Me and OH are disagreeing on this so need others opinions.
My son is the 'cool' kid in the class (yr 5). It's a small church school and my son is a people person. He is the leader of the pack and all the kids love hI'm. .. he is very funny and charming. Thing is ... he is also selfish and can be nasty. If he decides he doesn't like someone the rest follow suit. It's never been too much of an issue although I have needed to talk to him a few times about the way he treats his friends.
There is a new girl in the class, a refugee. Her parents don't speak English and no one plays with her. She invited him to her party but he refused to gone. When I dug deeper it came out that no one is going and the whole class laughs at her because she is a 'baby' who still likes Paw Patrol and acts like she is 6. (She may have a learning difficulty, not sure, or maybe it's just because she is from a very different culture).
Anyway long story short I think we should force him to go, I tried to bribe him with a treat if he went but he is still refusing. I've tried explaining that he should do this nice thing for her but he is having none of it. He says it will ruin his image and the rest will mock him. I've explained that if he goes then others might follow bit nope. He is a naturally selfish person, always has been... something I am trying to work on. This is one of the reasons why I think he has to go, he needs to learn about being nice to others even when it doesn't benefit you. Another reason is because I was the outcast at school and knows how this little girl must feel.
My OH was the cool kid at school so has a different opunion. He says we shouldn't force it as it could be too embarrassing for my son ano may result in him being teased and loosing his 'cool' popularity.
So what do you all think? Do we force him to go or let him miss it? He burst into tears when I explained he might have to go. I don't want to hurt my son but surely there is a valuable life lesson for him to learn here about being nice to others.
You absolutely need to work on his empathy, social conscience and behaviour. I wouldn't force him though. He will blame the girl and resent her. Which could come out as bullying.
I think you are right and you sound very emotionally intelligent. I always felt I was the unpopular one and felt incredibly anxious about dd's party- worrying whether people would come and how awful it would be if they didn't. You will be teaching him valuable life lessons if you can get him to go with good grace and even to explain to his friends why it's the right thing to do. Good luck!
Erm... it sounds as though your DC is shaping up to be a bit of a bully...
Scared to be kind in case it ruins his cool credentials? Altering his peers' treatment of other children?
Hope I've read this wrong, sure he's a delight really...!
Goodness. I'd be really worried he is going to turn into a very nasty bully. I think you need to have consequences when he excludes people. And yes I'd make him bloody well go.
Wouldn't force him to go. You wouldn't force an adult to a party therefore less so a child who has less resources than adults to cope with this situation. It's a difficult situation though. I do empathise.
And most other parents won't find him charming and funny. They will be thinking he is arrogant and spoilt.
Your son sounds like he has some very narcissistic traits, which is very worrisome. He's the star, the charmer, but turns on anyone who doesn't fawn over him, and then uses his influence to make others turn on the "outcast." Yikes. Is he devoid of any compassion and true concern for others? As for the little girl, I honestly don't know what I would do, but I think you have a lot more to be concerned about other than this party.
He doesn't sound funny and charming at all! He sounds mean spirited and unkind 😔
Oooh this is a tricky one! I don't think you can actually force him to go, but he needs to be sat down, have a frank conversation about how disappointed you are in him, explain why the treatment of this poor girl is unacceptable. Follow it up with telling him you won't tolerate selfish behaviour and there will be consequences.
I would also make it clear that you will be chatting to his teacher to ensure there is nothing 'untoward' going on with his behaviour towards this girl. By that I mean being nasty, encouraging others to do so. Explain to the teacher what you know and say you are concerned for the treatment of this girl and explain her peers thoughts about her. I think he needs to know you will be chatting to the school and making them aware of his attitude.
Not sure if this helps. My son is autistic and often the 'outcast'. I think if this happened to my son (it often does), I would want parents to talk these steps. Being tolerant and inclusive is so important. If you chat to the school about these concerns, they may have a talk to the class about this vey matter.
I wish every parent were as tolerant and kind as you!! Good luck xx
Do kids really like him or are they scared of him. You are his mum and your assessment of him is brutal and paints him as a bully.
