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Am I wrong to feel this way? (vent over a friend disciplining my child..in my house)

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

Ok so this post is part question and part vent. Sometimes I need other like-minded opinions to either validate my feelings or give me a different perspective!

 

I have a very close friend with a daughter who is almost 2. My DS is almost 3. We do NOT see eye to eye on parenting techniques but choose to "agree to disagree" for the most part. I had a home party for her (shes' a consultant) and while the party was going on her husband and daughter played downstairs with my husband and son. Apparently, the entire time they were down there her husband took it upon himself to discipline MY son...in MY house. My husband was down there and was sorta in shock and didn't know what to say or do because he doesn't know this man very well and didn't want to start anything so my husband ended up yelling at Dylan for everything he did as well to avoid the "well aren't you going to do anything?" stink eye. It was an issue over sharing. Every time this couples daughter wanted a toy it was "Dylan you need to share"...but then when Dylan wanted to take a toy from his daughter it was "Dylan you need to wait your turn". His daughter hadn't napped and neither had my son so they were very wound up and she kept crying over nothing but of course it was "Dylan what did you do? Be nice!" When he didn't even do anything! And then later we are asked "Do you guys do time out?" Ummm NO! He's not doing anything to deserve a time out!! After they left and my husband told me everything that went on I was furious and i'm still having a hard time letting it go. Should I say something? I'm non-confrontational and usually let these things go but this is a good friend of mine and I feel like I might hold some resentment.

 

My poor DS who (and maybe i'm just biased) is really a well behaved little boy for almost 3 who says "sorry" and "please" without being prompted and honestly seems very sensitive to the feelings of others and really doesn't do all THAT bad with sharing for his age had to endure a full day of being yelled at in all directions.

 

This happened once before with a different set of parents who seemed to have an "issue" with Dylan and yelled at him (in front of me) for everything he did..taking toys out of his hands to give to their daughter to play with because "he needed to share". I am starting to wonder if it's just me. As it is, I get way more involved in situations like that than I want to constantly being on him like a hawk to "share" and "be nice". I only do that because I feel like i'm being watched by other parents. I think kids should work things out on their own as like as they aren't being aggressive. Am I wrong?

post #2 of 16

You mentioned that your DH went along with it because he was in shock, so I assume that he wasn't ok with the situation either. If that's the case, then you might just want to have a convo with him about how to stay more assertive in situations like that. Some dads I know are so used to their wife dealing with that kind of stuff that they freeze when alone, so maybe he just needs more support and experience in dealing with other-parent-conflict on his own. 

post #3 of 16

And to answer your original question, I don't think you are wrong to feel this way.  It sounds like you are a really conscientious parent!

post #4 of 16

Children that age should not be forced to share, the concept is something they're still working through.  It sounds like the dad in question doesn't have much of a clue as to what should be expected of children. 

post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 

Cat- no my DH was not comfortable with this at all either. He ended up bringing Dylan back up in the middle of the party saying that "Dylan was being too bad and needed to be kept away from the other little girl"..and then took me aside later and said "Dylan wasn't being bad. The other father was being majorly controlling and overbearing and he didn't know what else to do".  I think my DH is actually usually a more assertive person than I am but these are "my" friends and he didn't want to make me angry if he did something to make them angry. I don't blame him for that...but i did tell him that night that when it comes to our son and being mistreated, i don't care HOW close of friends i am to someone.

post #6 of 16

 

My LO is only 12 weeks old, so I don't have your experience yet, but I totally know how tough it is to be assertive for your child. First, I had to assert my choices during pregnancy and birth, even though my doc didn't agree. Now, I'm trying assert my choices for my son's health, and doc and family don't agree.  It's funny, because in my head I'm so clear on how I want to act and there is no problem, but once I'm in an confrontational situation it's hard to stay strong.  


Quote:
Originally Posted by LindsG View Post

Cat- no my DH was not comfortable with this at all either. He ended up bringing Dylan back up in the middle of the party saying that "Dylan was being too bad and needed to be kept away from the other little girl"..and then took me aside later and said "Dylan wasn't being bad. The other father was being majorly controlling and overbearing and he didn't know what else to do".  I think my DH is actually usually a more assertive person than I am but these are "my" friends and he didn't want to make me angry if he did something to make them angry. I don't blame him for that...but i did tell him that night that when it comes to our son and being mistreated, i don't care HOW close of friends i am to someone.

It sounds like maybe he'll be more confident after this experience! 
 

 

post #7 of 16

The other child is a year younger than OP's child. Possibly her father had unrealistic expectations about how much better he would understand the sharing concept than the 2 yr old does. A year can seem like such a huge difference at that age.

post #8 of 16

Its totally inappropriate to discipline a child in that manner when a parent is present. I'd be upset, too. I would either want to talk to the friend about it, or if I didn't think that would help, would probably avoid getting our children together.

post #9 of 16

I don't discipline my friends rudest kids.  I don't know what they do or how they do it and I won't ever step in.  I have had to tell people over and over that thats how I operate.  I was once told I could spank my friends kid is he misbehaved.  And I told her HELL TO THE NO!  I can't hit my own how could I hit yours?  I've been called a weak parent and told my kids were going to end up terrible.   Right and that's why we have sooooo many discipline problems.  Maybe once a week I have to give a reminder about respect.  Obviously your friends husband needs a reminder about respect.  Sorry this is a crappy situation. 

post #10 of 16

I don't think young kids should always have to work things out on their own, especially when it is ending in a lot of tears and unhappiness for young children who don't have the skills or the language to work things out with each other.  I do think that this couple overstepped their boundaries by a long shot.  I see nothing wrong with redirecting a child if they are snatching things from my own child or physically aggressive with her and their own parent isn't willing to do anything.  I don't think what you describe sounds anything like that though. 

