PLAYGROUP POLITICS

Princess A is in a couple of playgroups because she is an only child with a stay at home mom and dad which is awesome but we still want her to be social and meet new people. Most of the time these playgroups are fun. The kids learn to share and sometimes they get into fights over toys but it’s good for them. Most of the moms are chill and if Princess A tries to be gentle but ends up being rough the moms get it.

Well this week at playgroup Princess A climbed to the top of a fort like structure. Then another boy climbed up and pulled her tutu pants down exposing her bare bottom. Princess A did not like this one bit. I mean she is a lady and not just any lady… she is a princess. So Princess A pushed the boy off the fort and he fell andย  bumped his head. I apologized to the mom and then she got mad at me saying I should discipline my child. First, why did I apologize? Second, he pulled her pants down first… maybe you should discipline your son! If anything Princess A taught the boy that it’s not cool to pull a girl’s pants down and why should I discipline her for standing up for herself!

Not that I want any kid to ever get hurt but seriously what should I have done in that situation? A kid did something Princess A didn’t like and she reacted. Isn’t this how kids learn? If Princess A was just randomly beating other kids up I would do something but if someone pulled my pants down I would probably have the same reaction.

Unfortunately, I see this mom a lot. We live near each other and our kids are very close in age so we are in a lot of classes together. She ignores me now which I am fine with but sometimes I feel like I am back in high school when I take Princess A to playgroups. There are definitely “Mean Girls”, cliques, and gossip. I do my best to stay above it all and just focus on Princess A but sometimes it’s hard. Any advice on how to navigate the politics of playgroup?

Stay Glamorous,

Shannon

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37 responses to “PLAYGROUP POLITICS

  1. For me, you did the right thing. The way the other mom acts now is probably because nobody want to be “the one who started it” (the “culprit”). Yes, Princess A pushed the other kid, but she could have done worse!!! And the other kid is okay (not like is badly injuried or wathever…) If the mom ignore you, that’s okay, she miss a good chance to be friend with you. Stay respectful with her and maybe, someday, she will change her mind and start talking to you again!

      • If it’s really really annoying you, you can still try to talk to her…. but choose carefully yours words and the moment, otherwise the situation risks of getting worse!

      • It’s not really annoying me class is just weird now and the experience made me question my parenting because whenever Princess A has gotten into a scuffle before the other moms are just like whatever they are learning social skills. It was shocking when this mom freaked out at me because it was so opposite of what usually happens in playgroup.

  2. You were nicer than I would have been. I would be like “darlling, u take care of yours and I will take care of mine.” But I’m not the nicest person. If she wants her son to be a bully, well she just showed him how to be one. I say “WTG Amelia” maybe next time smack him harder.

    • And also, I would have been yelling “That’s my girl!!!” He pulled down her pants, I think the mom needed to have a talk with him telling him that’s wrong. But instead she also reacted instead of thinking about what she should say and do. As parents, whenever anything happens to our children, we react and not always in a good way. You did nothing wrong. She will end up talking to you eventually and if she doesn’t??? Do you really want her for a friend anyways?

  3. You definitely did the right thing. She was standing up for herself, and that isn’t wrong at all. But you still took the initiative to apologize even though it wasn’t really in order. He did something rude, she took care of it, baby style. But some people go about parenting their children exactly how they go about grown up issues. For example, maybe she is the type of person who points out faults in others while ignoring or denying her own, or doesn’t take much responsibility for conflicts or disagreements with others. Unfortunately, a lot of people are like this. But you did the right thing, if your apology isn’t enough for her over a little baby tiff, then you’re probably better off. Just stay chill and positive, even around the “mean girls”. Maybe your good attitude toward it all will rub off on them. Even if it doesn’t, at least you’ve got the right idea, which will be passed down to your daughter. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Is it wrong that i laughed @ Princess A’s reaction??? She is one bad*** baby good for her to teach the little boy what is improper!! if his mom won’t & another baby/toddler has to well thats the moms fault. I think u handled it very well ๐Ÿ™‚ i dont have any kids yet so i cant give any advice only encouragement. So keep up the good parenting you will do what is best for the Princess ๐Ÿ˜‰ tell her Happy Birthday for me :} stay well strong & fab!!!

