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My friend discipling my child in front of me - Page 2

post #21 of 100
It sounds like your friend was gentle. However, I agree with the following:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Britishmum View Post
I would be fine with a friend correcting my child, but not with taking them out the room without me, or with telling my child to say sorry.

In your friend's shoes, I would have asked your dd to stop, then if she did not, I would have fetched you and asked you to handle it. That is what I would want a friend to do for me.

But then, my kids are highly sensitive and being taken to another room for a chat by another person would be hugely upsetting for them. Whenever I talk with another child about any behavior, if the parent is there, I always do it in their presence, or if I can, ask them to handle it.

But if you and your friend are comfortable with removing children like that, and asking for apologies, that changes the situation, and only you can judge if it is appropriate.
I would be most upset if someone took my kid to another room to "discipline" them in their preferred method and have them say sorry. I'm a big believer in not forcing kids to say things they don't feel.* I don't want to have to explain to each of my friends that feels sufficiently "close" to me to take matters into their own hands how we handle each little thing like this. I'm not going to consult them for each parenting practice I chose and don't want to get into it with them why we have decided to raise our kids the way we have. I've already gotten into some uncomfortable conversations with other parents about sharing (I don't think kids should be forced to share personal toys; sharing playgrounds/public toys is appropriate) and it's not even that big a deal. It also undermines the authority of the parent - it wasn't good enough for Mom to tell you no, Suzy had to do for it to stick.

*In this situation, I would have explained to my daughter that tickling Johnny's feet really upset him. How do you feel when someone does things to you that you don't like? Can you understand how Johnny was feeling? Do you have anything you'd like to say to Johnny? Prompting for a true statement of feeling is one thing, forcing "Sorry" just makes it a meaningless platitude shoved out of one's mouth to stop the confrontation. This method worked incredibly well with my birthdaughter - she will say she's sorry when she genuinely is and will say "I'm sorry I upset you" when that's what she means and will say "I'm sorry you're upset" when that's what she means - and she's seven.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CarrieMF View Post
it sounded to me like the OP was sitting right there, close enough to see her dd was tickling this kid's feet. The OP did ask her dd to stop.

I can see taking her dd out of the room to deal with it in private. Not for privacy away from Mom, but away from the entire group of people there.
This is exactly why she should have let the mom (OP) keep handling it. Redirecting Mom's attention to the daughter's behavior would have been far more appropriate. Mom is _right there_ - she can handle her daughter's behavior in the way that is appropriate for her.

We know people who have children that they don't discipline, pretty much at all, and we limit our time with those people. If their children's behavior is too much for us to handle, we will remove ourselves, perhaps explaining to the host that we just aren't comfortable. I get to decide who is in my parenting "village" - not you. I try to extend that to others; they have not placed me in a parenting role for their children and I will not place myself there.
post #22 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by tallulahma View Post
i thought the OP said she also asked her dd to stop when she saw it happening under the table?

when it happened again, she could just have asked her to stop again OR said to the mom "you really need to do something. its really upsetting my child/me"

im not understanding why its a "i must deal with this myself" issue.

if the mom is right there- she either didnt see it or didnt think it was a big deal, right? i feel like people would rather discipline the child themselves than say "I need you to control/intervene/do something else with your child/act in a more authoritative way to keep your child from upsetting my child" to an adult.
The op was right there. And didn't do anything.

The friend took care of it herself because there was not time to wait on the op. Obviously the op wasn't concerned or willing to do anything. For whatever reason. The friend got sick of it and handled it.

I'm not sure of the age of the child (nevermind, it doesn't matter) - but crawling around under the table while people are eating is unacceptable at any age. And then to actually disturb another person by tickling their feet!? Not cool and needed to be stopped immediately.

OP - don't sweat it. Mothering is a work in progress. And every mother should realize that. The fact that you came here to work this out in your head shows how willing you are to be versatile. You're doing great!!!!
post #23 of 100
wow! I'm surprised-- I think the mother mom owed you a heads up. "Oh, your kiddo is ticking my son and it's bugging him".


