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What do you do if one child is grounded but other isn't?

(252 Posts)
Fullofregrets33 Sun 03-Mar-19 08:00:56

Morning. I am having a really rubbish weekend. My husband has grounded our son who is 7 for the weekend he has to play in his room and can't join us on visiting relatives, going the park, out for lunch etc.

Aibu to be really pissed off about this? Our kids are still young and I'm still getting to grips about what I think are suitable punishments for things. I think my husband has been too harsh this time and it has really spoilt our whole weekend as a family.

My husband and I have fallen out over it and aren't speaking to theres a horrible atmosphere in the house, the dog is crying and pacing up and down constantly because my son is his playmate and they are separated.
My daughter now has noone to play with so she's playing up. We usually see grandparents, just me and daughter went so they were upset to not see my son. And now got another day of it. One parent staying home whilst the other takes daughter out.
It has made the family really disjointed and the weekend has been just horrible. I feel like all of us are being punished, not just my son.
My husband and I disagree over almost everything, and I am far too soft but I just want this weekend to be over

canadianbanana Tue 05-Mar-19 05:11:13

StinkyCandle - I’ve run a home daycare for many years and have seen many parents, children and punishments. Grounding is a ridiculous punishment, and rarely works. Discipline should be about teaching children, not punishing. Kids who are told/taught WHAT they are doing wrong and WHY learn self control and to behave appropriately. Children who are punished learn how far they can push before punishment is meted out. They learn to manipulate and they learn which parents cave. Grounding is not a way to reach children to behave.

Idonotlikeyoudonaldtrump Mon 04-Mar-19 23:31:31

the punishment inspite of what’s said isn’t actually that bad his sat in his room with his tv etc comes down for 3 meals a day - mine do that on a normal day people only see it as bad because it’s “punishment”

Blimey loz85 ... I see it as very bad, that it’s the norm for your children. Very bad indeed.

ToffeeCake1 Mon 04-Mar-19 23:30:57

Slightly confused! (Childless so genuinely looking for a response/explanation). I saw a post a few days ago similar to this (was in the newsletter) where the dad didn’t agree with the mums punishment. The whole thread was about how he had undermined her basically. What makes this different? Why is she not undermining him? (Once again looking for a general answer)

musketeersmama Mon 04-Mar-19 22:40:15

I have an 8year old DS and am utterly appalled at this punishment and agree with others that it is tantamount to abuse. I couldn’t stand by and let my DH bully my child in this way.

Advocate for your child. I feel very very sad for him reading your comments.

squeekums Mon 04-Mar-19 22:38:05

wow did your dh catch him dealing crack or something?

Too harsh and like LynetteScavo i think its hitting a dangerous territory of abusive.

At 7 he probably wont even remember why he is being so harshly punished. Poor kid

dutysuite Mon 04-Mar-19 22:02:36

If he can't deal with being in a class room all day how will being confined to a room all day help with matters? I think the punishment is too harsh. Perhaps I feel this way because my father was a bully and he would confine me to my room for a week at a time including all day weekends. He would take out the lightbulb in my room so in the winter I couldn't do my homework because I didn't finish school until 5pm and by then my room was too dark. I would only get a school meal during these periods. This gave me terrible anger issues growing up and my school work suffered. I have never forgotten how I felt during this time especially because usually I hadn't actually misbehaved! I would no way tolerate my husband treating my children like this, it is mental and emotional abuse in my view.

WhatFreshHell Mon 04-Mar-19 21:47:30

Thank you for clarifying, @jwpetal. My own experience suggests that there's more to be concerned about in this sort of situation than a child being in physical danger. I would argue, from my own experience, that psychological damage is equally problematic. However, every situation is of course different, and I wouldn't want you to think that my comments are a reflection on your particular situation. They are, of course, based on my own experiences of living with a man who used punishment as a way to abuse his children (he possibly couldn't help it, as he was also badly parented. But still.)

jwpetal Mon 04-Mar-19 21:36:20

@WhatFreshHell I was that person doing extensive punishment. 6 years with CAMHS and marriage counselling makes a difference. Of course, a parent must step in if the child is in danger, but this one instance the punishment was extreme but did not put the said child in physical danger We also do not know the full back ground so my response was to 1. avoid asking for more details and 2. support the parent who was asking the question.