 

 

post #11 of 16

From your description, I would be frustrated, too.

 

But, in general, I am VERY hands on when my kids are with other kids.  Probably other parents find me being overbearing or something.  My kid has just been take advantage of by other people's kids SO much, that I've had it.  Mama Bear, I guess.  But, I have no problem stepping right in and saying, gently, "Uhoh.  A was playing with that and you took it away.  Now A is sad.  Let's give it back.  Okay, what are you going to do now?  This?  Or that?"   Or, if I sense the other child won't be agreeable to something so direct, I start doing something really fun with my kid, and allow the other to join in...with my rules.  I have just found that most parents have this "kids are playing in the room and its fine" mentality, but it just isn't.  The little ones need constantly watched and redirected...that's how you get a kid you CAN trust.  My 6 and 4yo play alone now, with other kids, but I am still in close ear shot.  I am aware of what they are doing/is being done to them all the time, they just don't know it.  And, it does depend on the other kids whether or not dh and I will let them go. 

 

So, maybe this dad was over the top.  Or maybe he has just his little girl get stomped over and over, and he's had it.  Maybe she's got him wrapped around his finger, and he just doesn't know what's what, and wants everything for his sweet little girl.

 

Instead of "talking to him" about this "issue", I'd try to look at it from the prespective of a new dad kind of thing.  You said your dh wasn't sure how to handle it, it could be that the other dad is embarrassed, etc about it, too.  Maybe some general conversations about how to handle play as the kids are getting older might be a better way to go. 

post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by LindsG View Post
 After they left and my husband told me everything that went on I was furious and i'm still having a hard time letting it go. Should I say something?


Your dh should have said something, not you.



Quote:
Originally Posted by LindsG View Post

Cat- no my DH was not comfortable with this at all either. He ended up bringing Dylan back up in the middle of the party saying that "Dylan was being too bad and needed to be kept away from the other little girl"..and then took me aside later and said "Dylan wasn't being bad. The other father was being majorly controlling and overbearing and he didn't know what else to do".  I think my DH is actually usually a more assertive person than I am but these are "my" friends and he didn't want to make me angry if he did something to make them angry. I don't blame him for that...but i did tell him that night that when it comes to our son and being mistreated, i don't care HOW close of friends i am to someone.

 

He shouldn't label his son as being "bad" in front of everyone. He should stand up for his son, not blame him for something he didn't do.

 

JMO, of course.
 

 

post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by transylvania_mom View Post


He shouldn't label his son as being "bad" in front of everyone. He should stand up for his son, not blame him for something he didn't do.

 

JMO, of course.
 

 


I agree with this.

 

post #14 of 16

i don't think sharing problems are discipline issues.  i think sharing problems are situations that need distraction or parental leadership in teaching kids how to play or finding something cooperative to work on. 

reprimands aren't teaching them better skills.  personally, i think both the dads could have done something different when it was apparent that toy conflicts were going to keep going; put on some music for a dance party... have the kids throw a ball to the dads, etc. 

i would have been pretty irritated by this in particular:

He ended up bringing Dylan back up in the middle of the party saying that "Dylan was being too bad and needed to be kept away from the other little girl"..and then took me aside later and said "Dylan wasn't being bad. The other father was being majorly controlling and overbearing and he didn't know what else to do".

a) no your child is not BAD.  no child is bad.  some children (and not 3 year olds) can have bad actions or behaviors.

b) saying that in front of the other parent only reinforces what he was trying to project onto the kid, making him think he's "right."

c) expecting kids that age to share without modeling or redirection or anything else is not a logical expectation. 

i think keeping them in the playroom with toys when it became clear that they weren't relating in a good way to each other was the real problem.

post #15 of 16

First "share" does not mean "give it to the other kid, because she wants it". 

 

I've always hated that "can you share????" as the parent is prying it out of another child's hands so their own child can have it.  What's wrong with just saying "he has it right now.. go find something else".  

 

I would avoid those situations with them in the future, unless you and your husband can both be there, and brainstorm some tactics before you get together with them.  It's always easier to think of what you SHOULD have done after it's happened.  It's really hard to do it at that time.  But, maybe this is a good learning experience for you both.

post #16 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by nextcommercial View Post

First "share" does not mean "give it to the other kid, because she wants it". 

 

I've always hated that "can you share????" as the parent is prying it out of another child's hands so their own child can have it.  What's wrong with just saying "he has it right now.. go find something else". 



We always say something along the lines of: "so-and-so is taking a turn with it right now.  You can have a turn when he's finished."

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