Correcting a Stranger's Parenting Tactics? - Page 5 - Mothering Forums

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#121 of 129 Old 10-30-2005, 05:22 PM
 
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I can see why that would be equally aggravating. What about if it's in a playflul manner? I haven't really done it, but I've discovered people playing peekaboo with son while he was whining in line or something. It wasn't a stressful situation, but they were sort of "helping" so to speak.

I will chime in that the general question "can I help?" has felt inherently condescending to me, when there's not really any specific way to "help," like carry a bag or something. Someone did that once when I wasn't even yelling, just speaking firmly because I had to get dressed in the locker room and he could not be distracted or persuaded to stay by me, and it sort of made me feel like she thought I was about to hit my kid or something. Her intention might have been good, but I didn't like it.
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#122 of 129 Old 11-01-2005, 10:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I was at the park with dd and was having a conversation with one of the mom's there. Her son swatted my daughter (I'm sure she's fine..), so she pulled him over to reprimand him.. okay, none of my business so no big deal. Then he ran off to play again. She turned to me and said "I almost forgot we are in public right now, I came so close to smacking his butt right then!" I smiled and said "yeah, I think some people don't like to see that" (I didn't say me). Then she went on to say, "yeah, what is that though? People wonder why the jails are so full but I know it's because kids don't get spanked enough."

uh. That pretty much ended our conversation. I didn't say anything, but I made myself preoccupied with dd and then left shortly after.

My opinion: Where does she think her son learned that behaviour? Duh?

~Sara, WAHSingMomi to girls R and AV, S.O.A.R. Scout Leader and Homeschooling In Detroit Blogger

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#123 of 129 Old 11-01-2005, 01:41 PM
 
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Are you baiting me? No way would I have left her opinion the only one voiced. What if a man had said that about women? I'd have chewed his ear off.

Pat, Gladys Cravitz

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#124 of 129 Old 11-01-2005, 03:49 PM
 
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Sometimes it's hard to know what to say when you're shocked. Especially if you're not comfortable being confrontational. I've been in a similar situation (she was talking about slapping hands) and I didn't know what the hell to say. It's a lot easier to think something up later.
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#125 of 129 Old 11-01-2005, 04:01 PM
 
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I'd say something like "Wow! I am shocked to hear you say that! I believe hitting people teaches them that hitting is ok." Or, "Wow, we don't hit people in our family!" Or, "I think it sad when people hit children, don't you?"

Or, the least confrontational but emphatic responsive I have heard suggested is to look the speaker directly in the eye for several seconds and say Nothing. To Pause..... and let what they just said to hang in the air but with direct wide eyed disbelief. And then to say 'excuse me' and disengage.

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#126 of 129 Old 11-01-2005, 05:48 PM
 
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Some months back when I was about 10 weeks pg and suffering morning sickness, my 3 year old dd and I traveled to FL. In the airport for our return trip I was desperately trying to get something to eat before getting on the flight, was feeling like puking, running late (we ended up being the LAST to board) and very irritable. While in line my dd "disappeared". She was right underneath/behind me if you know what I mean. I freaked, started screaming for her, and when I saw that she was right behind me started yelling at her. Then when I got our food I started walking away, and turned around to see her about 12 feet behind me. Again I started screaming at her to come on. Some kind woman knelt down by my daughter, turned her in my directions, pointed me out to her and gently told her to go to me. I am so ashamed of that moment I can barely recall out without crying, and I am grateful to that woman for being so kind to my daughter at that moment. I wish I could thank her and tell her I am usually a much better mom. I wonder what she thinks of me.

Recently I was in target and while walking with my cart after paying saw a girl who looked about 3 fall off a bench and end up lying close to the wall with her head bent up, crying. Her mother didn't even help her, just said coldly, "you are ok, just get up! You need to stop playing around!". Other people were looking on as well as it looked pretty bad. I said in a loud voice, "She doesn't LOOK like she is ok!" and kept walking. Then I sat in the snack bar with my husband and dd and quietly cried while I ate me food (the pg hormones) because I felt so bad for the little girl and angry at the mom. I don't know her situation. I decided later if I ever ran into that same situation I would simply kneel down by the child and help them up. After all, if I saw a mother who had fallen and was hurt, I would stop and help her. If I saw a child who was alone and had fallen and was hurt, I would help her. Why shouldn't I help a child who had fallen and was hurt just because her mother wouldn't help her? Maybe the mother would appreciate it that someone was kind to her child when she was at the end of her rope that day and couldn't be.

It is hard to know what to do.

~Tracy

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#127 of 129 Old 11-02-2005, 12:44 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SunRayeMomi
My opinion: Where does she think her son learned that behaviour? Duh?
Before I had children, this is what my mom told me. She told me that children hit because they were hit. Uh . . .NO, mom, you are wrong! My DD has hit us on occasion, and she has never been hit!

This mom probably does spank, but I'm just putting it out there that sometimes things come out as instinct (or emotion?) vs. being taught.

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#128 of 129 Old 11-02-2005, 12:49 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wugmama
Some kind woman knelt down by my daughter, turned her in my directions, pointed me out to her and gently told her to go to me. I am so ashamed of that moment I can barely recall out without crying, and I am grateful to that woman for being so kind to my daughter at that moment. I wish I could thank her and tell her I am usually a much better mom. I wonder what she thinks of me.
That you were overwhelmed and needed help to get back in control of the situation.
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#129 of 129 Old 11-02-2005, 01:50 AM
 
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Sara,

I know this thread has been ...well ...a little rough on you but I wish to thank you a lot for posting it. I got alot out of it (the posts that were constructive). I for sure would step in if I thought something was out of hand. What this thread made me think is how to do it in a more positive manner, especially given your scenerio which I accept as hypothetical as you asked us. I have never been one to stay off to the side if I thought I saw some abuse. I refuse to look the other way if I see a woman being berated, I wouldn't do it because it's a child. I'm not a busy body and I am the type to let people live as they see fit, to a point. If they are in public, they open themselves up to public scrutiny. The parent has to realize that. Sure, I would plan to do it very nicely and do it in as much of a non offensive manner as I could. This thread gave me nice ideas to bounce around in my head..so thank you all for your constructive input. I have often made non threatening comments to rather hyper children when I can see the parents getting embarrassed and I say...oh neat..a spirited gal like I used to be..and I can see the parent's shoulders just relax and chuckle. Opens the door wide open. I've yet to have a parent take offense and if one would...that seems a bit isolationist and a bit presumptuous to me since it's not presented as offensive.


I do think we should not look the other way when an opportunity presents itself to strike up a conversation that might change someone's life. To those so easily defensive about this, maybe it's a good opportunity to reflect a little and become more open that your way is not the only way...and sometimes it's kinda good to see some concern from other people when they see your situation. Isolationism has it's drawbacks imo if we all sit back and "do nothing and look the other way". I'm not naming any names of course..I don't need to...I think these types of threads are ingenius for us to look within to see how we can make the world better. Our actions every day either make the world a better place, or make it worse off.
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