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  1. #1
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    Default Acting like a dog

    Hello fellow parents.

    I have a bit of a situation and I was hoping on receiving some of your feedback.

    A little background; my daughter was born in Cambodia and has a Cambodian mother. My daughter (Pollin) and I moved to Australia in December '15. I am an Australian. Pollin is 3 in December '16. She is happy, healthy and is quite advanced for her age. Her grandparents have 2 small dogs of whom she is very fond.

    The issue I'd like to talk about today is the mother's intolerance of my daughter's role-playing behaviour. Pollin enjoys pretending; she loves hopping like a kangaroo, scaring people like a ghost and crawling on her hands and knees pretending to be a dog.

    Unfortunately, her mother has taken deep offence to this behaviour and is of the belief that my mother (Pollin's grandmother) is doing the wrong thing by encouraging her. Specifically, it's the acting like a dog that offends her as in her country dogs are sub-standard and dirty animals.
    It's reached the point where my daughter's mother now flatly refuses to speak to my mother, putting me in an extremely difficult situation.

    I am of the belief that role-playing and "pretending" is completely normal and healthy for a <3 year old. I've done a bit of reading up on it and I can't find anything to say it's not a good thing.

    Looking forward to the community's opinions.

  2. #2
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    If I'm reading this correctly. You've adopted a little girl from Cambodia (fantastic) and she'll have a much better life. But your still in contact with the birth mother and your all friends etc and you still correspond with her in regards to pollin ?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by babybeeno1 View Post
    If I'm reading this correctly. You've adopted a little girl from Cambodia (fantastic) and she'll have a much better life. But your still in contact with the birth mother and your all friends etc and you still correspond with her in regards to pollin ?
    I read it as OP is the father and he's talking about his partner/wife, not the woman they adopted from.

    OP I don't have any articles or links but role playing and imaginative play is definitely developmentally appropriate at this age.

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    Before I offer any form of advice - what is your current relationship status with the mother of your child? Does she still live in Cambodia?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mamasupial View Post
    I read it as OP is the father and he's talking about his partner/wife, not the woman they adopted from.

    OP I don't have any articles or links but role playing and imaginative play is definitely developmentally appropriate at this age.
    This is how I read it as well.

    Op my daughter is 3 and my son is 5 and one of our favourite games to play is 'guess the animal'. We take turns in pretending to be an animal and the other's have to guess which one we are being. All very normal behaviour and nothing that I would have the slightest concern over. Can I suggest you make an appointment with a Child Heath nurse (your local council can point you in the right direction to find one if need be) and take your daughter's mother along to the appointment. There you can all have an open discussion about what is normal at this age and hopefully it will help the mother understand that there is nothing to be concerned about.

  7. #6
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    Sorry for not being clear. I am Pollin's biological father (no adoption).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mod-Degrassi View Post
    Before I offer any form of advice - what is your current relationship status with the mother of your child? Does she still live in Cambodia?
    I was hoping to keep this specific to the child's behaviour and her mother's interpretation of it. But your request is valid...

    Both my daughter and I are Australian citizens. I got her citizenship granted while we were still in Cambodia.

    Her mother is here on a Visitor visa that I sponsored and is due to return to Cambodia soon. Unfortunately, she seems to believe that myself and my parents are not suitable guardians for her daughter because of this dog malarkey.
    Therefore she has taken our daughter to a women's shelter somewhere and has taken a DV out against me. She's now saying that if I don't let her go home with her daughter she'll continue with the DV charges (which are unfounded, and I have every intention of contesting and defending myself, although I wish I didn't have to).
    She says that she wants to live in Australia to take care of her daughter herself, but she doesn't trust me to sponsor another visa. So she's insisting on taking our daughter back to Cambodia as a guarantee that I sponsor her for another visa.

    So.... are we still together? I suppose not.

    But... This diabolical mess is my problem alone. I'm merely seeking advice on my daughter's behaviour.

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    If she only objects to pretending to be a dog, I think you need to be mindful of cultural perspectives and differences. A dog in her culture is not something to pretend to be as it is considered dirty etc. You can try to tell your little one how her mother feels about dogs etc and we should try not to mimic them as they can be dirty?

    If she is totally dismissing ANY imaginative/pretend play you could:

    Google and find articles and information about pretend or imaginative play and flood her with as much information you can find.

    Take Pollin's mother along to a play group or something similar to show her and introduce her to children around the same age. She can talk to other mothers and realise it's normal, and in fact so important.

    Take the little ones mother along to a gp appointment or paediatrician and have them explain the importance. This is an extreme suggestion but if nothing else works, it might be an idea.

    ETA Just read your above post, perhaps the above would not be suitable. I am so sorry you are in a tough place at the moment.
    Last edited by SookiLala; 15-09-2016 at 20:15.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CambodianBaby View Post
    But... This diabolical mess is my problem alone. I'm merely seeking advice on my daughter's behaviour.
    Okay - advice on your daughter's behaviour - it sounds pretty normal to me.

    Sounds like the mother desperately wants extra time with her daughter and is prepared to go to drastic lengths in order to achieve it. This may be why the dog issue has been blown out of proportion.

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    Default Acting like a dog

    Quote Originally Posted by Mamasupial View Post
    I read it as OP is the father and he's talking about his partner/wife, not the woman they adopted from.

    OP I don't have any articles or links but role playing and imaginative play is definitely developmentally appropriate at this age.
    Gotcha, whoops I never think that dads sometime post on here

    Role play completely normal and there is nothing as parents we can do its all part and parcel of being kids. But as another poster has stated maybe try to explain to your daughter that her mum see's it as dirty etc and maybe she could be another animal like a bunny rabbit.

    I'm really sorry your going through all the mess that DD's mum has created, I do hope it gets sorted. As for her taking her away from you she won't be able to leave the country if you hold her passport and you can also put her on a flight risk list so best speak to a lawyer about that one.
    Last edited by babybeeno1; 17-09-2016 at 11:46.


 

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