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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A couple weeks ago my freind was here with her 2 daughters. all the kids were playing in my kids' room.<br>
Then all of a sudden my son was screaming crying. Both of us rushed in.<br>
Turns out according to all kids involved...no denials<br>
That the 2 girls pushed my son off the bed b/c they didn't want him playing. He was shoved by both girls and hit his head.<br><br>
My friend took her girls out of the room to speak to them. I'm not sure what she was saying.<br><br>
I was comforting Michael while my DD told me, "they pushed him right off the bed and laughed about it"<br><br><br>
All kids involved agree this is a true story.<br><br>
When I go out into the living room my friend is finishing up her talk with her DD and was kind of leading her into apologizing but her DD didn't want to.<br><br>
My friend mouths to me, "we don't believe in forced apologies"<br>
which I already know...we discuss discipline all the time. I am generally the one to introduce the latest book recommendations here from MDC to her.<br>
I know all about it.<br><br>
however I am still pissed that while she may not believe in forced apologies I think it would be right that she, as the mother, should have apologized for her girls.<br><br>
I do not know however if that is rational thinking. I am quite hurt that she wouldn't say, "I'm sorry they hurt him"<br><br>
He was really hurt and it was no gentle, "move it" it was a shove.<br><br><br>
BTW we are going to her house on Friday and I do not want to leave my son alone to play with them but I don't know if I am just being over zealous.
 

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We don't do forced apologies either. I do explain to my son about how apologies can make each person feel and ask him if he would like to apologize. If he chooses not to, I do apologize. I don't take responsibility for the action but I might say something to the effect that I'm sorry that they were hurt. I do this not only because I WOULD actually feel sorry that this happened but to be a role model for my son. After I apologize, I might point out how it made the other child feel a little better, etc. in hopes that it will help him to see the process in action so he can understand it better.<br><br>
It's hard on us when our child is hurt, but we don't know what she said to her daughter or what she may have said later, etc. Hopefully they processed the incident and talked about it using whatever style they are most comfortable with and it won't happen again. If something like this does happen again, I would sit with her out of hearing range from the children and brain storm about what you can all do together to prevent it from happening in the future.
 

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Ha! well they may not believe in forced apologies but I dont believe in violent behaviour going on without consequences. I think you are having a rational mama bear response, myself. I have told other peoples children, in a serious tone, that being aggressive with my child is not okay and if they are not able to behave decently they will not be playing with her. I've done this actually when apologies have been forced but mumbled insincerely and I have not felt this to be adequate (no true remorse demonstrated, no other consequence, repeated violent behaviour from the child). I feel it's my job to protect my kid... it is true it's the other mama's place to deal with her child, but if she is not doing it, I will let the child know what I will and will not tolerate... mostly for the benefit of my own child who needs and deserves my protection, but also to let the other child know what's what and what they can expect from me if they dont change their behaviour.<br><br>
If my kid were repeatedly or callously violent with a friend, she would get seriously lectured and told an apology is in order. I would definitely offer one if she did not, and I would let her know that if the behaviour happens again, she can expect xyz to happen (no more playtime, have to sit with me, etc). I would tell her that in front of the other child, because I think a child who has been treated poorly by a friend who doesn't feel badly needs to see some kind of justice being done.
 

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I don't do forced apologies either.<br><br>
BUT, I would have apologised for my kids. "I'm sorry they did that". Because that would have been true. I would have been mortified and been apologising all over myself. I might have even offered to buy him his first car.<br><br>
My child probably wouldn't even have been sorry. She would have justified it somehow.<br><br>
So, My job as a parent is to make sure it never happens again, and make sure that the injured child is O.K and knows that at least *I* care how he feels.<br><br>
And my child wouldn't have been going back into the bedroom again.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>thismama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10809908"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Ha! well they may not believe in forced apologies but I dont believe in violent behaviour going on without consequences.</div>
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Yep. Although the other mom wants to let her children have their own authentic reactions (no forced apologies, etc.) don't forget that YOU also get the privilege of having your own authentic reactions. In a calm and adult way, you can go ahead and let that mama bear roooaaaar!
 

