Mom-of-four Gena Lee Nolin is inviting Celebrity Baby Scoop readers along as she shares her life experiences – and asks for advice – as she juggles her busy life with husband Cale Hulse and their four children: Spencer, 16, Caia, 11, Hudson, 6, and Stella, 4.
In her latest post, Gena talks about dealing with an unruly child. From stepping in to help, to letting her children “sniff out the situations and move on,” the former Baywatch star shares some great tips on helping your kids “deal with adversity.” Continue reading her words of wisdom, and share your thoughts, questions and advice in the comments.
“Speaking up or letting them work it out…this has always been a tough one for me as a mother, because I’m very protective of my children. When you’re dealing with a bully or an unruly child, it’s hard to know when to step in or let them work it out.
I think we’ve all gone through this at some point and it’s never easy. I’ve seen my children try to fit in with a group while playing at the park, and sometimes they’re not always welcomed. When this happens, I step back and let them sniff out the situations and move on to a more positive group of children, or maybe even one child. Life is hard, and I believe that if we instill these lessons in our children early in life, they’ll learn how to deal with adversity.
Last week, I was with my kids at a restaurant near a beach. After dinner, we strolled along to this play area where there are always a ton of kids. There was this one child who was literally screaming at other children, pushing them around, and yelling at the parents for something to drink. We were all in shock and couldn’t believe that the child’s parents allowed him to talk to them with that tone and treat the other children so poorly. He also wouldn’t let my little 4-year-old girl have a turn on the swing.
We waited patiently –probably too long in my opinion– and I said, ‘Hey buddy, time’s up!’ He looked up at me and said, ‘Say’s who?’ To this, I told myself, ‘Deep breath…count 1, 2, 3…’ and told him, ‘Say’s me. Stella has been waiting and now it’s her turn.’ However, he wouldn’t get off the swing. My personality has always been a little confrontational, especially under these circumstances, so I took my daughter’s hand and went directly to the source: the parents!
I said, ‘Excuse me, your child has been bullying others and pushing my son, and he won’t let my daughter have a turn on the swing. Quite frankly, this is disrespectful to everyone here at the park, including the other parents.’
The boy’s parents were clearly off their rockers. They told us that their son is an energetic and outgoing boy, and if we didn’t like it then we should go to another park! WHAT!? Sorry Charlie, not happening.
I said sternly, ‘If you don’t control your child or his disrespectful actions towards others, like pushing my kid and hogging the swings, then you and him can be the ones to leave.’ Luckily, I had more than one parent behind me who were also sick of this little stinker. Other parents stood up along with me and basically said, ‘Ship in or ship out!’ The unruly child and his parents left! Hooray!
We played with other amazing children and parents until the sun went down, so the night was left on a very positive note.
You have to pick your places…some kids won’t always act the way you’d like or treat your child the way you want. I get sensitive to this, but our kids have to have a ‘suck it up and learn how to survive on the playground’ mentality, as it will prepare them for life’s challenges. As adults, we all know too well that life isn’t always comfortable or the way we want it, but it can be with the right skills and the right frame of mind.
So…when you see a disruptive kid that has pushed the boundaries, stand up for your children and the others or simply pack it up and leave if it’s unsafe. Every situation is different. You’ll know what to do; our parental instincts kick in and they are usually spot on.
Cheers to beautiful fall weather and good people to hang out at the park with!”