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Feeling a bit embarassed that I upset my friend, a bit long

(11 Posts)
bran Sat 19-Sep-09 19:25:59

I'm not sure what to do for the best in the future.

This is the background

I have a friend who is very sweet and kind, and therefore quite a different personality to me with a different parenting style and general outlook on life. We possibly wouldn't naturally have become friends if we didn't live near each other with DSs the same age (5 yo), but I very much value her friendship nonetheless.

Her DS has recently been going through an aggressive stage, which is fine, I think most boys do. My DS has just (mostly) come out of his aggressive phase. My DS used to get frustrated and lose his temper and hit out without caring who saw him. Her DS is very bright (sometimes floors me in an argument) and very concerned with being "good" and usually checks to make sure his parents aren't looking before thumping/kicking/pushing over. But he's not being bad, I'm not criticising him at all, he's just being a 5 yr old.

This is my dilemma.

Our DSs go to the same school and today we were both at the birthday party of another boy. They were in a circle for pass the parcel and the birthday boy was sitting in a soft plastic tub thing and her DS was telling him to get out and sit in the circle. Birthday boy refused and her DS started to rock the tub, putting a fair bit of effort into it. The birthday boy fell over and cried briefly but no real damage done. It was very quick, he went over on about the third heave so although a few other parents saw what was happening the didn't make it over in time to stop it.

My friend was sitting beside me but with her back to the circle so she didn't see. When the birthday boy cried she looked around and said "is he ok" and I said "he's fine, your DS just pushed him over but he didn't fall far".

I really didn't think it was a big deal and if it had been my DS I would either have given him a first warning or taken him out of the game for one round and then put him back in away from the birthday boy. My friend took her DS away into the house and when she came back she was very upset because her DS was refusing to come back to the party. He was distraught that he had been accused of pushing the other child over when, in fact, the child had been leaning out of the tub and over-balanced. I feel terrible that I upset my friend so much, she seems quite stressed and easily upset at the moment and tbh the actual incident was such a storm in a teacup that it wasn't worth my while having said anything.

Should I just let the whole thing go, or should I apologise, or something else? In future (we and the DSs go to quite a lot of parties/school things so see a fair bit of each) should I just turn a blind eye? In the past she has intervened when my DS has been up to no good, and I'm glad that she has. I have done the same thing with her DS, ie separating him and another child when they are fighting or when I have seen him about to hit/kick and she has always seemed fine with that too. This is the first time that I've tattled though.

MaryBS Sat 19-Sep-09 19:30:00

If you said that he had pushed the child, and he hadn't pushed the child, then I would first of all apologise to her DS and then to her.

He quite rightly feels wronged, and I think you need to put it right.

I don't think you need to make a big deal of it, but I think you should apologise

ingles2 Sat 19-Sep-09 19:31:40

Did she give you chance to explain further? By that I mean, when you said the ds had pushed him over did she ask any other questions or just get up and whip him out of the circle?

Lilyloo Sat 19-Sep-09 19:32:38

Is he saying the boy fell or did he actually fall ?

ingles2 Sat 19-Sep-09 19:32:46

he did push the child over... he was rocking the tub to overturn him

bran Sat 19-Sep-09 19:41:13

He did cause the birthday boy to fall though, quite deliberately. It may be that in his mind he didn't push the child over, 5 yr old logic works in strange ways. It's possible that he thinks that rocking the tub quite forcefully and the birthday boy falling over are not connected, or that as he didn't touch the birthday boy (just the tub) it doesn't count as a pushing over. It may even be that he doesn't make the connection between the tub rocking and the boy over-balancing.

Like I say, it wasn't a huge deal. Friend's DS wanted the birthday boy to get out of the tub and sit in the circle (because that's what they were told to do and he likes people to be good and do what they're told). Birthday boy wouldn't get out of the tub. Friend's DS rocked the tub, birthday boy said "don't", friend's DS rocked the tub twice more with a bit more amplitude each time. Birthday boy fell over. It was so minor.

nickschick Sat 19-Sep-09 19:48:50

Bran do you know what I think?

You are too nice.

The child was behaving in a way that his mum should have told him off for and I think comments in your op like 'he floors me in an argument' my dc would never argue with my friends or be cheeky at least not whilst I was sat there.

Move on and find friends like yourself.

MaryBS Sat 19-Sep-09 19:50:36

OK, from what you wrote it read like you'd mistakenly thought he'd done it - so ignore what I said earlier!

ingles2 Sat 19-Sep-09 19:57:41

you are too nice bran
your friend has no problem mentioning your ds's misdemeanours, you told once... and too right, he was pushing over the b'day boy, he should have been pulled up for it.
Forget it.... completely.

bran Sat 19-Sep-09 20:10:01

nickschick grin, I'm very far from being too nice, on the whole my rl friends are fairly thick-skinned people so I don't worry too much about my careless remarks. This friend is a very sensitive person and I generally feel that I need to be on my guard and keep myself a little reined-in.

She's so tactful (and I'm so thick-skinned) that I often don't understand that she's hinting things at me. I guess if our positions were swapped she would have said something about my DS rocking the tub and not knowing his own strength. She has said things to me in the past about DS's behaviour and I haven't understood that he did something wrong until another (blunter) friend has translated. When I say things to her it must be like being bludgeoned. blush

Lilyloo Sat 19-Sep-09 20:11:07

Just let it go then , he did push him regardless of how he interprets it.

What a lovely friend you are....

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