You know that kid. The one that always wants the truck your child is playing with simply because your child is playing with it. The one who pushes your kid out of the way, just because. The one who screams so loudly and randomly for no apparent reason. The one who ignores your every attempt at mediation.
You both watch the same scene unfold and yet one of you is secretly boiling over, while “that mom” doesn’t appear fazed at all. You get your hopes up with any sudden act of intervention (read: parenting) by “that mom” but you’re usually left incredulous at the half-hearted attempt while the mayhem continues. Her instructions sound more like suggestions: “Billy, please stop that, okay?” She appears to give up after one feeble attempt, as if resigned to a notion that it’s hopeless to even try.
Do you say something to “that mom”? Do you say something to that kid? Do you ignore it and leave at the first chance you get? What happens when “that mom” is your sister? Your next door neighbour? Your best friend?
It’s often true that having a child can create a rift between you and your child-less friends. Can the same thing happen when you have different parenting styles?