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Sharing/not snatching advice for 'other parent' please!

(6 Posts)
randomtask Fri 26-Apr-13 14:57:22

Had a friend and her 2 year old DD over to play with DS2 (6 months older). Her DD thinks she can snatch whatever DS2 is playing with, her Mum will sometimes tell her to give it back (but not ensure she does). One of the many things that happened was that the girl suddenly wanted the tent DS2 was playing in so she pulled it whilst he was in it-he sat crouched looking like he wanted to cry. I was trying to talk calmly to DS2 whilst making clear he was upset and the Mum was saying 'oh look at her determined face' and laughing. Really difficult as suspect the Mum wouldn't take kindly to someone telling her daughter off. Incidentally I did put DS2 on the naughty step whilst they were here for taking DS3's toy hoping she might realise it wasn't acceptable behaviour.

Was talking to DS2 at lunchtime about his friends coming to play. He is very sure that he doesn't want anyone coming to his house (when normally he bounces off the ceiling if he knows anyone is coming) but is happy to go to his friends house. When I mentioned his girl he gave a very determined 'No. Tent.'.

What do I do?! Obviously I'm going to make sure we don't have them over much if at all (I think it's better when we play at her house and it's her toys) but I don't want him now to get nervous about having friends over when normally he loves it. I also don't know how I should handle this and how to teach him that yes he shouldn't snatch/should share but also he shouldn't let others snatch his things (and I don't know how he can stop that apart from getting violent)!

Any advice would be appreciated!

JoinTheDots Fri 26-Apr-13 16:47:58

Hrm, as a parent of a snatcher (who is paranoidly aware of it, ready to swoop in and defuse situations when they occur) I would say you could get involved and offer the little girl something else to play with, or lead her away from whatever it is your son is doing to show her something else, so that at least she is not upsetting your son. The mother should not get annoyed at you because you are not telling her off, just preventing the conflict. At the same time, you could say to the other mother "isn't it hard before they learn to let others have a turn before them?" and "what do you find works when your daughter wants to play with something someone else has and they do not want to give it to her?".

I am currently taking DD out of situations if she snatches, making sure she gives said toy back. Sometimes she is apologetic to the child, sometimes angry and violent with a tantrum because she is not getting her way. It is hard.

randomtask Fri 26-Apr-13 17:08:09

You sound more reasonable/rational than this Mum!

Have tried distracting her with other things (works sometimes) but she is very determined & is more than happy to throw the toy away once she has it (DS1 will then be too scared/nervous to pick it up). Have also said to the Mum about how difficult it is teaching them to share/take turns, she agrees but I honestly think can't see beyond her/her daughter's feelings. She has said things in the passed where she obviously thinks as long as her daughter is ok it is fine (kind of Mum who if someone said 'doesn't X's dress look pretty' would immediately say to her DD 'but you are the prettiest girl in the world').

I think I find it more frustrating as my other friends would make sure their children don't do this & take them away if need be but now DS doesn't want to play with anyone. :-(

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Fri 26-Apr-13 17:11:54

Same age but my DS was fed up playing with a girl we knew - his senior by only a few days. Soon noticed her fond mama was always quick to tell him to share but when her own poppet snatched or grabbed first and DS reacted, she couldn't help herself exclaim, "Ladies first!" confused. That friendship didn't last long.

Allowances should be made for younger weaker playmates. If they're of roughly the same age or older I would counsel you to say to both DCs after arrival "It's nice to share and take turns". Encourage them to ask for a go.

Without turning their playzone into a toyshop give them an assortment. Whilst one DC gets a toy DS plays with something else. If the other child grabs that too your DS comes and tells you. If they aren't willing to get along better to turn his back and just play on his own. Outdoors he can make a dash for it. In a larger public setting he can abandon any awkward playmates and go play with someone else.

Any aggression, have a cooling off session - distract and occupy.

People will like their DCs to be 'feisty' but don't necessarily like them to be challenged. Say "We do this" not "Your child doesn't..." if you try and referee. When DCs are that young a spot of observation at a short distance is essential. How unnerving the first time one catches one 's own little angel transformed into a tyrant!

Now in the interest of honesty I'll add my DC2 had her own tactic. As soon as another playmate grabbed something, she snatched it right back. If the other child wailed she screamed louder. That other infant rarely challenged her again.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Fri 26-Apr-13 17:21:58

Do you ever have DC1 home when DS2 is visited by this friend and her DD? DS2 might benefit from a sibling ally. It might work if Friend A sees her DD either can't intimidate both DCs or risks them leaving her out if she acts up.

randomtask Fri 26-Apr-13 19:58:25

DS1 is 11 so not around usually plus too big/nice to help-suspect he'd be horrified & stand there looking as scared as DS2! Fortunately for me I have 3 lovely gentle & generally calm & loving boys...

I do make sure I tell them both to share & have set up things they can play with alongside each other but the girl still takes whatever DS2 has even if she has the same toy. I also do the giving another toy in it's place & distraction but that doesn't seem to work either. DS2 is too young/quiet to turn away & play on his own but does avoid if she takes his things but she tends to follow.

I have tried gently saying 'now X DS2 is playing with that so why don't you play with this' & saying to both of them that they must share & not snatch but her Mum doesn't notice & if she does won't stop her.

We all know kids who have moments of snatching but personally I expect the parent to care & react. Thankfully my boys aren't bold enough (yet!) but I would stop them & if they didn't apologise I would take them away from the situation in disgrace!

I do think we need to not invite her around again which is sad as I can see her becoming a lonely child due to her mother not teaching/disciplining her well. Poor DS2 has now decided he doesn't want to go to anyone's house to play either 'DS2 play at DS2's house'.

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