Hello!

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My little one adores her uncles, and each week we go there for dinner. There are 3 uncles and an aunt all living at home. The youngest uncle, however, has become a problem. he expects my 2 year old to sit still and quiet and not touch anything, and, if she makes too much noise etc he yells at her. The first time he yelled, she broke down into hysterical sobbing, and I asked him if he had a problem with her to tell me and I would deal with it. A few weeks later, she grabbed something off the table, and he threatend to smack her. I explained the consequences of this would not be pleasant, but his response was it was his house and his rules and if he thought she needed a smack he would do so… we did not go there for a few weeks, but she started missing her other uncles (and aunt) badly, so we went back there for dinner. All was well for while, but last night we had a problem. She has always climbed on their coffee table, and it has never before been a problem, but this one uncle suddenly decided he did not want her doing it. I took her off the table a few times, then she climbed again. I was a bit slow reacting, and he grabbed her, and slammed her onto the floor. If she had not been wearing a nappy, she could well have wound up with spinal injuries. My husband is aware of this, and has on one occasion actually walked out, but they all keep saying it is not his fault, it is the medication he is on. I am sorry, but can you really get away with blaming medication for mistreating a child? As an adult, surely he has enough self control to just walk away. Anyway, I am not sure what to do now. All his family events, christmas, easter etc are held at this house, but I am very very worried this will esculate and he will really do her harm. Do I deny the rest of them access to her because of him, or do I risk it and just make sure i am watching her the entire time (even if this makes them think i am over protective). A true dilemma – any ideas?


Posted by katelt, 8th April 2013


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  • He needs to understand she is 2 and is not going to sit still. He has no right to discipline your child. How would everyone feel if he seriously injured her? I would suggest having gatherings at your house.

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  • You could invite the others to your place more often. Or you could keep a closer eye on your daughter while you’re visiting them. Have you tried telling the uncle in question to just back off?

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  • be on your child. don’t let her climb the furniture, it is dangerous. you have watched this happen over and over yet did not step in. I would have intervened before it got to that point. He should not have been rough but he was probably frustrated by the situation. He doesn’t have children so why would you think that he would be ok to deal with them?
    you know that she is not welcome to touch things. if you can’t avoid going there then respect their wishes. Children will be children but some people can’t cope with them. I am not trying to make you feel bad but think about how you can avoid the situation or minimise contact with this person.

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  • exellent super story

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