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Your response is rational.<br>
How old are the girls? I think when the other mom mouthed that they "don't do forced apologies", I would have been tempted to mouth "We don't play with kids who intentionally hurt others and then laugh about it.'<br>
I have a dear friend whose children are pretty aggressive and she practices a very hands off parenting. It can be really difficult to deal with sometimes. Good luck.
 

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I'm wondering if she's just lacking a strategy for that situation? I know when I first read unconditional parenting and it confirmed my desire to not do forced apologies, that I was stuck on what to do in a situation (or forgot in the heat of the moment). It may be a case of not knowing what to do and her just focusing on meeting their needs rather than looking at the entire situation and why she isn't forcing apologies. If she's not modelling apologies herself then she is missing the point of kids learning by those around them. I'd tend to put it down to oversite and perhaps caught up in the moment. Are you able to have an open discussion about it since you seem to share similar philosophies anyway?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The girls are 5 1/2 and just turned 4. They have this thing about playing with boys and it really drives me batty b/c my little boy is so sweet and I hear them say, "we don't want Michael to play b/c he's a boy"<br><br>
In my house no one is allowed to exclude anyone from the game. you may excuse yourself to play alone but you may not alienate anyone from the group game and it breaks my heart to hear them say those things.<br><br><br>
hopefully as a PP poster pointed out they discussed it more at length at home and things will go smoother at this visit...if not she and I will need to talk about it b/c I can't have my son being picked on.<br><br><br>
BTW nextcommercial your car comment cracked me up b/c that is exactly what I would be doing.
 

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Can you tell them, "We dont exclude people based on gender" ? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> Coz I think that sucks and i would never tolerate that from my girl. What does the other mama think about the gender trashing? IMO that is not cool at all.
 

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I would have playdates at playgrounds or other public places where I could watch my child, and he could have fun without the two girls. Excluding him and then pushing him when he is so much younger is really intolerable.<br>
When my DD pushes or hits I apologise for her and we leave. I have a 'if you can't play nice, you can't play' policy. I really feel it's a natural consequence for violent behavior. My DD is only 27 months. I would think I'd have alot higher expectations in two and three years.
 

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I also don't do forced apologies, but *I* would be VERY sorry and *I* would have said so. And *I* would control my kid in the future or keep them home. Mama bear response AND rational, IMO. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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In another current thread in GD about an aggressive child of a friend who consistently hurts the poster's child on playdates, there are a few posters that touch on the idea of parents who don't seem to empathize when their child hurts others. I have to agree for the most part based on my experience: there are a lot of parents of aggressive kids who probably contribute a great deal to their child's problems with aggression. They tend to minimize their child's aggression, are more concerned about protecting the feelings of their aggressive kid instead of physically protecting the victim, and cannot seem to understand why the hurt child and hurt child's mother are so upset. I really don't know why this is, but I've seen it over and over, and when my kids were little, I just stopped hanging out with people who had aggressive kids. Some parents will argue with this, saying that socializing the aggressive kid is what's best. But, they expect you to offer up your child to be hit, bit, and smacked around, in the interest of socializing their child. They seem to not want to be the "bad guy" to their child so they sort of try to get everyone else to take on the responsibility for fixing their aggressive child.<br><br>
Better to send the aggressive child to preschool, where the teachers are trained to handle the problem, and there won't be the kinds of hurt feelings that occur between friends when one child is aggressive. The funny thing is, I have really liked the moms of the aggressive kids I've known. The moms tend to be kind and nice people, just the kind you'd want as friends. But they seem to lack the personal power to effectively manage their kids' aggression.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>cinnamongrrl</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10811233"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I my experience: there are a lot of parents of aggressive kids who probably contribute a great deal to their child's problems with aggression. They tend to minimize their child's aggression, are more concerned about protecting the feelings of their aggressive kid instead of physically protecting the victim, and cannot seem to understand why the hurt child and hurt child's mother are so upset. I really don't know why this is, but I've seen it over and over, and when my kids were little, I just stopped hanging out with people who had aggressive kids. Some parents will argue with this, saying that socializing the aggressive kid is what's best. Funny thing is, they expect you to offer up your child to be hit, bit, and smacked around, in the interest of socializing their child. They seem to not want to be the "bad guy" to their child so they sort of try to get everyone else to take on the responsibility for fixing their aggressive child.</div>
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ITA, this has been my experience too. It gets on my nerves. We need some literature or something for dealing with this gently but still *effectively*. Like it's nice and fine and all to say we dont do apologies (can't remember what book that is from) but how about actually dealing effectively then? Some suggestions would be good, I think they must be absent in the GD literature because a lot of my well read friends totally suck on this front.
 

