Monday, January 23, 2006
I don't generally use this blog to gripe but some things are major pet peeves of mine. I witnessed one of those pet peeves today.
We took Cal to lunch at McDonald's. There were only two other kids in the play area, a boy and a girl, and they both knew each other. They were older than Cal although the boy probably wasn't that much older (maybe a year or two). Neither of them wanted to play with Cal. Cal has been taught to go up to prospective playmates and introduce himself and ask their name. He does this quite well. And I daresay my child is damn friendly so he shouldn't be scaring anyone with his forwardness.
These kids didn't want to play with him. The boy would even go so far as to push him away. Did their mom do anything about it? No. She sat behind us and yammered on with her friend. I called Cal over and told him to just ignore those kids and play by himself. He loves playing with other kids though and kept trying. Let me tell you, I won't keep my mouth shut when kids are being mean. I especially won't keep my mouth shut when kids are being mean to my kids. I got on to Cal and that boy a few times because Cal is pretty quick to give attitude back when he gets it from a kid. Something I'm not too keen on but I figure it's somewhat inevitable with an older brother.
Another little girl arrived who evidently went to school with the girl of the pair and she wasn't interested in including Cal either. The girls teamed up and the boy kind of tagged along after them. At one point Cal started crying in the tubes because one of the girls had pushed him away. I called him down and said rather loudly that he shouldn't bother trying to play with those kids because they weren't nice. What I couldn't do was make those kids be nice and include Cal. That should have been their parents' job.
Why don't parents see that teaching their children empathy is important? One of the biggest things I've always taught my kids is to include others. If I've ever seen them being mean to another kid, I get all over them. They get the talk about how would that feel if someone did it to them. And then they have to apologize. I'm good with the guilt, believe me. I can't abide cruelty, especially when it's being directed at my kids. It was so disapointing that with two moms in attendance, neither one saw fit to talk to their kids and ask them to be nice. What would it have hurt to let Cal follow along and play with him? Why was it easier to allow them to exclude and hurt a three year old who doesn't yet understand that people can be assholes?
posted by Tamara - 11:39 AM -- Link to this entry
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