or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › A stranger bought my dd a chocolate bar...am I over-reacting?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

A stranger bought my dd a chocolate bar...am I over-reacting? - Page 3

post #41 of 166
By the way, I hate when it when strangers don't take no for an answer about anything. It drives me crazy how people just don't get it sometimes or refuse to respect what we say as parents or people. Sometimes trying to be nice just ends up making them a pain. Ever been standing on a curb or near a street not ready to cross for some reason. Then some car stops and waves you on, you wave for them to just go because you're not ready yet, and they sit there waiting for you, still waveing with a big ol grin on their faces. Drives me nuts when that happens. Why isn't a "no thank you" good enough for some people?

post #42 of 166
I wouldn't want my kids to think that someone who buys them candy is automatically axiomatically a paragon of goodness. Because they're not.

Of course it doesn't mean that that person is always good but it does teach the goodness of little actions, something one can do everyday to help a small piece of humanity. This isn't a lesson about this one person, I see it as a broad lesson about the little things one can do for another person.

Children learn solidly about the goodness of humanity by maybe doing charitable work, or by helping people who need help, or by learning about all the ways they can help fix the world. Getting a piece of candy teaches them only that this particular grown-up wants them to have a piece of candy.

Again, I don't think I got my opinion across clearly, Lessons come in all shapes and sizes. Of course children learn about their goddness by helping others in large ways but I do not dismiss the everyday goodness because it may be very small. I want them to learn that goodness and that fixing the world can be done everyday, in a million small ways. And that they deserve to be on the recieving end as much as on the giving end.


I do agree that the man forcing you to take the candy bar was out of line and of course my perspective comes from accepting the gift right off the bat and not saying no.
post #43 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by LovemyBoo
I don't think you overreacted.

What raises my alarm in your story is not that he offered the candy but that he ignored your repeated "no, thank you". People that ignore or disregard the word "no" usually make me uneasy.

You went with your instincts and that's great! Keep listening. What's the worst that happened here? Some strange guy at the video store thinks you're overprotective? Your dd will think twice before accepting candy from someone she doesn't know? Big deal on both counts. At best you let this guy know that your kid isn't an easy target. If you ruffle a few feathers here and there in the name of protecting your child, so be it. It beats the alternative. Keep listening to your heart.
right on.

I'm suprised no one else has referenced author Gavin de Becker's #1 bestseller, The Gift of Fear, which I think I must've heard about on Oprah.

Quote:
Perhaps we have a bad feeling about someone we've just met, or a little gnawing perception that a situation just doesn't "feel right," or perhaps even a fear that a co-worker might do something harmful. What de Becker, renowned expert on violent behavior, explains here is that instead of shrugging off these fears, we need to listen to them, see why we're having them, and act accordingly. Far from being silly intuitions, often these can truly show when something is wrong and violence might be imminent; if listened to, along with information about how violent people behave, these feelings might protect us from harm. Using examples from cases on which he's worked and even from his own childhood of domestic violence de Becker shows how instinct, and knowledge, can warn us of impending violence, whether by stalkers, family members, predators, or people in the workplace.
Amazon.com is so cool, 'cause you can read the first few pages of the book:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0440...3D#reader-link
I think that de Becker's intro, that you can read online right here, is invaluable. It affirms that it's OKAY and possibly imparative that we trust our "silly overreactions" to people's "kindness."

For crying out loud--no means no. The best outcome would've been this guy accepting no as an answer, and posting on HIS bullitian board about how paranoid this chick (the OP) was--and how he chose to STOP PUSHING the candy issue because he is sensitive and respectful of this mother (the OP) and her child.
post #44 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyshoes
I'm suprised no one else has referenced author Gavin de Becker's #1 bestseller, The Gift of Fear, which I think I must've heard about on Oprah.
I mentioned de Becker's other book, Protecting the Gift, in my post, post 34 on page 2.

