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Neighbor kid creeps me out - Page 2

post #21 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrunchyMama19 View Post

 

My DD1 would play with anybody but I don't necessarily allow it. Just today I had to pull her away from some kids at the lake because they wanted to sneak up on people and throw rocks at them. Nope, not gonna happen. I also don't allow her to play with certain neighbors because I know there is excessive drinking and/or smoking going on often at their homes so she can't go over there even though she really really likes them and wants too. Also, if neighbor kids come over they have to follow our house rules, their parents have to know that they are at my home, and I am NOT feeding them meals. An occasional snack maybe but that is it.

 

 

 

I wouldnt let my kids play  somewhere where i felt they would be unsafe, i would invite the child over  to our place instead, but i wouldnt discourage the friendship (judgemental what...how do you know about excessive drinking at her place anyway? )

Kids throwing rocks? Bad behavior. Different story. I dont say-'you cant play with those kids', i say 'you cant throw rocks at other people.'

post #22 of 48

The kid is 3-4 years older than yours and is occasionally purposely mean or just obnoxious.  I don't think that's a normal play-mate situation and I don't think you're under any obligation to let your kids play with him.  Just gently but firmly tell him your kids can't play today.  Tell your kids it's not the right time to play with him. Repeat, repeat, repeat.

 

We have a neighbor boy who used to be really mean to my boys (although they're the same age).  I would send him home immediately, and tell him we don't act like that in our house.  Now, years later, he's always on his best behavior around me, but I overhear him swearing sometimes, or just being rude.  I give him a warning that if I hear it again he'll have to leave and sometimes I do have to send him home. My boys don't actually like him that much because he can be mean, so more often than not, they ask me to send him away as soon as he comes to the door.  

 

Incidentally, this kid has a sister who regularly plays with the girl across the street who is 4 years younger than her.  The mom of the younger girl says the neighbor girl comes over just so she can boss around the little girl-- the mom hates the relationship, but feels a little trapped since the older girl runs across the street as soon as she sees the family.  The parents of these two kids are actually very nice and enjoyable.  But they think their kids mean behavior (which they witness!) is just normal kid stuff.  I don't agree and neither does the other neighbor.  

post #23 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by tm0sweet View Post

Is it reasonable to think he may just be too old to play with my little ones? I mean, I wouldn't mind it occasionally but everyday, all day seems a little extreme.... Am I jumping the gun here?

 

As a mom of the older boy who wants to play with the only kids in the neighborhood, who are younger, but who's mom won't let my DS near her kids, please don't automatically assume that "older is dangerous".  It has been heartbreaking to have to explain to my son that the only reason the other mom won't let him play is that he is older.  He keeps saying "But I'M not bad, why doesn't she like me?"  In this case, she (the other mom) has said that she fears inappropriate behavior, which is really hard to explain to my son.  All I'm saying is make decisions for this individual child and his behavior, not older children in general.

 

I agree with those who say "set and enforce limits" but let him play sometimes.  If he's an only child he really needs to learn more social skills and have some guidance in playing.  Obviously it's not your job to help this child, but it is a nice thing to do.  Sounds like he could use a little pity and a lot of guidance.  That said, I would also supervise the situation like a hawk, instantly stop behavior you don't like and send him home when you need to, for whatever reason.  All with very clear feedback and instructions.  "Johny, please do not hog the swing.  You need to take turns.  Its Jimmy's turn now.  Oh, you don't want to take turns?  Then I think its time for you to go home for the day.  You can come back tomorrow after 10".  If necessary, take him by the hand and take him home.

 

I would also go over and introduce yourself to his family and see what you can learn.  He might be at your house because his house is abusive, or hungry, or something like that.  Again, it's not your job to help him, but it would be a nice, neighborly thing to do.  If we all were willing to help other's children more, I think the world would be a better place.

post #24 of 48

one more thing, i have been the mom of a younger child playing with a mean older child. even then i have not stopped them playing. i have given their play structure. built boundaries. and then let them be. i DID NOT WANT dd to play with that child. but i had to let dd discover that herself when she was about 3 1/2. and when dd had enough of it, then i stepped in. 

 

i have only stepped in when it was physically dangerous. its coz dd is super independent and its easier to do so for her to experience why rather than me tell her. 

post #25 of 48
I say absolutely stop letting the kid play with your kids if you're getting a bad feeling about him. It is not your job to be charitable to this child at the risk of your own children's safety and comfort. As they get older you will not always be able to protect them from influences and treatment you find undesirable, but right now, and in your own home, you can.
post #26 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by tm0sweet View Post

He makes my mommy senses go off-- there's just something wrong there and I really don't want my kids around him, but I don't know how to get rid of him! Advice please!

