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"Mama Bear" at the playground.... I know some of you have BTDT... - Page 2  

post #21 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by ElliesMomma View Post
i agree that a 5 year old certainly knows not to put his foot in a younger child's face. (!)

 

That's absolutely true...if the other kid is 5. The OP started by saying that her son looks much younger than he is. My tall, highly articulate 3YO is often mistaken for a 5 or 6 year old. This kid may not have been as old as you think he was. That doesn't make the attempt to kick okay, but it's something to consider the next time your reaction is to scream at a child because you think he's old enough to know better.
 

post #22 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Octopus8 View Post

"what's wrong with you?"

 

I don't feel a bit bad about it, either, she must have outweighed him by 30 pounds and was twice as tall.



This makes me really sad.  Kids of all ages make mistakes.  And I think this behavior is more commonly seen in kids who are neglected or who have issues like ADHD.  I don't think any child, no matter the mistake she has made, deserves to be told that there is something wrong with her.  greensad.gif  This kind of vindictive behavior toward her is certainly not going to teach her how to be compassionate. 

post #23 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by no5no5 View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by Octopus8 View Post

"what's wrong with you?"

 

I don't feel a bit bad about it, either, she must have outweighed him by 30 pounds and was twice as tall.



This makes me really sad.  Kids of all ages make mistakes.  And I think this behavior is more commonly seen in kids who are neglected or who have issues like ADHD.  I don't think any child, no matter the mistake she has made, deserves to be told that there is something wrong with her.  greensad.gif  This kind of vindictive behavior toward her is certainly not going to teach her how to be compassionate. 


Well, you might have felt differently if it had been your toddler splatted on the ground in tears.
 

post #24 of 95


More than one person mentioned removing your child from the situation. While I agree that this is the appropriate response for the world that we have, I hate that it essentially punishes the child who is being treated aggressively (has to leave) and rewards the aggressor and reinforces the aggressive behavior as a result (gets what she wanted in the first place -- the slide to herself). I wish that we could trust that our children could make mistakes without us noticing and another parent could just handle it appropriately. (ie, if it were a conflict between my two, or if mine were the one we wiith the foot in the face, the aggressor would be pulled off the slide and not play on it anymore that day). But the world just isn't like that -- we can't "discipline" other people's kids, and we can't trust that others will "discipline" ours appropriately if we get distracted. And I know from reading enough threads here that if someone's five year old was disciplined by another parent on the playground that almost everyone would be up in arms about that horrible parent, disciplining someone else's child!

 

I don't think that screaming at the top of your lungs is an inappropriate reaction if your child is in danger of falling from the top of the slide and the person who can prevent it didn't hear you the first time.

post #25 of 95


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Octopus8 View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by no5no5 View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by Octopus8 View Post

"what's wrong with you?"

 

I don't feel a bit bad about it, either, she must have outweighed him by 30 pounds and was twice as tall.



This makes me really sad.  Kids of all ages make mistakes.  And I think this behavior is more commonly seen in kids who are neglected or who have issues like ADHD.  I don't think any child, no matter the mistake she has made, deserves to be told that there is something wrong with her.  greensad.gif  This kind of vindictive behavior toward her is certainly not going to teach her how to be compassionate. 


Well, you might have felt differently if it had been your toddler splatted on the ground in tears.
 



My child has been hurt and crying as a result of much-older kids being mean.  It upsets me, but it doesn't change the fact that I believe that people are generally good and deserve to be treated with compassion.  It certainly doesn't change the fact that I think it is wrong to humiliate and belittle a child, regardless of the mistakes she has made.  An adult should be able to refrain from making negative statements about a child's character or worth regardless of how upset she is. 

post #26 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by no5no5 View Post


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Octopus8 View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by no5no5 View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by Octopus8 View Post

"what's wrong with you?"

 

I don't feel a bit bad about it, either, she must have outweighed him by 30 pounds and was twice as tall.



This makes me really sad.  Kids of all ages make mistakes.  And I think this behavior is more commonly seen in kids who are neglected or who have issues like ADHD.  I don't think any child, no matter the mistake she has made, deserves to be told that there is something wrong with her.  greensad.gif  This kind of vindictive behavior toward her is certainly not going to teach her how to be compassionate. 


Well, you might have felt differently if it had been your toddler splatted on the ground in tears.
 