http://www.mothering.com/discussions...9&postcount=34

Someone else may have mentioned it, as well. It is similar to The Gift of Fear, but it is more specific to protecting children.
post #45 of 166
I don't think you overreacted.
When ds was about 18 months we were waiting for take out at a local restaurant. They had a M&M vending machine in the lobby. Ds was fascinated by it, didn't necessarily know what they were though. An older man was interacting with ds, being nice and talking to him while he was toddling around. I thought it was nice. While I was paying for my food, the man bought a handful of m&m's from the machine (they were loose but they came directly out of the machine) and ds had one in his mouth already by the time I was able to say "please don't give my son any candy"! The man apologized and I thanked him and pocketed the candy. I told the man that ds was about to eat dinner, that's why we were here, and besides, I didn't want him having candy at such a young age, but thank you very much for the nice gesture. I also told him that I didn't want him to get used to strangers giving him candy. The guy was truly trying to be nice, told me how his grandkids love candy, etc. I could tell he was a bit puzzled by my reaction, but oh well. Nice or not, I don't want strangers giving my kids anything to eat without my permission.
I think refusing politely but firmly is the way to go.
post #46 of 166
Whether or not another mother might have accepted the candy when it was first offered has nothing to do with the fact that you had every right to decline the candy and to have your wishes respected. You also didn't need a "reason" not to want your daughter to accept it - maybe safety, maybe nutrition or allergies, or maybe 'just because.'
post #47 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Corvus
I mentioned de Becker's other book, Protecting the Gift, in my post, post 34 on page 2.

http://www.mothering.com/discussions...9&postcount=34

Someone else may have mentioned it, as well. It is similar to The Gift of Fear, but it is more specific to protecting children.
thanks, mama--like I said, I was suprised no one had mentioned it...and indeed, suprise is now gone, book was mentioned.
post #48 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by bellasmum
I immediately had a very important heart to heart with dd about accepting things from people we don't know,
I still don't get how it was OK for DD to approach someone, offer someone something etc if you are so freaked out by her accepting something. We all have to teach our kids what's important to us, so I'm not questioning that, just the mixed message of this particular incident. So DD is viewed as innocent and full of love for her actions but the same actions following her actions are tainted, not innocent, creepy?

I agree the guy should have accepted no, but you were not happy with the offer before the insistence.

Your DD engaged this man with you there. It's not like he went out of his way to get her attention.
post #49 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kirsten
I think you are overreacting a bit. He didn't walk by your house, stop to chat your dd up in the yard, then offer her candy. He was in line at the video store and your dd initiated the conversation by giving him the rock. She was kind in giving him something (well, a rock but still her heart was in the right place) and he felt he'd like to give her something. Nearby is a candy bar display. No harm in that unless you are diabetic. He didn't pull the possibly tainted candy from his coat; it was for sale at your video store.

You say he was young; if he didn't have kids, he may well never have imagined his actions could be upsetting or worrisome to you. He was just trying to be nice.

I think it is sad that we are to the point where we shield our kids from decent people just in case they are the small percentage point who could harm them. You were right nearby; I assume the clerk could see her in line. It doesn't strike me as dangerous or unsavory in any way. I can see where it would happen.

I do understand your "is this ok?" feelings about it; it is something to give a once over to. I just would have come up with a different end feeling I think.

Did you or your dd have a bad feeling about him before he wanted to give her the candy?

I once read that if you need help, it is better to randomly ask someone than wait for someone to offer. Thought being that your chance of choosing the predator is very low. But the predator will be looking for someone in need to "assist". Your dd chose this man to give a rock to. In line at your local video store. Now if you'd seen him driving past your house last week, over and over, or asking the video clerk if they had kiddie porn - I can understand a strong reaction to him speaking to your child. But she initiated it and it seems harmless to me. I think he was just trying to be nice.
:
post #50 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by nicole lisa
I still don't get how it was OK for DD to approach someone, offer someone something etc if you are so freaked out by her accepting something. We all have to teach our kids what's important to us, so I'm not questioning that, just the mixed message of this particular incident. So DD is viewed as innocent and full of love for her actions but the same actions following her actions are tainted, not innocent, creepy?

I agree the guy should have accepted no, but you were not happy with the offer before the insistence.

Your DD engaged this man with you there. It's not like he went out of his way to get her attention.

