Protecting my son

Jessica - posted on 08/08/2009 ( 2 moms have responded )

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My son had to witness a family member he loved yell (or get upset) at me more than once. Weeks later when we were on our way to visit this family member he asked me this: "Mommy, is _____ going to yell at you again?" That shocked me so much. I didn't realize how much he had actually been aware and it simply broke my heart. I told my husband this and we have decided to limit the visiting times with this family. As a result I have been given the cold shoulder, made fun of, and disrespected by not only this member but everyone else in this family as well. Am I wrong to shield my son from this kind of awful behavior? I felt that he deserved to see me respected at least and not brought down verbally and emtotionally by these people. I have tried to express my wished in numerous ways but nothing I say matters.

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Melissa - posted on 08/08/2009

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I do not think you are wrong to shield your son at all. Children pick up all kinds of behaviors and then start to mimic them and you do not want him to think that it is ok to act like that or treat others that way. However, he probably does not understand why he isn't seeing that person as much as he used to anymore and may think it is his fault. I would definitely sit down and explain to him what happened so he understands because at some point I'm sure he will experience that type of behavior again whether it be strangers in a store or whatnot. Make sure you express to him that the family member still loves you and him. I know you said you have tried to express your wishes in numerous ways and if your family cannot understand that you do not want your son around that type of behavior then they are in the wrong. Your son is your world and as a mother you have to protect him. My opinion - they shouldn't have acted like that in front of a child...if there was an altercation then they should have spoken to you in private about it. However, family is very important so try to make amends or as Shashana said, allow him to spend time with the family member without you until everything is back to normal. Have faith, things like this usually blow over but it may take some time so be patient and don't give up!

Shashana - posted on 08/08/2009

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if it is a close family member you dont really want to keep your son away. Children simply don't know what people are doing wrong they just know that is him uncle or cousin, etc. YOu can let that family member spend time with him when you aren't around. And explain to your son that you and that family member can't speak nice to one another, so it is best that you don't speak at all. Make it something that he can understand. I don't think your wrong in anyway I just think you may regret it in the end. You should be respected at all times so you should make sure to let that family member know to never disrespect you in front of your child, and if he does he can no longer spend time with him until he is a positive influnce. IT's your child.

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