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To call this father on his sons behaviour in the playgrounds?

(76 Posts)
Olympiathequeen Tue 04-Oct-16 12:44:06

Wondering if I was a bit pfb (despite not DS not being pfb)

DS (3) and I were waiting for the nursery doors to open when DS joined in the kids running around. Noticed another little boy doing karate type, punching moves near other kids. DS goes to him, looks a bit puzzled and did two copycat moves. Not physically touching. Then other kid actually starts making contact with DS so I called out... Hey you two, stop that.

DS turns and runs to me crying. DS is not a crier and only does it if he's actually hurt, so I knew the other kid punched him.

Dad just stood there. Didn't say anything to his kid who'd run off again. DS sobbing on my shoulder, so I said to him, you really need to say something because he's actually hurt DS.

Dad says 'they we fighting, (they weren't) and boys will be boys (wtaf) but called his kid over and nicely told him to say sorry, and be friends, so the kid hugged DS, said sorry and they held hands to go into nursery. Dad was fine about it.

I said thank you to boy and dad.

I know the boy was just playing and didn't mean any harm, and the dad really didn't think it was a big deal so ignored it. So was I being U to call him on it or should I have just ignored it all as there was no real nastiness involved?

VioletBam Tue 04-Oct-16 12:48:41

I'm with you but I've seen this a LOT in school playgrounds with parents of some boys watching like smile whilst their darling runs around getting boys in headlocks etc.

It's WEIRD! It's as though some parents think this is normal and fine and part of being a boy!

You were right to think wtf but sadly, you probably will see it again in some shape or form.

FlyingElbows Tue 04-Oct-16 12:55:01

Ywnbu but there is nothing you can say that will make Amy difference to people who think that is normal behaviour in male children and encourage it. We have the same issue with our neighbours and their done but he's 13 and built like a 16 year old. His step-father was in the garden positively encouraging the boy to hold a friend in a headlock under water in their large paddling pool the other day. I was absolutely horrified and it's the reason my 13 year old isn't allowed to play with him. My sin finds that physical "play" really upsetting because we just don't allow it. I can't get my head round people like that at all.

FlyingElbows Tue 04-Oct-16 12:55:58

"any" and "son". Bloody phone!

Amandahugandkisses Tue 04-Oct-16 12:56:16

Well you said your son was doing moves to the other boy, perhaps the Dad didn't see the whole scenario.
He was nice to get his son to apologise regardless though.

longdiling Tue 04-Oct-16 13:01:17

I wouldn't have made a point of ordering someone to tell their child off in those circumstances, no. Taking play fighting a bit too far is so common in kids that age. Your son didn't cry until you called out to him to stop so he obviously wasn't being badly hurt. They seemed to stop when you shouted over. That would have been good enough for me, I would have just assumed the father didn't see. Which, judging by his reaction is exactly what happened. If he really believed it's OK for boys to fight he probably wouldn't have told his child off.

I kind of think you made a mountain out of a molehill, sorry.

HeyNannyNanny Tue 04-Oct-16 13:01:53

Kinda sounds like a non event really - the kid was mucking about, yours joined in, one of them ended up hurt.
TBH I wouldn't have pushed for an apology, though had I witnessed it I would have made my child apologise for striking someone accidentally, if they hadn't done already.

I don't think you were being particularly PFB nor the Dad being negligent.

I'm going to go and mumble neutral vague-ities somewhere else now....grin

PrimalLass Tue 04-Oct-16 13:03:21

I think you were a bit pfb.

I knew the other kid punched him.

Or he was crying because you told him off.

Olympiathequeen Tue 04-Oct-16 13:03:43

He only put his arms out twice not really understanding the game and the dad was looking on (we all do as its near the parking circle so cars are about) but it could have looked like a play fight.

Yes, I think I'm going to have to get used to this boy stuff. I think I'm still furious because at soft play the week before a brother and sister cornered DS and we're kicking him. bastard soft play

flying that's horrific! Not all boys want to fight and dads seem more likely to encourage it sad.

DS is a gentle boy but won't be for long at this rate angry

ItsNiceItsDifferentItsUnusual Tue 04-Oct-16 13:05:19

Did you actually see the other child punch your ds, or just assume? It sounds likely he did so I can understand you thinking that, but unless I saw it and could be sure exactly what happened, I personally wouldn't have requested an apology.

