Sunday, 26 August 2012

Leave my children alone!

There have been a few times lately where other parents have felt entitled to tell my children off for doing something that I thought was fine.

It drives me crazy and I am teetering on the edge of an explosion, so if you are one of the Mums that thinks it is OK to discipline a stranger's children BE WARNED!

Last week we were at the park with friends. Our three boys were playing happily (for once) in a bushy corner of the park, next to a path. As part of their game they had put a few handfuls of dirt on the path. Another Mum took it upon herself to go over, stop the boy's game and tell them off for putting dirt on the path because it was messy and someone might trip over.

I was so cross.

The boys weren't doing anything wrong and we, their mothers, were watching them. They were having a great game, that impacted on no one else, in a bushland park and I can't imagine what made that woman think it was OK for her to go and intervene.

If her children had been playing the same game and she didn't think it was appropriate then fine, go and stop them. Or if her kids were being affected by the game that our boys were playing then say something, but they weren't.

A couple of weeks earlier, a different Mum at a different park, told Wild Man and a friend off for having sticks. She ignored the fact that I was standing right next to both of them, the sticks were about 6cm long and they weren't doing anything naughty with them.

In fact they were using them to dig for dinosaur bones under the slippery dip - surely a game to be encouraged!

There was a brilliant moment when Wild Man turned around and politely told her that they couldn't put the sticks down because they were being palaeontologists but overall the whole thing was irritating and made me really upset on Wild Man's behalf. The impact of what Wild Man was doing on this woman and her children was absolutely zero so why was she saying anything?

Obviously kids do sometimes do naughty or dangerous things at the park and I have often been very grateful to another parent who has stopped Wild Man from doing something crazy, but that's only OK if what he is doing is so obviously dangerous that the rules are the same for every child in the world.

For everything else, everything that is subjective, strangers do not get to set the rules for my children.

You don't have to like my rules and you can criticise my parenting as much as you like but unless my child is in some way endangering you or your child then their behaviour is NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS.

Do you find other parents to be really bossy towards your children? And do you say anything to them?

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