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I would NOT allow the 3 of them to play in another room- they need to stay withing sight of the parents at all times. The girls have proven that they're not responsible enough to play with your DS unsupervised.<br><br>
Had my girls ever done something like that, we would have gone home immeditately. I wouldn't have forced an apology either, but neither would I have continued the playdate when my kids were hurting others.<br><br>
I think you need to talk to this mom about the situation before going over there on Friday. Agree on some ground rules to keep all the kids safe (no playing in another room, her girls told not to exclude your DS based on his gender, etc.) or cancell the playdate. Let the other mom realize that there are "natural consequences" to ignoring her children's aggression.
 

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I wouldn't have forced an apology, but I would have been MORTIFIED. I would have been apologizing up and down!<br><br>
I think natural reactions are good. That's part of the learning process. So long as you aren't freaking out and scaring kids, seeing that it makes you angry to have your kid get hurt, and seeing that the mom is embarrassed and angry that her kids hurt someone else (and then laughed about it), teaches how our actions impact other people.
 

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I dont force apologies either - they are pointless then!<br>
But I certainly do apologise for my son behaviour if it needs it! - I am often saying 'I am so sorry that happened...'
 

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I don't have my daughter do forced apologies but I do apologize for her if she does something that needs an apology. I agree with mamazee totally on this one. I am a little surprised this mama wasn't totally embarassed about what happened. If they tend to be violent a lot like that with no response from anyone then I think you probably should make it a habit to have your child stay in the same room you are in so that he can stay safe. The bigger they get the more damage physical fighting can do especially when it is two against one.
 

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I don't have my daughter do forced apologies but I do apologize for her if she does something that needs an apology. If it was my daughter I would have made it very clear that her actions were wrong, especially laughing at a hurt friend, and we would have left immediately and gone straight home after I apologized to the child and made sure the child was okay.<br><br>
I am a little surprised this mama wasn't totally embarassed about what happened. If they tend to be violent a lot like that with no response from anyone then I think you probably should make it a habit to have your child stay in the same room you are in so that he can stay safe. The bigger they get the more damage physical fighting can do especially when it is two against one.
 

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I dont force apologies but I also don't apologize for something someone else has done. I might apologize that I wasn't there to prevent what happened if my kids had a habit of such behavior, but really this kinda stuff happens all the time in this age group so I dont see why she should be mortified. If you feel more comfortable supervising closely, then of course you should do that.
 

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Do you think it's acceptable though for older children to push a toddler off a bed? And he hits his head? Because he is a boy?<br><br>
Because there is no forced apology, it's just 'oh well they do that kind of thing?' If it were my kid I would be mortified for sure. Yes they do sometimes do that kind of thing, but they do it more if we dont act like it's seriously wrong and a mortifying thing to be doing. Parental response is what helps kids learn. Shrugging your shoulders will teach that it is no big deal.
 
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