My child has been hurt and crying as a result of much-older kids being mean.  It upsets me, but it doesn't change the fact that I believe that people are generally good and deserve to be treated with compassion.  It certainly doesn't change the fact that I think it is wrong to humiliate and belittle a child, regardless of the mistakes she has made.  An adult should be able to refrain from making negative statements about a child's character or worth regardless of how upset she is. 



I have to agree, we're all here b/c we like AP, and want our children treated with respect, I'm not sure why its ok to treat other peoples children disrespectfully b/c of their behavior, but not our own?  If your child hurt another child much much younger, how would you feel if you child was addressed in the way that you addressed the child who hurt your child?  You would probably be very upset.  Or you're thinking, Oh, I'm an AP parent, my child would never ever even think of doing something like that!  But it could happen.

 

I've definitely made mistakes, but I try my hardest to live by the "Golden Rule" - treat others the way you want to be treated.  Period.  If you don't want someone hissing at you "what is wrong with you?"  then don't do it to others.

post #27 of 95

I think that your reaction was over the top and it scared your son more than it did the kid who had his foot in front of your child's face.  He may have been playing or trying to engage your son in play in an inappropriate way (if he wanted to hurt your child he probably would have done it outright), which may be what your husband saw and why he thought your reaction was way too harsh.  Every mama gets that mama bear instinct, but I think you can firmly react with it while respecting your child and the child you are reacting to. 

 

The climbing the stairs thing is something you need to help your son navigate until he is old enough to navigate it for himself.  Kids tend to climb over and around each other a lot, especially once they are used to playing on a school playground.  Getting brushed by another child or brushing into another child doesn't seem to phase kids all that much when they are playing.  Some kids are very aware of younger kids and view them as younger kids.  Others don't understand that a younger kid isn't just a short child their own age and they treat them the same way they would treat kids their age, especially when they are irritated with them.

post #28 of 95


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by One_Girl View Post

I think that your reaction was over the top and it scared your son more than it did the kid who had his foot in front of your child's face.  He may have been playing or trying to engage your son in play in an inappropriate way (if he wanted to hurt your child he probably would have done it outright), which may be what your husband saw and why he thought your reaction was way too harsh.  Every mama gets that mama bear instinct, but I think you can firmly react with it while respecting your child and the child you are reacting to. 

 

The climbing the stairs thing is something you need to help your son navigate until he is old enough to navigate it for himself.  Kids tend to climb over and around each other a lot, especially once they are used to playing on a school playground.  Getting brushed by another child or brushing into another child doesn't seem to phase kids all that much when they are playing.  Some kids are very aware of younger kids and view them as younger kids.  Others don't understand that a younger kid isn't just a short child their own age and they treat them the same way they would treat kids their age, especially when they are irritated with them.



Seems like OPs original post shows she paid great attention to this dynamic of older kids climbing around her son, she observed it, assessed it, and felt she was ok with it cuz her son was still safe and didn't seem bothered.  It was only when the older kid was putting his foot in her son's face (which is hard for me to imagine even for a 3 yr old how that would be "engaging" and seems like something the child knew was not right) that this whole thing became a problem.  Also, sounds like her son was navigating the climb just fine, but maybe too slowly for other kids.

 

Combining this and the post about how it's too bad we live in a world where we have to remove our own kids when things go wrong, I think OP did probably over react a bit (sounds like stern voice might've gotten the kid off your son without the screaming) but OPs reaction is truly understandable given how high up her son was and how far he would have fallen had the older kid kicked him off.  That said, I don't believe in removing my child from situations when my child wasn't doing anything wrong, and I have NO problem at all talking to other kids or asking them to point out their parents and talking to their parents about their behavior.  The "Village" mentality goes both ways, both for nurturing and support and also for problem solving.  I realize not all parents see it that way, but that's not my problem if their kid was bothering my kid and stepped over any clear behavioral lines.


Although we were on a playdate so this was with a child and parent we knew, the kids were both 2 and the other boy literally shoved dd in the face so hard she face-planted on the floor and started crying very very hard.  I saw it happen, the boy's mom did not.  I went straight over and said "That is NOT ok!  You can NOT hit anyone in the face!"  I know this boy, so I know he both knew it was wrong but also somehow didn't really mean to heart dd, and he seemed sad she was crying so much.  That's fine, and I didn't yell at him, but I had no problem telling him immediately that what he did was not ok and comforting dd.  I also didn't leave them alone ever and will not be ever leaving dd there without me, though that mom has invited her for overnights.

