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Inappropriate language ...

(46 Posts)
imtheonlyone Sat 27-Oct-12 13:19:09

Hi, we live on a smallish estate and the houses are relatively new. There is a small park that is maintained by the estate and its only a few yards down the road and can be seen from our house. Consequently, we allow DSs (7,7,4 and 3) to play there as long as they tell us at all times where they are and that the older ones are in charge of the younger ones. We watch from the house/garden when they are there. Whether this is right or wrong is possibly for another thread .... I'm sure there are some who would think this is not acceptable but all the children from the estate seem to play there and most of them can't se the park from their house like we can!

Thing is there is a boy who plays out with them and I'm not entirely sure how old he is but he's always around and can't be more than 8. He swears. A lot. Mostly telling the older girls who play in the park to 'fuck off' very loudly! I'm not really ready for my eldest at 7 to be this exposed to the f word and for them to start and bring it home (which they haven't yet I guess only a matter of time) but most especially the younger ones and I'm quite perturbed that this young boy is using this language so freely when he's out and about. Whilst I accept its a part of this world, I'm not really very happy with my boys hanging round with this lad and have told them as such. But this lad spent give up and won't leave them alone!

I was thinking of knocking on his parents door and just saying 'do you realise that your lad uses the f word and swears a lot etc ' - in a very non confrontable way to gauge their reaction??? Obviously if they tell me to fuck off then I have my answer!! I know I'm not the only one on the estate who has a problem with this boy as others have mentioned it to me - boys who play out with mine too and are a year younger!

What would you do?? And any advice/tips???

Thanks!

ZuleikaD Sat 27-Oct-12 14:25:04

I would assume that he hears it at home and that anything you say would be seen as unwarranted interference. You may just have to accept that your children are going to hear it if they are going to play in this playground and you'll need to teach them that it's not acceptable language for them to use at home. They will probably start, though.

Wolfiefan Sat 27-Oct-12 14:28:28

Go to the park with them and keep them away from this kid. Perhaps ask him to curb it if he swears at your kids but otherwise I think I'd stay well clear.

moleskin Sat 27-Oct-12 15:14:28

We can see the park from my house but I def would not let my 8 yr old take my 3 yr old there without me!

Anyway, I don't think you can grumble about what they're being exposed to if you're not their to supervise especially the younger ones

MrsCantSayAnything Sat 27-Oct-12 15:49:23

Again....you shouldn't be allowing at the least the tiny ones out there. I can understand you letting the 7 year old's but the tinies? NO way. You say you watch them....but do you keep your eyes trained on them the WHOLE time they are there? Doubt it. Takes seconds for someone to grab a child...or for a child to run off.

The 7 year olds are barely old enough to watch out for themselves and they should not be in charge of tiny kids. You should take the little ones over yourself and sit on the bench.

As for the swearing boy....no...don't knock on the door...his parents probably know all about him and either won't give a flying you know what or they'll be agressive to you for having a "go".

Explain to your older boys that they need to avoid this boy and his swearing is not on at all. They will more than likely encounter all this at school by the sound of it.

MmeLindor Sat 27-Oct-12 15:54:42

I'd let the older ones take the little ones to the park (but I realise that I am going to be in the minority on MN).

I would be wary of speaking to the boy's parents, tbh. Do you know them at all?

Sit down and have a chat with your DC. Talk to them about swear words being inappropriate.

I talk about there being no 'bad words' and 'good words' just inappropriate usage of these words. So a child saying 'fuck' is inappropriate, as is an adult saying it at work or in church. Or to their granny!

You are not going to able to stop them using these words, but you can make them think about when they use them.

MrsCantSayAnything Sat 27-Oct-12 15:55:51

Don't people think that 3 year old's are too small? Mine at 3 was a total mare and would fall over, hassle people and wander off.

MmeLindor Sat 27-Oct-12 15:58:58

MrsCant
I used to let my DC out in the courtyard in front of our house when they were 3yo. I could see them from the house and there were often other kids out playing too.

My DC take their cousin over to a nearby grassy area to play. They are 8 and 10yo and she is 3yo.

It depends on the children, I would say.

moleskin Sat 27-Oct-12 15:59:02

My 3 yr old would be scared without me!! Would talk to strangers (as would my 8 yr old still!) , would tread in dog poo, pick up unsavory objects and generally be a nuisance!

LoopyLoopsOlympicHoops Sat 27-Oct-12 16:00:29

So, you can't be bothered to look after your kids but instead you will go and tell other parents that their child is not behaving how you want? No. You go to the park and speak to the boy yourself if he swears in earshot. Or you allow them to go and accept that you can't control what happens when they are there.

MmeLindor Sat 27-Oct-12 16:02:30

Loopy
That is unfair. The park is a few yards from the OP's house and can be seen from the house.

We have got to let kids out to play. They have to gain in confidence, and this is a good, safe way of doing this.

