Son is not growing up :(

(54 Posts)
Abcdefgh12345 Fri 30-Aug-19 16:39:59

It’s a catch 22.
My son is 11 and although I have brought him up to be kind and caring which he is I now need him to be ready for secondary school.
He’s more like a 8 year old.
He won’t play fight and cries when someone tries
He still likes to watch cartoons
He won’t try any tricks on scooters or bikes because he’s scared
He won’t climb a tree because he’s scared
He’s scared to stay at anyone else’s house other than his dads or mine.
He cries when he falls over
He cries when he’s emotionally upset
He won’t play football or any sport for fear of being hurt

I live in a cul de sac street where everyone knows each other. Everyone has kids. It’s great. But he only plays with the younger ones and not his age.
He is in a group on WhatsApp with all his school mates but won’t engage in conversations. He only reads them.
What do I do?
Although I don’t want him to grow up too fast I kind of need him to so he is ready.

OP’s posts: |
pictish Fri 30-Aug-19 16:48:20

Well some of this is nonsense isn’t it? I have two sons and a daughter and while they are very different from one another, none of them have ever relished play-fighting or team sports or tricks on bikes or scooters.
It’s not like being a competitive daredevil is compulsory for children. They don’t punch lumps out of each other either.

He sounds well within the normal range of development for his age. What do you want from him?

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 30-Aug-19 16:48:33

Have you got any other concerns at all? How was he at Primary? Did he play with the children there?

Does he do any out of school activities like Scouts?

AnyFucker Fri 30-Aug-19 16:49:13


SarahTancredi Fri 30-Aug-19 16:51:40

So he doesn't fight or do stupid things that land him in hospital on his scooter ?
That doesn't sound a problem.tbh. and more boys should cry. Dont ever tell boys they shouldnt.

Is he sensible. Could he cope getting to school by himself? Can he organise himself. Thise are things that should be of concern for secondary school.

What does he like to do activity wise?

LtGreggs Fri 30-Aug-19 16:53:54

I have a 10 and a 12 yo DS

What you describe does sound a little bit unusual, though not necessarily a major problem.

Do school have any concerns?
Does your DS consider himself to have friends?
Is your DS happy in himself, or does he wish he was different?
Do you (or his dad) do any of those more physical things with him - e.g. do you do outdoorsy stuff, play a sport, go on bike rides as a family activity??

pikapikachu Fri 30-Aug-19 16:55:19

Most of those don't matter.

Ds is in y9 and reads but rarely replies to texts. His friends and him have short conversations like
-Wanna play PS4?
-Can't until 7. Soz

You're being sexist trying to push playfighting and footie. Lots of boys like neither. My Ds has no interest in footie but lots of friends.

I'd be worried about how anxious he is- scared of being hurt playing footie is unusual. Does he have to do rugby for pe?

PaquitaVariation Fri 30-Aug-19 16:55:25

He sounds cautious and sensible. He’ll find kids just like him at secondary school. You want to change his personality which seems a bit unfair. You can’t force emotional maturity but it sounds like he gets upset at things which are upsetting and crying is a perfectly reasonable response. Can he travel by himself and organise his time and belongings? These are the things which will make a difference.

Fudgenugget Fri 30-Aug-19 16:57:14

My dd is nearly 13 and watches cartoons confused.

Do you have a good parenting relationship with his father?
Any problems between your son and his dad?

I will be frank and say I think you expect him to be a certain way, more of a tough boy, when he clearly isn't. Why not just accept him for who he is?

pikapikachu Fri 30-Aug-19 16:57:16

He cries when he’s emotionally upset

>> what do you want him to do when he's upset? Crying is better than lashing out and hitting, smashing things up etc

pikapikachu Fri 30-Aug-19 16:58:39

Lots of kids his age and older watch cartoons. There are cartoons aimed at adults like Family Guy. In y7 my son became a big fan of Rick and Morty.

Happyspud Fri 30-Aug-19 17:01:25

A group of 11 yr olds have a WhatsApp group....well there’s your next problem. Are you aware the age limit is 16, for very good reasons.

