Disciplining Someone Else's Kid...What Would You Do? | Me, Myself and Kids

Disciplining Someone Else’s Kid…What Would You Do?



I was at the park the other afternoon with my kids.  They were on their bikes, following each other around, laughing and having fun.  It was perfect.  The sun was shining, the weather was finally nice, and we got to enjoy a little bit of the outdoors after a long day of work and school.

I watched as the other boy started riding towards my kids.  I watched him attempt to chase them all the while being told to stop by my oldest.

I heard as my almost 6 year old ride up to me and say “mommy, this boy won’t stop chasing me”.  And my response was, “not to worry Z, I”m here and he won’t bother you on my watch”.

After watching it happen for the third time, I gave up.  I had to do something.  I walked over to this boy, no older than my son, and said to him, “he asked you to stop”.  He looked up at me and rode away.

I looked around at the people near by.  This boy had no parents at the park and was chaperoned by his nanny.  There was no one watching him, seeing what he was doing. Seeing that he was bothering my son.  But I let it go as he seemed to have heard me, and left Z alone.

Only a short time later, the kid decided to bother T.  Thats right.  Bother my 2.5 year old who’s on a tricycle.  He started riding up close behind him.  And when T stopped, he stopped with him, and started talking in his face.  I couldn’t hear him. But he was IN HIS FACE.  It was then, T started to cry..and cry and cry.  I ran up to him and the boy and looked around.  NO ONE was doing anything.  I turned to him and said, “HE’S 2.5 YEARS OLD, LEAVE HIM ALONE”.  (I promise thats just caps, I didn’t yell…though I wish I could have).

I took my kids and left the park.

I looked back at the spot we were in.  The nanny had gone up to him and was confronting him.  I couldn’t hear what she was saying, but I could tell she knew he had done something wrong.  And what happened after that, I’ll never know.

Z said on the bike ride home he didn’t like that kid.  Said he was being very mean to him and his brother.  I agree.

How do you know when its right or wrong to discipline a kid that isn’t yours?  I felt I had no choice but to talk to this kid.  He was hurting the feelings of my boys, he made a 2 year old cry! I couldn’t let it go.  Was I wrong?

What would you have done?

11 Comments Write a comment

For the last 7+ years I have immersed myself in the "mom life". My blog, appropriately named Me, Myself and Kids is my life; the challenges, the laughter, and the tears. But I also offer my own version of motherly advice. In doing so, I’ve designating myself as an MD or “Mom Doc”. Not because I know it all. Don’t get me wrong. It’s an open perspective; my learnings shared so you can take the good, bad and ugly and adapt it to your own family life. So please join me as I share all of the crazy and overwhelming thoughts and experiences of the mom life with Me, Myself and Kids.


  • Chantal Saville May 6, 2015

    Absolutely not wrong. Particularly in the face of the 2.5 year old being bothered, a child who is not yet old enough to defend themselves. Typically, if no one else is watching, I will intervene where necessary and if you are at my house (like on a playdate)? I reserve the right to intervene. With the older kids, I try to let them work it out unless it’s getting physical.

  • Jacklyn May 6, 2015

    Maybe the boy should have been introduced and just wanted to play with your kids….that is usually the case

  • Ilnara May 6, 2015

    I think you acted appropriately. The nanny should have been paying attention to what he was doing. That’s her job. The only thing I would have done differently than you would have been to go over to the nanny and let her know what was happening. But that’s me. When I used to take my daughter to the park I’d get talking with the other parents there, especially those of the kids playing with my daughter. We’d have another adult to talk with while keeping an eye on our kids. As my daughter got older and I didn’t need to keep such an eagle eye on her I’d take something with me to do and usually had a group of kids gathering around seeing what I was doing. By then I knew most of the kids and their parents/babysitters from all the years we had been going there. Nowadays it seems fewer people like meeting and chatting at the park.

    • Me, Myself and Kids May 6, 2015

      I totally would have but I had no idea who this kids nanny was until we walked away and saw her go to him.

  • S bruens May 6, 2015

    I do the same you did. I will let my, or even someone else’s child, try to solve the problem themselves but will intervene or remind the “bully” that this behavior is inappropriate and unacceptable.

  • andersongirl May 6, 2015

    I think you should have tried being nice to the kid first … introducing the kids
    and initiating conversation for them. He likely just wanted attention he was not getting from his nanny/parent.

    • Me, Myself and Kids May 6, 2015

      The kids all know eachother from school and while chasing after my son who is his age is one thing even though he was repeatedly told to stop and didnt, he was in my 2.5 year olds face and made him cry. That was where I had enough. I would never just jump to conclusions about another kid.

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