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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We live in a town house, the main part of the town house is upstairs so we have a safety gate at the top of the stairs.

When H is at work the kids are up and down those stairs off and on all the time. This morning dd fell down the stairs. I was standing at the top and watched the whole thing. I ran down and picked her up and she was obviously upset, she fell from top to bottom.

H went NUTS, calling me EVERY name under the sun shouting etc. Upset ds and called me lots of names saying that was the dumbest f'ing thing ever, I'm a f'ing ahole blah blah blah.

She has fallen down before and he did the same thing. Whenever we have been at home alone there has never been a problem.

My theory is you have to let children explore, trust that they will be ok( to a point) and not instill your fears into them. I know you wouldn't let them play in the street etc. I'm talking about climbing and exploring.

H sees it as me opening the gate and chucking her down the stairs. I see why this upsets him. He is completely stressed and working his but off, not that that justifies screaming at me everytime the kids hurt themselves.

He overreacts to stuff, the kids crying sends him into a frenzy. When they hurt themselves, which I have to say isn't often, it's my fault.

Should I be wrapping these kids up in flippin cotton wool?


If they hurt themselves my concern is usually him, how he will react.

I don't really know what my question is , just neede to get it off my chest.

Lisa
 

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I guess I'd agree that you may not want to let her play on the stairs unless you can be there with her. My DD is 2.5 and I still try to help her down the stairs as much as possible (she does fine on the way up).

I agree that we should let kids explore and not wrap them in cotton wool, but we also have to take the level of risk into account. A kid can seriously hurt him/herself by falling down the stairs. I tend to "spot" DD when she does things that might be dangerous, like climbing the steps to the playground slide, coming downstairs, etc. I'm there to catch her if something happens, but otherwise she's on her own. She's an amazing climber, actually!

Of course we only have one DC for the moment, so there's no one else to keep track of - that could make a difference!
 

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I'd say that your dh yelling at you and calling you every name under the sun is more traumatic to your children than falling down the stairs. It doesn't sound like your dd was hurt terribly by the fall. I'd ask your dh that if he has a problem with your parenting that he needs to discuss it with you and not in front of the children. Maybe a compromise could be reached where you each take each others' wishes into account.

That said, personally, I'd monitor an 18 month old on steps closely. But I don't think that's really the point of your post.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I agree the yelling is more traumatic than the fall. I also agree I should have been a little closer and helping her more.

He just called and apologised, I suuggested that if there is something he doesn't agree with , that he deal with it before hand, he agreed and said he was going to read his anger management book tonight. Oooooooie. I said it upset ds SO much when he does that. He said I know, thats just how I react to things.

I told him that when the kids hurt themselves I'm more worried about him and his reaction than them, (I hope that is understood correctly) He didnt even acknowledge that so I think we have some issues that need addressing.

Thanks for all the input, feel like a bit of a crap mum for not being there to catch her.- know thats not the case but its not a nice feeling.
Lisa
 

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Hi Lisa

I remembered this from your update a while ago
"I am by no means trying to justify some of the things that happend, but have realised how absolutely terrified this man is of having two small children and is trying his best"

Maybe he is so afraid of 'letting then fall down the stairs' in his own mind that he sees it as a really terrible thing for you to do - regardless of how serious or not it actually is. My ex did this a lot. Sometimes I could do no right by the children; everytime they got hurt it was because I was stupid/careless/a crap mother and he used thesethe incidents again and agin to prove by stupidity.

I think it is another symptom of control. He is not blaming the child but it has to be someone's fault so he blames you. As you say there are issues that need to be discussed and at least you are in a better place to talk now than you were before.

I'm with you on the stairs thing - we have no gates and dd has been up and down since she was 1. She started soming down forwards before she was 2 so I don't think age has anything to do with it, its just a learning thing and the more you help the less they learn.

Take care m'duck
Rachel
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks Rachel

I know...contol, I think even he knows it now, he said he was really shocked at this behaviour.

Part of this thread was a safety thing too, I just thought it was ok if she was ok, which she generally is..I started to be a bit over the top today, walking outside, at the park etc. Panicking about them falling over.

The funny thing is dh was driving us home and dd was freaking out in the car seat, he said "just take her out and let her crawl around she already fell down the stairs, so what could be worse"
...well going through a windscreen could be a lot worse, but what the hell do I know?

 

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Well...with respect to your daughter, I can say that my dd has been up and down the steps on her own pretty much since she could walk. I originally tried to keep her under control, but it was about impossible. She's a climber, and I wouldn't put up a baby gate - she'd try to go over it and end up hurting herself even more badly!

