I can't stand my son's best friend - Page 2 - Mothering Forums
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#31 of 36 Old 06-11-2009, 09:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Don't get me wrong. My ds does make big messes sometimes. But, no, he has never dumped out his entire toy box and flipped it upside down. It's not just the dumping of the toy box, though. It's the sneakiness about it and lying after the fact even if I don't ask what happened/who did it.

The other thing is that he'll take things that are put away in a box or bin and stack them up somewhere else like he's rearrangined things the way he wants them to be. This usually results in them being stacked in front of the closet door so I can't get to the closet or in the middle of a walkway so I have to clean it up before I can go through a room. If he wants to do that in his house, that's fine. I don't think it's cool to go to someone else's house and rearranged things like that without asking first. I get just as upset with my mother when she comes to my home and decides I don't have the dishes in the correct places and moves them all over my kitchen so I can't find anything.

And, yes, my ds does clean up after himself when he sees me cleaning (most of the time). I don't try to force my ds to clean nor do I expect him to. He's not the one who wants things clean. I do so I see it as my issue/responsibility. I usually just start cleaning. Sometimes I may ask if he will help if it's a really big mess, especially if he wants to do something with me. Most of the time I don't. He usually (and my 2yo, too) will help me once he sees me doing it. They actually fight over who gets to help me clean rather than who has to help me clean.

Let me give you an example of the difference between these two. We have plastic bins in a wooden shelf type system. My ds might take one bin and dump it out because he's looking for something particular that he can't find. This other boy will dump out all the bins so he can use them for something else.

I admire his creativity. I can totally see him being an architect some day if this part of his personality is encouraged (I don't think it is, though). However, I would really appreciate it if he would ask before he does something like that in my home and/or let me know that it has been done. My ds does that for the most part. I think the difference with that comes from this other boy being used to being told, "No," and getting in trouble for doing this sort of thing. Apparently, he's not even allowed to sit on his own bed after his mother makes it.

With the outside hose, I really don't mind at all if they play with it as long as it gets turned off so the water is not just running (because we have to pay for it) and flooding the yard all night long. If they ask, it is usually perfectly fine with me if they play with it. That gives me the chance to remind them to turn it off when they are done and to be aware that I need to check it. My ds knows this. I have told this other boy this many, many times. However, he waits until I'm not paying attention and sneaks and then runs off when there's no need for that. KWIM?

We don't do any structured play. My ds does what he wants (radical unschoolers). He is pretty tame, relatively speaking. My oldest ds and my youngest are both wild ones. My oldest was/is(?) destructive but not in a purposeful way. He was just sort of oblivious to what he did most of the time. My youngest, at just 2, is wild and crazy but, again, not purposefully destructive. This kid does these things in a sneaky way and lies about it.

Another example of his sneakiness and dishonesty. One time the boys asked me if they could go across the street. I told them I couldn't watch them cross the street at that moment but, if they waited until I was done with what I was doing, I would watch them go. This boy tried to get my ds to go downstairs away from me so he could tell him something in secret as he announced that he was going home. I had a good idea what he was doing. He was probably going to tell my ds to tell me they were going to his house and then go across the street anyway. I told them both they could say whatever they needed in front of me. If not, they didn't need to say it and the boy could just go home. He opted not to say anything.

I could go on and on. This has become a novel. Sorry.

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#32 of 36 Old 06-11-2009, 09:55 AM - Thread Starter
 
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One more thing , I asked my ds why he thinks his friend would lie and say that my ds did something instead of taking responsibility himself. My ds said it was because the other boy always gets in trouble and he wants my ds to get in trouble instead. We then discussed whether or not that was a nice thing to do and whether or not real friends do that sort of thing to each other.

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#33 of 36 Old 06-11-2009, 10:54 PM
 
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Gotcha. Well, that makes sense and I see where you are coming from. I just wanted to put that observation out there.

