Is it okay to discipline other people's children?

@MJJ1011 (107)
United States
March 30, 2007 11:13am CST
We have some friends who do not discipline their children. Their house is a disaster because they let the kids write on the walls, etc. I have not let my 5 month old daughter be around their kids yet because I'm very nervous about a potential situation that could occur. I'm uncomfortable with disciplining their kids if they do something mean to my daughter. Another friend of ours had to say something to one of these kids because he was playing with our friend's cell phone. This friend felt horrible about "disciplining" this child, eventhough he probably had every right to. So, do you think it's okay to discipline other people's children?
7 people like this
40 responses
@cher913 (25891)
• Canada
30 Mar 07
If my daughters have friends over (they are ages 10 & 13) and i do not appreciate the action that child is taking, i will say no or stop or whatever...if it is bad enough, i would tell the parent... so yes, i think its fine to do that... your house, your rules!!!!!
4 people like this
@MJJ1011 (107)
• United States
30 Mar 07
I agree with "your house, your rules" but what if you are at that person's house?
2 people like this
@syndibee (799)
• United States
31 Mar 07
if you are at their house then their rules. you can say no if they are doing something that involves your child but anything else i would say is off limits, you don't have to go over there. if you don't agree with the way they are raising their children then maybe you should just let them be and find some other more compatible friends that you can feel comfortable around them and their children.
@stacyv81 (5904)
• United States
30 Mar 07
If they are at my house, or doing something they shouldn't & the parent doesn't say anything, I'll say, no dont do that, or that is mean, do not hit. If they hit my son. But if you just say no, & tell them it is wrong, that is ok. Or if you are babysitting you can put them in the corner, but I think that is itwhen it comes to disciplining someone elses kids.
4 people like this
@cjthedog64 (1553)
• United States
30 Mar 07
We have friends kind of like that. They do discipline their 3 kids, but they arent' very consistant, and the kids know it. We don't want our DS to pick up on any of their behaviors when they visit, and we don't want anyone (or anything!) to get hurt. We will correct them, tell them no, and give them short time outs. Won't spank them or anything, but we try to be consistant with OUR house rules when they're here. We notice the difference in their behavior. Just wish their parents did too. :(
3 people like this
@MJJ1011 (107)
• United States
30 Mar 07
You'd think that the parents would get the hint. At what point do you just have to flat out say something to them or do you not?
1 person likes this
@leese29 (341)
• United States
30 Mar 07
If they are at my house or within my care then yes i will discipline them. But if their parents are around I would hope they would step forward and do something. If it got to the point the parents didn't do anything and it was effecting my child then I would not be around them.
@MJJ1011 (107)
• United States
30 Mar 07
That's the problem with this particular family. When the parents are around they don't do anything. I'm starting to get to the point of not wanting to be around them at all because it's just so frustrating watching them not discipline their children.
1 person likes this
@spindrift (197)
30 Mar 07
My kids are 7 and 8 and they bring round friends I try to get them to play in the garden because I just do not like to tell them off ofr things but if have to I will say to them I feel that if I don't say anything they will not respect me. I just see the way some of the local kids get away with things and it maks me wonder how far they will take thinks
3 people like this
• United States
30 Mar 07
i dont know if it is "right" but i do know that if i have had enough, i do make the move to do it. the way i see it, hey, its my kid that is being affected by this undisciplined kid. i am the mom, and i have to look out for my son. he is too young to protect himself, so its up to me to do it. the child that is out of control is my neice. she is a very big bully and my brother and his wife are proud of that. it irritates me that they let her push around other kids. in fact, they are proud of..and brag! that she (3years old) made a 7 year old boy cry. that is jut ridiculous to me. she has to learn right from wrong, and they are not instilling that in her. she thinks it is ok to talk back, hit, and bully. since she is my neice, i cannnot keep my son away from her. they are going to be growing up together. right now he is only almost a year and a half, so he is too small to talk or yell at her. i am not goign to teach him to fight back, but i do want him to speak up - when he is old enough. there have been quite a few times that i have to firmly grab her arm in order to make her stop her bad behavior. i never yell at her or spank her. i just tell her "you cant do that, its wrong and mean". she knows what i am saying becuase as soon as she sees her chance to do it again, she does. i have to practically follow them around. my brother and sister in law, they dont care, even though they see what she is doing. they smile and tell her "no no" but thats as far as that goes. so yes, i have to step in. like i said, i dont know if its right, but i wouldnt have a problem with someone confronting MY son if he is doing something wrong. i am NOT ok with someone spanking or yelling at him, but to tell him "we dont do that..." or something like that, is fine by me.
