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AIBU - friend is really horrible to her ds

(7 Posts)
anongirl Mon 03-Nov-08 14:40:52

I know there's probably nothing I can do, but I do get really upset by the way my friend and her dp treat their ds (8).

I have never seen her show him any affection or say anything positive, either to him or about him. He is constantly criticised, even in front of his friends and other adults, for being unable to do x,y or z, while other children are cited as examples. Luckily, he doesn't seem to get upset by this but it must be having an effect, mustn't it? His younger sister is treated better, but not much, and I am fed up with her telling me how much better my children are than hers.

Ideas?

gingerninja Mon 03-Nov-08 14:44:18

Other than highight her kids positives to her and them and to be encouraging I'm not sure. Perhaps she's just a bit overwhelmed or tired and is snappy. Perhaps they have moments of kindness and you don't see them.

Thankyouandgoodnight Mon 03-Nov-08 21:16:23

If she really is screwing them up then it is worth telling her and risk losing her friendship - after all - you might help save two small people's sanity helping them to function as normally as one ever can in life.

Sarimillie Mon 03-Nov-08 21:27:19

Can you set an example, and be really positive and affectionate with both kids? They will appreciate the kindness, and the parents might just follow your lead; sometimes it takes someone with a bit of distance to show how differently things can be done.

anongirl Mon 03-Nov-08 22:05:16

This isn't just a phase of her being overwhelmed or whatever - she's been like this since her ds was a baby, and her dp is even worse. I think they both have self esteem issues and are doing what their parents did to them, i.e. running them down at every opportunity.

I do praise her children every opportunity I get but she'll just mutter something derogatory about them as I do it, even when they can hear her. It's really awful. I know we all make mistakes etc., but I truthfully have never heard her say anything good about them, especially the ds. Depressing - they are lovely kids, and even if they weren't, it just isn't right, is it?

yomellamoHelly Mon 03-Nov-08 22:15:22

My parents did this to me. And my brothers. I was so used to it as a child that I didn't react to it, but I did really value praise from other sources. So I'd keep up what you're doing. Now I've got children I feel even more "bemused" by how they were. I don't understand why they did it and it doesn't make me feel especially close to either of them. I think your friend will lose out in the long-run.

anongirl Tue 04-Nov-08 10:09:48

Poor you, yomella! I will keep up the praise & affection on my side but I don't really see them very often and the parents behaviour is getting worse. They just seem to hold their children up as objects of ridicule, and compare them loudly to all other children present, in everybody's earshot. The adults don't know where to look sometimes. I have tried telling my friend I don't want to hear any more criticisms of her ds (and it is criticisms, not offloading like we all do) and especially the 'my dd is fat but yours isn't' (while the girls are both there, age 4!) but she seems to take no notice.

Am seriously wondering how much longer I can bear to watch this sad

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