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I am feeling so overwhelmed by my sons' friends' mum... and friend's behaviour..

25 replies

frecklyspeckly · 27/02/2008 22:17

I do not want my son to be taken by his friends mother to McDonalds or for any time at all without my supervision. Her son is very very immature and badly behaved, has tantrums and accuses my son of hurting and hitting him. School have picked up on this and they are not allowed to sit near eachother because of this childs behaviour towards ds. In fact I dont really want them to spend any time together without my supervision. Time and time again the mother has turned a blind eye to him doing this. She is pressurising me to let me take him and frankly the way this child is I fear for my ds safety. Today she said she wanted to take him and i told her me and my husband consider him too young to be allowed out without me there. He is 5.She is very laid back and her parenting ways are completely different to mine. I have posted about this mum before and I am getting to the point of wondering if i have to say 'because he cannot handle your ds behaviour and neither can I'. She just keeps pushing for me to leave him. I am having to defend my right to be accompanying him places at this age.
She is a very strong character and i dont want to upset her or end their friendship. Sorry but I had to vent this tonight. My little boy has even started to say he doesnt want to play with this boy because of the crocodile tears and the silliness. She corners us and walks out the school with us every night. Every night their is an incident of some kind. What IS wrong with feeling protective of your son? I do let him go without oursupervsion - just with trusted adults and i dont trust her to not let her son jump on him or push him about near the road or cry and get him into trouble.

OP posts:
moljam · 27/02/2008 22:20

if your lo doesnt want to play with him just tell the mum.

frecklyspeckly · 27/02/2008 22:23

Tonight he [ds) was saying IN FRONT of the mum 'I dont want to walk home with ---' she got down to eye level with my son and said, 'But you are good pals' i felt so embarassed. I would be a bit hurt if it were my son and someone said it to me.

OP posts:
MyMummiesAScummyMummy · 27/02/2008 22:27

Freckly i know how hard it can be when someone tries to foist their opinons and themselves upon you. I think all you can do is stick to your guns, say your not happy for him to go alone etc, etc, and hope that she finds something else to concentrate on, why does she want to go to Mc's on her own with your DS? I presume she is aware of the situation re:school not allowing them together?

frecklyspeckly · 27/02/2008 22:36

Yes but school being school said it's because of an isolated incident - thats the expl. for the lunch hall separation - they movedmy son in class away from him but she wasnt' informed of the reason why as they moved ds onto a different work group. Honest it is because of this lads immaturity towards him but this was not repeated to the other mum. Teacher said this was reason to us.

OP posts:
MyMummiesAScummyMummy · 27/02/2008 22:42

Perhaps, then shes completely clueless as to the way you're DS feels about her DS? I know that given the circumstances it would be hard if her son is given yours a really bad time. Maybe her DS is enthralled with your son and therefore she just presumes that its reciprocated?

fingerwoman · 27/02/2008 22:44

I would just try and talk to her and say that you're ds finds her son a bit much and that he doesn't want to go to mcdonalds, or wherever, with him.

it's hard, but it needs to be done

quint · 27/02/2008 22:52

You say that

"i dont want to upset her or end their friendship"

she doesn;t seem to worry about upsetting you and what friendship - your son clearly doesn;t like this other child.

Next time she asks you if she can take your son, just say thanks but no, if she puts the pressure on and asks why, just say that you've asked your son and he doesn;t want to go - you don;t need to go into it any more than that

Heated · 27/02/2008 22:56

Agree with Quint.

You can also be quite noncommittal and find you are busy at weekends with family/ ds too tired after long day at school/ too shy about going on his own. You don't need to be unfriendly but just reduce the intensity of the friendship.

MrsWeasley · 27/02/2008 23:03

A friend of mine wanted to bring my DD home from Pre-shool one day with her DS and she insisted and at the time I didnt see a problem. Her DS was always in a buggy or on reins as he would run off and not stay on the pavement. My DD was a sensible walker who would not run off and would hold hands/pushchair etc quite happily.

