Mothering Forum banner

1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
686 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I'm obviously new here. I don't have any GD/NFL friends IRL (hard to come by in the deep south!), so I needed to come here and vent/ask for suggestions.<br><br>
There's a new couple at my church. They have a daughter a few months younger than my older DD. Now, my DD has been going to church since she was 2 days old and realizes that everyone else is being quiet, so she does, too. She usually sits in the floor in front of my pew and draws, colors, eats a snack, or plays with some small, quiet toys I bring for her. This other couple sits their dd on the pew between them. I have no problem with that, but I have seen them physically holding her down if she tries to stand up or move around. That's not even the worst of it... I have seen them hit her on the legs for squirming, talking, or even for fussing! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> She is being punished for displaying what I consider typical toddler behavior. She is 19 mo and is being spanked an awful lot. Last week after services, I was talking with the mom about getting together to let our girls play together and the little girl, let's call her "Ruthie", answered her Mother's "let's go, ruthie" with a sharp "No!" and the mother stomped over to her and spanked her, then grabbed her by the arm and got in her face and said, "You don't tell ME "no!!" I just wanted to grab HER by the arm and get in her face.<br>
Now, we have these plans set up for getting our kids together in January and I'm almost afraid to. I don't even want my dd to be exposed to mothers hitting their children like that. My hubby suggests I just tell her next time we are talking that we don't hit our children, but I don't feel like I know her well enough to do that. We are going to church together, so I don't want to get in her face. Ugh. I know she wouldn't do that to another adult- why do people treat their own children so badly?!<br>
Any suggestions? I am really in a quandry on this one.<br>
Thanks for reading!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,993 Posts
This is a good question- I don't have to agree with everything other parents do but I have a hard time being around harsh, punitive parents. I don't want my kids watching violent TV, how can I let them watch children be treated so wrongly? Maybe you can give it a try. I mean, maybe it is only at church that they really struggle with her "behavior" but I doubt it. I say- just be busy, don't confront them if you expect to have to see them regularly in church- just too busy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
722 Posts
There's really nothing you can do about how they treat their child anywhere except your home. We have a "no hitting" rule for our home and it is goes for guests too. No one is allowed to strike anyone else in my home.<br><br>
May be seeing how you handle situations with your DD will let them see that there is an alternative to smacking their child around.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
674 Posts
This is SO SAD!!! Imagine how they treat that poor little thing at home if they're that way in public. That's just awful.<br><br>
You know, my first memories as a child are of being carried out of church each week and spanked because I wasn't sitting still. I remember the walk, as my Dad would hold me, from the church pew to outside where he would spank me...and I would cry this whole walk knowing what was to come.<br><br>
I wonder now, what were all those other adults sitting in the church, who surely knew what was going on, thinking. Was this okay with all of them? As an adult myself now, if I were to witness the same thing I would be saddened deeply.<br><br>
Expecting children to sit through church is just yet another example of how so many children are expected to act like little adults. And then are punished for their own natural behaviors. It is so sickening!<br><br>
As for your church "friend" if you can stomach it remain friends with her. Maybe you can be sneaky and have a positive influence on her. And you can show her child love, which clearly she needs.<br><br>
Why do SO many church go-ers have to be such horrid parents? Ironic because I truly believe Jesus would never harm a child in any way.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
773 Posts
I think people are sometimes more harsh with their children in public than they are at home because they think they are being judged based on their child's behavior. And in truth, they probably are. It took a long time for me to really get it: DS's behavior really isn't about me. He has bad days just like I do. Sometimes his age-appropriate behavior does not make him look like the obedient child the world wants to see. Then I realized that I really don't care who thinks I am a good parent. This family may be caught in that same trap.<br><br>
I like the idea having them over to your turf and making the 'no hitting' rule stick. You could expand it to include no yelling. I would just say that you strive to create a peaceful home and that yelling and hitting are no conducive to that. In addition, you might have some books out that she might find appealing, like Sears' Christian parenting book, The Case Against Spanking or some others that she may be tempted to borrow and learn from.<br><br>
And if the get togther does not work out, you can cross them off your list of playmates. For me, their going to your church should not mean that you treat them differently than people from any other group with whom you disagree. We have removed ourselves from several family members for this reason.<br><br>
You also might be able to make some empathetic comments to them when you see something happen. "Isn't it hard to keep your temper in check when they are acting their age sometimes?" Or "It is so hard for them to sit still for an hour at this age. Would she like a crayon and some paper?" Or just ask a question, "I noticed that you don't like it when she tells you 'no'. Are you worried about her expressing her feelings?" or something like that. Just enough to call attention to the idea that there might be another way to handle it. She may have been more worried about what YOU would think about her daughter telling her no than she was about the actual event.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
686 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you all for your replies and suggestions. sorry it has taken me so long to respond; I'm practically offline altogether these days!!<br><br>
I am planning to institute the no-hitting rule here. That will be so nice, but hard considering that my own sister spanks her 3 yo son. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> But, I can say that I think I've made some progress with "C" the spanking mom from my op.<br>
Last Sunday night after church, the new couple, my grandparents, my 2 dds and I all went out to eat (my hubby was at work). Peyton, my 21 mo, decided to stand in the highchair to reach the bread. I simply stated, "Peytie, we don't stand in chairs," and she sat down... of course this doesn't ALWAYS work, but I noticed "C" just looked at me. Later, "Ruthie", the 19 mo spank-victim decided to put her feet on the table. So, Peyton put her feet on the table. I saw "C" raise her hand to spank "Ruthie's" leg and quickly said to both girls, who were sitting side-by-side, "Girls, let's not put our dirty shoes on the table." Peyton smiled and looked at "Ruthie" and "Ruthie" put her feet down first, followed (a little reluctantly) by my Peytie. "C" looked genuinely surprised. I just wanted to scream "See?!? She's a good girl!! You don't have to HIT her all the time!!" But, I truly felt like my example was doing the screaming for me. I'm just so thankful that Peyton was being cooperative that night!<br>
I've decided to go ahead with the playdate. I think "C" will be pretty openminded... seems like her hubby's the hardheaded one!<br>
Thanks again ladies!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,238 Posts
I'm glad things are looking up and I hope you are able to show your new acquaintance some better parenting techniques. Way to go mama! Sounds like your example is already shining through.
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Top