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To think you shouldn't find your child taking a snail and deliberately stomping on it very funny at all?

(73 Posts)
OstentatiousBreastfeeder Wed 23-Sep-15 12:10:40

A friend texted me earlier apparently in stitches because her son had found a snail, thought it was dead and showed it to her. It turned out to be alive after all, so he took it up the garden, stomped on it three times and shouted 'its dead now!"

She then filmed him standing next to the poor squished thing and asked him what he had done, then sent the video to me with lots of lols, crying-laughing emoticons and 'he's so cute'. I didn't really share the humour.

She's now accusing me of being oversensitive and weird, because it's 'just a snail.'

Its less to do with a snail being squashed (though I do rescue them from paths blush) than it is her finding it hilarious, to be honest. She's told me to speak to her when I find a sense of humour and lighten up a bit.

Not really sure I want to lighten up if it means finding children being unnecessarily cruel hilariously funny.

I should add that her son is 3, and (imo) old enough to be told about and then somewhat understand the rights and wrongs of hurting other living things.

So am I being weird and sensitive? Or is this something worth being hmm about? Would you laugh along?

WorraLiberty Wed 23-Sep-15 12:13:19

God no, that's not funny at all.

I've a feeling that sort of attitude will come back to bite her when the child is older.

Scobberlotcher Wed 23-Sep-15 12:14:18


my eldest did something similar when he was younger and I hit the roof.

It's not funny to kill living creatures. I don't care that it's 'only' a snail. To stamp on it because it's funny is not something that should be tolerated. That's what I was so furious about when my lad did it. He killed it because it amused him to do so.

Gileswithachainsaw Wed 23-Sep-15 12:14:57

Not funny at all. I would punish that behaviour not laugh and encourage it

TenForward82 Wed 23-Sep-15 12:15:27

Raising a psychopath. Nice.

Babyroobs Wed 23-Sep-15 12:15:38

YANBU- I feel awful if I accidently tread on one when walking the dog in the dark. I know they are a pest but it still doesn't sit right with me to encourage a child to take pleasure from harming another creature that is doing no real harm.

SirChenjin Wed 23-Sep-15 12:17:31

No, it's not funny in the slightest and she's certainly not someone I'd want to be friends with.

Tell her you have an excellent well-developed sense of humour which is why you're able to spot something which isn't funny from a mile off.

LaContessaDiPlump Wed 23-Sep-15 12:19:31

I'd be horrified. I'm soft-hearted vegan though.

We have a corner of our garden to which snails are repatriated and the children are under strict instructions to NEVER kill anything that's not hurting you. I've been actively taken aback at the way one of DS's friends behaved, when I found a ladybird to show them and he tried to hit it.

Any attitude that starts with 'it's only a snail' is the nascent version of 'it's only a dog', 'it's only a child', 'it's only a woman', 'it's only a foreigner' etc. I fear such attitudes.

LisbethSalandersLaptop Wed 23-Sep-15 12:19:31

no it is not funny at all.
Not wishing to sound hysterical but I would be v concerned about a small child doing this.
Sounds like a psychopath in training tbh.
Encouraged by his mother.

MTPurse Wed 23-Sep-15 12:19:45

YANBU, it is far from funny. She is setting him up to be a wonderful child.

BarbarianMum Wed 23-Sep-15 12:21:20

YANBU - it is the sort of thing children do and then you teach them not to. I wouldn't punish the first time - I'd explain why it was wrong and tell them how amazing snails/spiders/ladybirds/whatever the creature was are.

CabbageOfShame Wed 23-Sep-15 12:22:00

Not funny at all. Poor snail sad

Binkybix Wed 23-Sep-15 12:22:32

I'd be shocked and horrified if mine did this!

claraschu Wed 23-Sep-15 12:25:28

I think it is horrible to encourage children to take pleasure in killing any living thing. That includes fish.

It is very easy for parents to encourage this ugly callous behaviour and also VERY easy to encourage the opposite: caring for and protecting all living things. Yes I am a vegetarian, almost vegan.

I make an exception for mosquitoes and lice. Maybe that makes me a hypocrite.

Hoppinggreen Wed 23-Sep-15 12:27:13

The rule in our house is that if you kill it you eat it.

Sighing Wed 23-Sep-15 12:29:01

Mosquitoes and lice will essentially eat you. So killing them is more of a self defence thing.
YANBU. Killing something does happen (food, accidents in cars), but shouldn't be a joke!

yeOldeTrout Wed 23-Sep-15 12:29:34

Considering all the gleeful spider killing threads on MN, this thread is confusing.

I could not rise to caring about the fate of a snail. I just chucked a lot of sawfly larvae off my raspberries. And smashed them with a brick. Anybody want to speak up for the poor wee fly larvae?

experiencedhider Wed 23-Sep-15 12:30:45

Yanbu. Agree with pp - thus is a situation where you make it clear behaviour is unacceptable. My DS is 3 and is well aware(because I go on about it a bitblush) that we don't squish things.

DoJo Wed 23-Sep-15 12:31:39

Nothing funny about it, and if your friends thinks your problem is a lack of sense of humour then she is seriously misguided. Hurting animals for no reason is stupidly cruel and thoroughly unpleasant and I cannot imagine why anyone would encourage their child to exhibit such traits.

LisbethSalandersLaptop Wed 23-Sep-15 12:32:17

that is not really the point yeoldetrout.
What is weird here is the mother encouraging her lad to kill and maim living creatures. OK this time it was 'only a snail', next time perhaps 'only a mouse' then what? 'only a kitten?'

ThisFenceIsComfy Wed 23-Sep-15 12:33:03

I don't like the spider killing threads either though.

My DS, also 3, is under no allusions that I do not find standing on snails, slugs, ants, beetles funny. I don't let him chase pigeons either. If he goes to stamp on an ant, I explain that the ant is just tiny and not doing anything to him so leave it alone.

BarbarianMum Wed 23-Sep-15 12:34:36

yeOldeTrout I assume you were doing that to protect the raspberries, not for a laugh.

If you kill living things for fun then I suggest you don't tell people.

DoJo Wed 23-Sep-15 12:34:37

Considering all the gleeful spider killing threads on MN, this thread is confusing.

In what way? I'm guessing most of the people who find it unamusing to kill a snail would not advocate killing a spider either - different people, different threads, different responses....

Scobberlotcher Wed 23-Sep-15 12:35:49

If someone killed a spider because they enjoyed it and thought it was funny, that would also be wrong.

It isn't right to get pleasure from killing anything. It's the enjoyment that's wrong, imo. your reason for doing something makes a difference.

You had some sort of bugs on your fruit. Fruit I assume you eat. Removing bugs therefore a necessity? Before they eat your fruit? You killed them. Fair enough.

If you'd gone out with a brick to smash maggots because you enjoyed it and it was fun for you- that would be, well, creepy, frankly, at your age grin

MaidOfStars Wed 23-Sep-15 12:36:35

The rule in our house is that if you kill it you eat it

Fabulous, love it. But even accidental deaths?

OP, it's not funny at all.

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