Disciplining other people's children?

Amanda - posted on 03/27/2011 ( 15 moms have responded )

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When you are at a public place with your child and another child is mistreating your child, what do you do?

Yesterday, I took my son to one of those mall play places (he goes about once a week), and there was an older boy-I'm guessing 6-8 (my son is 18 months), who kept pushing him off of objects and only wanting to play on things when my son was on them. What would you do if it were your kid? (If the parents were around, they never once did or said anything. I get the feeling they were in some nearby shops).

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Jennifer - posted on 03/29/2011

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I would, and have told a child that was being rude to my child to stop. At first I was reluctant to, but then I thought about it one day. I though about if I was the parent of the child acting mean. I have 4 kids, so sometimes my attention gets pulled to one child for a second or 2 and if another one of my kids was acting mean, and another grown up witnessed it, I would sure hope they would say something. I guess it goes in the line of "it takes a community to raise a child".

Lydia - posted on 03/28/2011

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If its bullying and their parents arent doing anything Im quite happy to step in and say something - even if it isnt necessarily my child they are bullying. I think its best to give the parent the opportunity to do something if possible but otherwise someone needs to let them know when their behaviour isnt acceptable. If a verbal reprimand wasnt enough then I would probably jump in and physically block him from going where my child was. Fortunately telling them to stop has been enough so far.

Danielle - posted on 03/28/2011

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I have no problem saying something to other ppl's children if they are being rough with my child. I also don't have a problem with someone saying something to my children if they are playing rough with someone. If I had been you I would have put on my "in trouble" face (as my kids call it lol) and very sternly told him to go find his parents. He had lost the priviledge of playing with my child. If you can't play nice, you don't play at all. Most of the time, the first thing they do is go and cry to their mom. In return you'll get some ugly looks and maybe a snide comment to the air but they'll tell their kid to leave you alone. That's always worked for me but if the day ever comes that it doesn't work I'll just go straight to the source and tell the parent to keep their kid away if the child can't behave.

Pia - posted on 03/27/2011

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I either tell the child to stop it or I'll remove my child from the situation while saying (hopefully loud enough for the parents to hear) "let's get away from this naughty boy/girl. He/she is being nasty". If the parents have a go at me I'll say something along the lines of "clearly someone needs to discipline your child" and walk away. I'm not going to put up with my child being hurt because of someone elses lazy or bad parenting.

April - posted on 03/27/2011

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If another child did that to my kids. I'd tell him/her to stop it. Why should i wait for the child's parents? What will happen if the child hurts my daughter or my son? Sometimes you have to do what's best for your child.

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Elizabeth - posted on 03/29/2011

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If their parents aren't responsible enough to watch their own children then ..sorry..but I WILL correct him/her. Especially, when it involves my child being hurt.

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I would scold him definitely. "It's not very nice for a big boy like you to push such a little boy out of the way. You are so much bigger then he is and he could get really hurt. I know that you don't want to hurt anyone so please be more careful." Appeal to his vanity, make him see that he really is bigger and smarter and stronger etc. But if he is a spoiled little bully anyway there is probably nothing you can do but go somewhere else to play anyway. If his parents are not putting a stop to this they probably don't care, so this child is not used to adult authority and he will scoff at your remarks, make some snotty comment and continue to bully little children. Just hope that he wont be there again.

Lopa - posted on 03/28/2011

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I would give an expression of surprised look on my face, then ask "why are you doing that? The baby is so small. etc." The kid might back off. If the kid still continues, then I would stay with my baby to protect.

Bonnie - posted on 03/28/2011

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First I would say something to the kid and if that didn't help then I would go to the parents. When my kids are involved, I definitely say something.

Amanda - posted on 03/28/2011

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Thank you ladies. As I did not see a parent/guardian, I did talk to the child myself-twice, and then my son and I left. I just wanted to know how others were handling it! Thanks! I am glad to know I am not alone! :)

Stifler's - posted on 03/27/2011

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Tell the other kid to stop it. I do it all the time. I'd do it in front of their parents too. Obviously if they're "watching" their kid they don't really care if they're not saying something so why do I care what they think of me saying something to their kid.

Shannintipton - posted on 03/27/2011

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Hi Amanda, I would have WANTED to rip his arm off and then beat him with it. But I think people frown upon that. I am a chicken. I would have probably taken my child away. I should learn to be a little more forcefull. However I would never let another person harm my child. Always stick up for your kids.
{:+) shannin tipton

Barb - posted on 03/27/2011

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I would give the boy a verbal warning to knock it off and if he didn't, we would go speak to his parents. If that didn't work, i would take the boy by the hand and help him find his parents, explain to them the situation and that i need to keep my child safe and part of that is to keep their child from putting his hands on my child. If the parents can't be found or they aren't willing to listen, i would include mall security in the discussion.

If that was unsatisfactory, (depending on my time of the month and my bitchfactor) I would go home and write a corporate email to the mall management about how displeased i was with their mall security and the inability to use the play area. If this continues, i will find some other place to spend my money.

The last is quite extreme and a last ditch resort, probably wouldn't even come to that.

I guess i'm just going through the stages of escalation.

All my adult children are away and i've been spending time with my 3 year old granddaughter and getting quite a few, "but what then? but what then? but what then?" LOL so, just, going through the "but what thens"

Kimi - posted on 03/27/2011

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I would have just looked at the kid and said, "stay away from us". In fact I have done this a few times(:

Krista - posted on 03/27/2011

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I would have said something, absolutely. I don't make a habit of disciplining other peoples' kids, but if the child is a) in danger of hurting himself, or b) being aggressive with my kid, then you bet your bippy I'll use my mom voice and tell him to cut it out. I wouldn't go beyond that, though -- if he doesn't stop, I'd look for the parents and/or remove myself and my kid from the situation.

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