child wiped nose on my dress - Mothering Forums

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Old 01-26-2008, 02:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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A child in the playground wiped her nose on my dress. I know the child and her parents. SHe is 7 so I think she is old enough to be told that she should not do this. However I did not say anything to her or her parents. I would have liked to, if I knew how / what to say, but since I did not, I figured it probably won't happen again and why make an issue of it. On the other hand I want to be prepared in case it does happen again what to say to the child and/or her parents.

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Old 01-26-2008, 02:57 PM
 
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I would probably crack up laughing if a seven year old wiped her nose on my dress.

That said, you could keep a hanky in your bag or pocket and say something like, "Oh, you don't have to do that. You are welcome to use my hanky/tissues any time you want, just let me know."

I don't know if that is GD appropriate, as I do not have children and I don't think I would make an issue of it. Once I am around kids (of all ages), I pretty much accept the inevitable onslaught of bodily fluids.
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Old 01-26-2008, 02:58 PM
 
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Well, it could happen again because she thinks it's ok to do so.

How about, "Oh honey, let's use a tissue instead of my dress (clothes) that way the icky germs can go right in the trash when your done."

Or,

"Dresses are for wearing, tissues are for blowing noses sweetie. Here's a tissue."
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Old 01-26-2008, 03:32 PM
 
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I absolutely think that 7 is old enough to know better!
I think that is gross. Sure, if a child sneezes unexpectedly on you, that's understandable. I agree, kids bring along tons of opportunity for contact w/ "fluids". But purposely wiping a nose on a dress, that's *gross*, IMO.
I would have said/would say next time: "Please don't do that. If you need a tissue, I can surely get you one!"
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Old 01-26-2008, 06:59 PM
 
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I don't think it's anti-GD to let someone know you don't want her wiping her nose on your dress ... I'd also say something if another child was putting her bodily fluids on my child -- as in, "Yuck! we don't want that on our clothes!"

Normally I believe in leaving it up to parents to address their children's misbehavior -- but when they're doing something directly to me or mine, I'm sure going to say something.

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Old 01-26-2008, 07:01 PM
 
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I don't think it's anti-GD to let someone know you don't want her wiping her nose on your dress ... I'd also say something if another child was putting her bodily fluids on my child -- as in, "Yuck! we don't want that on our clothes!"

Normally I believe in leaving it up to parents to address their children's misbehavior -- but when they're doing something directly to me or mine, I'm sure going to say something.
Ditto. At 7 there is nothing wrong with telling the child not to do that...

Shay

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Old 01-26-2008, 07:06 PM
 
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Wow. She must really trust you. I'd say, I'd rather you not wipe your nose on me. Would you like a tissue and a cup of tea?
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Old 01-26-2008, 07:08 PM
 
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Ditto. At 7 there is nothing wrong with telling the child not to do that...

Shay
I don't even think it's wrong to say it to a younger child: If you say nothing, they're liable to think it doesn't bug you.

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Old 01-26-2008, 07:10 PM
 
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Unless the child has special needs. I know my 4.5 yo will wipe her face/nose.. whatever... on anything nearby. Over christmas she ruined someones white suede coat by wiping her candy cane face on it.

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Old 01-26-2008, 08:15 PM
 
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I would have said, "Ew, don't wipe your nose on me."

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Old 01-26-2008, 10:10 PM
 
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Bleah. I agree that it is gross and way out of line. I would have said "Don't wipe your nose on me--get a tissue!"
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Old 01-27-2008, 12:54 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I know! It's gross isn't it??
Why did I say nothing?

1) it was a fly-by wipe while playing freeze tag. like she was just rubbing her nose on the run. She was gone before I realized what had happened. Id have had to call her, remind her of what she did, and then say, "dont do that ..."
2) i didnt want to embarass her or her mother in front of the others.

But from now on I shall carry extra hankies and be prepared for such situations.

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Old 01-27-2008, 01:34 AM
 
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Yeah, "ACK! Don't do that!" would have been my response.

