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"Don't hit", "Don't tell tales" - so when to hit back and when to tell a grown-up?

(10 Posts)
jodee Sun 01-May-05 23:58:27

Sorry for long-winded title and I know it's late, this just came to mind.

How do you explain to your children that they mustn't hit other kids - but on the other hand, stand up for yourself if being bullied?

Or the grey area around not telling tales but telling an adult when someone has hurt you, etc?

I'm off to bed, so I don't expect any replies until tomorrow anyway, but I wanted to be able to explain things to my 5 year old.

serenity Mon 02-May-05 00:10:19

I tell mine (4.5 and 7) that I want to know if someone is doing something that is or could hurt themselves or DSs. At home that translates into if there's no blood sort it out between yourselves

At school I tell them to tell a teacher if someone is hurting them, but otherwise sort it out or walk away. My comment is usually 'if X is being a pita, tell them, and then go and play with someone else' I don't think you have to hit back to stand up for yourself. However, we've never had a problem with bullying so I reserve the right to change my mind if I have to!

ghosty Mon 02-May-05 00:29:16

Basically, DS knows that is is NEVER ok to hit anyone for any reason ... but that obviously hasn't stopped him (he hit someone at school recently to retaliate and got into MASSIVE trouble for it!)
What they say in NZ schools and kindergartens is that if someone is hitting them they have to say in a loud voice "Stop it, I don't like that!" and walk away. If someone keeps hurting them they must tell a teacher/grown up ...

BadgerBadger Mon 02-May-05 00:58:00

I teach DD1 (3) to say "Don't hit me!" loudly, then walk away if someone does, ATM.

So far I've always encouraged her to tell me if there is something going on that she's unsure about (translated to young un speech ). That way I have the opportunity to guide her as to whether whatever she has seen/heard/done is good or not and what to do about it, IYSWIM.

I'd prefer her to feel free to tell me anything, rather than label certain incidences as tale telling, therefore lead her to feel she can't ask me for advice.

OTOH, I'm sure this will change over time as she becomes more aware of situations she should/could handle vs situations where she might need me to advise or intervene.

Though with DD2 becoming more mobile I'm sure there'll be plenty of room for practice in the near future .

I'll be interested to see what others have to say I've been pondering this myself recently.

bobbybob Mon 02-May-05 04:21:29

Oh Ghosty, someone tried to hit ds, and he stood back and said "that's not okay!", then they tried to take his toy "that's not okay!". It seems the training works well even from a young age.

Freckle Mon 02-May-05 08:15:28

This is interesting in light of a conversation I had with DS1's primary head last week. DS1 has been bullied for a very long time (didn't know about it for ages because he doesn't "tell tales" - sigh). Things came to a head last week and I demanded to speak to the headmaster immediately and we had a very fruitful discussion (with DS1 present). Part of that discussion dwelt on the fact that I have raised all 3 boys not to retaliate (because it is always the retaliator who is caught and retaliating merely serves to escalate matters into a full-blown fight). Anyway, the head addressed himself to DS1, saying that I was perfectly right in this and, although he wasn't telling DS1 to do this and he wouldn't suggest it to many boys, but as DS1 was mature and sensible, he wanted him to know that, if DS1 was being bullied so badly that the only way to stop it was to thump the perpetrator, then DS1 wouldn't get into trouble for it. He, the head, felt that some bullies just wouldn't stop unless shocked into stopping. Hmm. Not sure how I feel about this and DS1 didn't look too comfortable either, so I suspect that he probably won't do it.

Wrt telling tales, I say that telling tales is when you tell on someone merely to get that person into trouble and that is unacceptable. If someone is hurting someone else or themselves or damaging anything important, then telling an adult is right and is not classed as telling tales.

gothicmama Mon 02-May-05 08:19:02

dd knows it is not alright to hit anyone but if she is hit first tehn hit back and go and tell someone this tactic used after a numbe of incidents at preschool and seems to have stopped them.
Have tried to instill in her the idea of it it hurts you or upsets you tell

Tortington Mon 02-May-05 22:43:34

at school they must tell a teacher at infant or primary age.
my rule was at home they never hit first if someone hit them then someones going to come worse off.

re telling tales. if little johnny comes running in because his friend is being naughty - then johnny will be instructed to tell his friends mum - not me who cant punish him in any way.

however if little johnny's friend is kicking biting punching glue sniffing or all of them - i will tell him off then go roun his mothers have a nice word - unless she doesnt want a nice word then we will have cross words and pull hair.

Tortington Wed 04-May-05 00:48:21

how did it go jodee?

tigermoth Wed 04-May-05 00:55:43

freckle, I think that is a really surprising thing for a headmaster to say to a pupil. I can see where he is coming from -the need to shock a bully sometimes - but I still think he was being really outspoken. I too would have been taken aback to hear this.

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