I happened to be getting something from the garage as they approached and saw both children walking and her DS dragging my DD into the road! I confronted her about this and she said she thought it would help to train her DS if he walked with my DD. I pointed out that she was putting them both at risk and she just shrugged! I was fuming and never allowed it again, although she often asked.

Stick with your gut feeling, encourage your DC to mix with others and arrange play dates with others (if you want to!) Do not let this lady bully you into getting what she wants.

MummyPenguin · 28/02/2008 10:24

If it were me, I think I'd have to grit my teeth and be blunt and tell this woman to leave me and my child alone. You'll only have to do it once.

southeastastra · 28/02/2008 10:29

maybe she's hoping your son's good behaviour would rub off on her sons

GooseyLoosey · 28/02/2008 10:35

I have to say, I worry that my ds may be a little like the other boy that you describe and I just want him to make friends. I am worried that no one will ever want to come and play with him and that their parents won't let them. It is horrible. I completely understand where you are coming from and think you are absolutely right and the needs and interests of your own child must come first.

If this was my son, I would be completely aware of what the situation was and welcome any approaches from you along the lines of "their relationship seems to have a few problems at the moment, I'm sure we can get it back on track, but I think they should take it easy at the moment and maybe, if ds comes around I should come with him". I would fall down at your feet with gratitude for this. However, there is of course the possibility that she is completely clueless and if she does not pick up on the cues here, I suspect there is nothing that you can do other than be more blunt as the others suggest.

Butkin · 28/02/2008 12:39

I do not understand why she wants to take your son to McDonalds - this is quite unacceptable.

If she had wanted a play date she should take them back home and give them tea and supervise their play.

I suggest you just say that your son wants to go home after school because he is always tired after a hard day and needs to get on with reading his book (which I'm sure is true if he is anything like our 5yo DD).

Do not let this person manipulate you or your child. Only suggest a play date (perhaps at yours) if your child suggests it.

CristinaTheAstonishing · 28/02/2008 12:48

At 5 I wouldn't have let my son go somewhere with another adult. Playdate yes, on the road no.

OTOH "he doesnt want to play with this boy because of the crocodile tears and the silliness" shows clearly a personality clash between your two. My DS would have been the silly one, if others were a bit more straight & square, well, that's life. He always had lots of friends, though, so plenty for everyone.

But I totally agree on the going somewhere with another adult.

Miggsie · 28/02/2008 16:17

Two approaches really that I can see:

Tell her no, and say why, she sounds like someone who only hears wants she wants to hear so be firm and stubborn and never never ever give in to her.
If she dismisses her son's behaviour just say "you may not be bothered by this but I am and I don't want your son near mine" and repeat as and when needed. Also get your son to tell other child he does not want to be friends as he is not nice and so your son can find another friend.


Take her son out with your son and really tell him off when he's a horror. I know someone with unruly kids who strangely do NOT misbehave at our house as they get a right telling off from me and DH who they are frightened of.
Second approach does depend on you looking mean and tough and first approach may be easier.

You are right to protect your child, my DD has a similar problem with a girl at nursery. I had a few words with the staff and turned down all invites from girls mum.

Do any other mums have an issue with this mum, or with her son?