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Old 01-27-2008, 02:48 AM
 
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But, I'm wondering if the snarky responses would be appropriate to say if one is looking for a GD response?
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Old 01-27-2008, 02:56 AM
 
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I know! It's gross isn't it??
Why did I say nothing?

1) it was a fly-by wipe while playing freeze tag. like she was just rubbing her nose on the run. She was gone before I realized what had happened. Id have had to call her, remind her of what she did, and then say, "dont do that ..."
2) i didnt want to embarass her or her mother in front of the others.

But from now on I shall carry extra hankies and be prepared for such situations.
That seems kind of weird, and like she might have some special needs? I can see my nephew doing that, and he has some sensory issues and other stuff going on, mostly what I would call boundary issues. I think the best approach for him is always very clear, non-blaming, non-shaming information, kind of like the pp who said, "Kleenexes are for noses, dresses are for wearing. Let's ask someone for a Kleenex," or whatever. Especially because he's very bright and can learn, but that stuff does NOT come naturally to him.

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Old 01-27-2008, 03:37 AM
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.....But from now on I shall carry extra hankies and be prepared for such situations.
I don't think any adult should have to carry hankies on the off chance that some errant child, somewhere in the world, might rub snot on her clothes. What the child did was wrong-- and there's no excuse unless the child had some learning or developmental disability. (Thank heaven the average 7 year old one encounters knows better than to use someone else's clothing for facial tissue.) If this child does this to you again, you need to tell the child to use a tissue. Then you need to inform the parents. If she feels free to do this to you, can you imagine what other things she might be doing to/with others? Her lack of awareness about boundries may put her in danger at some point. Her parents need to be on the lookout for serious boundry issues so that they can keep her safe, if that turns out to be what is needed.

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Old 01-27-2008, 10:27 AM
 
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wow.
harsh.
I'm glad the mama whose coat my dd ruined didn't have a reaction like that.

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Old 01-27-2008, 10:43 AM
 
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Originally Posted by elspethshimon View Post
I would probably crack up laughing if a seven year old wiped her nose on my dress.

That said, you could keep a hanky in your bag or pocket and say something like, "Oh, you don't have to do that. You are welcome to use my hanky/tissues any time you want, just let me know."

I don't know if that is GD appropriate, as I do not have children and I don't think I would make an issue of it. Once I am around kids (of all ages), I pretty much accept the inevitable onslaught of bodily fluids.
Wow, that is pretty awesome! I love how relaxed you are. You are so ready to have children!

I would be pretty freaked out if any of the seven-year-olds in my life did that, because it's not really age-appropriate and I would be worried. Sidling up and getting close, yes--nose wiping, no. So I would have said something gentle like what you say, but then I would have wanted to talk with the parents about it. When younger children get close to me and hug me and stuff, I don't worry. So far no one has wiped his or her nose on me.

Divorced mom of one awesome boy born 2-3-2003.
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Old 01-27-2008, 10:48 AM
 
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But, I'm wondering if the snarky responses would be appropriate to say if one is looking for a GD response?
I guess I didn't think the responses were snarky or non-GD.

I think authentic responses (within reason, obviously) and letting people know that you want them to stop a behavior immediately or not do it again are within GD.

My response to a 3 year old would probably be softer. But a 7 yr. old? I can't imagine needing to say anything other than, "Please don't do that." Barring special needs, they mostly know that kleenexes are for noses. Three year olds, not so much.
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Old 01-27-2008, 12:28 PM
 
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I asked dp what she would do ('cause she's the best mother in the entire wide world.) She shrugged and said, "I'd figure it was an accident. And I wouldn't want to embarrass the kid. Unless it was [our 8 year old autistic friend]. And then it's not like saying something would matter."

So OP....the best mother in the world would treat it the same way you did....like an accident in the middle of a rousing game.
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Old 01-27-2008, 05:20 PM
 
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Well, I'd certainly want to know if my 7yo had wiped her nose on someone else's clothes. I wouldn't want her to be humiliated, and I wouldn't punish her. I'd want to know, 'cause if she were doing stuff like that (as a developmentally normal 7yo), I'd feel a need to watch her more closely, and spend more time talking about social niceties. I'd feel like somehow I'd fallen down on the job, for her to not realize by age 7 that you just don't do that.