 

I want my dd to learn that the world is a place where she should expect justice, even though she will often see/experience injustice.  I want her to learn to both speak up when she feels she's not being treated fairly, and also know when to act or remove herself when things get worse.  And I want her to know that her parents will absolutely protect her as best we can, and she won't be punished for another child's bad behavior (like making her leave the playground).  We will just be that much more vigilant about protecting her so she can continue playing (which is what we've done when this has been an issue before.)

post #29 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super~Single~Mama View Post

I would have taken my ds to a smaller ladder on the playground after it was clear he couldn't keep up with the kids on the ladder.  I don't like it when kids are on playgrounds that they aren't really able to keep up on, or that they are too big for.

 

That said, sometimes people get really really angry when their children are being threatened, and its a normal reaction.  Next time, I would try to pull your ds off the playground when it starts happening rather than getting angry.  Oh well, hindsight is 20-20, and children need to know that they don't always do perfect things.

Except he wasn't keeping other people from using the equipment. When the other kid decided to threaten to push him off the ladder, the other kid had already climbed up the ladder several times and was already at the top of the ladder again and instead of going to play decided to turn around and put his foot in the face of someone else trying to use the equipment.

 

Honestly, I'm surprised the OP was the only one telling the kid to knock it off.
 

post #30 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtiger View Post

While I understand that you were upset, I'm not sure I understand why - if you were within arm's reach, you had to scream at the kid. Why not just grab yours out of the way and tell the other kid he was out of line?

 

If you were further away, I could see your reaction. But... you were apparently right there.


Okay, that is weird.

post #31 of 95
Thread Starter 


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by mtiger View Post

While I understand that you were upset, I'm not sure I understand why - if you were within arm's reach, you had to scream at the kid. Why not just grab yours out of the way and tell the other kid he was out of line?

 

If you were further away, I could see your reaction. But... you were apparently right there.


Okay, that is weird.



DH and I were both right there, underneath DS. He is a good climber, and I don't worry about him falling much, but b/c there were other, bigger kids around I stayed close. I "had to" scream at the kid b/c as soon as I saw the foot in DS's face, I said, "Hey! Stop that!" and the kid pushed his foot DOWN, not away from DS's face. (His shoe was ON his face.) When I realized he wasn't going to respond right away, I freaked out, thinking he was just going to push all his weight down on DS and make him fall. When I freak out, I scream bloody murder. It's not something I like about myself and want to change, but in the moment I just couldn't keep my composure.

 

Is that weird?

post #32 of 95

Screamed bloody murder??LOL  Na, that's not weird at all;) 

 

I can sympathize with you though with yelling "where's your mother?"  I admit I do this more often than I'd like.  It seems like people just don't watch their kids at parks.  I have 4 and I'm pretty observant of them at parks.  I don't even have to hover to really get an idea of what's going on with them.  I yell "where's your mother?" because I truly want to find their mother and let them know that their child is not acting nicely. 

 

One of my children (5yo) was admiring another older boy (7yo) once and following him around at the park.  I was watching, but the older boy didn't see me.  He got my son to where he thought he was out of sight and started beating him!  I started running over there and screaming at him...turns out his mother wasn't there...big surprise.  I'm pretty sure I told him that if he tried that again, I'd call the police so they could find his momredface.gif  Anyway, there's my mama bear story.  

 

I think it's great to speak up to teach your child to be assertive, to teach the other child that someone is watching and that his behavior wasn't ok.  I can't imagine taking my child away from the park instead of telling the other child to stop.  That, to me, would teach them that they're not worthy.  I've had children try to kick one of my children out of their "club" that was in a public place...um, no..it's a public place and you can't make him leave... and now I'm going to stand here, really close to you and make sure all's well:)  Children hate when you do that.LOL (okay, maybe I have too many mama bear stories.)

 

On another note, I didn't see where you mentioned the other child's caretakers coming to see what was going on??? If someone were yelling at my child, I'd sure be coming over there to find out what was up.

 

post #33 of 95
Quote:

Originally Posted by chaoticzenmom View Post

 

On another note, I didn't see where you mentioned the other child's caretakers coming to see what was going on??? If someone were yelling at my child, I'd sure be coming over there to find out what was up.