frecklyspeckly · 28/02/2008 22:33

All I can say to you all is a great big thankyou. I feel lots better today and from listening to all of your support.I suppose i felt like I was going to be condemned as being neurotic, and that everyone who posted would say I was being OTT. My son can be silly - find me a 5yo who can't - but we have worked long and hard to try and encourage him that there is a time and place not to mess- with other kids in class, not to be cheeky or hurtful, my issue is with the other mum's laid back attitude to other boys behaviour. I actually am genuinely fond of this kid, it is her attitude to/ lack of ability to try and control him where my anger lies. To Miggsie, I doubt she would let me have him as she has to be in driving seat at all times, But a great suggestion and one i would love to try! but the problem school are coming up againgst with him is he cries if you tell him off, ( very unprofessional helper told me this) so i can just imagine if i let rip with a firm reprimand I know a few other mums have same opinion of him being out of control - very tellingly she met a mum who her ds went to nursery with her child -iyswim- and this mum looked horrified and could not get away quick enough. Also other mums have passed a few comments in the yard, of the variety of, 'Do you know --- is running out the gate/ rolling in the mud/ hitting my child' so i have picked up they have the same opinion. FWIW - I have huge amounts of patience with boisterous kids whose parents are clearly trying their best to parent them and I am sure most other reasonable folk would too - would not stop me wanting to associate with them - as long as mum/dad tries to reign in their really wild ways if they are presenting a danger to themselves or others. Now i sould like i am backpeddling, think I'll just shut up!

OP posts:
Janni · 28/02/2008 22:42

I used to get into all sorts of situations where I would look after other people's kids because I didn't want to upset their mothers.
These days, unless one of my children says 'I want to play with so and so' I avoid getting into any arrangements and don't encourage the other parents to make them. If you're a nice, non-confrontational person, it can take you a while to be comfortable with your own boundaries, but the more you let someone you don't really trust into your family space, the more you will end up having to deal with them. Make no mistake, some time down the line she will be expecting YOU to look after her DS if she is pushing so hard to take yours out now.
I know that sounds harsh and I speak from bitter experience. Do not get yourself into friendships through your children that you are really not comfortable being in.

MyMummiesAScummyMummy · 28/02/2008 22:42

Glad you're feeling better today freckly ! just as long as you feel confident that you are doing the right thing for you and you're son then thats all that matters.
Maybe suggest you all go to Mcdonalds together?

frecklyspeckly · 28/02/2008 23:02

MyMummy - Indeed see that as a possibility in the near future - to show I do want to be on friendly ground - and hey! i can watch him and come home when it all becomes too much.

Janni - feck!! do you think she will Seriously tho you are right with last comment - very true.

OP posts:
Janni · 28/02/2008 23:06

Absolutely I do! I have seen it so many times and once you've got yourself into a so-called 'friendship' it is hard to get out of. If you and your DS do not want this friendship, then be polite but firm.

purpleduck · 28/02/2008 23:20

Your ds is only 5 -start having other children over for tea/ playdates etc. The friendship will soon fizzle.

CristinaTheAstonishing · 29/02/2008 00:53

Bloody hell! Have I misunderstood what friendships are about in the UK all thsese past 15 years? Going to McDs with someone is NOT friendship in my book. It's just going to McDs. Friendship is having so meone number and implicut or explicit invitation to phone them at any time if you want to talk. Not spending £2 together in McD.

Janni · 29/02/2008 10:18

Cristina - all I'm saying is that in my experience, if you are not very assertive, you can get yourself into 'friendships' with other parents that become really draining because it's actually NOT a real friendship. I'm saying to the OP be careful. If this is a child and a mother she finds difficult, it's best NOT to start accepting invitations.

indiemummy · 29/02/2008 11:44

Freckly, I had a similar problem, with another parent whose parenting style was way more laid back than mine. She is always offering to take ds to dancing class, MacDonalds, etc. I always say no. She clearly wants our kids to be friends when they are not really friends at school.

I'm sorry but I do what I think is the best thing for my ds, and at age 4.7 I want to be with him, doing things together. Be confident, don't be bullied into letting him go. Anyway my ds is always knackered after school and we go home and have a snack and read his book - so you could just use that as an excuse.

At any time when the kids are together, for example after school, make a big deal of talking to your ds e.g. "what that other boy did was naughty, we do not shout like that" "just because the other boy is climbing on the wall, I do not want you to climb on the wall" maybe the other mum will get the message that you are hotter on behaviour than she is, and find someone else to pester?

CristinaTheAstonishing · 29/02/2008 16:01

Understood now, Janni. I agree with you, not a real friendship. I read the quotation marks this time

Hey, nothing wrong with climbing walls.

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