I guess I wouldn't mind if it was someone very close to me and my son; my sister, for example. But I'm suprised just a 'friend' would think it's ok to take another mom's kid into the room to scold her.
post #24 of 100
I just re-read your post and it you mentioned that htis has happened several times.

Not ok at all in my book. I would put your foot down.

discipline should be dealt out by someone with the child intersests at heart. Not a 'friend' who is making your kid out to be a bully.
post #25 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by sora View Post
My daughter seemed embarrased and hurt by being told off by somebody other than her parents.
When I was about four years old, my parents took me to a cookout/get-together at the home of some good friends of theirs. The three-year-old son of another of their friends was also at the party, so I played with him that day (he was a frequent playdate playmate of mine). I was being bossy with my friend, but not aggressive or rough. Apparently his dad didn't approve of my behavior. In front of a large group of adults, this man-- my mom's best friend's husband-- told me to leave his son alone, and if I didn't, he would spank me. I was humiliated. I looked at my dad, who was sitting next to my friend's dad. My dad looked shocked, but he didn't say a word to his friend. I ran into the house to find my mom. Five minutes later we were in the car on our way home, and I was bawling. My dad admonished himself for not confronting his friend. That was cold comfort!

This happened almost thirty years ago, yet I still remember how horrible and embarassed I felt being disciplined by an adult who was not my parent (actually, I think this man's behavior wasn't so much discipline as it was threatening and abusive, but I digress).

IMO, nobody has a right to discipline another person's child, unless a dangerous situation exists. This was obviously not the case in the OP's situation. OP, I think your friend may have meant well, but she should have pulled you aside to discuss your daughter's behavior.

Since more than once your friend has taken it upon herself to discipline your daughter, I would suggest re-thinking keeping her as a playdate friend. Seriously, your daughter's self-esteem is more important than remaining friends with someone who seems to have trouble seeing where the discipline line is drawn.
post #26 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by MissMaegie'sMama View Post
When I was about four years old, my parents took me to a cookout/get-together at the home of some good friends of theirs. The three-year-old son of another of their friends was also at the party, so I played with him that day (he was a frequent playdate playmate of mine). I was being bossy with my friend, but not aggressive or rough. Apparently his dad didn't approve of my behavior. In front of a large group of adults, this man-- my mom's best friend's husband-- told me to leave his son alone, and if I didn't, he would spank me. I was humiliated. I looked at my dad, who was sitting next to my friend's dad. My dad looked shocked, but he didn't say a word to his friend. I ran into the house to find my mom. Five minutes later we were in the car on our way home, and I was bawling. My dad admonished himself for not confronting his friend. That was cold comfort!

This happened almost thirty years ago, yet I still remember how horrible and embarassed I felt being disciplined by an adult who was not my parent (actually, I think this man's behavior wasn't so much discipline as it was threatening and abusive, but I digress).

IMO, nobody has a right to discipline another person's child, unless a dangerous situation exists. This was obviously not the case in the OP's situation. OP, I think your friend may have meant well, but she should have pulled you aside to discuss your daughter's behavior.

Since more than once your friend has taken it upon herself to discipline your daughter, I would suggest re-thinking keeping her as a playdate friend. Seriously, your daughter's self-esteem is more important than remaining friends with someone who seems to have trouble seeing where the discipline line is drawn.
this is exactly why its best to take your issues up with the adults, not the child. when children are not used to being spoken to/disciplined by others- it can be hard on them.

JUST BECAUSE THE MOME WAS THERE doesnt mean she knew it was as upsetting as it was.

she deserved a heads up. "please keep your dd from doing this- its upsetting me"

why is disciplining the child more acceptable than that? in ANY circumstance?

keep your kid safe, then alert the adult to the behaviour you need changed.

a lot less drama that way. and sensitive kids dont end up crying over a mom not understanding the severity of a situation.

and ive been to many kids parties where kids crawling under tables is quite common... so its not even something that would catch my attention.
post #27 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by phathui5 View Post
Yes, if you're not doing it.

