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Ask earthsister Your Own Question

earthsister
earthsister, Parent
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 141
Experience:  Home Child Care Provider, and mother of 4; two pre-teen boys and twin baby girls.
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Hi, My daughter is five years old and my nephew is nine.

Resolved Question:

Hi,
My daughter is five years old and my nephew is nine. My sister, aunt, allows my nephew more sweets rice krispy bars and fudge in the same day, gives lots of other treats, and my nephew does not listen when he is told to stop. My daughter likes to play with him, and always wants to go with her aunt. How do I set boundaries without making myself the "rules" mom, my daughter says I have too many rules.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  earthsister replied 1 year ago.

earthsister :

Good evening, I would like to help you today.

earthsister :

Have you already had conversations with your sister in regards XXXXX XXXXX concern of the sweets and other junk that your nephew eats?

Customer:

Yes, I have said that sugar makes them play more wild, he gets loud, running around, and there is no listening. But, her way is no syrup on pancakes but them buys him a box of cookies with frosting, and he sneaks things from the kitchen as well, she just does not seem to regulate it much.

earthsister :

I suggest that you start by (trying not to pester her, but instead approach it with genuine concern) continuing to convince her that the sweets and junk foods are not the best foods for either of your children, and that you want to help her bring more fruits, veggies, and other foods into your nephews diet. Also be honest with her; let her know that you want the children to continue to play together and be around one another, but that you notice that your daughter is influenced by your nephew's eating, and behavior habits (which come as a result of him consuming junk food and sugar).

earthsister :

Let her know that you are not trying to judge, and that you know that it can be difficult to keep a handle on what your child eats, especially as they get older and begin to move around more independently; assure her that your concern is for the health and well being of both of your children.

Customer:

I don't feel that I can influence her in that way-maybe because she is my older sister. . She buys these things for him, he whines, and she gives in. Mostly, I want to know how to handle this with my daughter; I don't want her to think of me as the rules person. I also don't want her to follow some of my nephews behaviors, when she is with him, she does not listen to me well. Example, we went for a weekend trip together my nephew was in the hotel playing in the curtains, she starts too, I tell them both to stop, nobody listens.


We go to the mall he starts chasing and trying to scare her in the store, I tell them to stop they don't listen; he doesn't listen to my sister either. I solve the problem by taking my daughter to another level of the store-seprating them, but then she says I have too many rules and am too bossy.

earthsister :

You gotta love it when your five year old tells you that you're too bossy (not really). Seeing that you don't see much hope in influencing your sister, the best that you can do is really work to influence your daughter. Make the habit of making healthy eating fun, and something that she wants to share with her cousin. Spend time with her at home making healthy snacks and deserts; keep fresh fruit, and veggies with dip available, as well as other healthy food choices (yogurt, sherbert, etc.); and whenever her cousin/your nephew does come over your house (and maybe that's another solution without necessarily separating them); have him over your house more often, instead of with your sister (if possible), and spend a day making healthy snacks and foods. Here is a website that has a few ideas for healthy snack and dessert ideas for kids:http://recipes.kaboose.com/snacks.html

earthsister :

In regards XXXXX XXXXX if you have not begun giving your daughter appropriate punishments for her behavior, now would be a good time.

Customer:

Yes, we do time outs, I use a three count warning, and there are consequences for bad behavior. I want to limit her time with him which I feel is appropriate because I don't like the influence he has on her, but I wonder if this will make her more focused on spending time with him.

earthsister :

It possibly will, that would be my concern as well. Does she have any friends, maybe other little girls her age? Maybe even getting her involved in some clubs, teams, or groups with other children her age will be good. It may help to take her mind off her cousin.

earthsister :

And if she does ask why she doesn't see her cousin much anymore, let her know that he has to start being around other children her age, and so does he; but do definitely allow them to keep some time together, perhaps when you are able to be the one to supervise them.

earthsister :

and pardon the typo, I meant that he has to start being around other children his age, and so does she...

earthsister :

Do you have any other thoughts about what I've suggested?

Customer:

I have signed her up for an adventurers club with kids her age, and she is t-ball with kids her age. I do think she needs to have more activities with friends her age, and will try to build that in her time. Also more time with me that is not with my nephew because I have to be the discipline person. I guess I am just feeling like all of this is changing my relationship with her, and I don't like that.

earthsister :

And that's understood. You are going to go through similar feelings all throughout her life; our children are constantly changing and being influenced by things around them, and just as we feel we are adapting to them as they are; there they go changing again. Whatever you do; let her do the changing, and be sure you continue to unconditionally love your daughter (which I know you do), provide her the necessary discipline and proper support, and I am sure that your relationship will be just fine.

earthsister :

Keep her busy and in connection with other kids her age; soon her cousin will realize that he should be hanging with bigger kids, and your daughter will be too busy with her friends and activities to worry about your nephew.

Customer:

Thanks that is helpful. I also can be insecure about my parenting because she is my only child.

earthsister :

You are doing just fine; I have 4 children, and I still have my moments of insecurity. You are doing well in reaching out for extra advice, and if anything, an open ear to help bounce your concerns off of. You'll do a lot of adapting as a Mom in the coming years, be prepared for change, and throw those insecurities out the door.

Customer:

Thanks.

earthsister :

If you do need any other advice or information on this issue, please do not hesitate to ask; I want to be sure that I provide you with a high quality and helpful answer.

earthsister :

You are welcome.

Customer:

Yes, you did.

earthsister, Parent
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 141
Experience: Home Child Care Provider, and mother of 4; two pre-teen boys and twin baby girls.
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