  5. Just be your normal happy self when you are around her. It’s her problem not yours.

  6. Sad isn’t it when sometimes the parents act worse than the kids? I don’t blame Princess A one bit, at some point that boy needs to learn he can’t just pull down girls pants. The Mom was out of line. You did the right thing, you said you were sorry her boy got hurt, she should have also said she was sorry for him pulling down Princess A’s pants. What did she expect you to do to her? She is 1!
    I face this at the dance studio all the time. I see parents sitting back and letting their kids do whatever they want to whomever they want, but heaven forbid anyone try to stop them. I have had one little boy come up and hit me (he isn’t my kid and I was sitting there reading a book while my kids danced), he has slapped the book out of my hands, basically he is a little brat (he is 3.5 yrs old). He is old enough to know better. His parents let him do it, but if any of the other kids hurt him, or bump into him they are the first to bitch and complain. This is the same kid who will bite the parents or his sister (really hard…break skin) and they laugh and say “that’s my boy”. I just avoid them as much as I can.
    Different people have different parenting styles. I think you are doing fine. You are teaching Princess A that she can’t be walked all over. I would maybe watch that she doesn’t try to hit/push to solve all her problems, but right now she is 1. She was defending herself.

    • Those parents sound horrible. I agree that she shouldn’t think being tough is always the answer but you’re right that I can’t really explain that to her until she is a bit older.

  7. I think you did exactly the right thing by doing nothing and letting Amelia take care of the situation. I would have praised her. That would let her know its ok to stand up for yourself and not let some little jerk pick on you. The mother in question is either embarrassed at her son’s actions or she’s one of those who think her baby boy can do no wrong. In which case, both are her problems and not yours. If she wants to play High School B&^%% and ignore you, let her. You don’t need her as a friend anyway and Princess A does not need a friend who acts like that–plain and simple.

    • True, and I was proud of Princess A. I grew up in an school where basically boys could do no wrong and were able to be bullies and get graded easier than the girls. Especially if the boys were football players. It got so bad in high school I left to go to Interlochen. But I guess it was a good thing because if I didn’t leave to go to boarding school I would have never met Princess A’s godfathers!

  8. It’s amazing that even as adults there are still bullies, and even sadder, some are parents that are willing to bully other parents. Ridiculous. I would never approach another parent like that, even if I thought their kid was a total brat (which Princess A is NOT). Parenting is a hard, tough job, and one would think another parent wouldn’t be so judgmental. For starters, she is a one year old, what the hell are you gonna do? Secondly, its not another parent’s job to tell someone else how or when to discipline their kids. Every child is different, and it is up to each parent to know their children as individuals, and how to deal with their needs. That includes discipline methods.

    I may have said to my daughter, “No, no. Use your words. Our hands are not for pushing.” That would have been the extent of her “punishment,” but I would never have the audacity to tell another parent how to parent their child. And then I would have apologized for him being hurt, because of course, I don’t ever want another child to be hurt, but I would not have been so friendly when that mom got snarky with me. It would’ve taken all of my restraint to not have some serious wordage with that woman. She was completely inappropriate in her actions, and she thoroughly overreacted! I’d just dismiss her as one of the crazies that are out there, and interact with other parents during class. Just be glad you’re not one of the lunatics.

    • LOL, Jenni. The weirdest part was the mom got so mad at me so quickly I had no time to even let Amelia know how I felt about her pushing the boy. I didn’t even have a chance to “discipline” her because the other mom yelled at me before. And with Amelia and most 1 year olds if you don’t say something to them right when they do it they are onto the next thing.

