My husband and I are good friends with another couple. We both have 23 month old daughters who have known each other since they were 3 months old. Our friends just had a new baby last month and I think that the little girl is having trouble adjusting.
Our friends are VERY difficult to talk to, as they feel that the way we parent makes us self-righteous and smug, simply because I feel so confident in the fact that we're still breastfeeding, are vegan, cosleeping and are general 'crunchy' folk.
They are very, very not that way. Elective c-sections, formula from the get-go, cry it out, etc. Basically, any suggestions or even mentions of what might help them when my friend complains about any kind of problem is completely ignored or even taken as us being judgmental, when I am trying to be VERY DIPLOMATIC in how I talk to them.
At their cores, they are very defensive people, and I personally feel it stems from an insecurity they have from parenting in a way that they were told, and not in how they feel, instinctively.
Anyway. The problem:
Their daughter, likely in the face of dealing with a brand new sibling, has taken to pushing and hitting our daughter. They're the same age, but their daughter is quite a bit bigger and more aggressive in her manner to begin with. Kind of a determined, 'bull in a china shop' type.
Annabelle, my daughter, is something of a 'wuss' in comparison, or at least, that's how they see it. She's incredibly sensitive, watchful, and passive in her way. If a toy is snatched from her, she'll come to me to 'talk' about it, which is really just her babbling and pointing with a furrowed brow - instead of snatching it back or screaming.
Their daughter is pushing and hitting Annabelle CONSTANTLY. It's to the point that they're hardly playing anymore, Annabelle is just spending her time trying to get away, or find toys that the other girl has forgotten to play with, only to have them snatched again.
The parents make very little attempt to stop the behavior and I don't know what to do. I can't easily be like, hey, maybe DO SOMETHING TO STOP THIS.
How do you help in a situation where your kid is being bullied and the parents aren't doing much? They don't even seem like they're on the same page as far as discipline is concerned - the husband tries to address the issue, only to have the wife yell at him in front of us for being 'too harsh' on her.
I'm so frustrated. What would you do?