I read Gavin DeBecker's book Protecting the Gift , http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0440509009/ref=wms_ohs_product?ie=UTF8&psc=1 and two things I took away from that book: listen to your maternal instinct. If you ignore the initial strong feeling when you first feel something is wrong, it will then become a dull constant nagging but it won't go away until you feel your children are no longer in danger.
Secondly, children or adults who are a threat to your child almost always seek them, not the other way around.
In other words, your child is less likely to be harmed by the person he goes to, but the person who hangs around, seeks contact or directly approaches him is the one to be wary of.

Your words In your original post state your feelings directly, I would listen to them.
post #27 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Asiago View Post


I read Gavin DeBecker's book Protecting the Gift , http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0440509009/ref=wms_ohs_product?ie=UTF8&psc=1 and two things I took away from that book: listen to your maternal instinct. If you ignore the initial strong feeling when you first feel something is wrong, it will then become a dull constant nagging but it won't go away until you feel your children are no longer in danger.
Secondly, children or adults who are a threat to your child almost always seek them, not the other way around.
In other words, your child is less likely to be harmed by the person he goes to, but the person who hangs around, seeks contact or directly approaches him is the one to be wary of.

Your words In your original post state your feelings directly, I would listen to them.

i disagree with you. your maternal instincts are not always right. fear is a horrible emotion that can appear as a maternal instinct and totally mess your family up. its an emotion that closes options. look at what the OP wrote in her following reply alluding to what happened to her brother which she open mindedly said could have an impact on her feelings. 

 

i personally have had to watch my own emotions. they can lie. they have for me when i have lived in fear. 

 

what you write is absolutely true. the strong feeling IS to be listened to if it is a true feeling and not a lie. 

post #28 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by meemee View Post

one more thing, i have been the mom of a younger child playing with a mean older child. even then i have not stopped them playing. i have given their play structure. built boundaries. and then let them be. i DID NOT WANT dd to play with that child. but i had to let dd discover that herself when she was about 3 1/2. and when dd had enough of it, then i stepped in. 

 

i have only stepped in when it was physically dangerous. its coz dd is super independent and its easier to do so for her to experience why rather than me tell her. 

 

so, you let a 3 and a half yr old get picked on by a mean kid? what do you mean by "given their play structure. built boundaries"? mean behavior is an over-stepping of boundaries! standing by passively, letting a child that young figure it out with a OLDER child is plain ridiculous, i am sorry! the playing ground is just not level. sometimes it's possible to over-estimate a child's need for independence. autonomy depends on age and stage.

OP, follow your motherly instincts. children have moms for a reason!

post #29 of 48

it is HER definition that the older kid is picking on the child. her children seem to welcome the 7 year old in their lives. 

 

what she is talking about is normal kids stuff. she doesnt see it now because her kid is young but in hindsight when her kids grow older she will see what meanness truly is. 

 

i have been in her place and today in hindsight i see what seems like teasing and meanness was really an older child asserting their choice. as my child grows up i also recognize people are quick to jump to labeling someone as a bully when they have younger children instead of realising the older child is showing age appropriate behaviours. 

 

it is important as a mom to guide the older child how to play with other children - esp. if they are onlies and have no idea how to be around siblings. 

 

from her writing i am not exactly sure what is going on. she might be bang on with her suspicions. but its a good idea to check on her suspicions and figure out if they are right given her history. 

 

as a mother it is VERY important to remove ourselves from the picture and try to do the best for our child. as the mother of a near tween it is one of the hardest things to do. i have had to question every single decision ever since i gave birth. am i acting out of my social conditioning or am i truly taking my child's needs into consideration. 

 

first of all what is so creepy about finding the kid in the bedroom. to me i'd think curiosity rather than creepy. from a SEVEN year old. and THAT to me makes me question OPs gut instinct. is it truly gut instinct or fear from past experiences. i am not saying give carte blanche to the boy, but just sit and review and examine OPs own feelings around the issue and then take action - whatever that may be. 

 

but dont jump into thinking the boy is going to molest her kids just coz he went into her bedroom. i strongly question her reaction to that incident. 

post #30 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by meemee View Post

 i have been the mom of a younger child playing with a mean older child. even then i have not stopped them playing. i have given their play structure. built boundaries. and then let them be. i DID NOT WANT dd to play with that child. but i had to let dd discover that herself when she was about 3 1/2. and when dd had enough of it, then i stepped in. 

