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To let them know how upset DS was?

(134 Posts)
itsgoodtobehome Wed 21-Dec-16 14:49:49

DS4 is really good friends with a little girl who is also 4. We are good friends with the parents, and they do a lot together. As it's the school holidays, we had today arranged for me to take the 2 children out for lunch. DS was so excited and looking forward to it. Literally as we were getting ready to go (we had our coats and shoes on!) the little girl and her dad came over and said that she no longer wanted to go. She had changed her mind!. There wasn't much I could say really, so just said OK then. Well, after they had gone, all hell broke lose with DS. He was so upset and disappointed. Couldn't stop crying and said that he no longer wanted to go out anymore.

I'm really quite upset for him and also feel a bit angry that the parents just let the little girl just change her mind like that. If she was ill, or something else had happened, then fair enough. But surely we should be teaching our children that if they make a commitment to do something, then they should stick with it, and if they change plans, the they are letting other people down.

Anyway, they are coming round shortly to exchange presents. I really feel like I want to let them know how upset DS was, and that his day and treat were spoilt because of it. AIBU to do this, or should I just let it go?

ElfontheShelfIsWATCHINGYOUTOO Wed 21-Dec-16 14:53:09

I dont know op.

<wrings hands> I would be inclined if I could trust myself to get the point across without sounding harsh etc - just lightly mention it - I was in similar situ once, DD all dressed up to meet friend in park and literally last min text about car - ( had gone hours before in garage) having its mot fconfused very upset dd.

Can you say your ds has changed his mind about the presents!!! <childish>

CauliflowerSqueeze Wed 21-Dec-16 14:53:16

I think if they mention it you should say "DS has been terribly upset about this - he had been so excited".
If they don't mention it I don't think I would bother.

I agree they should have stuck to the plan. What a shame for DS sad

Elroya1 Wed 21-Dec-16 14:54:19

Are you really saying that a 4yo should remain firm on their 'commitment' to something (they most likely didn't arrange anyway, her parents did)? For all that is worth, I even bet it was her parents that cancelled for whoever know what reason and just didn't want to go into details. Sure, you can say your DS was upset, but do so in a joking manner, else it would not be a good idea.

CauliflowerSqueeze Wed 21-Dec-16 14:54:52

Actually I think the next time there's a plan I would reiterate "your dd isn't going to pull out is she? DS was terribly upset when this happened last time". Bloody hammer it home.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Wed 21-Dec-16 14:56:17

I would let it go graciously, but keep it in mind for the future.

BeingATinselTwatItsABingThing Wed 21-Dec-16 14:58:06

That's a shame for your DS but really? She is 4. 4 year olds change their minds. If she hadn't wanted to go, but had been forced to, she could have ruined it by being grumpy.

Maybe you need to think about ways to help your DS deal with this type of situation.

NotYoda Wed 21-Dec-16 14:58:56

It seems to me that you want the parents to make the girl more responsible for her actions. They might argue that you should try and teach your son to be more resilient. Neither of you is wrong. They are 4 year old children and I'd cut both sets of parents some slack.

BarbarianMum Wed 21-Dec-16 15:00:17

<<Are you really saying that a 4yo should remain firm on their 'commitment' to something (they most likely didn't arrange anyway, her parents did)?>>

Um, yes - of course. Unless you want them to grow up to treat people like shit.

OP - I'd do whatever makes your ds happiest today, and not make arrangements with them (only) again in the future because this will happen again.

mumtomaxwell Wed 21-Dec-16 15:04:06

Am I the only one who is absolutely stunned that a 4 year old has this kind of power over their parents??! My children are 8 & 4 - they certainly don't get to dictate what we do in this way!!!

Bluntness100 Wed 21-Dec-16 15:04:55

I would also let it go, and recognise there is a life lesson in here for your son too. On one side the girl changed her mind, she's only four and forcing her to go may have been problematic for you. On the other side, your son needs to learn to deal with these things, again he's only four, but plans change often with people and it's basically something we all learn to cope with.

So if one four year old should learn to meet commitments in your view, the other four year old should,learn to deal with disappointment. Fairs fair.

Or you could just say they are four an let it go.

TheIncredibleBookEatingManchot Wed 21-Dec-16 15:05:09

Playing devil's advocate...