      • Yeah, I think some parents forget that little children don’t think like adults. They are not malicious or cruel in their thinking process. Princess A didn’t push him to be mean or thinking “I’m gonna kick this little guys butt.” He pulled on her and she didn’t like it, so she communicated the only way she knows how. She can’t turn around and say, “Excuse me, I don’t like that.” And I’m sure (if this boy is about the same age) he wasn’t trying to be malicious either. He wasn’t thinking “I’m gonna pull this little girl’s pants down, so I can see her bottom, and embarrass her just for sh*ts and giggles.” One year olds just don’t think that way. He probably was trying to climb and grabbed her for leverage and her pants came down.
        Unfortunately, this mom got it in her head that Princess A was trying to viciously assault her kid, which is ridiculous.
        I had a friend that had a little boy a month younger than my oldest daughter, and he came over for a play date when they were both around 18 months. When they took him to the car they realized that he had taken one of her toys, so they brought him back in and made him give the toy back (which is reasonable). But then they started spanking him and telling him “it’s not okay to steal.” And I was totally shocked by this. I mean, this 18 month old didn’t know what stealing was. He just had a toy in his hand when it was time to go, and accidentally took it with him. Adults just need to realize that you can’t expect a small child to think like we do. I mean, if someone came up to me and pulled my pants down then I would punch them in the face, because as an adult that would vulgar. But to a one year old…he had no vulgar intentions. And Princess A didn’t like it, so again, she communicated her dislike for the situation the way any one year old would. This mom just overreacted in a completely intrusive, disrespectful way. In my opinion, you did the right thing by checking on her son, and making sure he was okay, but there was no need to discipline Princess A. They’re just kids being kids. They get in scuffles, and that is how they learn to interact with others. The sad thing is they also learn from watching their parents, and it doesn’t sound like this woman is setting a very good example to her son on how to handle a situation.

        Sorry that was so long, ha! I just have a very low tolerance for stupidity and rudeness.

      • No worries I liked your story!!!!

  9. Sorry, I wouldn’t have reprimanded her. She was right to do what she did. Instead I would have praised her. It sends a better message.

  10. I have no advice on playgroup politics. When my kids were that young they hung out with their cousins and the neighbors. I will tell you this much speak up for yourself. Did you tell that mom her son started it with inappropriate behavior? It is never okay to do that and they need to learn at a young age otherwise they’ll think it’s funny and keep doing it. I speak from experience (my niece is in kindergarten and this past summer thought is was still funny) I’ve learned with moms like that to speak my piece politely but firmly. It’ll go a long way in making you feel better. Princess A is only a year old and is defending herself. I say you’re doing a great job. At least she’s not a bully or a pushover.

    • Tara, the mom definitely saw him pull her pants down and so did everyone else. Which is why I think Princess A reacted so strongly a couple of months ago she started to not like getting her diaper changed in front of people other than her usual caretakers. And we used to do this “Naked baby parade” before her bath where I held her up when she was completely naked and sang a song as we marched to the bathtub. When she was younger she LOVED this and a couple of times I danced around with her for so long she peed on me lol. But she also hates the naked baby parade now so I stopped. Anyway, she hates being naked in front of people she doesn’t know very well so I think that’s why she pushed the kid so hard.
      I feel like it would be easier if Princess A had cousins to play with. Some of the moms in the playgroups can be weird and competitive but the first time I went to a mommy and me class Princess A was amazed that there were other babies out there… not just giant adults. It made her so happy I felt like I had to make a point of letting her be around kids her own age!

  11. That’s the funniest thing I’ve read all day! Good for her sticking up for herself! The nerve of that mom telling you to discipline Amelia, what should you have done spanked her? Sat and had a long talk about not pushing? She’s a baby (excuse me toddler) she has no idea. If anyone needs to discipline their kid it’s her. I’ve been around more than my share of kids and have never had any pull another’s clothes or pants down, that’s just weird! Maybe she needs a good talking too! Your a good mom and a great person for taking the high road! Never let anyone make you feel like a bad parent, they don’t know your struggles or how great you are! Smile and walk on!!!