Gottagetmoving Tue 04-Oct-16 13:05:54

You were right to being the Dad's attention to it but to be honest, your child is going to have lots of encounters like this. Boys play fight and often get hit.
Perhaps your DS was more upset at you shouting 'Hey, you two stop that' - He may have thought he was in trouble?
As pp said - a bit of a non event.

HeyNannyNanny Tue 04-Oct-16 13:08:23

a brother and sister cornered DS and we're kicking him

Now THAT I'd have been furious at

Olympiathequeen Tue 04-Oct-16 13:10:28

DS didn't cry because I told them off. I didn't. It was the usual 'don't do that' the voice that's usually ignored type of instruction.

DS did cry because he'd been hurt. Normally he would just run off an play with another kid. I was really shocked that he came over crying. He cries rarely and only if he's really hurt.

The way I saw it was, play fighting is fine, but it if spills over into actually hurting another child then the kid needs to be made aware that he's gone too far, and next time more play than fighting please.

I could have been really unreasonable and marched up and told the boy off myself, but I felt I'd handled it sensitively.

I know it's a difficult path to tread though.

longdiling Tue 04-Oct-16 13:10:31

Ha! Yes, well everybody's child is gentle and well behaved until Other People's Children corrupt them. They're bastards Other People's Children. We should all be glad we don't have them hey?!

Olympiathequeen Tue 04-Oct-16 13:12:07

nice. Yes I saw him make contact with DS when punching out but not the force. I was watching. I know he didn't intend to hurt but if I child is hurt surely it's up to the adults to say that went a little too far?

Olympiathequeen Tue 04-Oct-16 13:13:41

It wasn't actually an apology I was after. More that the child understood where the boundaries are.

chinlo Tue 04-Oct-16 13:15:50

Sounds fine to me. You know your son better than anyone else so if you believe he was hurt, you did the right thing. Marching up and telling the boy off would have been very unreasonable, but a word with his dad is fine. And it worked out, because the dad was very reasonable in getting his child to apologise, and everything turned out great.

brasty Tue 04-Oct-16 13:16:15

YANBU. Boys play fight either because they atre encouraged to see this as normal, or because it is the only way they can get physical affection.

TheLittleRedHen Tue 04-Oct-16 13:16:41

You can't really not intervene when your DS is copying the boy and then be shocked when one of them gets hurt regardless of how it was handled afterwards.

If you don't want your DS getting hurt by playing fighting, encourage him not to copy or to play like that.

Gottagetmoving Tue 04-Oct-16 13:19:15

Boys play fight either because they atre encouraged to see this as normal, or because it is the only way they can get physical affection

It is normal. Boys will play fight even if you tell them not to. Animals do it - boys do it..... Normal.

brasty Tue 04-Oct-16 13:22:27

Girls often don't do it. That is because it is not encouraged. If it is encouraged, girls do it too.

Olympiathequeen Tue 04-Oct-16 13:24:19

redhen. All children copy other children. As I said DS looked puzzled and clearly had no idea what this new 'game' was or how he should join in and literally waved his arms around no making any contact. So hardly fighting! He's also much smaller than the other boy.

The other boy was simply copying something he'd seen (maybe older brothers/ninja turtle film?) and actually wasn't trying to hurt DS. The fact that he did and could have hurt another child made me intervene. The boy had been doing this to other kids first but they'd moved off. DS is the youngest in the class so even more naive than them

ItsNiceItsDifferentItsUnusual Tue 04-Oct-16 13:25:41

Ok, I just wasn't clear from your Op whether you definitely saw it, or saw the events leading up to it.

I also don't subscribe to the view that boys are rough and therefore it's ok for dc to get hurt, but to be totally honest, unless I think another child has hurt mine in an intentional and malicious way - i.e. like the kicking you saw at soft play - I tend to let it go. But we're all different, and it's never nice seeing your dc get hurt.

KondosSecretJunkRoom Tue 04-Oct-16 13:25:46

Boys play fight either because they atre encouraged to see this as normal, or because it is the only way they can get physical affection

Oh, come off it. Children who are 3 play fight because they are little primates with hundreds of thousands of years of genetic conditioning to hunt and survive and it takes a little while for them to push past that and become civilised.

Longlost10 Tue 04-Oct-16 13:25:57

YABU to use the phrase "to call on", which is a way of setting your self up as superior and qualified to make judgments.

YABU to want to make more of an issue that has already been dealt with, and is finished

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