There could have been a good reason for her not wanting to go at the last minute that the dad didn't want to go into ie a grandparent died suddenly or something traumatic happened to her.

NotYoda Wed 21-Dec-16 15:07:04


I'm not stunned. I think you can't change how someone parents. They may suffer the consequences of that later down the line, or there may be some issue with the girl we know nothing about the man did not want to mention.

All you can do is not let your child suffer for it (they will meet people who aren't as thoughtful as they should be), by making them more resilient. And by that, I mean comfort and then move on.

xStefx Wed 21-Dec-16 15:10:53

Let it go, but as Cauliflower says: Below

Actually I think the next time there's a plan I would reiterate "your dd isn't going to pull out is she? DS was terribly upset when this happened last time".

SantasJockstrap Wed 21-Dec-16 15:15:53

I would mention it. I wouldn't be able to help myself. Your little one has been upset and yes I would mention it, the child who let him down has to know the consequences of her actions

ilongforlustre Wed 21-Dec-16 15:26:11

Gosh. When mine were that age if I had cancelled every time they "changed their minds" we would never have gone anywhere!

Whatever happened to cheerfully ushering them out of the house, they enjoy it when they get there. Dangerous precedent if you ask me.

I know she's only 4 but I do think that learning to keep to arrangements even though you might suddenly not feel like it is a life skill worth learning... as illustrated by the parents!

ilongforlustre Wed 21-Dec-16 15:28:23


To answer your question...I don't think it would be out of line to mention how upset your DS was... he was wasn't he? I'd also be slower to arrange things next time, once bitten and all that.

dollydaydream114 Wed 21-Dec-16 15:31:11

Could they have fallen out somehow? Do you think it's possible your son (accidentally, of course) upset her or hurt her on a previous visit and they don't want to offend you by mentioning it? Four year olds can be really weird about that sort of thing, only suddenly mentioning at the last minute why they're worried/reluctant about things.

PurpleMinionMummy Wed 21-Dec-16 15:31:52

Yabu. It's frustrating but it's also life. Unless it's a regular occurrence let it go. Would you really want to be looking after a 4yo who doesn't want to be out with you anyway?

RubyWinterstorm Wed 21-Dec-16 15:32:15

I think it's a mistake to build up things too much for kids.

"Isn't it exciting! X is coming! We are all going out!! It will be so much fun! Yes! Aren't you excited?!"

Then they are all psyched up, and if something happens or it falls through, the kids are heartbroken.

Better not getting them too wound up in the first place.

Also, was DS day really spoiled? Could you not have taken him out yourself?

Kids this age are so easily distracted

BeckyAndTina Wed 21-Dec-16 15:32:32

I have had to do this several times when dd changed her mind because she was really anxious about the outing or visit. I would explain that her friend would be really disappointed but in spite of really wanting to go, she was also really anxious about it. And then she would be upset with herself for not going and letting her friend down.

Could something like this have happened to your DS's friend? Maybe something happened?

I would let them know your DS was disappointed, let it go, but bear in mind it might happen again when you make future arrangements.

allowlsthinkalot Wed 21-Dec-16 15:35:17

Dd has a friend like this. We arrange things, often initiated by her and then she decides she doesn't want to go. Her mum lets her do this. I eventually said something when it was dd's birthday and it looked like she was going to pull out.

Blossomdeary Wed 21-Dec-16 15:36:33

It's a pity he was upset, but I think you cannot take on your child's upset as your own and get into a difficult situation with the parents. The little girl probably got cold feet and I can understand that - she is only little. All you can do is mop up DS and carry on.

Atenco Wed 21-Dec-16 15:43:01

Actually I think the next time there's a plan I would reiterate "your dd isn't going to pull out is she? DS was terribly upset when this happened last time"

If she and/or her parents pull that stunt too often, she will end up with precious few invitations. Actions have consequences.

Jinxxx Wed 21-Dec-16 15:51:26

But you let him decide he didn't want to go out. If you expect the other four year old to get over herself and go out when she didn't fancy going, then surely you would tell your own son the same. If the principle is that once you commit to something you do it, you should have taken him out. I'm sure you would have had a good time and he'd have forgotten about the neighbour pretty quickly.

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