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Should I help my friend before it's too late?

(39 Posts)
hellooooooomama Wed 05-Apr-17 14:15:20

Her 3 year old basically rules her life. Whatever he wants usually goes and she is almost a slave to him. He won't do anything without her right at her side sad she does it for an easy life (he'll cry if she tries to fight it) but at what cost? When he's older what then? It is hard to watch.

I want to say something but I don't want to upset her.

I know it's not my place and that I shouldn't say anything, but then how do I cope with the worry of what the future holds for them?

IrnBruTortie Wed 05-Apr-17 14:16:28

Ach, 3 is only wee.
I'd just keep out of it tbh.

gandalf456 Wed 05-Apr-17 14:22:20

You can try but it wouldn't go down well. My DD was like this and still is at 12. I did try to change her but she is soo strong willed and proves to be futile

hellooooooomama Wed 05-Apr-17 15:34:27

Exactly IrnBru one so young one shouldn't have so much control (in my opinion). He's used to it though so unlikely to change without intervention.

Sorry to hear that gandalf. Are you happy? I just see my friend as a victim now, unfortunately. She doesn't seem happy.

Groovee Wed 05-Apr-17 16:54:32

My Ds was like this. He gradually grew more independent as he got older. He was painfully shy and if I forced the issue it just made him worse.

HecateAntaia Wed 05-Apr-17 16:58:34

has she asked your opinion or talked to you at all about it?
if not you really cant jump in and tell her all the ways in which she is a crap parent.

do you have children? if so how old?
the only way i can think of that you could possibly introduce it would be to do a gosh i remember that stage. its so challenging isnt it...
and hope she opens up so you can (non judgementally) support her.
they dont come with a manual and we're all just trying to do our best and sometimes we struggle.

skerrywind Wed 05-Apr-17 17:02:28

Do you have kids OP?

gandalf456 Wed 05-Apr-17 17:07:23

I'm sure op doesn't mean it that way but when you have young children you do feel defensive of any comment.

Am I happy? Well, when they're good, yes !grin

hellooooooomama Wed 05-Apr-17 17:08:07

I have one the same age. I have no experience except I know we have brought our sons up differently. I encouraged mine to do things on his own whereas she didn't. It's turned out to have made quite a difference in them.

I don't think she's a crap parent but I don't understand why she's done it this way.

hellooooooomama Wed 05-Apr-17 17:09:10

Gandalf, exactly why I'm wary! I'd hate to offend.

HecateAntaia Wed 05-Apr-17 17:11:19

you may not think it but my point is that's probably how she'll interpret it.

gandalf456 Wed 05-Apr-17 17:13:31

Do you think it's partly down to personality? I did find that some children were just more amenable - eg they sat still because they wanted to, ate their dinner because they enjoyed food and had a good appetite, slept because that was something that came easily.

I did find a lot of fellow parents took the credit for their children when they were just naturally easygoing and passed blame where parents were just struggling with naturally difficult children.

Read The Explosive Child. It offers a lot of insight

gandalf456 Wed 05-Apr-17 17:17:49

If you do say something she'll have you down as a competitive parent. I'm sure she's well aware that her child's behaviour is not right and would prefer it to be more like yours. You saying something is just going to spell out what she will think everyone is thinking and that would be quite hurtful to her. I do remember feeling very isolated at this stage because I was felt mine were the only ones kicking off. Advice would be better coming from someone that has been there and come out the other side otherwise you run the risk of coming across as patronising and not really understanding what she's going through having not been through it yourself. You don't know that you haven't been through it yourself because of your parenting or because of your child's good nature just says you don't know that hurt us the way he is because he is just like that or because she's made mistakes

Thegiantofillinois Wed 05-Apr-17 17:21:03

I am simultaneously a good parent, whose eldest child is easy going and friendly, and a shit parent whose other child is a clingy, tantrumming nightmare.

Or do I just have very different children?

NerrSnerr Wed 05-Apr-17 17:42:15

I have a 2.5 year old. She is at nursery 4 days a week when she is independent and leaves me with a quick kiss. On our days together she is clingy, we go to groups and she won't leave my lap and everything has to be done with mummy or daddy. She is cuddled to sleep at home but does it fine at nursery. She's little though, she'll grow up. I don't need another parent to tell me I'm doing it wrong when she's happy and healthy. I would interpret it as you telling me you're so much better than me.

hellooooooomama Wed 05-Apr-17 17:52:49

Yep you're right. I won't say anything. What I'd like to say is that it would be easier to put her foot down with him now than when he's older and bigger and more set in his ways. I did with mine from the get go, it's all he's ever known. That's the difference between us, and yes my ds fussed a bit but then got on with things on his own (things like walking down the other end of the room - seriously, he won't even do that on his own). I never once saw her attempt to get him to do things without her. He asked, she followed. I just think she's done him a disservice really, and herself in the process. But I won't say anything as I don't want to push her down any further. She probably knows anyway.

It's no fun spending time with them any more though. It just makes me feel sad.

Kennethwasmyfriend Wed 05-Apr-17 17:59:30

You put your foot down with your baby? Is that meant to be admirable? You don't have to spend time with them if you don't want to, but other than that you should mind your own business. A second child can also be a real eye opener in terms of how successful your parenting is.

hellooooooomama Wed 05-Apr-17 18:01:09

You know what I mean Kenneth.

FourToTheFloor Wed 05-Apr-17 18:05:32

hellooo no seriously, you've got a good temperamental dc along with some parenting skills.

You need to think how you'd feel if your great parenting hadn't worked. He won't be little for long so try to cut your friend some slack.

hellooooooomama Wed 05-Apr-17 18:19:11

Four. I wish her son would cut her some slack.

Sweets101 Wed 05-Apr-17 18:23:01

Presumably he'll be going to preschool soon and then school in the not too distant future so there will be changes.
I'm not too sure what you speaking to her about it would achieve, in practical terms?

gandalf456 Wed 05-Apr-17 18:35:32

You say yours fussed about bit. I'll give you an example of how mine fussed about lot- 3.5 hrs of crying when trying to follow professional advice on controlled crying, trying to feed children who would be physically sick, dragging a child round town with back to back tantrums, so many that I didn't know where the first one ended and the next one began. You get very worn down and it slowly becomes impossible to tough it out and be a strict parent when it's so relentness

hellooooooomama Wed 05-Apr-17 18:38:17

He's already at preschool (he's nearly four) and having problems there because he has no independence. The change to school may help though, I hope.

Quartz2208 Wed 05-Apr-17 18:45:38

I agree with previous posters, a well tempered baby and some good parenting skills does not a parenting expert make. Some children do find separation harder and do get separation anxiety. You are lucky to have one who is clearly independent and not caused any issues at school. Its a whole lot of luck though

As to what will happen, he will get older and school and preschool will step in. Either he grows out of it, she gets some parenting suggestions or it turns out he has additional needs.

You come across as smug and blame her in this thread that will definitely come across in person.

I had a high needs girl who would not leave my side, preschool was tough reception was hard. But now she is enjoys school and is independent far more than her peers whose parents probably judged me back then!

AlmaMartyr Wed 05-Apr-17 18:45:49

You've been lucky as a parent.

She may not be a great parent, or possibly she's a great parent with a difficult child. Stay out of it.

People judge my parenting because of my DS. They praise my parenting because of DD. Experts involved in DS' care are very praiseworthy of my parenting but those judging us have no idea about that - they just see what they think is bad behaviour and decide I'm terrible. I don't need their advice, my son is different to theirs.

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