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To "tell off" a 6 year old who bumped into me

(139 Posts)
DoThisDoThat Fri 18-Sep-09 12:43:44

Oops, know I'll be flamed so sorry in advance to anyone offended.

I was bumped into at a restaurant by a six year old girl, I said, "oh sorry" and smiled and she just looked blankly at me. So I said, "now you're supposed to say sorry too". Again, just a blank look.

So I continued outside and she was outside so I said "when you bump into someone, you're supposed to say sorry, it's good manners". Again, just a blank look. I wasn't mean, I wasn't snappy, just neutral and I had my own 3 children with me, including the 1 year old who I was carrying when I was bumped into. So, just walked out to car park when the mother comes up to me, with the girl in tow and asked me if I'd told her daughter she had bad manners. I said, "no, I told her that apologising would be good manners". Anyway, I got a telling off for upsetting her daugther, who was "nearly crying". Now, I am a bit cross because, if that was me with my 6 year old, I'd ask him to apologise to the adult. As it was, I apologised to the little girl for upsetting her. Which I really am sorry about. But aibu to think the mum was being a bit precious?

rubyslippers Fri 18-Sep-09 12:45:58

i would have just said oopy daisy with a smile and walked off

i think you made an utter meal out of it

Romanarama Fri 18-Sep-09 12:47:44

Look after your own kids. Preachy people in the street are really annoying.

LadyGlencoraPalliser Fri 18-Sep-09 12:48:09

No the mum wasn't being a bit precious. But you were being a bit of a bully.

ChopsTheDuck Fri 18-Sep-09 12:48:46

YABU. I'd be rather irritated if you had spoken to one of my children like that, especially saying it again outside.

The girl could easily have jsut been shy, or been told not to speak to strangers. It's even possible she has sn and doesn't talk to strangers. ds still mostly blanks people he doesn't know and he is 7 now.

It's for the mother to teach her manners, not random strangers.

potplant Fri 18-Sep-09 12:48:51

To say it to her once is sort of OK, but to carry on at her is not.

Perhaps she has been told not to talk to strangers, perhaps she is very shy, perhaps she has never been taught manners.

You say that if it was your DS you would ask him to apologise, so presumably you don't expect him to do it off his own bat? Why do you expect this girl to do it?

FarkinBarkin Fri 18-Sep-09 12:48:58

Yes an apology would have been nice but certainly not worth upsetting a small child over.

Sorry but you should've left it and not continued with it outside.

nappyaddict Fri 18-Sep-09 12:49:45

I think you were BU. She could have been deaf or non-verbal or had some sort of SN where they don't really get social norms until much later than children usually would. I don't think it was necessary to start again outside after you'd already said something to her.

andirobobo Fri 18-Sep-09 12:50:02

Agree with other posters - a bit OTT

Biglips Fri 18-Sep-09 12:51:04


holdingittogether Fri 18-Sep-09 12:51:05

little girl may have been very shy and you are a total stranger. She has probably been told not to talk to strangers too. I would have been annoyed if another adult had made such a deal out of something so minor, though would have not said anything. You made a total mountain out of a mole hill tbh.

GrimmaTheNome Fri 18-Sep-09 12:51:29

Um. Some kids are just too shy to talk to a stranger. Some (regrettably) may have got the idea that they aren't supposed to say anything at all to a stranger.

I don't think either you or the other mum should have made an issue about it.

belgo Fri 18-Sep-09 12:51:31


I insist on good manners in my own children, but would have been really annoyed if someone did this to my child. She was six years old, and probably just shy. And you upset her over an accidental bump.

StayFrosty Fri 18-Sep-09 12:51:46

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DoThisDoThat Fri 18-Sep-09 12:52:11

Okay okay, you're right. Incidentally, I do know she was not sn as they'd been near us in the restaurant.

nappyaddict Fri 18-Sep-09 12:52:52

Or she could have selective mutism. DS has a friend who will only talk to his mum and no one else. Not even his dad.

junglist1 Fri 18-Sep-09 12:53:09

I'd say she was either shy, or maybe could've had special needs. If she was rude it would've been different

thesecondcoming Fri 18-Sep-09 12:53:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PuppyMonkey Fri 18-Sep-09 12:53:54

Sometimes "looking blankly" or not saying sorry is just shyness though. Especially in front of strangers.

My DD would have stood their looking blankly too if a stranger had spoken to her like that. She would have been been too shy to say sorry to a stranger. Or maybe she would say sorry, but her voice is so quiet that they might miss it.

She would have probably come and told me a stranger upset her and cried.

It's not rudeness, it's just being awkward and a bit wary around strangers. Some kids have that, others don't.

belgo Fri 18-Sep-09 12:54:10

You do not that some sn are not immediately obvious?

ANyway, she could just have been shy.

nappyaddict Fri 18-Sep-09 12:54:17

I'd love to know how you know she wasn't SN just by sitting near them in a restaurant hmm

Morloth Fri 18-Sep-09 12:55:10

The first time was fine, the outside stuff was OTT.

I get bumped into all the time by kids - it happens. I usually just say "Sorry Mate" and 80% of the time they say sorry and we continue, sometimes they don't but they are a kids and need some leeway for this stuff.

nappyaddict Fri 18-Sep-09 12:55:43

thesecondcoming SN kids can communicate you know

ChopsTheDuck Fri 18-Sep-09 12:56:09

wow, are you a psychic paediatrician?

GibbonInARibbon Fri 18-Sep-09 12:56:53

Think my DD would stare blankly at a stranger giving her a hard time in the street too.


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