 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by meemee View Post


i have been in her place and today in hindsight i see what seems like teasing and meanness was really an older child asserting their choice.

 

your two responses sound contradictory to each other. i still stand by my view- letting a 3 year old parse an older child's behavior and deduct that it may be meanness or just them "asserting their choice" flies in the face of parental wisdom.

post #31 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by contactmaya View Post

 

I wouldnt let my kids play  somewhere where i felt they would be unsafe, i would invite the child over  to our place instead, but i wouldnt discourage the friendship (judgemental what...how do you know about excessive drinking at her place anyway? )

Kids throwing rocks? Bad behavior. Different story. I dont say-'you cant play with those kids', i say 'you cant throw rocks at other people.'


judgemental? How do I know? I know because their parties are loud, spill into the backyard, and there are beer bottles everywhere outside. We can clearly see it from our yard when we are playing outside. Not to mention the wafting over of pot and cigarrette smoke over the fence. I don't mind drinking (I drink sometimes too!), and if people want to smoke pot that is their choice, but that doesn't mean my kid is going over there by herself. Call that judgmental if you want, it's still my call as the parent.

 

OP- It would be a "nice" thing to do to let this kid play, but you are under NO obligation to do so unless you are up for it. Have you talked with the grandparents or the mom yet? That might give you better insight into the situation. And we certainly don't want to live in fear of everyone but if your instincts say something's not right, maybe it isn't.

post #32 of 48

they would seem contradictory if you as a mother havent been on both sides of the fence. until you do its really hard to figure out what is the truth.

 

looking back i was an extremely judgemental mother of a younger than K age child towards older kids till i became the mother of the older kid and what i thought was mean and teasing behaviour was very age appropriate for the older child. 

 

for me at least as my dd grows older i find i have to become more and more compassionate.

 

the OP here is using VERY strong language for a SEVEN year old. evil smile, creepy, peeking around the corner - for a child with hearing impairment.

 

remember her children 'beg' to play with that child.

 

so its OP drawing all the inferences. not her children. 

 

being the mother of a special needs child and her brother's history, it is COMPLETELY understandable to be super protective towards your own child - esp. a toddler.  all i am asking OP to do is question her gut feeling. there is a "knowing" and then there is a 'fearing' in the guise of knowing. there is a huge difference. but alas one has to be completely honest with oneself which is hard to do to figure out the difference.

 

i was talking about bullying with regards to the 7 year old. bullying is very serious. but i think that term has been way too overused and also v. casually used too. it was just an extra thought. 

post #33 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by meemee View Post

they would seem contradictory if you as a mother havent been on both sides of the fence. until you do its really hard to figure out what is the truth.

 

i find it slightly condescending on your part to assume things- older children and their behavior is not a mystery to me nor am i exclusively around toddlers. just because i am the mother of a older child who might be 'asserting her choice' about how to behave with a younger one, that does not preclude the possibility that this older kid is actually being mean. nor is it a toddler's job to deal with it while mom is developing compassion. OP has not based her post on a one time interaction between the children but on what she has observed thus far.

 

as a matter of fact, bullying is not taken seriously enough. especially these days, among older children and the increasing time they spend living lives online, it has become a far more insidious problem. so, i am not inclined to take a benign view from ANY side of the fence about problematic behavior and think it's best to look for proactive ways to address them.

 

OP, your thread is taking a bit of a turn, and i've said what i needed to. hope it all works out well!

post #34 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by meemee View Post

i disagree with you. your maternal instincts are not always right. fear is a horrible emotion that can appear as a maternal instinct and totally mess your family up. its an emotion that closes options. look at what the OP wrote in her following reply alluding to what happened to her brother which she open mindedly said could have an impact on her feelings. 

i personally have had to watch my own emotions. they can lie. they have for me when i have lived in fear. 

what you write is absolutely true. the strong feeling IS to be listened to if it is a true feeling and not a lie. 

I do see your point but when a mother begins to rationalize her initial gut responses, that highly instinctive feeling, it should be even more of a sign to her that her discomfort is not going away and to pay attention to it.
Trying to rationalize an instinctive response is what present day humans do, when we were more animalistic we would just act on our instinct, like a bear protecting her cub. An animal would not rationalize by figuring out why she feels the way she does, she would just respond and do what she had to do.

Truly that book by Gavin DeBecker was a real eye opener for me. My husband is not one for most of my reading material but he read it and was impressed to the point where he would like to buy copies for his family. He read it within a few nights, could not put it down. I also noted a new respect on his part for mother's instinct .......sorry I digress.

