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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
what are the guidelines on what you can say to other kids who are behaving inappropriately? obviously you dont have the right or the responsibility to 'gently discipline' them but you have to intervene or your own kid will get hurt ...
i ask because of an incident that happened today, and my own feeling of unpreparedness to stand up for my kid if she is being handled or dominated by others.

it seems many other kids are 'more playful' than mine even when they first meet her. they dont feel at all shy to hold her hand or tickle her and she doesn't like this AT ALL. My daughter just turned 2. She is very bubbly and social among people she knows well, but will cry immediately if a new person gets too close too fast.

Today a girl in the library started tickling my dd and she squirmed uncomfortably. I was about 5 yards away and as I walked towards them i tried to say in a calm voice, "I dont think she likes you to do that." and then scooped up my dd who burst into tears. The girl's mother, without getting up from the computer just called out, 'no touching.'

What should I have done? What would you do? My daughter continued crying as we left the library. I tried to distract her with magazines etc and only when outside I said, "you didn't like that girl to tickle you did you. If anyone does that you shoudl say, "dont do that"" My dd looked very happy as I explained this to her. At last I had acknowledged the real issue and given her help in dealing with it.

But in the library, was there anything I could have done or said to the other girl? I operate on the assumption that you should not criticise or scold a child, esp someone else's. In this case perhaps it was not very serious, but in another case it could be. I dont want my daughter to get the message that when other people behave inappropriately we just have to put up with it and/or escape, just to avoid creating a scene.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by rumi
Today a girl in the library started tickling my dd and she squirmed uncomfortably. I was about 5 yards away and as I walked towards them i tried to say in a calm voice, "I dont think she likes you to do that." and then scooped up my dd who burst into tears. The girl's mother, without getting up from the computer just called out, 'no touching.'

What should I have done? What would you do? My daughter continued crying as we left the library. I tried to distract her with magazines etc and only when outside I said, "you didn't like that girl to tickle you did you. If anyone does that you shoudl say, "dont do that"" My dd looked very happy as I explained this to her. At last I had acknowledged the real issue and given her help in dealing with it.

But in the library, was there anything I could have done or said to the other girl? I operate on the assumption that you should not criticise or scold a child, esp someone else's. In this case perhaps it was not very serious, but in another case it could be. I dont want my daughter to get the message that when other people behave inappropriately we just have to put up with it and/or escape, just to avoid creating a scene.
I think that you handled the situation wonderfully! I could be wrong, but I think that you did what you could in the situation. I know, I feel comfortable gding my friend's children, or children in my classes. However, I try not to gd any stranger's children in a public setting, unless like today the other parent is inattentive, or unresponsive to the situation (I know I wouldn't be very happy with a non-gd parent disciplining my dd). You didn't want your dd to feel uncomfortable in the situation and removed her from it. I think that considering that it upset her and she was crying, it was appropriate to leave to calm her down and explain what she could do/say in future situations. Just out of curiosity...did you go back into the library where you were after you talked? I probably would have taken my dd back in after she was calm if she wanted to continue with the activity. I guess I would want her to learn that she could go back to an activity or interactions with other children if she wanted after she felt comfortable again, and that she didn't have to leave. It may also give her a chance to express her feelings and react using her words to the other child (with my support) if it were to reoccur. I think either way, this was a learning opportunity for everyone involved: you, your dd, and the other child.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Quote:
Just out of curiosity...did you go back into the library where you were after you talked?
no, we just went to the grocery store and home.
i think that if i had said the same things to her while still inside the library it may have been better. the situation did make me tense, and i got the feeling the other girl knew that my dd was uncomfortable and was doing it more. it is often hard for me to keep in mind in such situations that 'she is only 4'.... which is why i proabably needed the little walk outside to cool down and say something constructive.
 

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I think you handled it fine. Generally when I have to intervene on behalf of DS I say something along the lines of "Please stop tickling/pushing/harassing DS, he doesn't like it. Thank you." That seems to work most of the time, and I don't feel like it oversteps any boundaries. Usually though the intervention is over sharing toys in a common space like at the library or something, and that makes me more uncomfortable because then I have to hang around and actively mediate the interaction. I'm not that great at that, anyway, and it always makes me feel like I am on thin ice.

