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What do you all do about children who are very openly rude to you and your family?<br><br>
My DH's cousin has three children. The youngest is the same age as my 2yo and doesn't speak much yet, but frequently hits, pushes, kicks, punches, etc. The middle child is a boy, and he is very, very rude to myself, my husband, and my daughter. His parents don't bat an eye. He says things like "what are <i>you</i> lookin' at, ugly?!" and frequently talks negatively about us TO us. The oldest is 8 years old. She is unbeliveably rude and obnoxious. She was watching TV at FILs house and went off on him and downtalked him for changing the channel on the TV. Today, she called me fat, asked me if I was pregnant again, and after I replied that I wasn't pregnant, she told me "Well, you sure do look pregnant, ha ha ha!".<br><br>
We see these kids OFTEN. They live in the same house as we do--different apartment--they live in the attic apartment and we live in the basement apartment, but still...we see them daily. If my daughter comes to play outside, they come running out to play as well. Today, DD was wearing her May Day crown and all they did was point and tell her how funny she looked. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><br><br>
I asked my DH and he told me that I need to say something to them, tell them that that isn't nice, etc.. but I have a real problem with that because I don't want to/dont want to seem like I'm trying to discipline someone else's child.<br><br>
My DD doesn't take this stuff to heart, but she's getting older and eventually I'm afraid that she's going to end up with low self esteem from being picked on so heavily by her cousins <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad">
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lurk.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lurk">
 

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"That behavior is not allowed at our house and you need to leave."<br><br>
And if you're supervising, discipline. Odds are, their parents won't even know, and if they do know they might be fine with it. If they do get mad about it, then their kids don't come over any more, problem solved.
 

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Wow, that stinks. At the very least, I'd give a raised eyebrow and a "That's not very nice", but I was a teacher so I don't have a problem correcting rude behavior. I'm guessing these kids know they're being rude, but also know they're getting away with it. I think I'd start telling them that if they can't act nicely--no name calling, hitting, etc.--your children won't be playing with them and then follow through.<br><br>
I read your post again, and honestly, if someone insults you (calls you fat) and you tell them that's neither nice or appropriate, I don't think that's disciplining someone else's kid, that's just asserting yourself and demanding humane treatment!
 

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You could always say something to the effect "I am sorry, what did you say." If they repeat it, which they most likely will, then "I am sorry you feel that way, but that is not very nice, and if you are going to continue to say/do that, then you are no longer welcome to play with my children."
 

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I am going to assume that you do have personal boundaries. You are not disciplining another's child by asserting what you accept as treatment for you and your children. I wouldn't think twice about addressing that behaviour; I find that completey unacceptable at best and abusive to personal dignity at worst. If you say nothing, you are tacitly agreeing to be treated this way.<br><br>
I simply wouldn't accept abusive or deriding/belittling communication from anyone, no matter their age or relation. You certainly don't have to be rude back to them; obviously there are a million beneficial ways of communicating with other people, so maybe they'll learn something from you if you choose one of those.<br><br>
I personally would address each incident in the moment and if the parents have something they want to say about it, I would welcome the dicussion. You don't have to make any judgments about the children/parenting at all; it really isn't about them. It's about your values and your dignity (and that of your family), so I would keep the discussion on that track, because that's really what's going on- a clash of values and trangressing of your personal boundaries.<br><br>
I have dealt with this and asserting my own boundaries very clearly ended it quickly with my obvious non-acceptance of their treatment. I said to the children, "I have not given you a place in my life to judge me; I would prefer if you would speak to me with respect, but if you don't want to, I would prefer if you would not speak to me at all." I repeated myself in a bunch of ways until they realised that I was standing my ground and not engaging their comments, at all.<br><br>
They began to speak to me with respect and their parents learned from what I said to their dc right in front of them, and began to express the same boundaries. I think that sometimes parents are just unsure of what is acceptable and what isn't and that often is a symptom of them not really grasping their own dignity.<br><br>
I used to be one of those people who had no idea what boundaries were and I let people tromp all over me, and dp was that way too. It's taken many years of work, but I am now certain of my boundaries because they reflect my values and my values reflect who I am. I hold those values because they resonate and align with who I am, so I cannot <i>allow</i> anyone to take that away from me because they <i>can't</i> in reality, even if they try. If I allow them to try without asserting myself, then I have forgotten/never realised who I am.<br><br>
... just to get all philosophical and preachy and stuff... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment">
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you all, Preggie, you hit it right on the nose. Thank you a ton.<br><br>
Sapphire- we all live in the same building, they don't come to my house, but we frequently see them at family gatherings, when we're outside, etc.<br><br>
I suppose my DH is right- and it really isn't discipline, it's setting personal boundaries and letting people know that it is NOT okay to undermine us like that. I need to be a good role model for my children and help them learn that it is okay to stand up for yourself and not let others tromp all over you.<br><br>
Thank you all for that <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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"You will not talk that way in this house."<br><br>
"If you say anything like that again, you will leave this house."<br><br>
"You may not talk to me/her/him like that." (And then walk away).<br><br>
"You may come back IF you are ready to behave appropriately."<br><br>
Most importantly, make them leave or walk away when it happens. Every s i n g l e time.
 