2 people like this
• Faroe Islands
30 Mar 07
I would say that you can't really tell other children what to do, because then you take their parent's responsibility. But you can tell them what not to do, if it annoys you.
@stormygrl (763)
• United States
30 Mar 07
If they're at your house you have every right especially when they do get around your baby. I would keep avoiding taking my daughter over there. Elsewhere I would probably feel funny about it but it would depend on the situation if you're out in public or not.If they avoid it and don't get upset, go for it.
2 people like this
@Lavera1 (897)
• United States
31 Mar 07
Yes, MJJ, I do believe that it's okay to discipline someone else's child when that child is destroying your possessions. I used to be too intimidated to do so. My friend's child drew on my wall with crayons and when I told her about it she just laughed and said that her baby was just being creative. She didn't even offer to clean off the wall. But when my daughter did something she didn't like she would feel free to chastise her. Another friend's son came ove after Christmas and jumped on my kids beds and while attempting to jump off the beds he broke their new toy piano. It was a good sized piano too! And she didn't chastise her child nor offered to pay for a new toy piano. So I said never again will I not say something to the child or the parent.
1 person likes this
@MJJ1011 (107)
• United States
31 Mar 07
Just curious, are you still friends with these people?
@jchampany (1131)
• United States
30 Mar 07
Well, that is a tuffy. It is hard to know what to do in those situations. Yes, if those kids are doing something to you, your child, or your belongings that you find annoying, harmful, mean, damaging,etc. I would say it is okay. If those people don't do it someone has got to. I know you say they are your friends but I would actually consider not hanging around them too much anymore. They don't sound like very good role models for anyone. If you have a little one that is going to be coming into the stages where dicipline is very important, you may not want them to be around them. It can be a bad impression on you or your kids.
@jchampany (1131)
• United States
2 Apr 07
Thanks for the br.
@aissha (2036)
• India
30 Mar 07
i hv one kid like that and i avoid going to that friend's place ,i sincerely believe we should suggest what children are lacking in their manners ,as we are apart of society and children should be social enough,right?
1 person likes this
@MJJ1011 (107)
• United States
30 Mar 07
I guess you are right about that. It is society's job to help teach children to be social, but it also is a parent's job. Where is the boundary?
1 person likes this
@echoshwj (58)
• China
31 Mar 07
To be honest, it's really hard to discipline other people's children, even the parents are your friends or relatives. Every parent loves their children very much. They can blame them by themselves but they won't like others blaming or disciplining their children, even if they know their kids are doing wrongly. They would think "These are my children. What right do you have to discipline my children?" So next time when you find your friend's children not doing correctly, you can tell your friends unobjectionably about it and let them to discipline their own children.
• China
31 Mar 07
It is not a good idea to discipline other people's children. Each family has its own way to educate its' children. You may feel disaster when your friends let their children write on the walls. Maybe they want to use this method to adopt their children's imagination. The childhood period is valuable for each person. If I has a child, I will permit it to do anything it wants. At the same time, I will teach it which is right and which is wrong.
1 person likes this
@txwoman36 (173)
• United States
31 Mar 07
sounds like a bad situation and i dont blame you on not wanting your 5 month around them. i would maybe say something to the parents. now when you say discipline if your meaning to just say something if a kid is doing something wrong then i dont think that is wrong but spanking a kid or anything like that is wrong. i have a 9 yr old niece and i will say something to her but never would spank her. i feel that is for her dad my brother to do. usually when i say something she stops what shes doing wrong.
