Thursday, August 25, 2011

~ A SWEET, PRECOCIOUS CHILD~

I have the sweetest neighbor that lives across the street from me.  I consider myself lucky to have her.  She is a great deal younger than I am and has a little six year old girl.  Her husband works out of town and is gone for a week at a time.  I have known the family for about a year now.

My friend comes over nearly every day.  She is lonely I think.  Her family lives near by and I also know her family.  Very nice people and close knit. 

She has a little girl that is just adorable.  From the first day they came to visit it was difficult to carry on a conversation with her mother.  She would stand between her mother and I and demand attention.  Not knowing them I just did the best I could to hear what the mother was saying as the little girl talked OVER her mother non stop. 
I gave the child my attention as much as possible, reading her stories, playing with her etc.  I have dolls and many childrens toys, such as play dishes...etc.
Even giving her lots of time new things to interest her..nothing worked.  She talks non stop from the time they arrive until the time they finally leave.  I say "finally" because it become very wearing.

The little girl was a premature baby and the mother is in her 30's with no intention of having more children.  Not that I blame her as this cute little girl is a handful.

It's been a year now and nothing has changed.  The mom just has difficult time disciplining her at all.
Here is the worst part.
The child is often insulting!  Not just to her mother but to me as well!  She speaks more like an adult then a little girl.  I have seen other children in my life that were somewhat like this one...but not this bad by a long shot.  
Recently I have begun speaking up.  When she begins to get  mean I attempt to stop her.
I tell her "that's not a bit nice!" or some such thing.  It seldom has any impact.

I have even, of late, given her little talks such as "you are so cute and I love you.  But..I want you to be as sweet as you look..." or some such thing.
Nope.

Here's another thing.  She seems to be easily distressed at times and gets a very hurt look on her face and it's sincere.  So I back off and just let her go on...and on...and on.
I know her mother adores her...and doesn't want to upset her either.  That's obvious.
Now and then the mom will say "STOP!"  but in a few seconds it starts all over.

I have begun to...and I hate to say this...find reason to get back inside the house to work after just a few minutes of a visit.
It makes me feel bad.  I mean REALLY bad because I love the little girl AND her mother.

I have even told my friend in a laughing way that "I think God knew what he was doing when he gave children to the very young." 
We have even talked about how the constant adult type insults and such get to the mother badly at times. 
She says she talks to her about it.  Tries to get the little girl to understand.  Nothing works!Q!

It's the hands on hips, squinting eyes, sassy back talk that finally gets to me.

I do not want to lose the friendship...and I keep thinking she will outgrow it..as she is now going on seven.  But nothing changes, only seems to get worse.

My question...how would you handle it.  I feel so bad when I make excuses to disappear. 
Any suggestions? 

There have been times I don't answer the door!!  That's NOT me! 

Thanks for listening.
Love and hugs,
Mona 

19 comments:

The Bear's Blog said...

Hi Miss Mona,

Well, I am only a teddy bear but I do have thoughts on this. At that tender age of 7 that little girl only has her Mom since her Dad travels so much. The excessive talking could be a cry for having someone (other than Mom) who will listen. When her Dad does come home he may want to spend quality time with her Mom and maybe forgets about her sweet, little girl needs, and needing a full time Dad.

Being fresh - well, that is another topic. Again, I think she is trying to reach out for attention.

Heck, I'm fresh all the time, even on my Blog but in my case it's not because I don't get enough attention....I just have an image to keep up. (o: Being difficult.

Heaps of Hugs
Prudence

Leann said...

Well I think that I would address it head on friend to friend. Perhaps she needs some type of counseling. You are only doing it for her best interest. Saying that you love them both, but you wouldn't put up with it from your own children or grand children. And if you love her and feel this way just think of what others think who don't know her or the circumstances. The Mummy might thank you for it.

Leann

racheld said...

Oh, Mona!! In our hearts, we WANT to love ALL children---they deserve it, though some of them make it HARD.

Do start reading one of your charming poems in a quiet voice, and I'll bet it will catch her interest, if only for a moment. Of course, that WILL last only the moment until she's off again, I suppose.

You DO have my sympathy. It's a terrible thing to feel trapped in your own home.

rachel

Debby said...

Oh Mona, I can see that this is stressing you. I must say my own little granddaughter is alot like this. Even the sassy part. She has been for a long time. But her mom, my daughter, does correct her. She is now five. Sometimes I will tell her that I need to talk to her mother and I will talk to her afterwards. Or the opposite. You could try, saying this and giving her something to play with. Then say now I have time to talk to you. She is wanting to be the center of attention. It's hard when the mom always brings her. Maybe having a lunch out with just the mom.
Not always talking to the mom works. They always get defensive. If she brings up the subject then it would be okay.

Another thing that is important is to always tell the little girl you like her but not her behavior.

When my little granddaughter was just two, I was riding in the backseat with her. She said, "Mommy, Grammy is kicking me." She is so smart and such a stinker.

Marigene said...

I would be truthful and tell the child's mother you find the constant interruptions during conversations to be very rude and distracting...mother may not even realize how disrupting the daughter is. The child needs to learn manners before she enters school, I would hope.

www.MaisonStGermain.com said...

It sounds like the little girl is lonely too. She must be so happy to have you so near by.And you are so nice to give her such attention:) Maybe you can tell her that you will talk to her first then you and her mom will have to have time to talk grown up talk and she can play. Maybe she needs a trip to the park to be with other children. Isn't she in school? I hope it works out. It is nice to have a neighbor to chat with from time to time:)
~Debra xxx
Capers of the vintage vixens

Chatty Crone said...

