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We went to our subdivisons 4th of July party. It's a huge/busy event. Kids were all over the place running around so I dd run around. I could see her from where we were sitting. DD who is 4 1/2 kept following two older girls around. I had her stop after a while because the girls while not openly annoyed, they didn't look like they enjoyed it (just didnt seem to acknowlede dd and I didnt want dd bugging them since they were older)

So after a while dd saw some other kids and I ler her go by them. DD regularly plays with older kids so I didn't see the big deal, these girls were younger then the first group, the youngest being probably 1-2 years older then dd, the other two maybe going into second grade. Well they threw a beach ball and when dd went to get it they ran off. I thought I was not really seeing what I thought, but they did it a second time, and that's when I got up to have dd come back by us. They managed to do it a third time before I got over there. They would throw the ball and run and hide (but watch dd to see her reaction) There were kids my dds exact age and younger but DD prefers older kids and didnt want to go by them (even though I encouraged her)

Is that normal? I know sometimes kids run from the youngest, or a certain kid...but to throw a ball and hide, then watch for the reaction? I felt terrible. DD didnt realize what was going on thankfully, but it was hard to convince her to stop playing with her "friends". We have playdates all of the time and some of the kids are the same age as this group of girls that ran from her. I dont want her to be an annoying kid, so I suppose unless they are her exact age I wont encourage her to venture off at events/things like this? Or do I just hang closer and intervene a little sooner? The other kids parents were no where insight. I really want her to be able to handle things herself, but at the same time I don't want her crushed/hurt. WWYD? I was tempted to tell the girls that it's fine if they dont want to play with DD but to run from her and tease her is not nice. :/
 

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I think if you had calmly said what you thought, "it's fine if you dont want to play with DD but to run from her and tease her is not nice" that would've been fine. I think you're always allowed to calmly, verbally correct another kid who is being mean to your child. It sounds like these aren't kids your daughter would normally play with, so I wouldn't go any further than that. Also, I think this is normal behavior from them, but also not acceptable.

I think you did fine, mama, by just redirecting your daughter and you probably also gave the kids a good glare and they knew they shouldn't be acting mean. I wouldn't discourage your dd from playing with all sorts of kids. Maybe the next group of older kids will like having a little kid around and playing "mommy" or pushing her around on a bike or whatever. Sometimes, (especially only or youngest kids) will think a younger kid is fun because a younger kid can really look up to an older kid. One 10 year old neighbor boy of ours loves to come around and show my 4 year old the latest thing. My 4 year old thinks he's the coolest person in the world. I'm sure the 10 year old wouldn't want to spend the day with my DS, but he certainly enjoy the adoration of a younger kid.
 

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we've had similar situations between my dsd (10) and d (4). I handle it the same way as a PP suggested-saying that it is fine if she does not want to play with dd, but she needs to use her words and tell her nicely, not play games about it. Dd also knows that sometimes older kids want time with just other older kids (or just private time), and that is okay too. I think you did great. I know when I see dd get rejected by a group or other child it just tears me apart, especially since she is to little to see what is going on-I don't want her to grow up and think that is okay to do to others or to let be done to her!
 

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It really depends on the personality mix of any given group of kids. I've had to intervene when my nephew and his friends have been openly mean to my son. My nephew is never like this unless he's around a certain group of friends.

With my kids and the group we spend our time with, the kids mesh extremely well. The oldest is 11 and the youngest 5 and they all manage to play together nicely and even the older ones don't leave out the youngers and no one's mean to the other (though the parents are all there keeping an eye on everything and wouldn't allow that anyways).

I think you did fine. Unless you know the kids and know that they'll be nice, I'd stick close to your daughter. Don't step in until she needs it, but just be around.
 

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My daughter is frequently the new kid or the only one who shows up without a friend, brother, cousin, or buddy. She's also very friendly and outgoing. I find that if she can find a single child to play with, almost any kid will play with her. When she tries to get into a group of kids who already know each other, forget it. They either ignore her or they're straight up rude. Many parents don't at all seem moved to guide their kids into better ways of handling this kind of thing. As you said, fine, not everyone wants to play together - but there's no need to be mean about it.

I don't think it's about those kids not being her exact same age - my daughter has managed to temporarily befriend a wide age range of kids if they're alone - I think kids are testing out their social power. It's more about them being part of a group and her being on her own. You might talk to her about how it's hard, sometimes, to break into a group and how it might be better to try to find someONE else who looks like they need a friend.
 

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i very rarely step in with kids play. because most of the time i find either dd is trying to work things out or she is oblivious to what is happening around her.

if she has issues i try and talk to her and look at things from others perspective.

u urself noted ur dd didnt get it. the kids themselves - are they even aware they were being mean. i mean we look at it as being mean but for them it might be see what she does.

so far i have never stepped in to fix anything if i thought dd might be sad.

but dd is 8. she is now hte big girl whom the little ones follow. sometimes i have to help dd be kind to the kids when seh is tired of them following her. seh doesnt feel like she is being mean but we can perceive it could be mean. i try to come to a happy medium - not always successfully.
 

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I have had success in the past by speaking on behalf of my daughter and letting the other kids know how they are making DD feel. "DD really just wants to play with you guys, and it is making her sad when you run away from her."

I think calling them out as mean or just glaring at them sets you up as 'that mean mom' and will make the other kids even less likely to want to include your kid. Their first instinct would be to get defensive.

Granted, I have only done this with kids that I know, who are generally good kids and that my daughter enjoys hanging around. I am not sure I would do the same with just random neighbour kids. In that case I would be more likely to try to find someone who DID want to play with DD.
 
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