Bailey6 Mon 04-Mar-19 21:13:15

@floatingthroughspace and @zen1 totally agree with you both. It is best to get a good private Ed psych involved. Remember that the nhs is over stretched and so is CAMhs. Things take so long to get seen to and you will be so much better off going private. Our area seems to be running a course called mellow parenting, not really looked into it but saw it today. If you can start earlier pushing for things and also asking what are the school doing?? The school senco? They have a duty of care and should not be labelling a child as “naughty”.....they know he has underlying issues as well as a stressful environment at home. It’s a cycle. You and DH could pay for some parenting courses to go on together and it may help you both.
It doesn’t sound like you are in a good relationship and not “allowing” you to work, “being the boss” does indicate controlling and coercive behaviour. I hope you find a solution and some help.

Waveysnail Mon 04-Mar-19 21:09:46

My 7 yr old frequently bullied a child at school. A week of staying in his room afterschool, no electronics or tv and for the weekend worked wonders - he stopped bullying behaviour. He still refers to it now as it's stuck with him how miserable it was.

parry45 Mon 04-Mar-19 21:06:15

I've posted on another thread a few weeks back about my ds punishments from his dad. He was on isolation in his room for 2 weeks and banned from all electronics for 2 weeks. He was also banned from seeing me and any contact(his mum) for 2 weeks! I know it's difficult as you live with him and when someone is coersively controlling it's scary to stand up to them. But for your dc sakes please don't let this happen again, you say your soft but that doesn't make you abusive! Abusive is these harsh and controlling bullies. I hope that things are okay.

IncrediblySadToo Mon 04-Mar-19 20:53:04

You have two issues.

Your DH is a controlling bully. You would ALL be better off without him in your lives.

Your DS needs help, not punishment. Professional help. Go private.

Catsinthecupboard Mon 04-Mar-19 20:34:32

The punishment was far too harsh and not age appropriate.

Your husband should listen to you and punishments need to be reasonable and agreed upon.

If your marriage is difficult, please seek help, bc your husband needs parenting lessons.

Lillyringlet Mon 04-Mar-19 19:55:29

I would watch www.ted.com/talks/ken_robinson_says_schools_kill_creativity/up-next?language=en

There is a story about a young girl who is exactly this - the parents ask to assess for adhd but the doctor does something else. He turns on the music and makes them leave the room.

"your daughter isn't sick - she's a dancer" and she went on to be a famous dancer.

It might just be that a traditional school setting and career will not work for him. I know both myself and my husband struggled at school because we were ahead of the class so got bored. It was only me going to an advanced school (and even then hung out with the geeky kids) that I found my way.

I want naughty in the traditional sense but I did annoy the teachers asking for more or pulling out homework for other classes when I had finished. My husband however did act out, skipped class and did all sorts of crazy behaviour as he was bored and they wouldn't do anything about it.

It might be worth investigating what is causing this or ways to help keep his concentration.

I know stimming and doodling helps me focus. Stimming is spinning stuff so those fidget spinners for example (though I had a bracelet with all different feeling beads to keep it interesting) or encourage doodles. Talk to the school about both. He might not be adhd but dyslexic. Or he might be suited for a more hands on way of learning to keep him focused until he can learn the skills better or his own ways of focus.

Praise when he is quiet and talk to him about how he can focus more and what works for him.

I'm glad you put your foot down about an over the top punishment. It won't work as you aren't dealing with the route cause so will only encourage more lies.

expatinspain Mon 04-Mar-19 19:41:14

Grounding is for teens, surely? It's a strange punishment for a child who wouldn't be able to go out alone and basically punishes the whole family. Missing a trip to the cinema or to play football something like that, fine, but this is the wrong punishment for this age and is lasting too long.

WhatFreshHell Mon 04-Mar-19 19:37:13

@Loz85 his sat in his room with his tv etc comes down for 3 meals a day - mine do that on a normal day people only see it as bad because it’s “punishment”

Are your DC 7 or so? If so, and completely leaving aside the 'punishment' issue, I would indeed see it as bad. In fact, I can only imagine you are talking about 15 yr olds (and even then, it wouldn't be great).

