Still Catching Up...

I wish I could devote more time to blogging these days, but the best I can do is to post when I can.

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Monday, September 21, 2009

Hold Up

Okay, a parenting situation has arisen and I need some advice. Here's the scenario...

The Tumbleweed takes a dance lesson at local studio. While she is in the lesson, the Dandelion plays in the lobby. During this class, there are several other kids also hanging out - an 8 or 9 year old girl, a 5 year old girl and two boys about 3 or 4 years old. One of the families brings a bag of toys to play with in the lobby that they have been more than generous in sharing... monster trucks, motorcycles, airplanes --- and a toy gun!

Last week the boys were so busy playing with the gun, the Dandelion couldn't have gotten his hands on it, but today I had to tell him "no, you aren't allowed to play with that" because it was left on the floor. Now the moms of these kids hang out & chat while their kids play and were not within earshot when I told him this. The 5 year old girl was, and was quick to tell me "It's just a toy gun". I'm sorry, but toy or not, I don't want my two-year-old playing with it. While I was consoling the Dandelion, who was mad that he couldn't have it, the 8-year old girl took it out side and played "stick 'em up" with her friend as they waited for the next class. Her parent, and several other parents, witnessed this and found it funny.

So now I am left with the problem that I don't want the Dandelion playing with the gun, nor do I want to have to take it away, every week. If they bring it again next week I am going to try again to explain to the Dandelion that guns are not for little boys, but if the parents are still clueless is it wrong of me to ask the dance teacher to tell them they can't bring a toy gun to play with in her lobby?



Ali said...

WOW, I don't know what to say. Or what the "appropriate" thing to do is. Are you in a Beginning Years session? I've asked Beth for advice in the past about how to handle "awkward" issue with other parents regarding their "parenting" style and how it is affecting my child and how to remove myself from the situation without being offensive. She's had years of experience. That's my advice.

Kristin said...

Good suggestion --- I have Beginning Years tomorrow afternoon.

Cristin said...

I have not been in that situation yet. if you feel that toy is a threat to your child then by all means you should ask the owner of the studio to ask the parent not to bring it because some parents are offended by it.
Otherwise, you will have to bring your own bag of toys and not let him near the other kids.

Michele said...

First I would tell C that he's just too young for that toy. We said in our house "no guns (or weapons) as toys until you are 7" which has worked pretty well. I took a TON of flack for that when it meant water guns to, but kids are unable to make a cognitive distinction between toy gun and real gun until they are about 7.

I would also just pick up the gun if it is on the floor and hand it back to the mom. You can always just say, "He's too young to play with this." No more than you'd say if there were other age inappropriate toys around.

Let us know what Beth said too.

Artemis said...

You are very well within your rights to ask this be kept away from your kids. I am not a parent, but as a babysitter I never let kids play with their toy guns or even fake shoot with their fingers.

Even worse is the 5 year old who argues with you about it... Yes it is JUST a toy gun, but you can be firm, and say that C is too young to know and that you are his parent, not hers. Your rules apply to your kids, period! (And good for you guys, by the way! I'll be interested to see what comes of this.)

- Diana D.