Thursday, January 18, 2007

Play nice

We went to the mall a few nights ago to look for running shoes for Blake. We grabbed a bite to eat at the food court and when it was clear Sadie wasn't in a shopping mood, I offered to take her to the kid's play area so Blake could shop in peace.

One of our malls has a place specifically for situations like this. There is a huge boat, a bus, a train and several cars that the kids can entertain themselves with. Sadie is on the boarder line of being old enough to actually play on these things. They are big but watching her climb up the stairs or struggle for 10 minutes to get herself situated in one of the cars is pretty cute. She loves it. The only problem? Other kids.

I have reached yet another phase that I wasn't quite prepared for: dealing with kids that are interacting with mine. It's an interesting thing. Sadie was little compared to most of the kids that were running around that place. She kept getting knocked down, pushed out of the way and bullied out of toys that she was playing with. Aside from the time she cried when a little boy grabbed the steering wheel from her, she didn't seemed to be bothered. Me on the other hand? I was bugged.

We waited our turn to play on one of the toys but right when Sadie was about to climb in, a little girl jumped in and pushed Sadie out of the way. This is where my dilemma comes in. What do you do? Do you say something? Do you grab that little girl and tell her it's not her turn. Or, do you let that girl stay put and find something else to play with? It's a hard situation because I know that girl's parent was probably watching. I don't want to be out of line but at the same time, I don't like to see Sadie bullied. So what do you think? Have you ever been in a similar situation? How do you handle other people's children?


Jordan McCollum said...

Tough call. I know that I'd want to grab the little girl and (as calmly as I could make myself behave) ask her, "Did you see that we were waiting our turn here?"

But what I'd really want to do is grab her and throw her down. MY TURN.

Okay, kidding. Kind of. I know how you feel--this week was Hayden's first experience in a "day care" (half an hour on Monday and Wednesday, and now he's sick!). Some kids are lucky they didn't get whomped upside the head.

Okay, not really. But you get the idea.

Blake said...

Seems like a parenting dilemma. Sadie needs to learn to fend for herself, but at what age should she start learning. I think I would have counciled the intruder that it wasn't her turn, but that's easy to say withouth the added pressure of the girl's parent looking over my shoulder.

Angie said...

I've been in similar situations countless times with Blake. He is a more timid child, so he gets bullied and pushed around pretty easily. I've been lucky though, because when it does happen and Blake ends up in tears, the parent of the "mean kid" usually steps in and disciplines their child without me having to say much. It definitely is an awkward situation to be in!

Anonymous said...

Nicely state the obvious! Excuse me but it is not your turn. When we are done you can have your turn. I have said this countless times in watching our for my kids. The great thing is that the over zealous child will generally back off and wait for their turn. Have never had a watching parent approach me. While my child was taking his or her turn and little over zealous was waiting I would start up a conversation with the kid and make a little friend. Be nice someday it might be your kid with the over zealous behavior! Trust me I have seen it happen!

Leezy Lindsey said...

Sadie? Over zealous! Never! ha ha