  12. Go Princess A! My little guy Warren spends all day with me, he’s so excited to go to school next year, and is really well behaved around others. One thing I’ve learned is the things that I have taught him have stuck. Sharing toys has taken a little work but now he’s great about it. He’s (for the most part) well mannered, and a good kid. I’m also one of these “weird” parents that pays attention to my kid, all day, every day. Unlike our neighbors, who let their little boy run all over the neighborhood. They think it’s strange that I’m where my son is, we live in a very safe neighborhood, but their son can be a brat and has beat on my son before. The neighbor boy is slightly afraid of me now and I don’t mind. He has learned that I won’t fix every issue between him and Warren, and that if he does something mean, I won’t stop Warren from retaliating, once. No one gets to continually get to beat on each other but boys are wild and silly and beat on each other even when they’re happy and like each other. They get over things so fast, and since I’m the only parent actually paying attention, we do things my way.

    That other mom was rude and needs to teach her kid to behave. Princess A is a little lady, she should be treated as such!

  13. Do not worry. My daughter has bitten a classmate because she had struck him. I explained that we should not do that but they are children, it happens. This woman should scold his son, her reaction is excessive. Your daughter was defended, she was right. Be proud of Princess A: she has a strong personality!

  14. You (and Amelia) did the right thing. When the boy’s mother is so obtuse, you can abandon their friendship. I think it’s best if you ignore her as well and say nothing more on this issue.

  15. Yay Princess A! She has shown a normal reaction… a boy did something to her and she defended herself and why should you tell Princess A she did something wrong?! She didn’t… you’d teach her exact the same thing later in life when it comes to such situations: if someone does something you don’t want – defend yourself.
    The other mom should keep quiet because her son bullying another child is not cool. She just ignores you because she knows you’re right and if she keeps her teenage-stubborn behaviour then it’s probably the best thing to ignore her, too.
    I have one or two moms like that in my neighborhood… nothing to worry about. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  16. I’m probably the last person that should weigh an opinion about playground politics, but I’m going to do it nonetheless.
    First, kudos to Princess A. Not because she’s a Princess or because I’m blowing smoke into someone’s arse… NOBODY has the right to bully you. Period.
    I am not pro-violence, but firm supporter of self-defence. If someone does something nasty to you, you have every right to defend yourself to the best of your abilities.
    Since we’re talking little kids here, and not grown ups who (should) have mastered the fine art of diplomacy and dialogue, little kids have the primal instinct to respond to a ‘violent’ act with violence. I repeat, not that it should be encouraged, but according to the situation, I wouldn’t have discouraged it either.
    The mom in question should re-examine her thinking. It was her kid that made the unsolicited advance, so she had no right to open her piehole and ‘advise’ you to discipline your kid.
    If you don’t teach your kid to stand up since early age, they will just assume through life that being victim is OK. Well….it is NOT.

    • Thanks Dijana. I feel bad for the boy though because I don’t think it was malicious… he’s too young for that. I think he was just curious and when Princess A pushed him he could of learned a lesson about not pulling peoples pants down but the Mom flipped out so much I don’t think he really learned anything.

      • With young children is never malicious. They learn through play, but the grown ups… different story altogether. I remember when I was going in kindergarten, my mum always used to tie my hair in pigtails. So, as all good girls at the time, I wasn’t supposed to hit kids or do naughty things to them. This boy, let’s call him Spiro (because it’s his name LOL), started pulling my pigtails every day and it was hurting. For some time I said nothing and did nothing. Then, one beautiful day, I just had enough, took a large Lego brick and when he was quietly sitting on his chair, I smacked him on top of his head with it. He told the teacher (who didn’t believe him) and then I confirmed his story on my own free will. Guess what? He never did pull my pigtails after that. The teacher felt that justice had been done after I told her that for some time he had been pulling my hair.
        I’m sure you felt bad about the boy, but if the ‘incident’ was only supervised and no harm was done, the kids would have found their way around it. It’s one of the beautiful things about being a kid. You fight one minute and then you’re best friends the next one ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Sounds like you had a really cool teacher!

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