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Family keep telling my child off! AIBU!?!

(15 Posts)
WS12 Tue 08-Nov-16 11:43:08

I need to put some context to this before I begin. We have recently relocated to Australia - on 15th of September to be exact! And are living with my husbands family until we get ourselves on our feet. We are living with

His mum
His dad
Sister 1
Sister 2
Sister 3
Younger Brother

We are all in one bedroom so its cramped. It's been 7/8 weeks now and finally we are looking at moving into our own house in a week or two. The problem we are having is... His family keep telling our son off! He is 3 years old, and we also have a 1 year old daughter.

He is 3 years old so he's a mini teenager - anyone with a threenager will know my
Pain lol but seriously they are telling him off all the time. At first it wasn't too bad as they let me discipline him if I needed to but now I feel like he can't breath without being told off. Even my husbands brother had a go at him the other day and he never says anything as he has a speech impediment. An example would be that he was touching the house phone - so one of my husbands sisters will say "don't touch that you don't know who you'll phone", and I say "please don't touch that honey it needs to stay there" and then my husbands brother says "it's not a toy!". Yesterday I heard one of my sons aunties saying "don't punch me or I'll punch you"- my son has stated play fighting sometimes his aunties and cousins will do it as a play thing and other times they say no - how is my son supposed to know if he's coming or going?! I'm at my wits end. She should not be threatening a small child. Tomorrow I'm going to keep a diary of every time someone other than me tells my son off. I feel now they're just picking on him, I feel sick. Any ideas if I'm being unreasonable? Why are they telling him off so much?! On top of this his behaviour is getting worse. And I think it's because of the negative atmosphere here. One of his aunties winds him up so much, I mean so much I want to punch her in the face!! I can't wait to get out of here. AIBU?

SexTrainGlue Tue 08-Nov-16 11:52:26

you need to move out ASAP.

If one adult has told him not to touch the phone, then you don't need to chip in as well.

And yes, everyone has the right to self defence even if the person threatening to hit them is only 3ft high. We can't tell her tone of voice from the typed word, so there's no way of telling if it was pitched correctly. But if he's about to hit someone, then of course they intervene immediately and for as long as it takes to stop him doing it.

I wouldn't have a problem with people defending their property either, but if you don't want others to do it, then it's up to you to shadow him all his waking hours so they don't need to.

It's amazingly generous to take people in for an open ended stay, but after this number of weeks and a number of incidents they find difficult to live with, it would be utterly wrong to start keeping a diary as you suggest.

If it's intolerable, go to a hotel or service apartment.

Gizlotsmum Tue 08-Nov-16 11:53:36

So when the sister and you told him not to touch the phone did he stop? Ask them not to play fight with him and explain why.. i think you all need to sit down and set some ground rules but you can't stop them telling him off in their house..

PotteringAlong Tue 08-Nov-16 11:56:25

They've been lovely to take you in. They're probably sick to the back teeth of you too.

Nothing you've said sounds that bad to be honest.

Sirzy Tue 08-Nov-16 11:57:26

So you want them to ignore things like him touching the phone? Not sure what is supposed to be unreasonable about them asking him to leave it.

VivienneWestwoodsKnickers Tue 08-Nov-16 12:01:54

Sounds to me like they're so comfortable with you all there that they're treating him like an immediate member of the family. Why do you need to repeat what someone else says either?

HRarehoundingme Tue 08-Nov-16 12:02:02

Now I know you say he's 3 and you are telling him BUT be truthful, is he a handful? does he listen and do as he's told? do you back up the other adults - ie if MIL has said stop jumping on the couch do you tell him to stop etc.

I have been in a position where a child is being naughty and have had to sanction them for their safety ie their kicking/hitting me and the parent has been totally impassive - not baking me up with the no hitting and not supporting my role and saying "if this adult says do/dont do this then you need to"

Inthenick Tue 08-Nov-16 12:08:02

If you are living together I would expect them to discipline him when he's doing stuff that infringes on them. It would be different if they were visiting you in your home. But this is their home and they are living with a 3 year old so I feel have the right to correct him. Nothing you've mentioned sounds terribly unreasonable.

MrsJayy Tue 08-Nov-16 12:09:55

He was jumping on the couch and touching other peoples things they told him not to i really dont see the issue, im not sure what a threenager is are you excusing his behaviour ? Tbh i think its a good thing his extended family are telling him not to do... it is showing him people have feelings and he cant jump on their couches and play on their phones, it sounds cramped and stressful hopefully when you have moved into your new house he will settle down.

MrsJayy Tue 08-Nov-16 12:13:40

You are fixating on this dont keep a diary tell them play fighting is not allowed with him as he does not know when to stop speak up for your son but if they ask him not to touch something you dont need to chip in

VikingVolva Tue 08-Nov-16 12:14:44

Your job here is to bring up your DS and amend his behaviour as required.

It is not to bring up your ILs.

If you need to keep a behaviour diary, it should be of DS's actions and how he responds to intervention, Then you will see what needs working on most and have a decent shot at what will be most effective.

Or move out, if you find living with them is now unbearable. Because you cannot lay down house rules in someone else's house.

Jackie0 Tue 08-Nov-16 12:17:10

' please don't touch that honey it needs to stay there' hmm
Sorry OP but that is the most wishy washy claptrap.
Sounds like your in-laws are perfectly reasonable and a few boundaries will do your son the world of good.

Wolfiefan Tue 08-Nov-16 12:27:03

He shouldn't touch the phone.
He shouldn't punch people.
I suspect they feel you aren't actually disciplining him enough or effectively. You need to get out ASAP.

LetitiaCropleysCookbook Tue 08-Nov-16 12:46:20

An example would be that he was touching the house phone - so one of my husbands sisters will say "don't touch that you don't know who you'll phone", and I say "please don't touch that honey it needs to stay there" and then my husbands brother says "it's not a toy!".

The trouble is, their house is not child-proofed (why would it be?), so you have to be a bit pre-emptive about him interfering with things you might know the family won't want him to. You can never be as relaxed in someone else's home, as you are in your own. I remember many visits to parents when the dc were little, where I was constantly on the lookout for hazards, removing ornaments from the reach of little hands etc. - on the case, essentially! Tedious, but necessary.

Maybe you could be first with the "No, don't play with that, please" comments, so they don't feel they have to intervene? Then if they do still pile in, tell them that he's got the message (unless he hasn't, that is!). Fair enough to tell them off, as well, if they are winding up your ds. In fact, if it were me, I'd be expecting dh to say something, as it's his family.

NotAPuffin Tue 08-Nov-16 13:23:59

I don't blame you for wanting to move. We're living with my parents while we wait for our house purchase to complete and it's difficult for everyone. But I think you have to cut them some slack - it can't be easy for them either, having small kids around when they're not used to it.

Don't start keeping track. Take it one day at a time, get the kids out of the house as much as you can, and remember that it's only temporary. Soon enough this will be a distance memory but they'll be your family forever.

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