Author Topic: Should my daughter have "humored" him?  (Read 11089 times)

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Octavia

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #15 on: January 06, 2013, 02:10:30 PM »
As an adult who used to be a cute child that had to tolerate this type of behavior, I'm angry on your DD's behalf. More so because Gary tried to do it again, which crosses the line into creepy, harassing behavior. What decent adult who has his impulses under control would try to barge across a boundary set by another person? Consider telling Gary that your DD's body is not his plaything to touch, tweak, and make fun of. And of course reinforce that to your DD as well.
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pearls n purls

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #16 on: January 06, 2013, 02:14:07 PM »
Next time Gary approaches your DD, she can tell him, "That's not my sense of humor.  Please don't touch me."

I don't think Gary did anything wrong with the initial joke - some kids may think it's funny, but not everyone appreciates it. 

Gary should be plenty old enough to understand that people have different kinds of humor and that not everyone likes to be touched.  It seems quite silly that he made a big deal about her not liking his joke. 

RingTailedLemur

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #17 on: January 06, 2013, 02:22:42 PM »
You and your daughter behaved impeccably and I am really impressed with how your DD handled herself.

I'm disappointed that your DH wanted to apologise to Gary - Gary brought his embarrassment on himself.  Does your DH understand how you feel?  Will you be showing him this thread?

Gary's first joke was an annoying error of judgement, although I do think poorly of people who touch others without permission.  His reaction to DD - telling her to smile - is something that really winds me up when men do it to me.  Going for DD's nose a second time was rude of Gary, because he knew your DD didn't like it.

citadelle

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #18 on: January 06, 2013, 02:45:09 PM »
I am going to disagree. Gary obviously meant no harm. I think that to talk to him now would be unnecessarily embarrassing for him. Your daughter let him know she wasn't amused. If he teases her in this way again, she or you can certainly ask him to stop. However, I think a preemptive confrontation would be overkill. He is a clueless older guy, presumably not a dangerous predator.

Sharnita

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #19 on: January 06, 2013, 02:46:26 PM »
I think that would be way OTT. It does not sound like it was specifically that it was touching nearly as much as she thinks his comedic sensiblities suck. And at church you might shake hands, join hands to pray, etc. The child did not indicate the child made her uncomfortable and she didn't feel forced to accept touching anywhere. Not so veiled threats are not an appropriate response.

LeveeWoman

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #20 on: January 06, 2013, 02:49:41 PM »
I am going to disagree. Gary obviously meant no harm. I think that to talk to him now would be unnecessarily embarrassing for him. Your daughter let him know she wasn't amused. If he teases her in this way again, she or you can certainly ask him to stop. However, I think a preemptive confrontation would be overkill. He is a clueless older guy, presumably not a dangerous predator.

To me, that's not the point. Touching someone unasked--especially a second time--is wrong. Girls need to learn that their bodies are their own, that they're the bosses of who gets to touch them.

cicero

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #21 on: January 06, 2013, 02:52:17 PM »
I am going to disagree. Gary obviously meant no harm. I think that to talk to him now would be unnecessarily embarrassing for him. Your daughter let him know she wasn't amused. If he teases her in this way again, she or you can certainly ask him to stop. However, I think a preemptive confrontation would be overkill. He is a clueless older guy, presumably not a dangerous predator.

but he *did* tease her again.

He came up to her at the end of church that day and tried to touch her again.


...
Later, before we left, Gary was near us again, and tried to do "Got your nose!" on DD.  But this time she saw him coming and did an impressive duck-sidestep-step-around evasive maneuver that only proved that the money we're spending on martial arts is paying off. :)



I wouldn't say anything to him now, but I certainly would keep an eye on him and while i won't necessarily say that he is a predator, I think we can't say for certain that he isn't one.

it may be that OP's DD was just annoyed or not in a mood to enjoy the man. but it may ber that her inner voice is saying something.

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weeblewobble

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #22 on: January 06, 2013, 02:54:04 PM »
You and your daughter behaved impeccably and I am really impressed with how your DD handled herself.

