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am i taking it too seriously??

My 6 year old is telling me he wishes his brother would die soon so he can have one of his toys. I asked him if he really understands what he is saying, and if he understands death, and he says yes, and he doesnt care if we bury his brother in the ground and never see him again. He wants him to die. We have lost 3 pets in the last 2 years, and I am pretty sure he understands what happens. We have discussed it fully, and he is a very bright kid. I am NOT at all happy at what he is saying.... should I be freaked out or just blow it off?


He is NOT physically abusive to his brother..  though someimes he may hit him wih a toy if his litel brother is trying to get it from him..  He has a really big problem sharing anything, but thinks he can play wih whatever he wants, despie he many conversations we have had and the rules we have set.....

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Asked by Anonymous at 6:56 PM on Dec. 30, 2010 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Answers (23)
  • You should be concerned by his attitude

    Answer by butterflyblue19 at 6:57 PM on Dec. 30, 2010

  • Its time for a serious talk.

    Answer by pinkdragon36 at 7:00 PM on Dec. 30, 2010

  • I don't think you should be freaked out, but perhaps you should be a little concerned.

    Answer by eluc at 7:00 PM on Dec. 30, 2010

  • You should be concerned. But do not dwell on it. If you make such a big deal of it. It will be prolonged.

    Answer by tootoobusy at 7:01 PM on Dec. 30, 2010

  • I would be upset if he talked like that. Maybe its time for a nice long talk. Weve had a couple people very close to us pass away recently, my son is 5, and he says he understands what happens when a person dies, but asks sometimes when he can see his aunt again. So i think they kinda understand death but maybe not the whole picture. GL mama

    Answer by girllovescamo at 7:12 PM on Dec. 30, 2010

  • Yes... that would worry me too.

    Answer by sahlady at 7:21 PM on Dec. 30, 2010

  • I would be very concerned for his attitude and have a long serious talk with him

    Answer by mommy_of_two388 at 7:23 PM on Dec. 30, 2010

  • I'd be a little concerned, but the concept of death to a 6 year old is still very vague. They really don't understand that it is forever. Even my 7 year old is kindof vague on it. She asks lots of questions like 'When they come back from heaven.....:?" and stuff like that. So I know she is struggling with understanding. Don't take it to heart that he really wants his brother dead (unless you have other reasons for concern). Maybe you can discuss a way that he can earn this special toy (of his own) that he wants so badly by doing things around the house instead of wishing his brother was dead.

    Answer by slw123 at 7:24 PM on Dec. 30, 2010

  • I have 3 sons, none of them ever said anything quite like that. I think you're right to take this seriously. Six years old is pretty young, and although on the surface he understands what he's saying, he may just be venting, but he definitely needs to learn that venting in this way is inappropriate.

    I would consider seeing a child psychologist if this kind of talk continues. Is he physically aggressive toward his brother or other kids? Is it entirely verbal?

    I would also be concerned about how this makes his brother feel.

    Answer by ohwrite at 7:28 PM on Dec. 30, 2010

  • A six year old does not understand death even if they have had pets who have died. At six he can say he does but developmentally it is not really quite solidified.  If this were my child I would take a calm approach.  Not to dismiss completely but to also to not make this a HUGE thing so that your son is left with some feelings of guilt and shame.  Many children are jealous of siblings and crave the attention and all the material things for themselves.  Particularly now since he now knows he has some shock value after you questioned him in more detail.  This isn't about wishing his brother is dead it is more likely about craving your complete and total attention.  He is not able to say: "Mom I really need just you and only you.  I really need security of knowing my things are mine and that you track and acknowledge my needs."  Instead he says: "I wish my brother was dead so I can have all his things." 


    Answer by frogdawg at 9:44 PM on Dec. 30, 2010

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