He doesn’t need to be anything but resilient and it seems that is what you are worried about. And he is avoiding mixing with his peers which isn’t great either. Have you always protected him from everything leading to him being over cautious now or is this just his personality do you think?

SweetAsSpice Fri 30-Aug-19 17:01:26

He’s 11. CTFO. Let him grow up in his own time. You will be longing for the innocence one day, honestly!

Mrsjayy Fri 30-Aug-19 17:01:38

Well he doesn't have to climb trees and playfight does he and boys are allowed to cry are they not ? Are you expecting him to mature into some gruff teenager who rolls about the dirt with his mates confused

Mrsjayy Fri 30-Aug-19 17:04:27

And he is 11 what are you wanting him to watch of course he is going to watch cartoons

Yika Fri 30-Aug-19 17:04:31

Do you think it could be useful to take him to a child psychologist - not to change him but to develop some strategies and techniques to give him a better range of options when confronted with fears? He does sound unusually cautious - I wonder why the fear of being hurt is so strong?

PastTheGin Fri 30-Aug-19 17:10:28

I hope you’re not raising your “concerns” with your ds! He sounds absolutely fine.
Are you an extrovert? Is he an introvert?

MeggyMeg Fri 30-Aug-19 17:16:05

On the face of it your message sounds like your son is just not living up to what you expected from a boy. However, context is everything. Are there any other concerns ? How is his school work? Any worries with communication? Does he know his times tables ? Days of week/months of the year ?

greenfamily Fri 30-Aug-19 17:16:09

You seem to have an idea of what 11 year old boys should be like and yours doesn't conform - and why should he? You say he's kind, try making a list of his positive attributes and things he is interested in and develop those further. My son going into y8 is not on WhatsApp, nor does he want to be. He doesn't want the constant pressure of having to engage in that way. Give him time, support and space to develop into the young man he's meant to be

MeggyMeg Fri 30-Aug-19 17:16:57

Tie his laces ? Use cutlery?

IndianaMoleWoman Fri 30-Aug-19 17:17:24

Would you have these concerns about him having emotions and expressing rational fears about doing dangerous things if he was a girl?

Ornery Fri 30-Aug-19 17:23:37

Ds is 17 and left school this summer. His cartoon interest (which included mlp until very recently) now includes anime. He didn’t play any sport until 14/15 when he decided he wanted to be good at basketball, but he had been through swimming lessons and we pushed him through to lifeguard. He has never played football in his life.
He has two sisters and spent most of his formative years wearing purple tutus. At 10/11 he would hide behind the door if he saw kids out in the neighbourhood as the idea of social contact was overwhelming.

We had one rule, which was that he needed to choose two activities (of any sort) to take part in, as otherwise it was pretty clear he would prefer never to leave the house. This was sometimes a struggle. smile
He variously went to dance classes, scouts, swimming lessons, then eventually basketball. Every year we had to gently encourage (push) him to choose.
At 17 he has been lifeguarding for nearly two years and is taking a gap year before a performing arts degree. He has a small but tight group of friends that go on camping trips. And he still watches cartoons.

11 is just a baby. Don’t force him to act macho and pretend he isn’t a child. He is.

SeaSaltandLime Fri 30-Aug-19 17:24:01

Please don't tell him not to cry, or imply in anyway that he shouldn't be crying because it's 'immature.' Hugely damaging.

Kids are different. So what he doesn't want to break his neck on the scooter, play fight or climb trees hmm
If he doesn't feel comfortable, he doesn't.

He's still so small.
I know he's going to school with teenagers now but honestly most of them won't bat an eyelid at a year 7 acting like a child - since he is one.

NeverSayFreelance Fri 30-Aug-19 17:26:27

Hi OP! I'm a 23 year old woman with a house, a degree, and a full time job!

I cry when I'm upset. I like cartoons. I don't like to do anything which might cause me to get physically hurt. Sometimes I cry if I hurt myself badly enough.

I get that you're concerned your son isn't maturing at the same rate as the other kids, but he's acting like a perfectly normal human being of ANY age.

aliteralAIBUforonce Fri 30-Aug-19 17:28:09

What does he like doing? Does he read? Have a hobby or interest?

He doesn't have to do the rough and tumble stuff.

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