This is EXACTLY what I was thinking. Your child's desire to connect and express kindness to strangers is cute and charming, but any reciprocation is suspect? It's been said before, but it bears repeating - he did not seek her out, your daughter offered him a gift. Just because he doesn't "get" your "rules" about children and candy (which differ wildly from culture to culture, and from one person to the next anyway) doesn't necessarily make him a bad guy. For all you know, this could have been the only human who had shown him any kindness at all - and he desperately wanted to reciprocate. He could have handled it more gracefully, but you should be able to understand that, since you were pretty flustered yourself.
post #51 of 166
No, I believe you can never be too safe and trusting your instincts when it comes to your children.
post #52 of 166
I do think you overreacted a bit. I think that the guy was just trying to be friendly. You were there with your dd, so it wasn't like she was taking something from someone without you around. I can see how it would have felt weird for you, but this could have been a chance to teach about the difference between when we do and don't accept things from people.
post #53 of 166
I feel like everybody here who has said, "Oh, it's okay where we live to give kids candy" is missing the whole point of the interaction.

The mama said no. He persisted even after the mama said no.

Which part of "no" did he not understand?
post #54 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by nicole lisa
I still don't get how it was OK for DD to approach someone, offer someone something etc if you are so freaked out by her accepting something. We all have to teach our kids what's important to us, so I'm not questioning that, just the mixed message of this particular incident. So DD is viewed as innocent and full of love for her actions but the same actions following her actions are tainted, not innocent, creepy?
The OP's DD is a small child... a toddler from what I gather. She is still learning social skills. She still has a LOT to learn about interacting with strangers. She is probably still too young to understand the nuances between "you approached him first so it's ok" and "he approached you first so it's not ok." At this age, the rules about strangers need to be explicity clear, black and white. Toddlers do not understand "gray areas." Even when you think your child knows and understands the black-and-white rules, they still often violate them, b/c they forget or think "this guy seems friendly."

Of course the DD's offer of the rocks is innocent. She's a toddler! But the adult should have simply thanked her. His actions are "tainted" b/c he is old enough to know that, at least in THIS culture, it's not wise to put children in the position of accepting something from a stranger, and most parents are uncomfortable with it. And most importantly, he should respect that no means no.
post #55 of 166
And where do some of you live that people carry around candy and stuffed animals and toys to hand out to the children of strangers?
post #56 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Corvus
And where do some of you live that people carry around candy and stuffed animals and toys to hand out to the children of strangers?
I wasn' one of the posters who mentioned it, but I live in Seattle and it does happen here. And it has also occurred in the places we have visited, including Texas, California and Hawaii. Usually it is just candy, but my DD has been offered stuffed animals several times in just the past few months.
post #57 of 166
This happens to my kids frequently.
We stand in line at the convenience store and some old man gives them each a quarter. Or sombody buys them each a sucker.
We walk into Walmart and the lady at the door gives them each a sticker.
We go through the bakery and somebody gives them each a cookie.
Giving makes people feel good. And giving to children and seeing them smile doubly so.
It is sad that some people have perverted this natural type of interaction into something that is abused to harm children.
It is my job to protect my children against abuse of others. NOt to protect them against all interaction with kind people.
Candy is not the only way, nor the most prevalent way that abusers take advantage of children.
Joline
post #58 of 166
I really can not comment on whether you over reacted, because my dd (only child) is 15 months (today), so I have not btdt. So I am unsure how I would honestly feel. A few things made me think though (I apologize, I did not read the other responses), your dd did offer him a rock so he really just followed her lead. The other thought was that yes, he was persistent. That may have bugged me. However, he did say right from the start that he wanted to buy it for her, so maybe he felt that he really needed to follow through with her so that he didn't disappoint her. He may feel this way out of his own guilt or because of some issues from childhood.

Just my thoughts!
post #59 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by johub
It is my job to protect my children against abuse of others. NOt to protect them against all interaction with kind people.
Candy is not the only way, nor the most prevalent way that abusers take advantage of children.
Joline

What she said.
post #60 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Corvus
And where do some of you live that people carry around candy and stuffed animals and toys to hand out to the children of strangers?
One of the posters who mentioned toys and candy lives in Eastern Europe.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Parenting
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › A stranger bought my dd a chocolate bar...am I over-reacting?