 


Yeah, I'm wondering about that myself.  Maybe the mother hid after realizing that it was her child that got screamed at? rolleyes.gif

 

OP--I feel that your reaction was warranted, no doubt about it.  You tried telling him to stop in a respectful manner and he didn't listen, your little guy had a foot on his face while holding onto a ladder 6 feet above the ground, it's instinctual to react in a way that will ensure your child doesn't get seriously injured.  I think that while a good portion of anger expressed in this society is over-the-top or unwarranted, there are times when it is DEFINITELY needed.  We were given strong voices for a reason...we don't need to use them much, but if we don't use them when situations demand for it then we might as well not have them at all.

post #34 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by chaoticzenmom View Post

 

 

On another note, I didn't see where you mentioned the other child's caretakers coming to see what was going on??? If someone were yelling at my child, I'd sure be coming over there to find out what was up.

 


I'm guessing she wasn't screaming all that loud.  Maybe she was overreacting, but if she'd really been screaming, I think the other parent would have turned up really fast.

post #35 of 95

What strikes me most about this thread is the following quotes:
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by no5no5 View Post
 I came over to him and hissed in probably the meanest voice I've ever used in my life, "You need to stay away from my daughter."  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ledzepplon View Post
 I went right up to her and in my best "mama bear" voice said, "You do not touch my daughter." 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Octopus8 View Post

 I ran over there and pointed right in her face and hissed "Don't you dare touch my child. You are old enough to know better not to hurt little kids, what's wrong with you?"

 



These make me very sad, for some reason.  Like its only ok to protect our own kids, but not every kid.  Why on earth wasn't the message to the "offending" kids that they shouldn't touch ANYONE in an unkind way???

 

I dunno... I'm not explaining myself well and I can't figure out a way to say it.  I guess I can see a young child, maybe who is already having trouble with social skills, hearing a correction like, "Don't touch my kid" and their brain tells themselves: "OK... I'll go mess around with those kids over THERE."

 

 

OP:  I think you did the best you could.  I would have been scared for my DS too.

post #36 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by no5no5 View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by Octopus8 View Post

"what's wrong with you?"

 

I don't feel a bit bad about it, either, she must have outweighed him by 30 pounds and was twice as tall.



This makes me really sad.  Kids of all ages make mistakes.  And I think this behavior is more commonly seen in kids who are neglected or who have issues like ADHD.  I don't think any child, no matter the mistake she has made, deserves to be told that there is something wrong with her.  greensad.gif  This kind of vindictive behavior toward her is certainly not going to teach her how to be compassionate. 



I say "What's wrong with you?" all the time.  My family has always said that.... that, and "Have you lost your mind??"  That phrase doesn't bother me at all... but, if I heard someone say "Shut up" I would be appalled.  I also think saying "butt" is an insult.  "Sit on your butt".  So, I think it depends on how we were raised.  I don't think the mom was actually questioning the child about her possible medical issues.  

 

I also do not think ADHD is an excuse for purposely throwing  a toddler off of play equipment.   My brother was/is ADHD, and he was still held responsible for his behavior.  Nobody EVER said "but, he's ADHD... so, then you just have to deal with it".  (my mom overlooked a LOT though, because he was exhausting)   

 

I do think both moms in this thread COULD have handled it better.... but, they didn't, and it's a learning experience.  Both moms will have a five or seven year old who will do something selfish to a younger child, and the moms will remember when their own kids were toddlers and they will step in to stop their kids from being mean to the little ones.

post #37 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Belia View Post

These make me very sad, for some reason.  Like its only ok to protect our own kids, but not every kid.  Why on earth wasn't the message to the "offending" kids that they shouldn't touch ANYONE in an unkind way???

 

I dunno... I'm not explaining myself well and I can't figure out a way to say it.  I guess I can see a young child, maybe who is already having trouble with social skills, hearing a correction like, "Don't touch my kid" and their brain tells themselves: "OK... I'll go mess around with those kids over THERE."


I can sort of see your point, but I don't think there's a "go mess with someone else" message being sent when people say the things you quoted, they're just referring to the person who is being hurt at the moment (the speaker's child). I also specifically refer to other kids when my kid is doing something undesirable -- I'll say, "DS, watch out for that little girl!" if he's sliding too fast and a girl at the bottom isn't out of the way yet. It would sound really odd for me to say, "DS, watch out for other living things" or something to try to be inclusive, when I'm trying to prevent one particular girl from getting hurt. 

post #38 of 95

Screaming isn't ideal, and the "what's wrong with you" comment isn't great, but I doubt the kid will end up in therapy over it and tomorrow will just be another day for him.  Maybe think of a somewhat less intense way of reacting should something like that happen again (maybe a firm "You need to be gentle with other children. Where is your mother?"), but don't stress over it.  You're human and you were scared, and I sincerely doubt the older child will be scarred by this encounter.

post #39 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Belia View Post


These make me very sad, for some reason.  Like its only ok to protect our own kids, but not every kid.  Why on earth wasn't the message to the "offending" kids that they shouldn't touch ANYONE in an unkind way???

