I try to take Master 2 yo to playgrounds quite often so he can run around with kids & toddlers of all ages. Some get a little rough, so in turn he has learnt a few bad tricks which I have tried to dissuade him from doing (telling him to be gentle, play nicely etc).
The last couple of times I've taken him there've been little girls (about 3 or 4yo) who have taken a liking to him & pushed/pulled him around & hugged him quite forcibly... but they're just being kids & weren't hurting him. You kind of expect a little rough play as kids are kids.
However, today he was doing practically the same things (I could see him 90% of the time from where I was) when I had another mother angrily accuse me that my "boy was a bully". He's only 2 (26months)!
When does a child become a bully? When he gets too boisterous I remove him from the playground, but until he gets a little older I don't really know if there's much else I can do. Am I being too relaxed about children & playgrounds - or was this mother just being too precious?
Are there any tips anyone can recommend other than what I'm already doing?
I should add that I have never verbally attacked another parent & have only chastised somebody else's child once (a four yo who was egging her little brother on to hit other children & the parents didn't seem to be around).
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30-01-2012 15:17 #1
Rough & tumble in the playground
30-01-2012 15:33 #2
Sorry, just to clarify - today in the playground he was doing the same things to other children that the little girls were doing to him - trying to hug, & pull/push other kids around the playground. He wasn't doing it the whole time, but obviously just enough to annoy another parent.
30-01-2012 15:42 #3
I don't think a 2 year old can be a bully. I really don't. They don't have the knowledge of what they're doing and the consequences, nor the intent.
Try not to let what she said get under your skin.
30-01-2012 16:30 #4
Kids are kids and they go through boistrous stages, some parents think their kids are angels.
30-01-2012 16:43 #5
Oh and just to share my experience at playgroup today, ds who's 3.5yrs was happily playing at the kiddy kitchen and a little girl the same age comes over and pushes her way through to where he was standing so he pulled her by the shirt. The girls mum says to my son "please don't do that, we don't need you here being rough" she said it like its a regular occurence which it isn't. Her child started it and I was letting them sort it out for themselves which is just what you have to do at that age. This is the last time I'm going to keep my cool with this mother as its a regular occurence her telling others kids off and other mums are getting jack of her as well. Some mothers are really precious of their children.
30-01-2012 20:18 #6
Sometimes such a small issue can get under your skin!
It's good to hear other opinions/experiences - thanks for your replies.
30-01-2012 21:02 #7
I am the mum of a very quiet, gentle boy who always seems to be getting thumped and roughed up in the playground. Maybe this mum just has a delicate petal like mine and is a touch overprotective because of it? Just offering a flip view for you.
I would never call a 2 year old a bully though
31-01-2012 08:13 #8
I think that's what I found so upsetting was that another mother saw fit to rather angrily & loudly throw an accusation in front of all the kids & parents there... with no chance of recourse. Pretty sure her kids were older than him (at a guess round 4yo).
I don't think a 2 yr old could be a bully, but I know mine has picked up some rough habits in the playground & unfortunately (as the saying goes) 'monkey see monkey do'. I would like him to be more gentle, but I can only guess that some of his behaviour is because he is frustrated with his lack communication skills & until he develops his language skills a bit more he might be a little rougher forcing his hugs on other kids. He can understand when other kids are saying silly mean things (you know, not wanting to share or blocking the path etc) but as he can't properly express himself yet I don't really know what went on.
It can be so difficult in the playground - you try & keep an eagle on them to make sure they're not hurt/hurting someone else, but then something like this happens!
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