I'm comfortable with other adults correcting my children as long as they are gentle with them about it.
I agree. It is absolutely the parent's right and responsibility to intervene if their child is causing a problem for someone else. But if they aren't there or choose not to, then another adult should be able to (hopefully gently) stop the action.

If Child A is tickling Child B - and B doesn't like it, then it stops. Now. Period. If A's parent is there then he/she should stop it, but if he/she isn't there or doesn't consider it a problem then B's parent or any other adult can stop it. Discipline regarding the issue is still left up to parent A - but anyone can stop the action.

This is a more common problem with firstborns - as it seems that moms mellow more with subsequent children. You either get on the same page with what is acceptable (among the adults whose kids your kid spends time with) or stop hanging out together.

When my dd1 was a toddler, a friend's child was too rough with her - and that mom didn't find it a problem. My kid and I found it a problem. That mom wouldn't stop her kid, so we stopped hanging out with each other until that kid matured enough to play nice.
post #28 of 100
I think your friend had every right to tell your dd that the tickling bothered her son, and ask your dd to stop. I'm huge on kids respecting others' personal boundaries.

I'm on the fence about taking her to another room, and even less sure about telling her to apologize. It sounds like she was nice and GD about it, but still.

Gently, I do think you should have asked her if what your dd was doing was bothering her son, and acted accordingly. Take it as a learning experience
post #29 of 100
I do not understand how a situation goes from an adult and child getting annoyed by tickling into a child being taken into another room and made to cry.

Let's just call it what it is- passive aggressive.

It's totally "I don't think you are disciplining your child appropriately, and instead of approaching you and risk confrontation, I'm going to approach your kid that I feel an instrinsic power over and show you how it SHOULD be done!"
post #30 of 100
I think it was reasonable of her to intervene to make sure your ds stopped tickling her ds, but I don't like that she took your ds into another room. I don't like the forced apology thing either, but that seems to be standard fare and I'd expect it in that situation. I find the taking your child into another room to be a real problem, though. I don't see why she couldn't say something right there.
post #31 of 100
I'm confused, what was the reason for the other mom taking your kid to the other room. Was it expressly for the purpose of discipline or was it just sometime after the initial tickling issue, so that the kids could play together. As I was reading the OP I assumed it was the latter. I figure that she took the OP's dd with her son to the other room to play to give the OP a chance to talk with the other adults and that is when another incident occurred.

If that's the case than for me I'd be totally fine with it. My friends can totally be a voice for their own kids and tell my child to stop a behavior that is hurting/bothering them (to me tickling is as bad as hitting or other aggressive behaviors because of the feelings of powerlessness it gives the victim). I have two kids so there are often times when we're in group situations where I'm following my baby around and my 3.5yo has a bit more freedom, so if I'm not dealing with a situation like this I hope a friend would do so in a manner similar to how I would handle it or at least as gentle as they would want their own child treated. I agree though about not wanting my child to be forced to apologize and it might be worth saying to her that you appreciate that she was there to help guide your child when you weren't there but that you don't believe in forcing a child to apologize and would appreciate her honoring that. I always make sure though to apologize on my child's behalf if she doesn't do it herself. something like, "jack, I'm so sorry that juliette tickled your feet after you asked her not too, I'm going to try my best to make sure it doesn't happen again"

On the other hand if she totally went off on your kid, raised her voice, used demeaning words (like calling her naughty or telling her she's a bad girl) then I would tell her that she may ask dd to stop a behavior only if it is dangerous or physically bothering her or her child, but to leave all other discipline to me.
post #32 of 100
The details here seem to be a little ambiguous. I will say that if the situation bothered you enough to be posting on a message board about it, you need to speak to your friend.

I have absolutely zero problem with other adults verbally correcting my child in gentle way. I actually think it is great if we are at a friend's house and she is asked to not stand on the furniture, or is asked to give back a toy she snatched. I want her to grow up knowing that the behaviour I expect from her is not just a bunch of rules I made up, but is instead the basis of a polite, respectful and caring society.