1 person likes this
@Rozie37 (15503)
• Turkmenistan
31 Mar 07
I love children very much, but if a parent is not willing to properly discipline that child, then the child should not be around me. I lived with my sister and her six children for two years. For the majority of those two years, I could not stand those kids. They would not listen and had very little respect. One of the most awkward situations for me to be in, is for a child and the parent to be around me and the child is acting up and the parent is doing nothing. Not only do people not want you to discipline their children, they also don't want you to tell them how they should raise them. I have no problem with telling a parent that their child is a problem and I don't want them around me. Think about a child running around your house getting into things and you are sitting there talking to the mother and watching her child run wild in your presence. She looks over every now and then and tells her son to stop, but he does not listen. You have family treasures all over the place that will surely be broken and ruined any minute. What do you do? This is what I would say to anyone, including family. I am sorry, but we are going to have to cut this visit short, because your son running around my house like that is really making me quite nervous, but I would love to have you guys visit again when jr. gets a little older. If she gets the point, good, if she gets upset, don't worry about it, she was not much of a friend in the first place. No one else should ever have to be burdened with someone else's bratty kid.
1 person likes this
@sparling (178)
• Canada
31 Mar 07
i think it is deffinatly ok. i also have a freind like the one you mentioned, and when her kids are here i dont think twice to disciplin them, this is my home that i keep clean and these are my kids that live here. if someone is inconsiderate enough not to keep there kid inline while they are visiting then you might as well take over. you might want to do this in a polite manner, the way you would like someone else to disciplin your child...do you get me. bottom line..if they are your freinds it shouldnt be a problem!
1 person likes this
• United States
30 Mar 07
When it involves your daughter, your home, or something else that belongs to you, speaking to the child is not wrong. There's a difference between disciplining the child and asking him/her not to hurt your daughter, harm your property, or to follow rules in your home. You have,not only the right protect your belongings from harm, but also the responsibility to protect your daughter. It is not okay to discipline other people's children. It is okay to protect your own children, yourself, and your belongings from others-even children. And, it is okay to enforce your rules in your own home.
@KATRINKA (1659)
• United States
30 Mar 07
If other kids are in my house, they have to follow the house rules. If they break a rule, they're reprimanded. If the kid is hitting or doing something destructive, I will separate that kid from the others. I expect good manners from anyone who visits me, and I expect my kids to be on their best behavior when they visit friends. I do not agree with spanking another person's child, though, if that's what you mean by discipline. If the kids continue to be ill-mannered, they're not allowed in my house. I doubt I'd allow my kids play at their house, if those kids aren't disciplined at home. I'd be worried about safety.
@magikrose (5424)
• United States
30 Mar 07
Honestly I think it depends on how strong your friendship is. My bestfriend and I disclepine eachothers kids all the time. It is our way of helping eachother out when we need to. If you feel the NEED to say something then honestly I think you really should especially since your children are there as well.
1 person likes this
@gemini1960 (1162)
• Philippines
31 Mar 07
in my view its not proper to discipline children when its not yours..why try it when you have your own to take care for...i dont think your friends will allow you do it..its too personal..
• India
31 Mar 07
nice command, we might discipline when we teach to our or other childrens
@kurtbiewald (2628)
• United States
31 Mar 07
unless you are accepted into a family as a substitute dad or mom, don't even think about discipline so they write on the walls, encourage it I think paint is cheap, maybe they become artists or something seriously, whne they go to college, get 2 gallons of paint and a roller if you don't like the drawings one days work and $40, relax about it
@MJJ1011 (107)
• United States
31 Mar 07
I'm not saying that I should discipline them because they write on the walls. I was just trying to give an idea of what these kids are allowed to do, and why I'm uncomfortable with my daughter being around them. If they are allowed to do this type of thing, what else are they going to think of to do and are their parents going to allow them to do? This is why I asked the question. Would I have the right to discipline them if they were doing something that affected my daughter or me?