One time last winter I was at the play area at the mall. DS was playing on one of the things they have to climb on, and another kid came over and climbed on it too. DS was going through a very agressive, possessive stage and tried to push the other kid off. I was watching and started walking over to intervene - I was maybe 10 steps away. The other kid's father was standing right there when it happened, and before I could get over there he got right in DS's face and started shaking his finger at him and saying, "No! You don't push! No!" in this really stern voice. I got there and picked up DS and he was *still* doing it, while I picked him up! I was like, "I can handle this, thanks," and walked away to have a little chat with DS - we ended up leaving soon after, partially due to DS's behavior and partly because that guy really ticked me off. So, long story short - don't do what that guy did, lol.
 

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I posted on your other thread that I thought you handled the situation well. Now I'm chiming in to say that I've stood between my ds and other children more than once to create a physical barrier in situations like trying to take things from him or if he and the other are getting undesirably physical. I'll state to the other child that my ds doesn't like that and then insert myself between them. I'll explain to my ds what I think the other child's intentions are putting a positive spin on it, affirming feelings, etc. I maintain a calm, friendly demeanor when I do this.

Recently, I left a store because an older child, maybe 7, was teasing mine, who is almost 4. It was a thrift store and the other child (oldest of 4, apparently) was holding a remote control car which my ds wanted to see/have. My ds had seen it earlier and discarded it because it didn't work, maybe just needed batteries. When the older child noticed ds was interested, he walked away, then started running when my ds started following. He was not simply trying to get away, he was holding the toy in sight of ds and slowing down if ds wasn't keeping up. He even set it down at one point and ran and got it when my ds started approaching it. After reminding ds to remember to walk a few times, I grabbed him when he got close enough and told him that we were not allowed to run in the store and he needed to remember to walk even if other kids were running, then we left and I explained that the big boy was teasing him and reminded him the toy didn't work. All this happened in the space of a few minutes. I had seen the boy teasing a younger sibling similarly a little earlier. In this situation removal from the situation seemed the best bet since the other mother wasn't stepping up to do anything and my ds was ready for a nap.
 

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Heh. I'm coming at this from the other angle - I have a very, very affectionate kid who really believes that everyone else enjoys hugging as much as she does. And wants to make friends with every other little boy/girl on the planet.
I don't know, she might be part puppy. :LOL

She is much better now, and I did have to constantly monitor her, but it was hard to tell sometimes how other children would react - some were happy and some not. We had to really work on asking permission to touch/hug/hold hands.

I am helped (as is my daughter) when parents are direct and say, "she doesn't like to be hugged/she needs personal space, thanks though..." or something along these lines, and a suggestion of what she does like (peekaboo, or looking at X in the library, or talking, etc), with a smile. I don't think any parent or child would take that the wrong way, particularly if you can offer a positive alternative for your daughter and the other child to connect socially, which is probably what the kid is after.

I'm not sure about the teasing example shown earlier - maybe that kid was after a new victim to torment! Although I suppose if there was any fun to be had, I could tell that child, "I'm sorry, my son doesn't like to be teased. But he wouldn't mind playing that racecar with you, if you've figured out how to work it." How does Mr. Teaser respond then...hee...
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
thanks loreeleen

basically, when approached slowly my dd will warm up to people, whereas a too fast approach will turn her off and it will take 10x longer for her to warm up to that person. situations like this in the library dont give you that much time. so even something like introducing hte two kids or trying to suggest a more positive interaction would not work because it will take her some time to get over her hurt feelings, her sense of being overpowered, etc.

i am not sure if/what i should do about this - to show her that other people are friendly and mean well. i am just thinking that she will get this with time and i dont have to do anything in particular to 'teach' her that though i would certainly be open to suggestions that might help her see this sooner rather than later.
 

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Can you redramatize what happened with her, using stuffed animals/dolls? Have Teddy Bear play the role of an overly enthusiastic, although well-meaning new kid...and maybe Dog is the shy child. Maybe switch roles? We did a lot of this with my daughter at this age.

I agree, it does all happen very fast though - I was usually watching my daughter very closely when we were in large crowds of children to make sure she wasn't trying to "love" them all.
 

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I think you handled it fine. I also don't think it has as much to do with disciplining others' children as it does with speaking for your daughter (which IMO you should do if she can't speak for herself.)
 
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