I definitely draw the line at another adult punishing her though. That is way out of place. If I was around another child that didn't something so agregious I felt that discipline was in order instead of just a polite request to change their behaviour, I would send them to go speak to their parents.

And from the other side of this, it can be extremely frustrating when another child is bothering yours and the parent isn't doing anything about it. There was a boy who attended one of our playgroups last year who was about 3yo at the time. My DD was just over 1... about 16 months or so. He preyed on her. He would snatch toys from her, hit her, and once knocked her hard to the floor and layed on top of her so she couldn't get up. His mom didn't do a thing. It was so bad that I used to have to closely shadow my DD and try to redirect this boy whenever he came at her, all while the other mom shot me dirty looks. Eventually they stopped coming, and the mom told one of the other group members that she was tired of people telling her kid what to do. I wasn't the only one having to ask this kid to behave all the time, and definitely wasn't the only one who breathed a sigh of relief when they stopped coming.
post #33 of 100
I would have thanked the mom for taking care of it when I did not notice. I would have said "She gets a little hyper at these things and I am sorry, but thank you."
post #34 of 100
people keep focusing on them going to another room. In the original post it sounds like the kids were in another room for an other reason..but even if they weren't would it have been better for this mom to call tell girl publicly "hey stop bothering him!" That would have been unnecessarily humiliating IMHO.

I love when my friends handle things directly with my children. I am not always going to be there or clued in when I am there and my kids need to learn to handle social situations by themselves and work out relationships with people between the two of them. My friends don't need my permission to exert their boundaries or their child's. And regardless of what one thinks about "say you are sorry" I think she and her son had the right to request it. And yes, your dd was upset. my kids would have been too. and I remember several instances as a small child where I was corrected by adults other than my mom. I was embarrassed every time and I should have been. And while I was not permanently scarred those instances left their mark. I never made those mistakes again because for some reason having a stranger correct me meant way more than having my mom do it.

But any time my kid is annoying someone they have a right to ask them to stop. and if my child refuses to listen and I fail to clue in, they have a right to enforce boundaries in anyway they need to. Its very good your friend stepped in. If your dd had been irritating my dd like that, my kid would have likely just starting wildly kicking her feet and screaming. Things deteriorate kinda quickly with overstimulated small children. She may have thought things needed her intervention right then before things broke down even more.
post #35 of 100
You seriously think that embarrassing and shaming a kid is deserved and appropriate way for them to learn social boundaries?

You think a kid "should be" embarrassed by someone for being unintentionally annoying?!

I would never be friends with someone that would rather shame my kidthan have a frank discussion with me. Its so offensive. And yet people really believe it's appropriate.
post #36 of 100
And I'd rather my child get kicked by an overstimulated little kid than talked down to by an adult.

It's developmentally appropriate for the child to lash out- it's stunted social skills for an adult to not be able to say "hey, your kid is really pushing my kids limits here"
post #37 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by sora View Post
Hi,

I feel awful and embarrased by my friend discipling my child today. I know my daughter was annoying her son but I did not interven promptly. I feel that my friend was right to discipline my child but at the same time I felt so embarrased and humiliated and inadequate. Do you think if my friend has the right to discipline my daughter in my presence? This did not happen once but several times. So I am quite sensitive about it. And I kind of sense that she thinks that my daughter is a bully and trouble maker and I know she is trying to protect her son, which is very understandable. My daughter is a bit on the wild side while her son is quite.

Today there was a gathering. The kids were at the table. My daughter was very tired and hyper so she would not sit down at the table (She gets too hyper at a party)She would have a bite and run around. Her son is very disciplined so he would sit at the table eating. The boy's mom was next to him helping him. It was obvious that she was annoyed by my daughter. My daughter started crawling under the table. I did not realize quick enough but she was tickling her son's feet. And he was annoyed. I told her to stop and kept eating and chatting. And then my friend took her son and my daughter to another room. Then I realized that she tickled him again. My friend was explaining to my daughter that her behavior was annoying her son so she would have to stop and say sorry to him. My daughter started crying and said sorry. My daughter seemed embarrased and hurt by being told off by somebody other than her parents. I was embarrased too. I felt like a failure as a mom that I did not discipline my child enough to sit through a meal and allow her to annoy others.
i bolded what i think are the important aspects of this interaction.

