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Am I being weird or are they?

108 replies

Blanchethegreat · 13/08/2018 08:36

I posted about this about a year or so ago. I think about half agreed with me and half thought I was being stupid, however I want to know if I'm still being stupid now.

My mil and fil have got a thing about playfully slapping my ds on the bum, they've always done this and do it every single time we see them and several times.

However, my ds is now 3.5 years old and out of nappies, and they're still doing it.

He can just be running around or playing and fil just randomly slaps him on the bum, or if he's climbing up onto the sofa mil will start slapping his bum. Fil will pick him up and say "shall I slap your bum", fil will walk past ds and do a full arm swing and slap his bum out of nowhere.

Just to be clear I'm not accusing them of anything untoward, I know that babies and even toddlers bums are cute and of course I've patted my baby's bum in an affectionate way when cuddling him, but they're not his parents, he's getting older now and I don't like the way they do it repeatedly and randomly.

They're not hurting him and they are only playing around but I absolutely fucking hate it, it makes me cringe more and more as he gets older and I don't know how to tell them to stop it without offending them.

Dh pretends not to notice but when I've spoken to him about it he agreed it makes him uncomfortable and that he wouldn't do it to someone else's child, he more or less admitted he doesn't know how to tell them how to stop it.

OP posts:
RandomMess · 13/08/2018 08:39

What's going to happen when your DS starts copying their behaviour on other children? It isn't going to go down well, could that be a way of telling them stop... he's done it at nursery and he's been told it's unacceptable so they need to stop otherwise it's mixed messages and confusing him?

LorelaiVictoriaGilmore · 13/08/2018 08:40

What RandomMess said... little white lie and it's all good.

Blanchethegreat · 13/08/2018 08:42

Dh did suggest that he was going to say that about ds copying, but he hasn't.

In laws are nice but very much don't see that they do anything wrong.

OP posts:
TimeForDinnerDinnerDinner · 13/08/2018 08:44

How does your DS respond?

Zommum · 13/08/2018 08:47

Start teaching ds about the underpants rule, no one can touch where underpants cover without asking first. There is a book about it you can read. Perhaps encourage him to say stop I don't like it, please don't touch me there. Hopefully ds sorts it out for you.

RandomMess · 13/08/2018 08:47

Is it not better to say he has before he potentially wallops another child and hurts them, or nursery misunderstand and report you for smacking him based on something he does/says...

BertrandRussell · 13/08/2018 08:49

This happened in my family of origin- we used to play chasing games when if you got caught you got a gentle slap on the bottom. If you want it to stop then saying he’s copying is the best way. Michael Mackintyre has a very funny routine about something like this, by the way- he invented a game where he chased his children and pulled their pants down.........and lived to regret it.

Blanchethegreat · 13/08/2018 08:50

Honestly ds doesn't seem that bothered, aside from maybe turning around to see who slapped him, as I said they're not hurting him. I just don't see the reason why they both feel the need to slap his bum 10-20 times every time they visit us. It seems totally unnecessary and bordering on appropriate.

They also do the whole pretending to cry if he won't give them a kiss, which I'm also not keen on.

OP posts:
BertrandRussell · 13/08/2018 08:51

Oh- and nobody’s being weird. Just different!

Didiusfalco · 13/08/2018 08:53

I wouldn’t like that either. I think Randommess has the best idea you’re going to get in the first post.

FuckingHateRain · 13/08/2018 08:53

It's odd they persist on this when you're not happy anyway, irrespective of what it is

Blanchethegreat · 13/08/2018 08:54

I think it's the whole underpants rule that is a big part of why I don't like it.

I know he's only young still but I've always taught my older children this.

OP posts:
ajandjjmum · 13/08/2018 08:56

I would do the 'white lie' thing, and say personal space is something that's being developed at nursery, and maybe show them the underpants rule book a PP mentioned?

You know that it comes from a place of love, but they need to be satisfied with hugs when they're available!

Maybe comment on how things have changed since you and your DH were young.

soapboxqueen · 13/08/2018 09:01

If it bothers you then I think the 'he's copying' is the way to go.

If someone asks for a kiss and your child says no, it's your responsibility to manage the situation. So 'OK, wave goodbye to a granny then' and swift exit. You can't rely on other people to play ball.

Unless there is something I'm missing, the bum slapping game wouldn't worry me in the slightest.

ppeatfruit · 13/08/2018 09:06

Agree with ajand I certainly don't think you're being weird, THEY'RE being weird (it is a generational thing though). In their day they got properly slapped on the bum, and MADE to kiss their relations so they think nothing of it.

nokidshere · 13/08/2018 09:22

I don't think it's weird at all. They are his grandparents and they are being affectionate. I think it's quite sad that everything is so over analysed now. And why have you let it go on for almost 4 yrs if it bothers you so much?

ArcheryAnnie · 13/08/2018 09:31

I think it's fine for you not to want them to do this, but it'll be hard to break their habits. As others have said, the "he's copying you and it's getting him into trouble" white lie is probably the easiest way to pursue this.

It's also not OK for them to "pretend to cry" if your DS doesn't kiss them. Teaching kids that they must allow hugs and kisses they don't want is never a good idea. They can be taught to be polite without demanding that they are not allowed to have boundaries.

RafikiIsTheBest · 13/08/2018 09:32

I don't think it's done with bad intent or anything untoward. But I don't think it's appropriate, what is he does start copying and keeps hitting other children? Or others?
I'd be unimpressed if a child at school came up to me and smacked me on the bum, playfully or not.

I hate the forced affection thing too. I think children should be encouraged to have good manners, so be expected and asked to say bye, but if they don't want physical contact then fair enough.

zzzzz · 13/08/2018 09:41

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

IncrediblySturdyPyjamas · 13/08/2018 09:44

If they were clipping him around the head would you also just let them do it?

Just fucking tell them to stop. You are the parents.

Happyhippy45 · 13/08/2018 09:47

As he gets older they will grow out of it. Patting a little kids bum (family only though and usually grandparents or parents) is just something that people do. I don't know why but it's something I grew up with and my kids grew up with.
I think you're overanalysing something quite innocent and affectionate. A sign of the times I suppose😕

Pebblesandfriends · 13/08/2018 09:52

Go with the ' he's copying so we have decided no tolerance on slapping' and as for fake crying teach him that it's his body his choice and that fake crying gets you nowhere and hopefully he'll repeat it back to them Grin


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BertrandRussell · 13/08/2018 09:52

"If they were clipping him around the head would you also just let them do it? "

Now that's just silly. If they were locking him in the cellar with the black beetles would you just let them do it?

KanyeWesticle · 13/08/2018 10:03

Every time they see him, for 4 years? No.

DarlingNikita · 13/08/2018 10:17

Tell them they need to stop because he's getting to an age when he needs to learn about personal space and touching with permission etc.

They also do the whole pretending to cry if he won't give them a kiss, which I'm also not keen on. That needs nipping right in the bud.

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