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My son and his friend..dilemma???

My son plays with a neighbor boy, who's name is Ben. They get along really well but Ben has little to no rules at his home. His Mom is carefree and she does not discipline when Ben has a tantrum and begins hitting her. The boys are 5. I've allowed my son to play with Ben and made sure that my son follows the rules I have set in place and I demand he remember his manners and continue with positive behavior. That is working great in the beginning and now I can see the small negative affects of playing with Ben are having on my child. I just don't know what to do???? Do I continue allowing my son to play and continue with my discipline or do I sever the friendship and cause my son heartache??

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 4:38 PM on Oct. 30, 2008 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Answers (7)
  • I would only let him play with him once in a while. let him know that if he acts like him (when it comes to acting up) he will get into trouble and will not be allowed to play with him for a while.

    Answer by armywife43 at 4:45 PM on Oct. 30, 2008

  • I say limit the time spent together. I have the same problem except its with my ex's girlfriends kid...My son, who is 5, goes with his dad every other weekend, there, there is a boy who is a year older. His mom does not discipline him enough and he has no respect for her or any other adult...I had to put my foot down to my ex an tell him that I do not want this boy influencing my child to be so im lucky he only gets him every other month.

    Answer by lala83girl at 5:01 PM on Oct. 30, 2008

  • I agree with the other two answers... limit and monitor the time that they spend together. My 4 yr old son will mimic bad behavior from other friends or family members on occasion, and I will give him behavioral reminders using that child's name... in other words, you could ask your son if he thinks that it is right or wrong when Ben does something, and then reinforce it with a reminder that even though Ben does something wrong, it doesn't mean that your son should. Ben could become a good example of right and wrong! :-)

    Answer by sarah_smile at 6:14 PM on Oct. 30, 2008

  • I would begin to distance the relationship with the intent of discontinuing it. Teaching your child that being around people who treat others without respect can be 'correctly managed' is to put to much responsibility on you and your kid. It's not your job to discipline this gals kid. It is not fair to your kid to have to be on the defensive from another child.

    We have a similar neighbor, only she is just oblivious. Her son it physical, disrespectful, self centered and generally has no self control. I have been clear with my boys that someone who does not treat you with respect is not a friend. That being the case, we are honest, without being rude. We avoid him when we can, and when we can't we maintain standards of how we expect to be treated and we do not make exceptions. If you feel bad after being around someone, it might be time to ask, why are you around them?

    Answer by Kestrel1 at 8:20 PM on Oct. 30, 2008

  • See if you can get them to play at your house. This way the kids are around you and your rules and maybe some of the positive things will rub off on Ben.

    I know when kids come over to our house they have to follow our rules. At first it might be difficult, but if you stick with it the kids really start to listen and they will want to come back.

    If Ben does not change then your son will more then likely start distancing himself. Right now they are just playing together and your son may not realize that this is happening. Talk to your son when he starts acting a certain way, that you do not like and remind him what the rules are.

    Good Luck

    Answer by cornflakegirl3 at 8:37 AM on Oct. 31, 2008

  • I would limit the time they're together and if possible, when/if they're at your house, I would not supervise them per say, but keep a closer eye on. I would also reinforce to your son that Ben's actions and behaviors are not appropriate, acceptable and should not be repeated (by your son) and will not be tolerated.

    Answer by LovingParent08 at 9:26 AM on Oct. 31, 2008

  • I would only let them play together at your house and I would make it very clear to Ben that when he is at your house that he has to follow your rules. If he breaks the rules, then he has to go home. I would bet that after the first time you send him home, he will work very very hard at following your rules. 5 is still an easy age, so you will probably get good results IN YOUR HOME.

    Answer by slw123 at 3:09 PM on Oct. 31, 2008

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