My son is 6 and I just recently noticed that he hurts younger kids when no one is around to see. He said he learned it from a friend and it's a game called "hurt zone." Now this I believe because I cut off contact with that child and his mother for other incidents. My problem is should I be worried or seek professional help because he is old enough to know right from wrong and still did it. Has any parent gone through anything similar to this?
He is only 6 years old. He isn't capable of knowing right from wrong. That is why he still needs parents to care for him and make decisions on his behalf. All kids get influenced by their peers, negatively and positively. Regardless of influence, it is important that you discipline inappropriate behavior. Don't blame it on his peers. If your son chooses to behave inappropriately, this is his choice. We could always blame others for our behavior, but ultimately we need to own up to it and not blame others. No professional help is needed in your son's case, just discipline.
I wasn't attempting to blame it on his peers or this little boy, just stating I believe it was something he learned and not came up with himself. Basically that I responded to his actions just concerned because he has been taught that bullying in any form is unacceptable and there are severe consequences from us if he does otherwise and he still chose to do it when he thought he wouldn't get caught.
Hi there. Well, I would tell him that any game hurting another child isn't a game but mean. Talk about if older kids played the 'hurt zone' and HE was the target. Would it be okay for them to hurt him?? He should understand that.
I agree that at this age, he knows he shouldn't be hurting other kids and that is why he does it when no adults are around.
So, let him know that hurting kids whether it is due to a game or otherwise is not allowed and that there are consequences.
I don't think he needs professional help for this. Set the boundary and see if he adheres to it.
Work on your son's empathy. Also at 6, he could probably use some work on taking the cues of other kids. If they say ouch, stop, or anything of the sort, he's to immediately stop whatever he is doing. An apology at that time even if it was an accident or play that got carried away is appropriate. You can work on his understanding nonverbal cues like facial expressions too. Make faces and have him guess the emotion. That kind of thing.
I will say as the mom of two boys that has many kids over to our house and yard that boys do play fighting games. This was hard for me to get used to as I only have sisters. They like to do rough and tumble play. I've allowed some wrestling and such as long as it isn't too rough. I've allowed a game of knock out where you throw the play ball at kids (this game was taught to them in gym class). Sword fights with nerf swords is an ever favorite of the boys my kids age. I've seen kids playing WAR and big time wrestling. But the key is to make things more on a pretend level so no one gets hurt.
Anyway, so set the boundary and let him know that purposely hurting another child is never okay and won't be tolerated without stern consequences. good luck
Specialmom brings up a good point. This "friend" who taught him the game may be worth checking out. This could be just an innocent "macho boy " game. Or this friend could be doing some bullying of which your son was an unwilling participant.
What are you seeing a doctor for? Well, good luck. I would try not to jump the gun and peg him as a kid with serious issues for playing a game that perhaps you could have curtailed easy enough through setting boundaries with him and having consequences if he broke the rules.
OH! I get it. Sorry---- I thought you'd made a drs. appointment for this. Yes, if you are a the doctors, you should feel free to mention it. I doubt he has a psychological problem but was just playing. Help him with appropriate things to play and empathy for hurting another person and that should help. Hope his cough gets better!
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