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Feeling sick about what I have said to my son

(12 Posts)
Ponderinganother Tue 21-May-13 14:54:17

Hello all,

I completely understand if I am flamed for this post as I have made the same mistake TWICE!

I read this post a minute ago and it has brought it all up for me again as I have said similar if not worse things twice.
http://www.mumsnet.com/Talk/behaviour_development/1754155-6-year-old-saying-he-doesnt-want-a-mummy-any-more-please-help

Let me start by saying that my son is absolutely my world and I love him so much! I cuddle him, am affectionate with him and tell him I love him many times a day (he is 6). I also build up his self esteem and am usually very careful in my language with him e.g 'That was a silly thing to do' instead of 'You did a silly thing' etc....

But I fear I have damaged him forever and cancelled out the tireless encouragement and self esteem building by saying something awful on two occasions.

DS is at the age where he is becoming very willful and cheeky and over the last few months has been told of more than usual. Naturally he has not taken to this very well and has lashed out at me in anger!

The first time he said he wouldn't care if I was not around any more and sometimes dreams that I am gone. I asked him if he was happy about me being gone in those dreams and he said yes. Well I started off light-hearted and said okay fine I will go and live in the forest then thinking he would find that funny and laugh about it. He didn't, he just said he would not miss me and did not care. That completely took the wind out of my sails and I very foolishly pretended that I was going to go through with it etc until he started crying and said 'please don't leave mummy'. At that point obviously I realised what I had done and immediately told him I never intended to and thought he didnt mind so was just kidding with him.

He was okay after that but I got a total of two hours sleep that night feeling sick about it and vowed to be the 'adult' and never fall into that trap again.

Unfortunately it happened again though (albeit) to a lesser extent. The second time DS said something very hurtful to me and I said something along the lines of 'well go and find another mummy then, if you really don't want me around I won't stay'.

The words just seem to come out of my mouth before I can stop them. I know he does not mean it but his words really really affect me to the point I have said these ridiculous things!

This all happened over three months ago and upsets me so much that my stomach still churns and I feel sick about it every time I think about it.

Sorry for such a long post and I know already that it was wrong but am wondering if anyone has any advice on how to think before you speak when you are so emtionally charged!

TheBirdsFellDownToDingADong Tue 21-May-13 14:59:28

I think you're thinking too much.

Bloody supernanny and all that amateur psychology is a pile of crap you know.

Whenever dd has a strop (and they all do) and moans about me, the house, her life <drama queen> I just say, calmly, "Ok then, if you'd prefer to go and live somewhere else, let me know and we'll see what we can do". Cue shock for a second or two, and then we just laugh.

When he says the horrid things to you just ignore him. Like he is undoubtedly ignoring the not-so-horrid things you are saying to him.

If you are feeling sick about it months after, then you might need some help there, because that is not normal. (in the nicest possible way)

lborolass Tue 21-May-13 15:04:52

You're obviously very upset by these incidents but I too wonder if there is a deeper problem. My children and I must have said these sorts of things hundreds of times over the years and never given them a second thought, to be so affected does suggest there's something else going on.

Please don't give any special meaning to the throwaway remarks of a 6 year old, "OK, fine" and carry on as you were anyway would be a normal type of response imo, sadly we'll all probably hear much much worse during the teenage years.

Ponderinganother Tue 21-May-13 15:15:45

TheBirdsFellDown....you are right it is not normal to feel bad about it so long after! I suffer from axiety so that might go some way to explaining it : )

I think I may be able to ignore him the next time as those occasions were the first time he has said anything like that so it was a shock.

lborolass I am less concerned about what he said to me but more about what I said may have hurt him. He is a sensitive child and I keep picturing his little face crumpling when I pushed it too far.

I can remember my mother threatening to leave (although I was 12) and how that stayed with me!

ReluctantlyBeingYoniMassaged Tue 21-May-13 15:26:11

Oh god. I've said such things to ds, who is six too. I'm a rubbish mother.

fabergeegg Tue 21-May-13 15:33:18

Your son is just trying out feelings and in one sense it's good that he's expressing what he feels. I sense that perhaps you're too emotionally vulnerable to his rejection. If that's the case then he'll be playing on it because kids are always looking for weaknesses. Is his dad around? My DH is one of three and his dad always made it a manly thing to be nice to their mum (which is very nice for me!). If they were rude or hurtful to their mum, their dad got protective and basically said, 'this is what happens when someone wrongs a member of my family,' which gave the kids a lot of knock-on confidence that their dad was behind them.

I understand why it's distressing and yes, I agree you made a mistake. But look how hard you're trying. Your love is enough. You're his mummy. You love him. He has to take the rough with the smooth. And he's damn lucky smile

LubyLu2000 Tue 21-May-13 16:34:42

I think that a child will only say something hurtful to a parent if they feel secure in that relationship. If he was insecure about you and your love for him he possibly wouldn't even dare say it in case you really did go.

I agree that you're possibly over thinking it a bit (in the nicest possible way smile). Kids say things like that all the time and so do parents, don't worry about it.

MeanAndMeaslyMiddleAges Tue 21-May-13 23:38:38

Oh love, you mentioned briefly about suffering from anxiety - I do too and your post spoke more to me that you might be having a shit time. Are you ok? I definitely think you're getting too tied up in this issue to be able to see it clearly.

lizzywig Wed 22-May-13 02:30:15

I clearly remember my mum saying in response to our criticism "i practice in front of the mirror".

I think it would help how you feel if you were armed with some choice words that you can repeat. FWIW you haven't done anything horrific, you're just doing the best you can, aren't we all?! :-)

JellyMould Wed 22-May-13 03:40:29

If you still remember your mum threatening to leave when you were 12, then I think maybe you are imagining that you've caused the same upset in your six year old. But it honestly sounds like that isn't true. You explained you were joking and he accepted that without upset. We all say things we regret, and it's impossible to predict how your child will react sometimes. Don't beat yourself up.

Ponderinganother Wed 22-May-13 11:17:52

Thank you all for your messages, hopefully I can start to forget about this and really concentrate on a better way of dealing with it the next time he is upset with me rather than trying to force an admission from him that he really does love me.

I think that is the crux here about why I am so upset about this. That I felt I went to those lengths and made him worried that I might leave (when of course I never would), just to get him to say he really does love me!

MeanAndMeaslyMiddleAges, yes was having a rought time with work etc and various other things so probably a contributing factor.

I just need to find my filter for the future and make sure I act like an adult the next time.

Booyhoo Wed 22-May-13 11:27:10

hmm, we probably have a different dynamic than you but both my dcs tell me they want to live elsewhere/with a different mummy when they are in the midst of a temper (usually when i've told them off) i recognise that they never actually mean it and it's just their anger speaking so i play along and say things like "ok, well let me know where you want dropped off to once you've packed" in a really relaxed voice. sometimes it works and they get the joke straight away, they laugh, apologise and we forget about it. sometimes they get more pissed off that i'm not taking them seriously so they insist more (and i insist more that i'll help them pack) and then they give up when the can see i'm just not taking it to heart (their aim).

i think you need to lighten up. chidren say things in anger that they dont mean (and this will go on until they move out btw so get used to it). learn to take it with a pinch of salt, dont take it as genuine because they dont want a different mummy at all, and just roll your eyes and say "ok son, that's fine" and when he's calmed down he'll coem and say sorry for being mean to you and you can talk to him then. dont react in anger to him.

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