She's never fallen, except a couple of times right at the bottom. She holds the railing every time, and it ends one stair short of the bottom, so sometimes she tumbles on that last one. I've watched other children about her age on the stairs, and she seems to navigate them better than most - I think it's because she's had lots of practice.

That said, she's always been cautious. She started holding the railing with her very first attempt to climb the stairs, and she still does it everytime, unless she's carrying something...in which case, I always walk up behind her if I see her headed that way. So far, so good.

Don't feel too badly about your daughter falling. Obviously you don't like it to happen, but babies tumble a lot...my ds fell out of bed one night when I fell asleep while night-nursing. I felt like the worst mother in the world - but he was okay, and he still is - 12 years later. It sounds to me like you're doing a great job!

As for your dh...he traumatized both your kids just to blame you for an accident. Was he home when it happened (your original post sounded like he was)? Where was he? Why was it your fault?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Storm Bride. He was at home both times she fell.

My dd is NOT cautious at all, she just plops down everything as if she can fly. I do see my h's point. MayMay, he says it wasnt a dig at me, but yes you are probably right.

I feel a bit silly posting about this as it probably doesn't sound like a big deal. Sometimes I just need some ideas, you know?

Thanks
Lisa
 

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I think the name-calling is a big deal. It's good that he recognizes it is a problem and wants to change it. That is definitely more harmful to a kid than a tumble down the stairs.

I'm in a similar situation in that I have a very relaxed view of childcare and am somewhat flaky whereas my dh is very paranoid about everything, always assumes the worst will happen. He's told me how frightened he is of getting "The Call" at work that something awful has happend to our dd because I wasn't careful enough. I have put myself in his shoes and do recognize how terrifying it must be to leave your beloved child with someone that you love but you don't quite trust 100% because you know they tend to be careless. From that awareness, I do try to be more careful than I would normally be. But I also try to reign him in when HE is going overboard. We've been able to talk about it and most of the time we do a pretty good job of balancing each other's extreme tendencies rather than working against each other. I think that's what you both should strive for - the recognition that the other person's parenting style can be a valuable "check and balance" against your own parenting style going too far. Does that make sense? Make it a positive rather than negative thing.

That said, I have to tell you about my friend's kid. She is the most laid-back mom I've ever met. The kid is 18 months old and has new bruises every day because she is a climber. But I have to say, she is also one of the most physically aware and coordinated 18 month olds I have ever met!
 

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We had a climber too! At 18 months he had managed to climb a tree and got stuck on top of the bird aviary. I guess the only thing you can really do is teach them to be safe in their climbing. We moved into a house with internal stairs and these stupid ramp things going into the front yard. Our 2nd had only just turned 1 so ds and I spent the first week climbing up and down the stairs, hence the tree climber :LOL
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thao and Linda thanks for the input.

Thao, you make valid points, we are like that, he's the"OMG something terrible is definately going to happen" and I'm not, I assume the best. I should try a bit harder at understanding his concern, as I would feel wierd about leaving the kids with someone who was careless, which I think he thinks I am. I think he is raving lunatic sometimes so I think we have reached a happy medium on this. We have slowly started to accept each others differences.

Thanks ladies
 

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Well, I think parents often fall into this dynamic: careful/paranoid and more laissez-faire. I am in the paranoid camp and my DH in the laid-back camp. And it can be maddening. That being said, he cannot yell at you like that, especially not in front of your children.
I would like to respectfully suggest that his lack of control has some sort of subconscious fear. I am no big Freudian, but this almost sounds reaction formationish to me, eg he has deeply conflicted views of parenthood and on some level wishes the kids weren't around (as a lot of people do who are still good parents) but this traumatizes him so much that every bump and bruise terrifies him as he is working against this feeling.
What I am trying to say is that his feelings are his problem and not yours. It is your problem when he talks to you like that in front of the kids...
Sending you hugs, mama. I have a DS named Liam, too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mydragonboy
Well, I think parents often fall into this dynamic: careful/paranoid and more laissez-faire. I am in the paranoid camp and my DH in the laid-back camp. And it can be maddening. That being said, he cannot yell at you like that, especially not in front of your children.
I would like to respectfully suggest that his lack of control has some sort of subconscious fear. I am no big Freudian, but this almost sounds reaction formationish to me, eg he has deeply conflicted views of parenthood and on some level wishes the kids weren't around (as a lot of people do who are still good parents) but this traumatizes him so much that every bump and bruise terrifies him as he is working against this feeling.
What I am trying to say is that his feelings are his problem and not yours. It is your problem when he talks to you like that in front of the kids...
Sending you hugs, mama. I have a DS named Liam, too.

I think you totally hit the nail on the head. The wishing the kids werent around thing....I know He adores these two, I also know it all totally freaks him out. I'll have to look into the "reaction formation", That sound interesting.

 
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