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AIBU to demand that people treat my DS with respect

(182 Posts)
Whirlmeister Mon 26-Dec-16 16:32:34

AIBU to demand that people treat my DS (age 5) with the same respect they would treat any other human being, including things like asking his permission before using his things, allowing him to make choices for himself (even when those choices are going to cause him trouble), leaving him alone if he asks you not to touch him (even if they feel he needs a kiss or a hug), giving him privacy - all within the constraints that we don't allow him to place himself in danger, or step outside the limited rules we set down (like bed times, holding hands whilst crossing the road, coming when called etc.).

I get absolutely livid when certain people ignore his wishes, do things for him despite him wanting to do them for himself, hold him despite him asking to be put down or let go of, pick up and use his stuff without asking him, or walk into his room without at least knocking.

I feel like he's being treated without any respect, and it would be really obvious to them if he was a little older but for some reason they just can't see it with a 5 year old. My DP feels I'm overreacting...

Squirmy65ghyg Mon 26-Dec-16 16:37:01

What are the choices that would cause him trouble??

NavyandWhite Mon 26-Dec-16 16:37:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FlyingElbows Mon 26-Dec-16 16:38:38

Let me guess, your Mil?

QueenMortificado Mon 26-Dec-16 16:39:28


catgirl1976 Mon 26-Dec-16 16:41:44

Why would you knock before entering a 5 years old room? confused

Frusso Mon 26-Dec-16 16:43:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SpiritedLondon Mon 26-Dec-16 16:44:55

You are coming across as a bit intense actually so I can see why your DH might think you're over reacting. I can see how some people dismiss the " rights " of children to make their own decisions however children are generally not equipped to make decisions in the same informed way as adults. ( my view would depend on the decision... I wouldn't let a child choose to eat sweets and chocolate for dinner for example ). I think some of the other issues you have a point, like not touching someone if they don't want but I think knocking on the door is just weird sorry.

FATEdestiny Mon 26-Dec-16 16:45:02

I'd be interested to know how you'd get, say, a 3 year old younger sibling to adhere to all of these rules with his 5 year old brother.

Or indeed get your 5yo to adhere to then with a 7yo older sibling.

Sounds PFB to me.

I agree with the sentiment though. Good luck with that.

RichardBucket Mon 26-Dec-16 16:47:48

You're overreacting with some things, not others. Sometimes you'd never leave the house if you allowed a five-year-old to make all his choices, and children have to learn that they can't dictate everything.

But nobody should force him to hug or kiss, and people shouldn't use his things without asking.

harderandharder2breathe Mon 26-Dec-16 16:48:01

The theory is fine but there are times when a sensible adults needs to overrule a 5 year old

For example if he loads his plate with 17 potatoes at dinner, you say "have a few now, you can have more when youve eaten them if you still want to". Because it's polite not to take excessive amounts of something, because he likely won't eat half of what he wanted to take, and if he does he still can.

Of course he shouldn't be held, hugged, kissed against his wishes.

What stuff does a 5 year old have that adults use without asking unless they're trying to play with him?

Astro55 Mon 26-Dec-16 16:49:02

I'd agree with you - why pick up a child who doesn't want to be picked up - or assume he wants something he doesn't?

Some people are just rude

Trifleorbust Mon 26-Dec-16 16:49:11

Children do not need the same rights as adults. They generally need more care than adults and they generally require adults to intervene far more in their business to keep them safe. I am happy to leave children alone within reason if they don't want to play etc, but not to let them make their own choices when they are likely to cause trouble, because it is usually an adult who needs to clean up the trouble! YABU.

WorraLiberty Mon 26-Dec-16 16:52:34

Fuck me, you must be a complete joy on Parent's Evening grin

Chill out. Why all the anger and annoyance?

And who knocks on a 5 year old's bedroom door??

DixieWishbone Mon 26-Dec-16 16:54:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

glentherednosedbattleostrich Mon 26-Dec-16 16:56:54

Both sets of parents are terrible at respecting DDs boundaries. They demand kisses, hugs and that DD sit on their knee (not so much now she's massive but still demand she sits beside them and constantly pat and pet her). Mil has been known to start taking things out of DDs bag to look through without asking. I don't care if the person is 6 or 60 that's rude.