 

I dunno... I'm not explaining myself well and I can't figure out a way to say it.  I guess I can see a young child, maybe who is already having trouble with social skills, hearing a correction like, "Don't touch my kid" and their brain tells themselves: "OK... I'll go mess around with those kids over THERE."


No, I think that makes sense.  And as I said, my usual reaction would be more general:  "You do not hit."  It was a sort of strange situation we were in in which I told the kid to leave my DD alone and, while I do wish I had done things differently, I still can't think of a way I could have better stopped the behavior in that situation.  FWIW, I watched him closely for the rest of the time we were there and he did not pick on any of the other kids. 


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by nextcommercial View Post


I say "What's wrong with you?" all the time.  My family has always said that.... that, and "Have you lost your mind??"  That phrase doesn't bother me at all... but, if I heard someone say "Shut up" I would be appalled.  I also think saying "butt" is an insult.  "Sit on your butt".  So, I think it depends on how we were raised.  I don't think the mom was actually questioning the child about her possible medical issues.  

 

I also do not think ADHD is an excuse for purposely throwing  a toddler off of play equipment.   My brother was/is ADHD, and he was still held responsible for his behavior.  Nobody EVER said "but, he's ADHD... so, then you just have to deal with it".  (my mom overlooked a LOT though, because he was exhausting)  


Well, perhaps it depends on context and tone of voice, but the way I pictured it it seemed cruel and scary.  If she'd said it in a joking tone of voice, or if she had a loving relationship with the child in which the child knew that her saying that did not mean that there was something wrong with her, I would not have the same objection.

 

And I agree that ADHD is not an excuse, and of course it is not a reason not to correct behavior.  But in the situation described, the mother seemed to think that the other child was mean-spirited, and I just meant to point out that there could be numerous reasons a good, kind child would make what seemed to be a very mean mistake.  Perhaps the older child was pushed around so much at home that she thought it was normal.  Perhaps she knew it was wrong but had trouble controlling herself.  Perhaps she was having the worst day of her life.  I myself once was accused of pushing a younger child down, and what actually happened was that I patted her gently on the back at the same time that she slipped and fell.  I'm sure to all concerned it looked like I pushed her, but I didn't.  But regardless of how accurate this mother's perceptions were, my main point is that if you want to teach a child to be compassionate, being mean to that child is not the way to do it. 

post #40 of 95


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Belia View Post

What strikes me most about this thread is the following quotes:
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by no5no5 View Post
 I came over to him and hissed in probably the meanest voice I've ever used in my life, "You need to stay away from my daughter."  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ledzepplon View Post
 I went right up to her and in my best "mama bear" voice said, "You do not touch my daughter." 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Octopus8 View Post

 I ran over there and pointed right in her face and hissed "Don't you dare touch my child. You are old enough to know better not to hurt little kids, what's wrong with you?"

 



These make me very sad, for some reason.  Like its only ok to protect our own kids, but not every kid.  Why on earth wasn't the message to the "offending" kids that they shouldn't touch ANYONE in an unkind way???

 

I dunno... I'm not explaining myself well and I can't figure out a way to say it.  I guess I can see a young child, maybe who is already having trouble with social skills, hearing a correction like, "Don't touch my kid" and their brain tells themselves: "OK... I'll go mess around with those kids over THERE."

 

 

OP:  I think you did the best you could.  I would have been scared for my DS too.



I totally get what you are saying.  It struck me too.  I've been in situations where I have to speak to a child who is being too rough or rude to my child (or others).  I usually say something like, "He is much littler than you.  Please be careful around the little children."  In a situation like the OP's I would not have been so calm, but still I would probably have said something like, "You don't put your foot in the face of other children!  You could make him fall!" 

 

I totally think it's OK to speak to other people's children, but you have to stick to the behavior and not attack their character.  I would have no problem with another parent telling my child to be more careful or to slow down, or even that they are being rude (if indeed they are), but I would not want them saying something like "What a rude kid you are." 

 

As for the OP's situation, I guess I'm in the you-probably-over-reacted-but-it's-understandable camp.  Since you say you scream more than you would like, it might help to practice some "firm tone" statements when you're alone in the car or something, so that they are easier to access in high-stress situations. 

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