Scenario 1: I give Sly a snack, which he's eating happily. A bigger kid comes over and grabs it away. Sly holds out his hands saying, "eh eh", asking for it back. Older kid says, "no! it's mine!" and walks away with it, leaving Sly looking sad and confused.
Scenario 2: Sly is at a playground, and blocking the path another kid wants to take. The older kid shoves him down, yelling, "MOVE, baby!"
Both these things have actually happened, as well as various similar incidents. And most of the time I just sorta stand off to the side, watching uncomfortably, unsure how to react. Half the time, the offending child's parent will have noticed, and they come over to correct them. But what happens when they don't? What am I entitled to say or do to the other kid??
|Sly playing with other kids at the pumpkin patch last October (no incidents occurred that day)|
One thing - besides my natural shyness - that makes this a difficult situation for me is that I only feel equipped to deal with kids who are Sly's age or younger. Sly is eighteen months old now, so through experience with him, I feel like I have a pretty good handle on where kids that age are developmentally. I know what things they should understand and react to. If there's an older kid involved, though, I just feel like I'm at a loss. I don't know what "works" with them.
Would other parents be offended if I somehow corrected their child verbally? If I physically took back some object the kid had grabbed from my son? I have a feeling they might....But can I just sit back and let it happen?
How much of a difference does it make if I know the other kid's parent?
Sometimes I think maybe I shouldn't even intervene, as long as no one's getting hurt? You know, let Sly develop a tougher skin and learn how to navigate the complex world of social interactions himself.
Any words of wisdom would be appreciated.