Where did this come from? (Parents wading in to fight their kids' petty squabbles)

I have to say that with an eight and nine year old who have had their share of battles, I’ve never intervened (well, except when my own children were excluding each other or excluding their own guests in our house) nor have I ever gotten one of these calls or visits. My kids certainly aren’t angels - so I’m assuming I have a neighborhood that is old fashioned in their “kids fight their own battles.”

My take on it is that they are kids. My daughter came in crying one day because Kathryn was being mean to her (which, I’ve watched plenty of times - her and Kathryn are not exactly soul mates). So we told her “well, don’t play with her - here bake some brownies” (having an eight year old bake is my current great distraction). Two days later, they are playing again, episode behind them. Until next time Kathryn is mean or my daughter too bossy.

So, did you beat him up or not? ;).

The only time I remember an adult interfering when I was young was when I had randomly stolen a younger boy’s bicycle. He saw where I took it and his Mum turned up, told me off, and made me give it back. Totally deserved, I was an occassional bully, something I’m not proud of.

Won’t someone think about the children? Oh, wait…

Certainly they do where I live at the moment, to a stupid degree. The other night, we had a mother from a few doors down calling at our door to complain that my daughter didn’t play with her daughter often enough - demanding, quite pointedly, for an explanation.
My response went something like this:
:eek: :confused: :confused: :eek:

And what did you say to her?

My wife actually took over, while I stood there just opening and closing my mouth, wordlessly.

(She said that we let our daughter decide for herself who she wants to play with)

As has been pointed out by other posters in this thread, there are appropriate times for parents to intervene in “kid business,” and doing so does not make the parents “helicopter parents” or minions of the nanny state or an example of everything that is wrong with today’s society or whatever.

When I found out I was pregnant with Whatsit Jr., I swore at that moment that I would never go on some kind of tirade about how, “When I was a kid, things were different! It was better then, and it sucks now!” and I so far have managed to keep that pledge.

I try to let my kids fight their own battles, but there are some battles that are too big for kids to fight on their own, and then I step in. Deciding when this is appropriate can be hard, sometimes, but nobody ever said being a parent was easy.

Mostly I just get tired of hearing people bellyache about how when they were kids, everything was so much better, because conflict resolution and anger management are for wussies who don’t know how to stand up for themselves, parents these days are overprotective, kids should be running around the backyard instead of learning to play the guitar, blah blah blah. Kids are kids. And I wish I’d had guitar lessons as a kid, anyway.

The one time I got into a proper fight with a good friend of mine, aged about 11, I came home and recounted the sorry tale to my parents (I had come off much the better in the fight, but maintained it wasn’t my fault - I had somehow provoked my friend to chase after me in a rage, and after a short while I stopped suddenly with my fist held out behind me - result, black eye). My father was furious and marched me up the road to my friend’s house to apologise, by which time I was by far the more upset of the two of us. Mind you, perhaps he partly wanted to avoid my friend’s father marching down to see him.

I’m surprised no one has mentioned it yet, but this is obviously just another face of helicopter parenting.

I’m from the school where parents don’t get involved until there’s already blood on the ground. Or at least an ongoing pattern of harrassment.

Psst. Posts #4 and #6.

Helicopter Parenting? Obviously this parent is on the right MB as I was totally ignorant about this. However will my children survive? Sheesh.

One of my friends mentioned this and I have to say that I find it incredibly hard to believe. Have you (or anyone for that matter) actually encountered this? I’d love to hear some war stories. I just can’t fathom hiring someone so immature/unprofessional/lame.

I can only recall a few times that parents went knocking on doors when I was young.
The first was when I bit someone – but the kid was being a prick, throwing my stuff around, and tried to punch me a few times. So I grabbed his arm and chomped down until he screamed for a while and ran home.

The other time was when the kid down the street, who was another prick, got angry at my youngest brother, picked him up and threw him on the kerb. Hours later YB complained about his arm hurting, and it turned out he had a fracture. A couple weeks later, the child-tosser got hearing aids and suddenly got much friendlier, since he could now take part in conversations.

I first read about this in the Wall Street Journal, then saw it again on CNN/Money. I haven’t experienced it, and if it ever happened during an interview I’m conducting, the interview would be over.

I haven’t personally encountered it, but I saw a story on one of the media channels about it. It happens most with big firms, but HR and hiring people were appalled at how often they find it necessary to include the parents in the entire process of hiring Little Timmy as a junior accounting flunky or some such. Trust me, I was as stunned as you are.

Wow, the same exact thing happened to me! (we were both girls though)

Only time I can remember getting spanked.

Stuns me too.

The total involvement of my parents was either me bouncing ideas off of them and them giving advice, or telling them ‘Hey, I have an interview with these guys’ and them asking later how it went/have I heard back.

I was bullied a lot as a kid, I had my share of squabbles but being threatened with a knife by boys twice my age isn’t that… Would have been nice if my father took it more serious, though I suppose I was a bit of a whiner at times. I try not to step in with my son and hold back, though I do step in when I percieve he is being the bully at times.

T’was a whoosh darlin’. I had already stopped counting hp references… :stuck_out_tongue:

Personally I have never encountered it and sincerely hope I never do. I’m not entirely certain my reaction will be politically correct.

I’m wondering if this is in the nature of an urban myth, or at least, a very rare thing. Certainly I’ve never encountered it, or met anyone who has. I would imagine I would have, if it was common.

There’s an element of truth enveloped in an urban myth, I suspect. There’s no doubt that the hovering of some parents continues this far, and the children (adults) have still not found a way to shake them off. I’ve certainly heard of recruiters complaining about parents expecting to be involved in the process, but I’ve never heard of this actually happening. Aside from anything else, it would open up a can of worm with respect to equal-opportunities issues.