LoopyLoopsOlympicHoops Sat 27-Oct-12 16:04:23

No, MmeLindt, you miss my point. OP is perfectly within her rights to allow her kids out to play, but she cannot expect other people's children to abide by her rules if she isn't there to oversee.

MmeLindor Sat 27-Oct-12 16:15:26

Ah, ok. I see what you mean. Yes, I concede that point but the 'you can't be bothered' was a bit inflammatory.

moleskin Sat 27-Oct-12 16:15:42

Agree with loopy I'm afraid

LoopyLoopsOlympicHoops Sat 27-Oct-12 16:19:57

Inflammatory, maybe. Honest, yes.

MrsCantSayAnything Sat 27-Oct-12 19:17:14

Well three is too small. It just is. They're mostly lacking in any sense at that age.

MmeLindor Sat 27-Oct-12 20:04:52

It really depends on the layout - the field that our DC go to is miles away from any roads. It also depends on the kids - and the younger ones could be almost 4 and 5yo.

All of which is irrelevant to the actual question asked.

DozeyRose Sat 27-Oct-12 20:45:54

Hi, I know this is not at all helpful, but I still can't believe anyone would allow their 3 year old out to play unsupervised! Yes you say you can see them from your house, but, it takes a split second for your youngster to be abducted, have a serious fall or wander, not to mention all the other possible dangers. You surely don't really expect your 7 year old to take responsibility? and there is no way you can be glued to your window the whole time?

Whilst I completely agree that the bad language is unacceptable, I think it would be hypocritical to challenge another parent over their parent skills if you yourself are not really supervising your youngest child efficiently.

Sorry, I don't wish to offend. I'm sure you are a very good mother. But I think it's a little naive to think that your child will be safe without your full supervision. You wouldn't expect nursery children to play outside unsupervised whilst the staff are inside the building?

DozeyRose Sat 27-Oct-12 20:50:08

Sorry, just to add - with regards to your actual issue. I would probably not allow my children out to said park, and take them somewhere else. Maybe the boy will also choose to hang around elsewhere then you can perhaps allow your children back in their local and see how it goes?

imtheonlyone Sat 27-Oct-12 20:54:22

Well yes, the younger ones are nearly 4 and 5 and I appreciate that there would be some come back on that .... Each to their own. I am trying to teach them to be responsible in a safe way - the park is just outside our house and as I said, all the kids from the estate play there mostly unsupervised. I would not let them do it if I thought it were in anyway unsafe to do soI am not naive or stupid but appreciate that people have differing views on these things. We also find it very difficult to stop the younger ones from doing what their brothers are doing ..... It's so hard - they want to be outside playing and having fun and quite frankly I would much rather they did this than play on x boxes/DSs/wiis etc ...... Also, our garden floods every time it rains and when it's not raining it is muddy and practically unusable therefore the park is really the only place they can play .... And I don't want to take that away from them.

My main point was I ask whether I should confront his parents - I am not asking anyone to 'live by my rules' and I certainly am bothered about looking after my boys and they are very well looked after. I merely wondered whether his parents knew he was doing it as I would be mortified if I heard my boys were doing it at such an age. I can't keep it from them forever I know that, but just thought it might help.....

Anyway, thanks to those for understanding the situation and the advice.

imtheonlyone Sat 27-Oct-12 21:04:26

And just to add ..... My kids are not the youngest who play out there ....

MmeLindor Sat 27-Oct-12 21:09:49

Don't feel you have to defend yourself, Imtheonlyone. This is always an issue that is controversial on MN.

Do you know the parents at all?

imtheonlyone Sat 27-Oct-12 21:18:02

No I don't .... I do feel a bit humpf about the reaction tbh .... I would never expose them to anything unsafe! I think I will just tell the boys to steer clear. Thanks :-)

5madthings Sat 27-Oct-12 21:23:32

how lovely to have a park so close so they can play out smile i let mine play out in the cul de sac we live in, like you i can see them from the house etc and its great to be able to give them a bit of freedom smile

have you tried talking to the boy yourself, maybe a stern word from another adult will stop him at least for a little while.

i am not sure about knocking on the parents, it may be that he has heard it from them! or he could of course have heard it from school and is just copying nad trying to be 'cool' or seen as a big kid? is the rest of his behaviour ok?

anyway my first tactic would be to tell him myself it was not ok and then i would consider speaking to the parents, have you seen them about or spoken to them at all? with it being halloween maybe there will some trick or treating and you could get to know his parents so you could then gauge a reaction?

vampirestakeknickers Sat 27-Oct-12 21:31:40

I'd love it if there was a safe park for the children to play in that I could see from my window!
Hopefully you'll get a chance to meet the foul-mouthed boy's parents sooner or later and assess whether he's learnt it from them (in which case the conversation about appropriate use of swear words) or he's picked it up elsewhere and they'd be mortified if he did it in front of them ikswim. Trick-or-treat season is probably a good time to start saying 'hi' as 5mad suggested.

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