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When is it okay for a friend/neighbor to discipline your Child/ren?

I the mom of 3 kiddo's my ages 6, 4, and 2. My neighbor and friend has decided to start to discipline my children. I am not one for giving out advice for the simple reason I choose to parent my children the way I parent. I have great kids I'm not blinded either by the things they do that arent okay. My husband and myself tend to use postive feedback when the kids are doing something great and inturn they tend to want to do right than wrong because they get praise for the good. The only time we really tend to put them in timeout or need to discipline is when someone is either getting hurt physicialy or if there is name calling going on. We will remove the child who is the problem and talk with them about it. This has always worked for us. This friend anytime she is over she has to put her two bits in when it comes to my kids. From putting them in time out for crying because her child has hit them. How do I tell her to butt out?

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Asked by Bellasmum at 2:38 PM on Jan. 12, 2009 in General Parenting

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Answers (13)
  • You tell her those are my kids, not yours. I discipline them the way I do and if you have a problem you tell me. But dont do it again or I wont have them come play. Plain and simple.

    Answer by gemgem at 2:40 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • i would explain to her your house your rules especially when it comes to your children if she cant except the way you disipline maybe she should stay home

    Answer by jodi205 at 2:42 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • you need to tell her that you would appreciate her suggestions to YOU but that you prefer to handle the discipline of your kids.I have a best friend of 25 yrs and would never discipline her kids anyway except how I see her do it.Be prepared for your friend to maybe get mad but they are your kids and you have every right to tell her what is not ok. Good luck, tough situation.

    Answer by Bearsjen at 2:43 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • you need to be straight up with her and tell her that it's not her job to discipline your kids. it's yours. If she is your true friend she will understand. If not then so be it. I do let my friends discipline my kids But it's scolding and it happens when i am not in the room and she is trying to maintain order. But she knows not to hit my kid or send them in the corner for just crying. She knows and stays in the boundaries.

    Answer by YamahaGoddess at 2:44 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • Thank you all so much. I was starting to think that I was being overly sensitive. I'm a quiet person who tends to not say anything when something is bothering me. I have always felt it is okay to say something if your child is hurting theirs or the other way around. I have no problem asking her child not to hit mine. I would never send her to time out though its not my place. Kids will be kids and they do get upset for things. Sending them to time out for crying was my last straw. My children loved playing over at her house and they loved it when she would come over. My oldest gets very upset and leaves the room now when she comes over because he is worried what she is going to say to him. I always knew I had great kids. I'm not being a mom who is blinded either by what their kids do. Thank you all so much!

    Answer by Bellasmum at 2:56 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • I would never discipline a friend/neighbor's kid, but I will say something if I feel a situation could be dangerous. For example, the boy across the street was coming to play with my boys, and ran out without looking into the street in front of a truck. When the boy got across the street, I called him to me and told him he needs to make sure looks both ways before crossing the street so he doesn't get hurt. I'll do something like that, but to actually discipline the child for it is up to his mother or father to me.

    Answer by tropicalmama at 3:26 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • I agree with Tropicalmama, if the kid is doing something that could endanger themselves or others I would say something. If it didn't stop, I would talk to the parents. If it still didn't stop I would talk to the police or social services. If the behavior is not dangerous than it is 100% up to the parent of the kid, not anyone else, to discipline. If they are at my house, on my property that could be a whole differnent thing though. In my home or in my yard, they will follow my rules or leave. However, I would never, never, never, physically discipline a child that was not my own. Just tell them to stop or go back to thier own home.

    Answer by AprilD32 at 3:47 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • The only time I think a neighbor/friend should discipline your child is if you are watching them without the parent and you enforce the parents discipline plan. Also, if kids are at my home playing and are disruptive, distructive, disrespectful and hurting / name calling, then I step in if the parent isn't doing a thing. AND when I say step in, I mean, I would say "Johnny, we don't push when you play here at my house"........NEVER putting anothers child in time out. If the talking to the child doesn't work I will talk to my neighbor/friend about HER children's actions at your house. If we play at their house and her children are doing wrong, I don't say anything unless the child is harming my child. And at that, I talk to the Mom first if I have a problem or I don't go to their house to play anymore. (have my kids go and play)....

    Answer by blessed5x at 3:52 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • when my son's safety or another child's is a concern then it is essential for the adult or person in charge to correct his behavior in order to make things safe. If it is not a safety issue I prefer a parent or a neighbor to send my child home, politely, and giving me a phone call so I can decide what action to take if any. I would never give permission for any person to spank my child no matter what their position or relationship is to my child. I will listen to what concerns a parent has, I will even say to them I will handle the situation, but it doesn't mean that it they need to know how I choose to handle it. With the exception of if my child damaged property. Then of course I will be courteous to pay for the damages and share what consequence my child received. I don't care if they agree or not agree with my chosen consequence.  I can still be respectful but even disagree that it even is an issue or a problem.

    Answer by frogdawg at 4:17 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • I have a friend whose daughter is autistic and has some other issues. She also has a very intense 18 mo old. I find that whenever she is around me she doesnt dicipline period. I think that its bc she is a single mom and that may be her "break". So I do disipline her children, bc she doesnt. However if she told me that it bothered her, I would stop. My point being, maybe for some reason your friend thinks she is helping. You should tell her how you feel in a non confrontational way. For example "I know you mean well, but I feel like you overide my authority as a parent when you discipline my kids. I would appreciate it if you would talk to me instead and I will disipline them." If it continues to be an issue, its more about control an isnt a healthy friendship.

    Answer by NightOwlMama at 4:42 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

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