When that little girl gets a little older and the mother has no control - woo boy! It will be tough.

marty (A Stroll Thru Life) said...

OH Mona, how sad. I think you should talk to the mom. If this is how the little girl acts all the time, then she will have no friends at school and be one of the ones they call a bully. Mom needs to hear that allowing this kind of behavior is only hurting the child. So sad. I don't envy you, but speaking the truth in love is a commandement of the Lord. Hugs, Marty

yaya said...

Mona, as you know, children need boundaries...if she's being sassy she's learning that language somewhere (like home). I've seen parents who think it's so cute when the kiddos are little, but then have to deal with them when they grow up and usually it's not pretty! I would talk to Mom and find out if this goes on when Dad's home. I think he needs a stronger roll in this. How does the little girl do in a school setting? I'm sure they don't put up with it. Hard thing to do, but maybe talking with the Mom might help her find ways to curb this bad behavior and not lose the cuteness of the child. Good luck!

Gail said...

Oh, dear Mona, you know how I would handle. I am not very tactful nor sweet.

I would tell the child, we do not act that way here. If you cannot play and let the adults talk, you may go home.

Of course, the lady needs company if she has to put up with that all day.

We can only hope she has a computer and gets the message!!

Life is too short to put up with unpleasantness...put your foot down. They may stay away a few days but they will get over it and possibly things will improve.

Don't be so nice!!!!

Mellodee said...

Mona, I agree with Gail. This doesn't sound so much like she a lonely little girl, it sounds like she is a strong-willed, and spoiled little princess. That is not uncommon with kids that were preemies. If the infancy was as dicey as preemies' sometimes are, keeping the child alive is the important thing, and the idea of discipline is way down the list. Once the baby get past all the dangers, the child is, of course, still precious to the parents and sometimes they indulge too much. And by then the pattern has been set. (Being the grandmother to a preemie who was a lot like little girl, I know this to be true.)

You, however, are not required to put up with it. If the mom is unwilling or unable to discipline her child, a neighbor (especially a lovely one like you) has every right to tell the child what is expected from little girls in your home. Gail's wording was spot on!

No one is doing this child any favors by letting her rule the roost, and the child will have some very unhappy experiences ahead of her if the mom doesn't learn how to be in control!!

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Dear Mona, this is such a difficult and touchy situation and I wish I had some words of advice, but sadly none come to mind. It does weem from re-reading your post that the mother had little influence over her daughter's behaviour. I wondered what heppens when the father is home. Do you know if the child still acts in the same manner when he is home?

Desiree said...

Wow, Mona! You have been given so much sound advice here, most of it overlapping and not contradictory, which is wonderful, since that will make it easier for you to decide what to do. I am not going to add my two pennies worth, since everyone else has covered the topic from all angles and there's really nothing much else for me to add, without repeating what's already been said.

I do wish you luck with whatever you decide to do. Please keep us posted.

Big, BIG hug,
Des xoxo

Anonymous said...

Mona, try having the mom call you and visit. It may help. You probly won't get much visiting done, but you won't have to be in the same room either. I am Terry from Okla. Really enjoy your site and the garage sale finds. Good luck T

Cindy (Applestone Cottage) said...

Hi Mona,
Oh dear, very tough situation!
One thing I do know is that excessive talking is a sign of ADD. My step-son does it and that is why. The rude behavior is a different thing though although probably tied to ADD.
These kids need very specific bounderies and the parents need to follow through.
It's very tough but a support group for the Mom would be a good start.
But seriously, I think it sounds like ADD.
Their brains just are wired differently and when the parents are educated they are better able to help.
I taught parent skills for years and many, many of my clients had children with ADD.
Hope this helps a bit.
Hugs for being such a good neighbor!
Cindy

Star said...

Hmmmm that child is a pain in the butt and no excuses from me. She needs some discipline and now before she gets to school and finds out what the real world is like! I would tell the mother to leave her at home next time so you can have a proper conversation and if that doesn't work, tell the child that you have a naughty chair and if she keeps on spoiling your conversation with her mom, she's going to be sitting on it with a gag across her mouth.
She is being terribly spoilt and it won't do her any good at all in the future.
If her mother can't do it, you do it. You've had so much experience, I know you can.

KM @ This Plate is Full said...

hmm.. well I have a little boy turning 8 - and I have heard that of the yrs 7 and 8 they become a whole different type of kid. This hold true with my son. All of the things you are describing sound familiar to me.
I would say it certainly is a phase this little girl is going thru.
The best you can do is to be polite. Im sure the Mother knows what she does and talks to her when they are back home across the street.
Sometimes it takes a while with kids - but eventually they get it.
Also - go to their house to say Hi - that way you can control the amount of time spent with them.
Best of luck!!

kt said...

It is hard to say. There are so many disorders that manifest such behaviors. Then again, she could be just spoiled or going through a phase. The problem is if someone intervenes in the wrong way it could make matters worse. The other side of the coin is that if she is allowed to continue the behavior could get worse.

In other words, politely let her know what you do not like about her behavior and at the same time be accepting. Limit your time with her and tell her it is because of her rude behavior. If she likes being with you then she might tone it down. If she does be sure to tell her that you noticed.........kt

Anonymous said...

This girl is definately a spoiled little brat. She wants her mom all to herself, and doesn't want to share conversation, she wants to be the center of attention. Tell her she will have to go home if she doesn't behave, then show her the door. If she stands there with hands on hips, with the attitude now, look out when she becomes a teen. Her mother needs to put her in her place now. She will either be a bully, or have no friends.