Manster ran from the neighbor kids

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by ML, Jun 3, 2009.

  1. ML

    ML Guest

    If it wasn't sad it would be funny. Manster has a really cool miniature motorbike that he has to charge about every 20 minutes that he rides around the townhouse complex. It's pretty cool. Well the neighbor kids have noticed it and my guess is they want to ride it. I would say they are around 12. They approached manster and he ran into the house and locked the door. The kids came to the front door and he saw them through the window but wouldn't open it. They tried to talk to him but he said those kids are mean. I tried to talk him into talking with them and making new friends but he was deadset against it. He said "they're mean to me and S and we hate them".

    A kid that literally runs from other kids to avoid them must have some aspieness going on lol. My guess is they'll corner him eventually and he will have to confront them. I think I'll stay out of it. I'm out of the making friends for manster stage. He socializes fairly well in school and daycare with the familiar kids and the rest is up to him. Don't you think?
  2. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Yes, he could have some Aspie going on. He could also be right about the neighbourhood kids. difficult child 3 certainly was (on both counts).

    The thing is, having a cool bike can be a conversation-opener as well as a tension-defuser. If difficult child keeps running, he will continue to feel afraid and to use running aas a tactic. He needs to learn the social skill of defusing, to be able to turn this around.

    I wonder why so many of the neighbourhood kids came round at once. Not a good sign, in my opinion.

    I also ride a "cool bike" (trike, in my case) around the town. It's a typical little old lady mobility thingie and there have been times when I've been out at night and there has been a group of drunken hoons getting aggressive. I know these same kids beat up people in the town. One night I heard one of them, on seeing me, yell, "Look at what she's got! I want it! let's get her!"

    I had no way of outrunning them - this trike goes at 8 km/hr, top speed. A fast walk can outpace me. So I turned and faced them. As they approached I pretended that OF COURSE they had been joking. Never show fear - first rule. Take it all as a joke - second rule. Use gentle humour in reply - third rule. Try to avoid publicly humiliating them (except perhaps singly, if they really deserve it - and then, use humour).

    So with the group of thugs, as they got closer, I said, "You think THIS is COOL? I've been disabled for 25 years, I never thought of disability as cool."
    I answered their quesitons about my disability, about the scooter (making it sound less cool - "It has to be recharged a lot, it is very embarrassibng when it gets a flat battery and I'm still miles from home. You feel a right git sitting on this thing waiting for the tow truck"). Fairly quickly their general curiosity overcame any sense of "gotta have it". The main statement I made - "You can have one of these, anyone can have one. But they're fairly gutless. If you want this one, you've got to have the disability to go along with it. I could arrange the disability for you, if you really, truly want it."

    And I say it with a grin.

    But also, a big important factor here - I'm female. It is very different for a male, even a kid male.

    Your son sounds younger than these kids, and there is only one of him. You could "walk" your son through the social interaction and in the process you get a closer look at these kids and work out what is frightening your lad. Or you could find a way to involve all the kids in something independent of the bike - a ball game, for example. We have a great game here in Australia - touch football. it is exactly what kids want in a ball game, as well as what parents will tolerate. Tackles have been replaced by touch only. As soon as a player of the opposing team is touched, he has to drop the ball so the opposing team player who touched him can take possession. They can run with the ball but while they have the ball all the opposing team will be chasing them. So it is in their interests to pass the ball to a member of their own team (and thereby change the focus of the attack). The only goals are a 'try' where the ball is manually placed over the goal line.

    Very simple, loads of fun. Lots of physical exercise.

    Maybe you can teach this to your son and his friend, and then involve the other boys. If your son already knows how to play this will give him status in their eyes. And because you will have to split them up to make two teams, some will be on your son's side in a friendly game.

    You can turn around fear and bullying with friendliness, information and breaking down the walls of fear.

    And if this doesn't work - well, at least you made an effort. That has to be of considerable credit.

    Last edited: Jun 3, 2009
  3. ML

    ML Guest

    Marg I like those ideas, especially the one about walking through the social situation. I guess I need to look at this as an opportunity. One challenge is that I tend to embarass him when I get too involved so I have to be careful not to take over completely.

    I also like the idea of putting together a game. We could do kickball or softball even as we have a park next door with tons of grass. Manster might squirm but like you said, it could break down walls of fear.

    thank you :)
  4. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    ML-Marg had some good ideas! Just wanted to say I understand how hard the socializing thing is for our difficult children.
  5. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    Hi ML--

    I almost think Manster's instincts may be right about this one....

    A smaller, younger, weaker kid with a "really cool" anything has a good chance of losing it to a group of bigger, older, stronger kids.

    If a neighbor had approached Manster one-on-one in an effort to truly make friends, it might have been different. But a group coming over en masse to play with the bike...? That doesn't seem like an offer of genuine friendship.

    Just my two cents...