Just to be clear also I am all for multi age playmates for children, we as humans evolved in groups of hunter gatherers, so for 99% of human history there were children playing, in small multi age groups. Peers groups were not a natural part of human bands, so it wasn't that 4 year olds hung out with other four year olds, they would play with various ages. My three year old likes to play with the neighborhood children and they span 18 months to 10 years of age..
I rely a lot upon instinct when gauging which interactions I need to supervise more closely or try to limit or avoid all together.
Edited by Asiago - 7/10/13 at 1:17pm
post #35 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by seawind View Post

i find it slightly condescending on your part to assume things

ugh sorry i wasnt meaning to be condescending. i wasnt even thinking of you when i wrote this. its more about me and how MY own experience has affected my reaction.

 

my response to this thread is so different now as a mother of a 10 year old than how it would have been had dd been 4 now. 

 

i do not agree this thread has taken on 'a bit of a turn'. i think its right on the path. even in her reply OP is questioning and trying to figure out what is appropriate. she IS trying to figure out the answer. she seems open to all possiblities. 

 

i was a big fan of Gavin's book till i realised his advice was spot on for the younger kids, but not so much for older kids. 

 

yes i am absolutely with you. bullying is not taken seriously enough - in middle and high school in general. 

 

but i have found for kids younger than 10 some mothers are too quick to jump to conclusions. i was one of them too when dd was a toddler till i grew up and discovered what i thought was bullying behaviour was actually typical age appropriate stuff. 

post #36 of 48

To me it comes down to this - follow your gut and the worst that happens is the kids don't play together.  Ignore your gut and the worst that happens is...fill in the blank.

 

I think, in general, people are afraid to be direct.  There are so many threads on this forum that are essentially, "This person has done this unreasonable thing and I don't want to rock the boat and ask them to stop."  It is not ok for the other kid's family to expect this mother to entertain their kid all the time.  It's not ok for the kid to wander around her home, ask for food, be mean to her kids, etc.  It's not.  THE CHILD (and his care givers) are the ones out of line, but the OP is afraid to rock the boat or possibly offend someone by asking them to stop doing something they shouldn't be doing in the first place!  It is 100% OK to decide who comes in your home and plays with your children.  It is ok to send kids home when you're tired of them, and certainly when they're being mean to your kids.  It is ok not to have that kid over if it is less like a playdate and more like you're providing free babysitting.  All these things are just FINE and no one should feel uncomfortable about setting up healthy boundaries.  You don't need a REASON to send a kid home or not let them come over.

 

I also have this ideal of the free range neighborhood where all the kids play in a multi-age group and lessons are learned, community is built.  In reality, I just end up with everybody's kids all the time and some of them are a pain and have to go home. There is one kid I feel especially sorry for because the home life, even just what the mother tells me and what I directly observe (to say nothing of what I DON'T know) is pretty sad right now...but having her here all the time makes MY CHILD'S home life terrible. 
 

post #37 of 48
Its so interesting to me how many posters suggest that this is common developmental behavior for a 7 yr old...my son is 8, honestly a good kid and most of the time very sweet with little ones, but lately sometimes veers into the type of mean territory described...deliberately baiting or upsetting a younger kid or sibling he was having fun with. I do see other children his age act this way at times too (I totally saw the 'evil' smile described on a neighborhood boy while he *enjoyed* seeing my younger child cry, and it gave me a cold shiver), but it still REALLY concerns me.
It almost always happens when he is tired and/or bored.
I deal with it immediately, protect the younger child, and weve had many heart to hearts about caring behavior and being a good person...but it still happens sometimes.

When other kids act this way at my home they do get sent home immediately. IMO even if its normal it shouldnt be tolerated, I imagine its helpful to them to get the clear message that its not o.k.
I too have found visitors in my bedroom and am creeped out. My kids so far have shown good boundries and respect for privacy, I would be very surprised if they did that.


I think maybe it comes down to what the child has been taught is acceptable/what behavior is modeled at home, but I dont think that explains my own child acting his way? Is this behavior a bad sign for the person they will be or is just figuring out social norms?