1- you knew your dd was annoying your friend because it was obvious
2- you told your dd to stop but then kept eating and chatting

here's my question, what did you do to _make sure_ that she stopped?

if the answer is nothing, after you knew it was a problem, then yes, i think your friend was right to handle the situation since you were not doing anything about it. if you did make sure that your dd stopped and _then_ your friend did her thing, then no, she was not in the right.

it doesn't mean that you have to make your dd sit at the table and eat, but i do think you are responsible for making sure that your dd doesn't make the experience annoying for anyone else. obviously your dd doesn't know how to do that for herself right now so she needs your guidance to figure it out.
post #38 of 100
I think there are multiple layers to this dilemma. First, is how she handled it the way you would have handled it had you not been distracted in conversation? Meaning, had you reacted quicker, would you have disciplined the same way? If my friends are aware of my discipline style and use it when interacting with my kids, I'm ok with that. You didn't mention whether it was just the act of disciplining that caught you off guard or if it was the method used. That would make a big difference to me. If a friend did something discipline wise that was a method we were not comfortable with I would be a bit more annoyed. But following our methods I would thank the friend for catching it and make a point to intervene wih my child quicker.

As far as leaving the room, it could be read two different ways... left the room to discipline or was already out of the room when the incident happened. Either way, I think talking to a child out of the room is actually more respectful of the child. Whether the parent or friend did it in the room it's going to embarrass the child more, leaving to a more private spot helps a bit. I don't think telling a child that the action is not ok is shaming if its done the right way.

Sometimes in situations like these children listen to others better than their own parents. My instinct would be that she cried because she was just shocked that the friend said anything, not that she was being mean about it. If you feel weird about it just talk to your friend, but I'd identify what part of it made you feel weird to start with first.
post #39 of 100
I think it depends an awful lot on what your relationship with your friend is like, how close she is to you and your family. When I read the OP I imagined myself and my best friend in that same situation, and it didn't seem like what she did was a big deal at all. Our families are very close, very much like family. We are best friends and our oldest children are best friends too. She disciplines my dd and I discipline her ds on occasion and it is completely and totally not a big deal. We parent very similarly and are on the same wavelength regarding GD. So, in the OPs case, if she and her friend are very close, and her friend is close and well-known to her dd, and they are on the same page about discipline, then I don't think that what she did was at all out of line. But if they are not terribly close, if the dd doesn't know the friend all that well, or if they don't share similar parenting values then it might be a different story. That said, it doesn't sound (from the small picture we've been given) that the friend had any kind of malicious or shaming intent. I think her ds was being repeatedly annoyed by the OP's dd and the OP wasn't doing enough to stop the behaviour and so she stepped in with (what I assume she intended as) gentle discipline. Simple as that. I don't see it as a play to make the OP feel inadequate etc, and I don't see it as overbearing/shaming/trying to make the little girl feel horrible. (Though of course I wasn't there!).
post #40 of 100
one of my dearest friends has a little guy who is a handful. She is pretty wired about him because he can also hit and be aggressive and my guys aren't. However we also both discipline each others children if the other one of us cannot deal with the child at the moment. She is my friend, she loves my kids and I trust her to not hurt them. She knows my style and I know hers, so we keep within those.

That said, your little one kept on doing something that was annoying her child and I would definitely gently explain like your friend were it my child being annoyed. I am my child's advocate and if other parent isn't going to step in after its pretty obvious the behaviour is not being well received, I am. What your friend did was gentle and appropriate, from my reading it doesn't seem like she took your kid in another room to discipline, but the behaviour happened again in that other room.

I think if you don't want other people disciplining your child, you're going to have to actively make sure your requests stick, which means your social time at these gatherings might be seriously limited for a while.
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