I'm disappointed that your DH wanted to apologise to Gary - Gary brought his embarrassment on himself.  Does your DH understand how you feel?  Will you be showing him this thread?


DH and I are on the same page about the issue.  His impulse to apologize came from social distress, seeing Gary embarrassed.  But once that impulse passed, he realized there was nothing to apologize for and DD behaved appropriately.

weeblewobble

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #23 on: January 06, 2013, 02:58:30 PM »
I am going to disagree. Gary obviously meant no harm. I think that to talk to him now would be unnecessarily embarrassing for him. Your daughter let him know she wasn't amused. If he teases her in this way again, she or you can certainly ask him to stop. However, I think a preemptive confrontation would be overkill. He is a clueless older guy, presumably not a dangerous predator.

I tend to agree with this.  While I did use this as an opportunity to talk to DD (again) about boundaries and the space bubble, I am not getting any sort of predator vibe from Gary.  I think he's one of those guys that thinks that if a joke doesn't land the first time, you just repeat it until it does.  That's not to say I won't be watching the situation carefully, but I think confronting him in this manner would needlessly escalate a situation that is, for the moment, pretty innocuous.

ETA: I definitely agree that girls should be taught that they have every right to decide who gets to touch them. But I also think they need to be taught how to judge situations and handle them on a sliding scale of confrontation.  There should be a few steps before you go for the "nuclear" option.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2013, 03:01:20 PM by weeblewobble »

NyaChan

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #24 on: January 06, 2013, 02:58:50 PM »
I think you all behaved appropriately.  I think Gary was  pushing it a bit to try the same joke again later in the day. Still, I don't think this is a danger, danger kind of issue as long as DD understands her right to enforce her personal space - which clearly she does  :)  If he does that same trick again I would just say "Gary, DD doesn't like to be teased in that way.  Please don't play jokes like that on her anymore."  Not in an angry way, but firmly.  Then do the bean dip. 

CakeBeret

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #25 on: January 06, 2013, 03:04:05 PM »
I agree with PPs. I don't think anyone, child or adult, should have to fake amusement when a joke falls flat, particularly when the 'joke' involves invading someone's personal space.

I also think it would be fine for your DD to say "Please don't touch me" if Gary tries it again.

We have taught our son that if he doesn't want to be touched, he just has to say so nicely. He's not forced to hug relatives or be tickled if he's not in the mood. We back him up verbally, i.e. "He's not in the mood for a hug/to be tickled right now" and people learn to respect that pretty quickly.
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m2kbug

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #26 on: January 06, 2013, 03:29:49 PM »
It sounds like Gary tried to overcompensate for the failed joke and then went and did it again.  I think you and your daughter were just fine.  "Humoring" someone is also a balancing act.  Some people just don't recognize social cues like facial expression or a laugh that isn't boisterous, which would trigger someone to stop a certain behavior.  Humoring someone could be an invitation for that action to continue.  Sometimes you do, sometimes you don't.  You are allowing your daughter to place her own boundaries and work with what's comfortable for her and say so.  If she was rude, you could jump in and apologize to the individual and correct your daughter's behavior, but in this case, again, I think you and your daughter were just fine.

Lindee

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #27 on: January 06, 2013, 03:49:52 PM »
I'm very impressed by your daughter. I wish I'd had the self confidence she has. You must be doing something right.  Just a thought, would Gary have thought it funny if someone had tweaked his nose? Twice?

Sharnita

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #28 on: January 06, 2013, 03:53:50 PM »
I have no idea about Gary but I know a guy who loves that joke -it is his go to joke with kids and adults. If somebody would have told it with him he woul have laughed really hard the first time. He genuinely does think it is funny.

weeblewobble

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Re: Should my daughter have "humored" him?
« Reply #29 on: January 06, 2013, 03:57:03 PM »
Lindee, the martial arts classes have been a life-changer.  :) The funny thing is that she has only recently become self-confident enough to talk to kids her own age in this manner. She's always been comfortable with adults, but other kids sort of confused and intimidated her.  Now, she's on a more even keel and is equally comfortable with both age groups.