Posted by: allisonwonder | March 9, 2010


So on Sunday night the Boys (capital ‘B’- AJ, Simon and Ike) were all playing in Simon’s room. Simon tends to be a bit possessive of his Daddy when he gets him in there, so I was pleasantly surprised when he was so good about having Ike in there with them. Apparently that’s as far as he was willing to go with the whole sharing deal, though.

AJ called me in to see Ike being all cute and lying down in Simon’s “big boy bed” like he was going to sleep (and probably just to get a bit of a break- he likes hanging out with his boys, but their bedrooms aren’t the most interesting places for him to be). I was in there for about 20 seconds before Simon ran in and told me to get out.

“Why? I asked.

“Dis is MY place, Mommy. You get out of my place. I don’t want you here, just Daddy and Ike.”

Ouch… but fair enough, If the boys want privacy in their bedrooms, I can give them that. And I try not to get too hurt by a 4-year old’s whims- I can be a grown-up about that).

Then he says, “Dis is MY place. Your place,” and he points to my bedroom across the hall, “is over dere. You go dere now, Mommy.”

So now I’m not only kicked out, I’ve actually been assigned a place I should go. I was actually half-expecting him to tell me that my place was in the kitchen, and take my damn socks off while I’m at it, so I guess my bedroom wasn’t so bad. But still… nobody likes to be excluded!

Simon came over to my room (yes, I went there) and I told him my feelings were hurt. He looked surprised. “Why, what happened?!” So we talked about how it hurts people’s feelings when you say you don’t want them around, when you won’t let them play (even though I hadn’t wanted to- he didn’t need to know that), etc. He said, “Oh,” and left. Didn’t invite me back in- just went back to his “place” and shut the door. I could hear AJ calling, “Kitty? Come baaack! Save meeee!”  He’s a big boy, though, and he can take care of himself. I went and read my book. He managed to escape a few minutes later, and Simon discovered that if you want to exclude some people, others who you really want around just might not want to join you.

I know that almost all kids get into purposeful exclusion at some point as they get older, often forming “clubs” where the point is basically to get a feeling of being special by excluding other people. I don’t want Simon to be one of those kids. I don’t think Sunday night is a sign of things to come, but I’d like for him to learn that it’s not OK to do that, to hurt other people. Then again, I don’t want him to feel guilted into letting me (or anyone) into his private space… so where’s the balance, there?


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