Rebecca - posted on 12/01/2010 ( 22 moms have responded )
So, I've had to make a very hard decision about a good family friend lately...
This person's child has a developmental disorder and is now getting to the age that the child can do some physical damage.
Now, my own brother had a lot of similar challenges growing up and my parents always met his issues with structure, positive feedback and discipline. There were no excuses made when his behaviour was violent or out of line because of his learning problems. To this day, I think this is why he was able to move past them and become the productive man he is today.
Our friend tends to just let the child run free to do what they want without any punishment or supervision. This was bearable when the child was too small to hurt anyone but now it is not the case.
I love my friends, I love the child, I've tried to invite the parents to events and hoped they might get a babysitter but it never happens. The child destroyed my baby shower (hitting people, knocking things over, pouring water on the floor, people left), another family event and (the last straw) jumped on a new born baby in its car seat during my child's first birthday party.
Now, I'm planning my wedding for next year and my fiance has made me promise to make a point of not including the child but inviting the parents (who we deeply care about). I know in my heart, it would be a disaster if the child came but I'm having a lot of difficulty trying to figure out how you can do that without hurting the parents.
So, what do you think? Do children who have developmental delays, learning disorders, behavioural problems get a free pass on discipline? Is there a nice way to say, I'd love you to come but don't bring your kid? Is it wrong to not include the child? If the parents do not take responsibility for their child, do you have to if they are at your home (if they are harming others)?