Reader Question: My Son is Being Bullied

Hey readers! I received my first question from a reader last night and I want to share it with all of you. I will post her message and my response and then I want you to leave your thoughts and advice in the comment section! Please be encouraging, sensitive, and godly in your responses. Thank you!

 

I need help
I just realized that my 2 year old son is getting bullied. One of my dear friend’s children has picked up bad habits from her day care. SonSon is always screaming and fusing when we have play dates with them. Today she hit him numerous times, kept taking just about every toy away from him, and hoarded all the snacks. I saw her hit him once and when I scolded her, she just laughed at me. At first I thought they were both just getting tired since we were close to naptime, but the more I think about it, the worse I feel. I think she thinks it’s normal. She gets spanked by her dad a lot, but it doesn’t seem to help. I love the mom and my husband is good friends with the father, but I don’t want SonSon playing with her if this keeps up. Sigh.

Any advice from experienced mom readers??

– Reader

This was my response:

I am so sorry you are in this situation. I will give you my thoughts and then, if you don’t mind, I will publish your message on my blog and get some feedback from my readers. I will keep your name anonymous for privacy sake.

The behavior of this girl towards your son is unacceptable. Something has to be done, even if that means severing ties with the family. That’s the worst case option though. First I would have a talk with the mother, your friend, and discuss your concerns. Is she seeing how her daughter treats your son? How does she handle it? If she’s ignoring it then that’s definitely a problem. Broach the subject with her and see how she responds. If nothing changes, bring your husband and her husband into it. And if nothing can be done even then, then you need to limit the time your son spends with them.

When and if you speak with them it’s really important that you emphasize how much you care about them and about their daughter but that your priority is the wellbeing of your son. Be careful about coming across as if you are “judging” their parenting. Keep focused on the relationship between your son and their daughter and on creating and maintaining peace.

More than likely the daughter is being treated meanly at day care by other kids and if she is then behaving this way toward your son, she is most likely also behaving this way towards other kids. The problem really does need to be brought to her parent’s attention in a loving and compassionate way. And if they make no effort to discipline their daughter for her behavior and work with her to behave differently, then it is my opinion that your son should no longer spend time with her.

I will gladly post this tomorrow on the blog so you can get more opinions and advice from other moms who are more experienced than me. Just let me know that I have your permission!

I hope and pray you are able to find a good solution for everyone involved that promotes love and peace.

It would behoove you to know that the parents of the little girl have had a really hard time lately so the reader is feeling very burdened for them and doesn’t know how to approach this without creating more grief for them. If any of you can give her some helpful advice and words of encouragement I know she would appreciate it. Also, spend a moment praying for her and this situation.

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3 thoughts on “Reader Question: My Son is Being Bullied

  1. And I’m thinking maybe, because of the recent events and drama in this family’s life, you should just give it some time before approaching the parents about it. Limit the amount of time your son and their daughter spend together and only when they are being supervised closely, that way you can get involved should the girl start hitting and misbehaving towards your son.

  2. I would approach it from the aspect of concern for the daughter, “I’ve noticed {she} has been acting a little aggressive lately, do you think she might be mistreated at daycare?” Try to see if the parents could change her environment for her better, and it might change her behavior. It is true that bullying behavior should and can be disciplined out of a child, but if she is being bullied at daycare, that needs to change before her attitude will.
    Otherwise, supervise closely and try to be involved, perhaps even commenting to the little girl in front of the mother, “Please don’t do that to {my son}, it hurts him/his feelings.” Sometimes that is a way to gently bring to the parent’s attention that they are not dealing with a problem.

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