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I agree with your husband. If they were just random kids I would ignore them, but with family and close friends I would correct it the same way I correct my dd when she is being rude. I would also bring my children away from them if they were teasing or send them back inside.
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">I asked my DH and he told me that I need to say something to them, tell them that that isn't nice, etc.. but I have a real problem with that because I don't want to/dont want to seem like I'm trying to discipline someone else's child.</td>
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by not saying anything you're teaching those kids & your own that what they're doing is fine.
 

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I like the idea of having them repeat it. "Excuse me... what??" Then, just keep looking at them like they aren't done explaining. Then, after an uncomfortable pause say ... "hmm.. well that was an odd thing to say.. but, thanks for pointing it out". (try to sound actually baffled, not snotty) Then, turn to someone else and change the subject.<br><br>
And, even if they are SUPER incredibly obnoxious... it is rude to change the channel when someone else is watching the tv. So, maybe you could suggest FIL either aks before changing it, or wait until her show is over.<br><br>
My husband changes the channel while my daughter is watching tv and it annoys the snot out of me.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>*bejeweled*</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15361465"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">"You will not talk that way in this house."<br><br>
"If you say anything like that again, you will leave this house."<br><br>
"You may not talk to me/her/him like that." (And then walk away).<br><br>
"You may come back IF you are ready to behave appropriately."<br><br>
Most importantly, make them leave or walk away when it happens. Every s i n g l e time.</div>
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She sees the kids at family gatherings, not in her apartment. They live in the same house in different apartments so she sees them outside in their shared yard too. She can't tell them to leave it's shared space.<br><br>
I would try "I don't talk to people who are rude to me", then ignore them if they continue to be rude. Tell your DD "we don't listen to people who are rude". Teach her to say "Stop!!". And don't let her and the other 2 year old play close to each other. If you are the only adult outside when they come out you could tell them to go get a parent that you are just watching your child if they are rude. You could bring them inside to another adult and say you are only watching your own child. You could only take your DD to public parks to play without them around instead of outside. It does sound like a difficult situation. I'd probably spend a lot time in just my apartment.
 

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I love what Preggie said!<br>
I wouldn't hesitate to say something to those kids. You don't have to punish them or even tell them they aren't allowed to talk to you like that. Just tell them how they ARE allowed to talk to you. You can be very conversational about it by explaining that the phrasing and tone of voice they are using makes people feel bad and then offer alternatives that are acceptable to you.<br><br>
Like when one of them says "what are you lookin' at, ugly?!" you can engage that child in a conversation about how those words make people feel like NOT answering that question and ask the kid if that's the intention behind those words. You don't have to judge or even discipline, but you can definitely teach. You can also offer other silly ways of talking that aren't rude and explain the difference. Like suggest the kid says "Hey good lookin, whatchoo got cookin?" or some other rhyming fun phrase that isn't offensive.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>nextcommercial</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15362086"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
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And, even if they are SUPER incredibly obnoxious... it is rude to change the channel when someone else is watching the tv.<br></div>
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I agree with this. I'm not excusing her behavior towards you or your dd, but if she is often treated disrespectfully like this then I can understand where the frustration is coming from. That doesn't mean your dd needs to endure being made fun of though. That's where I'd focus my efforts.
 