Your OH opinion is also awful - it makes it sound as if you status and standing is more important than empathy
It is a huge issue and one you need to address. Yes I think he should go I imagine his tears are still about him and not learning about his behaviour to others
Really really tough. I feel so sorry for that girl.
As for your son - these kids exist in every social group, and no he probably won't end up a nasty bully - he will simply remain the cool one. Believe me when I say that these people can and do remain that way fully into adulthood. And it's not necessarily a bad thing - it just is. I know someone who is like this, he is not a BAD person, people flock to him and he has a very good career and beautiful family. He is also very aware of his own social currency and can be quite "high school" about things like that. Gives the impression of casual nonchalance, but his persona is very finely crafted and he is very aware of the social hierarchy.
Back to your situation. I would be tempted to find another way to resolve this. The party may be a lost cause - maybe you could speak to/warn the parents about the potential turnout. Perhaps they can change their plans - a washout would be so sad for her.
And then could you get the teacher involved in some way of including her more in the classroom? A class project about her home country perhaps; more small group work where she will have more of a chance of participating/succeeding etc; a "getting to know you" project where pairs of students have to learn about another pair, and present the story to the class. Something like that?
Sounds like your son is shaping up to be a bully
Poor girl, I wouldn't make your son go, purely because I wouldn't want him there
Your dc may be a 'cool kid' but he's also gets his followers emulating him when he decides he doesn't like someone? That smacks of being unkind if not cruel, and verging on being the class bully to me.
While I wouldn't force him to go to the party I would be pulling him up pretty smartly over his other behaviour.
Seriously people, stop demonising this child. The "cool" types exist everywhere. It's not a sign of mental illness. At this age, it's very normal to exclude others. No it isn't pretty and the OP can try to mitigate it. But this will continue to exist in schools, universities, workplaces and families around the world. It just is.
And most other parents won't find him charming and funny. They will be thinking he is arrogant and spoilt.
Really doesn't sound like he is nice at all. You should deal with this.
Tough one for you - but you have him figured out. Kids don't naturally have a lot of empathy anyway so
It definitely a learned trait. He actually sounds insecure to me and very concerned about how people perceive him.
Activities which build empathy are Sunday school, A good drama group, scouts - that sort of thing. Does he do any of that?
Oh dear - this is upsetting and grim. Well done for acknowledging it and trying to address it
I think you should not make your son go, but you should sit him down and tell him about how you felt when you were the outcast at school, how sad it made you and how lonely you felt. Might make him more sympathetic towards the poor girl
Just a quick add on.
He hasn't been mean to this girl, he says no one is mean to her as the school is very strict on bullying. They just all avoid her and he says the girls in the class make comments behind her back about being a'baby'.
He just doesn't disagree with them but says no one says it in front of her.
He is very arrogant and yes I can see very narcissistic traits... something I am desperately trying to work on. I even make him do charity work. It's like he is a naturall selfish human.
I know other parents see his arrogance. He isn't Spoilt and I often speak to him about how lucky he is and how others aren't as fortunate as him.
He is a very nice and charming boy 90% of the time which is why he is pocular amongst the kids.
And yes I do worry that he might become a bully which is why I think that forcing him to do stuff like this might help.
I would be speeking to the other parents of invited children and saying how I hope their child is going to the party,and how it's important.maybe have a word with the school,they might encourage the friendships
Can you find anything about the country she has come from online (YouTUbe or similar) to show him what she has had to go through in her very short life?
Maybe then he will realise that he needs to be kind and help her. Maybe lay on the fact that if he is kind the others will follow just as they do when he is not so nice.
Thanks for the advice everyone... my heart breaks for this little girl.
My son says he doesn't want to be mean to her. But he says if he goes to this party he will be humiliated. Hevil loves being the popular kid and the thought that he may loose that is why he is frEckington out,
They just all avoid her and he says the girls in the class make comments behind her back about being a'baby'. He just doesn't disagree with them but says no one says it in front of her
This IS bullying. Poor girl.
I'm afraid your son is indeed behaving as a bully. He is not the cool kid, his behaviour is appalling. I'm sorry your OH can't see this. Time for a dressing down of them both?
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