I am a homeopath, offering acute and constitutional consultations for children, babies, and parents. Long-distance treatment is easy, either phone or skype! I also am certified to offer Homeoprophylaxis, a vaccine-alternative program. Message me for more details. www.concentrichealing.com
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#34 of 36 Old 06-11-2009, 11:14 PM
 
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you should talk to my mom.. we had neighbors similar to this growing up. i didn't understand until i was older.. and as i'm reading your posts its like everything clicked

my best friend was the girl who lived down the street she was three yrs old then me (everyone was either 3 yrs older then me or three yrs younger it was weird) her family was a mess. i was never ever allowed over there.. never knew why until years later. anyway my mom ended up setting ground rules for her the same way she did with me. since she was over at the house a lot (esp. since i couldn't go to hers) she had to follow our house rules too. end of discussion (this was unusual for my mom but she said she had had yrs to teach me and my brother respect.. she didnt have that kind of time with this girl) if she couldn't follow the rules she got 1 warning and then she had to leave. lying was one of the rules..so she wasn't allowed to do that either.

her parents were wack jobs so telling them would have been pointless. her little brother used to walk into peoples houses without knocking or anything and just go and hang out in there. and her mom would wander around the neighborhood in her nightgown and curlers (absolutely not joking) the one time i went into their house there was a rifle on the floor in front of the door... next to it was a used condom... had to ask my cousin about that later.

you can set ground rules in your own house... and since you don't have time to raise this one you kind of have to take the my way or the highway approach. fwiw my mom recently ran into this girl and she is in community college and doing well.. the first member of her family to go. and we still talk occasionally...so even the friends that make you grind your teeth may be around for awhile.. its worth it to set some rules so that he behaves in your house.. you might even start to like him. my mom grew very fond of my friend.. never liked her brother though.. walking into peoples houses is just weird.
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#35 of 36 Old 06-11-2009, 11:37 PM
 
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I love that you're so respectful of your ds's choices in friends and you are trying very hard to sort how to live with his choice.

Obviously, this kid has problems. He is so fearful; it must be heartbreaking to witness him cowering when a wooden brush is brought out.

I have a great deal of empathy for kids like this mainly because I was the kid like this. I wasn't destructive, but I was certainly a mess in other ways.

I think that boundaries which are firm, but loving are very helpful. And lots of talks with your son each day about what happened will help as well. I wouldn't focus on blame placement or judgments about his behaviors, more on how much you hope he will come back and behave himself like you know he can. Maybe try really hard to find things about him you like and make sure you tell the kid those things.

I might be projecting a bunch of stuff, but I get the feeling that he wants to be at your house because it feels safer to him. You give boundaries without verbal or physical abuse. You are doing him a world of good, even if it is draining. Take care of you, to be sure, and don't let him get away with anything, but I am so glad that you keep trying. You have a huge heart and this kid will remember you when he's older. I remember all the great moms and dads of my friends. My memories of them gave me the right tools to use when I became a parent myself.

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#36 of 36 Old 06-12-2009, 09:54 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, ladies.

I think maybe the 1 warning thing is kind of of hard for me, especially with lying, because it's very hard to prove that another person is lying. I may suspect it but most times when we're in a situation like that, I don't really know for sure. Like the money in the pocket. No one saw this boy put the money in his pocket. It is conceivable that my ds would give him the money (although, I still don't think it's conceivable that my ds actually put the money in this other boy's pocket). I can't prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that the boy is lying. I'm very sensitive about that because as I was growing I was accused of many things I didn't do simply because I was the middle child. My big bro was old enough to know better and my little sis was too young and not capable of doing whatever it was so it must've been me. I can certainly do a 1 warning thing with behaviors I see, though, which I already do quite a bit. Then the thing that makes me feel bad about that is that my ds feels punished by it because he then doesn't have a friend to play with.

We have a neighbor girl across the street who's 8 or 9yo who just walks right into our house. It's very bizarre. One time she walked in the door and went straight to our freezer for some ice cream. I was in the kitchen and she just said, "Oh, hello." She wasn't playing with my ds at the time so she couldn't even say that he told her it was ok to come in and get some. Either I live in a very strange neighborhood or I somehow attract people who are a little off.

I do try to find positive things about this kid (and everyone else I meet). I want to like this boy because my ds likes him and he's around a lot. I have told him numerous times that I like the way he comes up with ideas for building things and that he should consider being an architect one day. It's hard, though, because he cowers even when I just ask him how his day was. Any time I start to talk to him he immediately reacts as if he thinks he's in trouble.

I was thinking about the destructive and wild behavior in others' homes. Even my wild and crazy ds1 didn't behave that way in other people's homes. I used to joke all the time about how everyone else would tell me what a nice, polite and helpful child he was and all the while I was thinking, "Are you sure you're talking about my kid?" (not in front of ds, of course).

knit.gifSAHM to 3 boys and 1 man; 22 jammin.gif, 9REPlaySkateboard04HL.gif, 5 FIREdevil.gifand now 1 year oldtoddler.gif!

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