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Mums of sensitive toddlers: how do you deal with more boisterous kids?

(2 Posts)
ElusiveMoose Mon 13-Jul-09 14:12:57

I have a DS of 22 months who is a lovely, sensitive soul; although he's quite 'boyish' in some ways (he loves cars and playgrounds etc), he's also very gentle and kind. (Don't get me wrong, he can be a little horror in his own way, but he genuinely doesn't seem to have an aggressive bone in his body - as yet!).

Anyway, we had a nasty experience at a playdate at a friend's house this morning. My DS (as usual) wanted to stay close to me, but I thought, no, he's nearly two, he should be able to play on his own for a little bit. So I persuaded him to go off and do his own thing. He went and sat on his own in the wendy house and was having a really nice time playing with the tea set. Then my friend's little boy (who's 3 and can be pretty rough) came over, went into the playhouse and just shoved DS so that he fell over and bumped his head. Poor DS was inconsolable for ages and sobbed as if his little heart was breaking; he didn't really hurt himself, but he just seemed to find it so distressing that another child would be deliberately mean to him. This has happened a couple of times in the past, and each time he's reacted the same way.

I feel really unsure about how to handle these situations in future, and whether to encourage him to put himself in a position where he might get pushed about. On the one hand, I tell myself that he's going to have to go to pre-school/school sooner or later, and he's going to have to learn that life can be quite rough and tumble. On the other hand, I absolutely hate seeing him get so upset, and I don't want him to think it's inevitable that all children push each other about. A couple of people have said that I need to 'toughen him up a bit', but I love my thoughtful, gentle little boy, and I hate the idea that I need to try to change who he is. But am I just being ridiculously precious?

Sorry this is so long. I'm really upset by this, and interested to know if anyone else has had a similar experience.

Supercherry Mon 13-Jul-09 15:54:31

I think everyone has experienced similar at one point or another. It is upsetting as it's natural to want to protect your child.

The thing is though, they all, at some point or another go through pushing/biting/hitting phases. It's a normal part of toddlerhood. As long as the child doing the pushing is dealt with by their mother then that is really all anyone can do.

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