The irony is DDs favourite person in the family is stepmil. She takes time to talk to her, doesn't get in DDs face and loves nothing more than a nice walk and chat. I wish both my mother and dmil would respect DDs boundaries in the same way because then DD would enjoy time with them far more.

As for knocking on doors, letting them make their own choices, surely this is to be encouraged in an age appropriate way.

LindyHemming Mon 26-Dec-16 16:56:57

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Serialweightwatcher Mon 26-Dec-16 16:57:17

I'm thinking MIL too ..... usually someone a bit older of the 'children should be seen and not heard' variety who 'know' what the child wants/needs ... my MIL used to drive me potty when kids were little, ragging them about in her sweet controlling way ... your DH needs to speak up for his son if it's upsetting your son, but it's a difficult one without rocking the boat if it's just upsetting you

happychristmasbum Mon 26-Dec-16 16:58:07

I think we need more detail. Bet you all eleventy billion pounds there's a grandparent involved

glentherednosedbattleostrich Mon 26-Dec-16 16:58:42

Should have said, stepmil and fil are not well liked die to the divorce and how they handled the introduction and mil has never forgiven fil for moving on.

Enkopkaffetak Mon 26-Dec-16 17:00:23


Asking his permission before using his things, IMO this is a fluid thing. He has the right to have certain things out of bounds. If the using of his things in the past has left to excess breakage then you can reconsider this a bit. However I do not have all of my things as a " I have the right over everyone else" nor do I expect my children too. if you don't want someone else to use it you keep it out of their way.

Allowing him to make choices for himself (even when those choices are going to cause him trouble) Depends on context Like suggested up thread 17 potatoes on a plate would not be a correct choice and doesn't show considerations to others. This is where we parent. If he wishes to eat all of his chocolate in one sitting and not have anymore for rest of Christmas. As long as it is not liable to make him sick I would permit this.

Leaving him alone if he asks you not to touch him (even if they feel he needs a kiss or a hug) Utterly agree he needs to have that right and others should respect this.

Giving him privacy - Within social norms here. I agree he needs to be permitted to go to toilet on his own, Should be permitted to say he needs a bit of a time out in his room. However like the teenager who spend the day on his pc I would not permit this and would over rule. So all within context IMO.

So in short YABU and YANBU HTH fsmile

Trifleorbust Mon 26-Dec-16 17:01:47

I see absolutely no reason to knock on a 5 year old's bedroom door. They don't feel a need for privacy. What would they be doing that they would object to you seeing?

DollyPlastic Mon 26-Dec-16 17:02:04

Hahaha thanks OP.

lalalalyra Mon 26-Dec-16 17:04:09

I don't think you are being unreasonable.

The choices one depends. I wouldn't let a 5-year-old choose to eat 8 oranges and let them suffer the upset stomach. I think there are times when you have to stop children from making choices that will negatively impact them.

I do agree with the knocking, but that's because we do that as we expect the children to knock on our bedroom door. In this house if a bedroom door is closed it's because someone is doing something inside that they don't want walked in on (changing, studying etc) so you knock and wait.

Rummaging through her bag, again if you are teaching a child to respect other people's belongings then I think you need to respect theirs.

I think a lot of people show very, very little respect to children. It seems as if some folks things that being respectful to children automatically leads to demanding kids who always get their own way, but it doesn't.

CancellyMcChequeface Mon 26-Dec-16 17:05:30

YANBU and you are being a good parent by acknowledging and respecting his wishes as an individual wherever possible. Children can't have all the same rights as adults, but that's not a reason to deny them rights which they are capable of exercising safely. It's much easier to teach a child why others in the household should be entitled to privacy if you're respecting his right to it by knocking on his door, etc. (And that doesn't mean that you as a parent can't go in without permission if you think there's a safety or other risk, just that respecting privacy is the default).

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