Of course, in the run-by kind of situation the OP just described, I can understand the OP just letting it go and not bringing it up to the parent.

Susan -- married unschoolin' WAHMomma to two lovely girls (born 2000 and 2005).
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Old 01-27-2008, 05:30 PM
 
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wow.
harsh.
I'm glad the mama whose coat my dd ruined didn't have a reaction like that.
I didn't see Xoe's response as harsh. She said she'd tell the child to use a tissue, and inform the parents of what happened. It's not like she said she'd let loose an avalanche of rage and humiliate the poor child or the parents.

Also, while I wouldn't be harsh to a child who ruined my coat -- I'd certainly feel that the child's parents should offer to replace the ruined item.

And of course you probably offered to do this -- it's not my business one way or the other. But maybe the mama didn't react harshly because she knew you were aware of what happened and would be willing to rectify the damage.

Actually, I still wouldn't react harshly to the child, even if the parents did nothing to right the wrong -- and I wouldn't go off on the parents or demand anything, either. But I would be quietly offended if such a thing happened and there were no move to make restitution.

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Old 01-27-2008, 05:35 PM
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Why didn't she wipe her nose on HER OWN clothes?!
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Old 01-27-2008, 05:37 PM
 
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all bets are off when you play freeze tag around here! Don't wear your good coat!!

Kudos to the OP for being a good sport.

Here's how I read it: If someone posted: a 7 year old came up and kicked me in the shin, what do you think I should have done, there'd be outraged post after outraged post saying a 7 year old should be old enough to know blah blah blah....If the post said, I was playing soccer with a 7 year old and they overshot and kicked me in the leg....the reaction is (appropriately) different.

In a wintertime freeze tag game with little kids, some snot may end up on your clothes. Those of you without 7 year olds, take warning!! Did the kid un-freeze you? Was s/he it? Were you? I love to play freeze tag with the kids! But I'm liable to end up slightly bruised, muddy, cold .... and maybe a little messier than I planned!
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Old 01-27-2008, 05:45 PM
 
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Why didn't she wipe her nose on HER OWN clothes?!
'Cause snot is yucky and she didn't want to mess up her pretty outfit?

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Old 01-27-2008, 05:53 PM
 
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I'd pretty much just handle it the way I've done with my own child at varies ages and reasons or daycare kids etc.. No no honey not on clothes here lets find a tissue. If child asks why I answer if not I just redirrect as politely and as firmly as I need to be appropiate in the situation.

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Old 01-27-2008, 05:53 PM
 
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Why didn't she wipe her nose on HER OWN clothes?!
Just a guess? Really into the game, nose running from cold, not entirely aware it was runny, wiped on the fly as she un-froze or froze somebody.

Freeze tag is serious stuff!
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Old 01-27-2008, 06:01 PM
 
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If that happened to me, I would have told the child "wipe your nose on your own shirt!" or "Please don't use my dress as a tissue- if you need a tissue then ask for one", directly to the child at the time of the incident. I'd probably not involve her parents.

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Old 01-27-2008, 07:12 PM
 
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Why didn't she wipe her nose on HER OWN clothes?!
My child never ever would get something gooey on his clothes on pupose. If he did, he'd immediately take it off. But he was always very happy to wipe it on MY shirt.

In the OP's situation, I'd assume it was a bit of an accident.

I have seen my ds, at age 5, discretely wiping his hands on an other person. He was playing in a creek and dried his hands by patting someone on the back. It was really funny.

If a three-ish yo wiped their nose on me, I'd actually feel pretty honored (and amused) that he or she was that comfortable with me but I would gently suggest a tissue be used in the future.

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Old 01-27-2008, 09:00 PM
 
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Also, while I wouldn't be harsh to a child who ruined my coat -- I'd certainly feel that the child's parents should offer to replace the ruined item.
And what if the parents couldn't afford to replace the item? If a 3 yr old wipes her face on my seude coat I would say- dang! I should have kept it out of reach of a 3 year old.

I wouldn't offer to replace an item because I could never afford to replace a seude anything.
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