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Differing views on disciplining toddlers...HELP

(15 Posts)
jinnie1970 Tue 31-May-11 12:39:26

We are about to go on hols with my BIL and their 3 children under 5. We also have 2 children aged 2 and 3. All the children are very familiar with each other and see one another regularly. The last couple of holidays that we've had together have been exhausting for my husband and I as the children have fought over toys, have snatched things from one another then hit in retaliation etc etc.

We do not allow our children to behave like this so when they do snatch other childrens toys they are made to say sorry, give cuddles etc but my BIL and his wife do not see their childrens behaviour as being wrong. They turn a blind eye to it and even make a joke of it being 'survival of the fittest'! Thier children never make eye contact with us and it's upsetting. They must just see us as people who tell them off and sadly that's pretty much what we are.

What do I do? Please has anyone any experience of this sort of situation?

supercal Tue 31-May-11 12:54:03

Well it's too late now because you're committed, but if the last few holidays en mass have been tiring and stressful, why are you going back for me?

I sympathise. I have had to have a talk with a friend recently about her child's appallingly aggressive behaviour. She said she is of the belief that children should be allowed to sort things out for themselves hmm I am of the belief that six year olds should not be trying to wrestle 1 year olds or kicking smaller children in the face. Anyhoo - I have stopped seeing this child if possible and had a talk with her mother. I said that her DD has to understand and respect my boundaries when 'playing', and my friend said I was welcome to tell her DD off and that she was comfortable with me doing so.

That is the compromise we reached. it is not ideal, but you can't go changing how other people parent, you can only change how you respond to it.

supercal Tue 31-May-11 12:54:45

Gah, should be why are going back for MORE.
Don't come back for me. Please grin

jinnie1970 Tue 31-May-11 13:07:01

thanks for your advice supercal and you're dead right in asking why on earth are we going back for more and the reason is that it was booked a few montsh ago when things weren't quite this bad.
It just annoys the hell out of me that they can both sit there tapping away on their phones when their children are being like this. I'm going to address this before we go away so we can reach some sort of agreement. I know they'll say they haven't got a problem with us telling their kids off for unreasonable behaviour but it shouldn't just be down to my husband and I and that's what really gets my goat.

MoonFaceMamaaaaargh Tue 31-May-11 14:11:17

You clearly think you are right. And they clearly think they are. Or they don't care. Either way you aren't likely to change their mind. Are you likely to change yours? If not i would seriously reconsider going, or try and get away from them as much as possible! Maybe read up on other styles of parenting so you can see where they are coming from? I don't think it's particularly fair on anyone for you to be disciplining their kids tbh. Gah. You have my sympathy as it sounds like a horrid situation.

JamieAgain Tue 31-May-11 17:48:48

Not going on holiday with people whose approaches are very different? It's soooo stressful.

JamieAgain Tue 31-May-11 17:49:28

Sorry not helpful

mrsravelstein Tue 31-May-11 17:51:32

it's hard enough spending a whole day with people who have such differing views on childcare, let alone going on holiday with them!

JamieAgain Tue 31-May-11 18:00:51

I think the only way to cope is to go off and do your own thing as much as possible.

holyShmoley Tue 31-May-11 20:39:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

skybluepearl Wed 01-Jun-11 08:41:35

what works with mine?

taking turns and using the word turn a lot. and i mean constantly til it sunk in. telling children to let xxxx finish his turn and its your turn next if one wants a toy. letting child play quite a long time until they have finished thier turn but reminding other child it is thier turn next. getting them to say the word 'turn' or ideally even 'turn please'. if toy is stolen give it back to child who had it first. tell thief to wait for thier turn. don't make too much of a fuss but you may have watch carefully and encourage them to use taking turns. Do catch them taking turns and praise them.

get your own kids doing this so that when you met up with relatives it's already second nature to them.

when they are older they can all say 'please can i have a turn when you are finished' or getting child with a toy to say to others 'you can have a turn when i am finished'.

hitting is an easy one. simply say 'no hitting' then silently/calmly put the hitter in time out on naughty step/in a quiet room for XX amount of time. Do this every time they use violence and don't give any warnings, just time out straight away. ignore while actually in timeout and after quickly explain why they were in time out - then change subject.

try to give attention for great behaviour and withdraw attention for bad behaviour. this doesn't mean leaving kids to fight everything out though like you relatives.

MoonFaceMamaaaaargh Wed 01-Jun-11 08:50:28

sky blue are you suggesting that the op does this with someone elses dc's. I'm unsure from your post.

skybluepearl Wed 01-Jun-11 17:29:45

hiya. i think the turn taking would be easy to follow through with relatives kids and own children. time out you could do with your own but i think if you wanted to do it with relatives then maybe you could chat to sister first. tell her you want all kids hitting to stop and you would like to try and tackle it using time out. saying that my friends and i time each others kids out but we both use the same discipline methods and trust eachother to be fair. if time out for relatives kids is a no no - you can always firmly move hitter on to different activity.

MoonFaceMamaaaaargh Wed 01-Jun-11 18:43:55

but i'm not sure that answers the op's question (not to make you solely responsible for that skyblue! And the op seems to have disappeared anyway so the point may be moot smile ) as i understand it she already is disciplining the IL's kids (sorry, i could have said this last post, wasn't thinking properly) and that's whats annoying her.

I don't think it's fair on her to feel responsible for all of them. I don't think it's fair on the IL's who may feel trampled on or have differing views on discipline. And i certainly don't think it's fair on the kids to be told off for stuff they wouldn't normaly, in a way they wouldn't normally, by someone who doesn't normally do that!

skybluepearl Wed 01-Jun-11 21:08:35

agree moon it doesn't seem fair on poster and her kids at all. Its such a shame that relative is so uninterested in keeping her kids on straight and narrow. my parents had a free fall parenting style too and it really was the survival of the fittest - which meant that i ended up getting badly hurt a lot. i think all poster can really do is look out for her own kids and intervene to make sure her own kids take turns and don't hit.

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