People Are Strange...

Next door to me is a couple who have a grandson aged about 6 who has some sort of hyper-active disorder and probably shouldn’t be allowed out unaccompanied. At the moment he is running around the communal garden at the front of our houses with a 2ft plastic samurai sword and thrashing about the hedges trying to shoo out ferocious cats. I’ve a good mind to let my rottweiler out unaccompanied and see how long he lasts.

tl;dr - Damn kid, get of my, I mean our, lawn.

ps. I’ve just had another look and he’s currently eyeing another neighbours flower display. This could be funny!

If running around whacking bushes with a stick is strange, then my brother and I must have been pretty strange as little kids, too.

Well, he didn’t attack the flower bed, but only because his grandad came out for him. He must have been watching from the kitchen window and saw where things might be going.

What I’m suggesting is strange is, letting a child with with obvious learning and emotional difficulties( Believe me. I’ve seen some of the fits he’s had on previous visits. The reason this visit has stood out is because he is running around with an imitation samurai sword, ffs, and trying to attack cats! Dexter Morgan, eat your fucking heart out.) play with an imitation sword, of all things.

I just wonder how many of these cases of “hyperactivity” are just cases of “no parental discipline”. “Hyperactivity” seems to be no more than a cop-out in a lot of cases.

Huh, now I’ve seen everything - I thread in which ivan astikov calls someone else strange.

That may be overstated. But it does seem that more kids developed hyperactivity right about the same time that the relevant drugs appeared on the scene.

Growing up in the '60s and '70s, I wouldn’t have considered this kid’s behavior strange by neighborhood standards. In many ways, parents are expected to watch their kids a lot closer and enforce discipline on them–and yet swatting your kid has changed from being a normal part of parenting to child abuse. Add in the fact that most households need two incomes these days, and all the violence kids are exposed to in video games, movies etc. It just seems obvious that kids are going to have a lot of pent-up violence that parents are not well equipped to handle.

What is he supposed to play with? He’s a young kid, for crap’s sake. Let him play with a sword if he wants. If you took it away, odds are he’d grab a stick and use it the same way. What, should he be limited to sitting inside practicing spelling and punctuation? What kind of world-class ogre sees a young boy playing outside, with learning difficulties (whatever that means) or not, and thinks, “What’s going on here??!”

The strange part is the man watching him and typing on the computer.

I couldn’t see him from where I sit at my computer, but I’ll admit I could hear him. I watched him the first time while I was preparing a cup of coffee in my kitchen, and the second time while I was pouring the kettle.

Nothing sinister at all. Unlike the kid who acts as though he’d rip a hamster’s head off if he was given it as a pet, and is trying to attack a cat with his pretend sword. Get that kid some therapy or keep a close eye on him, I say.

It sounds like the grandpa had a close eye on him. He let him play on his own until he judged it was time to intervene.

:slight_smile: You don’t know the grandpa! He regularly “borrows” plants and figurines from the guy with the flowerbeds, knowing the man is too timid to ask for them back. What I told Tony to do was steal them back when he’s gone to bed. That seems to have restored the balance of power in the garden wars.

It’s normal for kids to have pretend swords. My girls have two. (And nunchucks for kung fu!) What harm can he do that he couldn’t do with a stick or a truck? Let the kid run around and be a kid.

Any cat worth its salt can get away from a six-year-old when they are outdoors. Chasing cats is fun! Chasing bunnies, too!

You’ve never seen Monty Python and the Holy Grail…
I warned you, but did you listen to me? Oh, no, you knew, didn’t you? Oh, it’s just a harmless little bunny, isn’t it? **

Qestion for the op: When did a child’s imagination become ADD?

When I was a kid, both boys and girls chased around, made lots of noise, had toy swords and sticks and purloined badminton rackets and wiffle bats, and we beat on the hedges (they’re sturdy things) and chased the cats. Neighborhood cats were, of course, never actually cats, but fearsome lions (or better yet, dragons) that had to be vanquished. We were saving the neighborhood!

That was normal then, and it’s normal now.

What is your basis for stating that the child has “some sort of hyper-active disorder” or has “obvious learning and emotional difficulties”? Have the parents or grandparents discussed this with you, or in some way indicated that he is under the care of a doctor? Or are you just assuming this because he is exhibiting what, as other posters have said, sounds like perfectly normal behavior for a six year old?

“Gary”, the grandpa, is about 10 yrs older than me, and as you might have guessed if you accepted my description of his actions above re my neighbour’s plants, he is not exactly the most PC character you’ll meet. In passing, after my witnessing the young boy having an extreme temper tantrum, when the mother, grandma and kid had gone indoors, he casually mentioned how the child was “a nutter” and how glad he was that the daughter only brought him once a week. Make what you will of that.

And I apologise if it wasn’t completely apparent in my OP, but the strangeness I am pointing out is not that of the child’s behaviour, but that of a grandparent who is prepared to let his grandson run around with a plastic sword trying to attack a neighbour’s cat without recrimination of any sort. Whether he could have caught the cat is besides the point.

Oh, and if I saw unaccompanied children trying to attack someone’s pet, whether they were only playing or not, if I knew their parents, I’d be having a word with them about their child’s unacceptable behaviour.

I used to go around knocking the heads of dandelions with a stick as a child and harassed our poor cats mercilessly, and yet I turned out okay and have not committed mass murder.

Well, apart from that one time in college but hey - we’ve all been there, right?

“Your poor cats”. Exactly. Would your parents have scolded you if you did the same thing to your neighbour’s pet?

Or would they have chuckled merrily and said “Look at the little tyke having fun. Isn’t that such a happy sight?”