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I do think it's perfectly acceptable to say something to the kids "We don't speak like that here." "That's not very nice, say you are sorry." You don't have to put them in time out or anything. And if they persist, then just bring them over to their parents-"I am sorry but Zach has been very rude today so he's not allowed to play with my dd today."<br><br>
On a farther note, it seems that your DH's cousin isn't disciplining the children at all when they are rude? Am I reading that right? If that's the case, I think your DH needs to say something to his cousin about the overall situation. He needs to tell them that their children are very rude to his family and if they aren't going to take action on that that he will not allow the children to see your kids.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
The TV situation was handled wrong- FIL was angry because the kids just run loose around the house (through the other apartments, except for mine) and do what they want. The girl just ran into the house and turned on the TV without asking.<br><br>
It is way more than kids just being blunt.<br><br>
It is also hard for us to have any say in it because DH & I are 19- the kids dont see us as different, but their parents don't view us as equals. If we were to have a talk about the children, they'd be horribly offended because we're "the kids". FIL has also expressed frustrations about these children.<br><br>
The more I think about it- the stranger it seems. We're all afraid to step on someone else's toes. I suppose we don't want to create tension in our household but I don't know how we can stand these kids just driving us batty. MILs laptop even got broken once! They're really bad (I hate to use that term) but no one does anything. I suppose I should start.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>WindyCityMom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15363393"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">It is also hard for us to have any say in it because DH & I are 19- the kids dont see us as different, but their parents don't view us as equals. If we were to have a talk about the children, they'd be horribly offended because we're "the kids". FIL has also expressed frustrations about these children.<br><br>
The more I think about it- the stranger it seems. We're all afraid to step on someone else's toes. I suppose we don't want to create tension in our household but I don't know how we can stand these kids just driving us batty. MILs laptop even got broken once! They're really bad (I hate to use that term) but no one does anything. I suppose I should start.</div>
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You know, dp and I used to talk a lot about why we allowed people to treat us poorly, and it oftentimes ended up being about others viewing us as 'kids' and us feeling like we had to take whatever was dished out because we really didn't feel like adults ourselves and had some mixed up ideas about authority and other issues (of course- there always are).<br><br>
It is really just in the last two years that I have felt confident as an adult, a woman- not a child, or girl.<br><br>
A lot of personal exploration went into my finally becoming and adult in my own eyes and interestingly, since I began to see myself this way, others have too. It's amazing how many of these sorts of things have stopped, how often people choose not to second-guess me anymore on issues that are usually hot-buttons and would previously have had me exhausted from trying with all my might to stand my ground and be understood in the face of incredulity and even mockery.<br><br>
I still sometimes marvel when I've had an experience wherein I simply stated my position and others just simply accepted it as is. They don't necessarily agree, but they respect my choices and don't try to convince me of my 'folly.'<br><br>
When people have genuine concerns now, I find that I enter into mature and respectful discussion rather than a defensive position that tires me and generally causes tension and dissatisfaction for me in the end. I also have a much better sense of what is worth expending my energy and time; I don't enter into heated discussions that needn't happen.<br><br>
For instance, in your situation now, I wouldn't even address the parents because it just isn't necessary and will likely mean that you will feel pressure to defend your values and personal dignity, although it won't likely be viewed that way. If you simply <i>live</i> your dignity, then you wouldn't accept the treatment and would deal with it in the moment with the people whose behaviour isn't acceptable to you. That's it. Simple- not complicated by relationships with histories that will no doubt colour the tone and outcome of the discussion. If you want to be treated a certain way, you can express that and if others don't want to treat you that way, you can make other choices for yourself that allow for both of you to have your wishes (you can find peace elsewhere and they can speak unkindly, though in your absence).<br><br>
Be prepared that people who are accustomed to treating you poorly will likely heat it up when you stop accepting it for a while before they recognise that this is a change, not a phase (though I have found with children, they accept it very quickly in general). My friend-set and family relations changed drastically when I began to realise who I am. Many of them were not willing to accept who I am; they much preferred their own interpretations and ideas of who they wanted me to be. But while that is a scary prospect, in my life, shedding misaligned relationships and ideas was an enormously freeing experience and I am far, faaaar happier and more effective as a human being now than I ever was before- truly. But there were definitely 'growing pains.'<br><br>
Anyway, you are years ahead of where I was at 19 given that you are considering these issues and relationships now. I only began to really hit the core of things for myself in my thirties.<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> Enjoy your journey, sister!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thank you!!! You are so wise.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>WindyCityMom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15363917"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Thank you!!! You are so wise.</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> I'm still in my thirties, so in my case, a brand new adult... I think I'll need another decade or two before I'll gladly accept 'wise' as a general descriptor. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"> But thank you.
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> will you take "wonderful" instead? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 
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