@jwpetal You have evidently never lived with someone who imposes OTT and harmful punishments on children. I completely agree in principle that parents need to back one another up - but at some point, you have to acknowledge that there is something very seriously amiss and that what one parent regards as 'discipline' is in fact abusive and damaging behaviour. At that point, you have to protect your child.

Mumoflove Mon 04-Mar-19 19:25:54

I can relate to your post in the sense that my husband wants to impose severe punishments like take away their laptop for a whole weekend etc and it has caused huge arguments between us and to be honest lately if I think it’s unreasonable I don’t enforce it. I tell him off and it’s really awful, I’ve lost count of the times we’ve had arguments

jwpetal Mon 04-Mar-19 19:09:05

A whole weekend is quite severe for a 7 year old. We try to find things that will not hurt the rest of the family. We have the rule that if a one of us makes a punishment, the other follows, even if we don't agree. Also, we try to follow the rule that the punishment should not punish the whole family. Though we have both slipped up in the heat of the battle.
A conversation with your husband,away from the kids should happen. Splitting the family for something is not always a bad solution. Just 2 days is very difficult.

I have a daughter with behaviour issues and I set up the guidelines for the day. If all do x,y,z, then we will go swimming and have a treat. Whoever chooses not to do x,y,z then they will stay home with one of the adults with no playing. This usually works.

Kingston74 Mon 04-Mar-19 19:06:17

Your husband sounds like a control freak. You have to say to him, that you're sorry but you just don't agree with his punishment and that there are 2 parents in your family and that the grounding is too harsh and doesn't stand.

Devora13 Mon 04-Mar-19 19:02:23

Just read some more of your comments. This certainly doesn't sound like 'just naughtiness' (if there really is such a thing). I'd wonder to start with whether there were complications with your pregnancy or birth, post birth illness for either of you, or any traumatic events since, domestic abuse etc? Any of these things (and others) can result in trauma which will impact of behaviour.

Marianb Mon 04-Mar-19 19:00:42

Wow sounds like a struggle for your whole family. Im reading the situation as your son has a behavioural issue that you need help and support with. Husband has reached the end of his tether (not abusive) and you're just a bit more patient but lost. Well done first of all. School should be more understanding with this. Surely they know his behaviour is not the norm or they wouldn't be calling you up to school. They should keep a record of the times and notes from your meetings. Ask for them and get back to your Dr, camhs and dont take no for an answer. They are failing your boy and your family.

busymomtoone Mon 04-Mar-19 19:00:03

This isn’t an appropriate or effective punishment in any way for a 7 year old and I think the school would be horrified. Not least because your child will go into school like a coiled spring on Monday for lack of stimulation/ company/ fresh air. Frankly it sounds like your husband just wants to remove your son (“ the problem”) from sight, and teach you “ not to be so soft”. Bring the school in on what might actually work, find out why the behaviour is repeating itself and show your son some kindness/ respect- this is a draconian Victorian style punishment for such a young child. Your husband will have him cleaning chimneys next!!!

loz85 Mon 04-Mar-19 18:58:15

Make it clear it wouldn’t be happening* ignore to said child I’d initially written something else and
Didn’t delete properly

loz85 Mon 04-Mar-19 18:56:49

Not gonna pass judgement on your relationship - nobodies is perfect though I do believe posting multiple posts about said relationship showing the bad is going to bring a lot of judgment. I feel sorry for your son if I’m honest - the punishment inspite of what’s said isn’t actually that bad his sat in his room with his tv etc comes down for 3 meals a day - mine do that on a normal day people only see it as bad because it’s “punishment” you and dad are both at fault here! You for being too soft him for being too harsh if you can’t both agree on suitable punishments and both back each other
Then you may as well forget punishment all together because it won’t work if you aren’t on the same page. As for keeping him in his room for 2 days if I didn’t like a punishment given to one of mine id make it
Very clear to said child it wouldn’t be happening it really is that simple. I learned the hard way what happens when 2 parents don’t agree when it comes to punishment - children quickly realise and use it to their advantage playing one against the other

Devora13 Mon 04-Mar-19 18:50:12

Join the National Association of Therapeutic Parents, get your husband educated on why consequences need to be natural or logical or they'll have no effect. Something he keeps doing at school is intriguing too. Behaviour is a way children use to communicate.

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