In any event, I definitely wouldnt let it get to the point where my younger childrens home didnt feel like a safe haven for them. Good for them to see you modeling personal boundries by sending him home, sadly sticking up for themselves is a necessary lifelong skill.
Edited by myra1 - 7/10/13 at 7:40am
post #38 of 48

I would have concerns too if a neighbor kid, of any age, came over as often as this one, regardless of how they were acting.  You as of yet do not know his mother or grandparents and I think that is something that is very important when their child is spending so much time at your house.  Like a previous poster said, we are afraid to be direct, but it is truly needed more often in our daily lives.  I suggest that you talk with the child's family.  I would be concerned that he is spending so much time there and THEY are not wondering who you are and what goes on in your house.  This is not meant to offend you, only to show the other side.  Why are they not concerned with who he plays with?  Why are they not concerned with what he eats all day?  Since they seem to be lacking in care giving basics, you are going to have to be the one to talk with them.  I know that you are concerned with his behavior as well but that may not need to be the first thing you bring up in conversation with the neighbors as it will probably shut down open communication immediately, maybe bring it up during a later conversation.  I think that you need to cover the basics with them especially since you think that he has a hearing impairment and since your son has special needs.   If you glean from them an acceptable amount of information and you let the child come overto play then it is your place to talk to him as well.

 

He is 7 and you can be direct with him as well.  Let him know your home boundaries and what kind of actions will send him home for the day.  You are here for guidance for your children and those that are around your children.  Don't be afraid to talk yours and to the neighbor boy.

 

I wish you well.

post #39 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by meemee View Post

ugh sorry i wasnt meaning to be condescending. i wasnt even thinking of you when i wrote this.

good to know.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by myra1 View Post


I deal with it immediately, protect the younger child, and weve had many heart to hearts about caring behavior and being a good person...but it still happens sometimes.

When other kids act this way at my home they do get sent home immediately. IMO even if its normal it shouldnt be tolerated, I imagine its helpful to them to get the clear message that its not o.k.
I too have found visitors in my bedroom and am creeped out. My kids so far have shown good boundries and respect for privacy, I would be very surprised if they did that.


I think maybe it comes down to what the child has been taught is acceptable/what behavior is modeled at home, but I dont think that explains my own child acting his way? Is this behavior a bad sign for the person they will be or is just figuring out social norms?

In any event, I definitely wouldnt let it get to the point where my younger childrens home didnt feel like a safe haven for them. Good for them to see you modeling personal boundries by sending him home, sadly sticking up for themselves is a necessary lifelong skill.

thumbsup.gif. this is exactly the kind of proactive and helpful approach i was thinking about.

 

as they grow older, there is a lot in their behavior that reflects what their peers are modeling in addition to the home environment, so when an adult steps in and responds as outlined in your post, it really helps the older child figure out social norms while supporting the younger one as well.

post #40 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by amyowltree View Post

 I would be concerned that he is spending so much time there and THEY are not wondering who you are and what goes on in your house.  This is not meant to offend you, only to show the other side.  Why are they not concerned with who he plays with?  Why are they not concerned with what he eats all day?  Since they seem to be lacking in care giving basics, you are going to have to be the one to talk with them. 

 

Yes to this.  We had a similar situation a few years ago when I was actually home one summer (mostly I've been a WOHM).  Two neighborhood kids practically lived at our house, while their grandparents were supposed to be watching them.  I went down to their house one day to introduce myself and get some basic information and to make sure they had info on me.  I asked if I could take their kids to the beach and they didn't even want my cell phone number nor my last name.  I was stunned by how much they didn't seem to care.  That particular day the boys hadn't even gone into the house after being dropped of by mom -- they had come straight to me.  Grandparents didn't even know where they were.  So not my style!

 

But I learned so much from that conversation and from comments and observations of the boys.  Parents were neglectful and involved with CPS.  Grandparents were disabled and really not able to do anything with the boys.  They also had one of those "all white" houses.  You know, white carpets that kids can't play on, white kitchen where they can't get a snack...  And since the parents weren't giving them any money, they weren't feeding the boys lunch or snacks.  Boys themselves had physical evidence of abuse (cigarette burns on their arms, beating stripes on their backs that I could see when they wore swimsuits...)  So I pretty much took them in that summer.  I had lots of house rules that I enforced by sending them home but they were so grateful for the different atmosphere than at home they were mostly great once I laid out my expectations.  And I did send them home sometimes when I wanted time with just my children.  They moved away shortly thereafter and I still worry about them all the time.  I hope they are OK.  I like to think that I gave these boys the gift of at least one nice summer where they were fed, went swimming every day, went on outings to places they would never have gone to, and no one beat them or even yelled at them.  And my children had the gift of learning compassion, that not everyone's world was as nice as theirs, and doing something good without getting an immediate reward was important.

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