There is a group of mom's that have lunch every Monday at the zoo (which is free where we live). There is a perfect little park inside and it is really something I love about our new home.
"YOU DO NOT KNOW HOW TO GO DOWN THE SLIDE RIGHT. I THINK YOU SHOULD NOT GO DOWN THE SLIDE AGAIN UNTIL YOU CAN LEARN THE RULES. YOU ARE HURTING ME. WHY ARE YOU NOT LISTENING!!!"
The next thing I know the little boy bursts into tears and starts to cry...loudly. Of course I am already over there...and the little boys mom happened to not be there at that moment (she had to run to her car). I brought Palmer off the slide and made him apologize and explained that he really hurt his feelings.
Palmer was very confused. He used his words. The boy did not listen. Apparently Palmer thought that yelling was the next step of handling the situation. I told Palmer to go play on something else for a while.
I told Bret the story that evening and was shocked at his response. Bret was proud that Palmer used his words instead of hitting. I was to but Palmer can't go around yelling at kids and making them cry. Bret disagreed and said that the boy was bullying Palmer and he was standing up for himself. Bret didn't argue that I handled the situation wrong but he did feel I needed to give Palmer more credit.
Out of my three kids Palmer is the one I have the hardest time with. He is not a bad kid I just don't always "get him" as easily as I do the other two. Palmer is a rule follower. He feels that the world is a better place if everyone understands and follows the rules. He wants things to be fair and black and white. He is usually very flexible as long as someone explains what is happening. It does not take a rocket scientist to guess who this sounds like. He is so much like his father and what I can only imagine what his father was like as a little boy.
Usually parenting the play group is easy...be nice, don't hit, share, etc. Of course nothing is that simple with Palmer. OY