Am I too sensative?? - FamilyEducation
Am I too sensative??
11/20/2008 at 12:57 PM

My little boy is 8 years old.  His father has never been in his life.  I am seriously dating a man who I have allowed to be in my boy's life. 

My bf is an honorable, successful and good hearted man.  He has taught me a great deal about boy relationships and really contributed in a positive way in my son's life. 

However, my bf sometimes has certain issues with the way I tend to my son.  He thinks it is unreasonable for me to clean my boy's ears out with a q-tip, stating he should learn to do that himself.  He encourages my son's independence and it has been good for my son, but I sometimes feel he does not understand that an 8 year old is too young to be COMPLETELY independent. 

Overall, my bf and my son have a fantastic friendship and my son is not aware of any problems (he's happy and loves my bf and looks up to him)... But I am troubled on some level ...

One other incedent that has me bothered is that my bf found a little action figure all chewed up.  I saw the toy laying on his dresser and I asked if his dog had chewed up the toy.  He explained that he thought my son chewed up the toy.  I wondered how he could be so ignorant.  In his defense, my son does "maim" his toy soldiers by removing arms and legs.  This toy however was a larger hard plastic toy that would have taken him hours to chew up.  I never for one second thought my kid chewed up the toy.  I am insulted that my bf did not just believe us when my kid has never given us any reason to think he is dishonest.

Should I overlook these things?  Truley we all have such a relaxed and enjoyable relationship that I feel pretty lucky.  But lately I am offended by my bf's observations and comments. 


Tamz, You seem to care about your son very much, and that's what makes a good mother. I commend you for being watchful of the new man you have brought into your son's life. That being said, you have radars going off to the point you felt the need to seek an opinion. You can't ignore that. You didn't mention if he has children? If not, it may be a lack of experience on his part. And moms are, well, going to mother. That's our job. A dad and a mom bring different things to their children, it's a balance. However, if you and your bf aren't seeing eye to eye on things now, I would give a serious pause to check deeper. There may be a control issue that is rearing its head? Fights about how to raise stepchildren contributes largely to failed second marriages. You didn't say how long you have been dating, but IMHO it's none of his business if you want to clean your sons ears! Please wait before making any serious committments with this guy. "Not now" doesn't mean "not ever". Just wait and see. Your motherly instincts will tell you what to do. If he is indeed the wonderful man you say he is, he'll grow into it just fine. And if he's not that man, then it will be easier to extricate him from you and your son's lives. Best of luck.

After my son's take their showers I take the Q-tips to both of them. I also still clip their fingernails and toenails. I will stop doing this when I think my kids are able to do it properly. Not when someone else thinks I should. Do what you feel is right for your son. FYI, my son's are 10 and 7 now. I wouldn't feel right with an 8 year old using a Q-tip.

SnglDad - You're awesome! Getting a man's opinion is good here. Honestly, I would clean my kids ears til college if I thought he needed help. I really wanted some parents to tell me if there are any 8 year olds out there using q-tips. Thanks again!! SteppinOut - I have known my bf for five years, but he has only been in my son's life for the last 16 months. My bf has three children of his own and they are awesome kids. The truth is, his kids being so well adjusted makes me wonder if he might be right about certain issues like kids being independent. On the other hand, I know I am wise enough to "do what I think is right for my son" ... I should learn to trust myself more. It's because I made so many mistakes with my other boys and I don't want to make the same mistakes with my youngest boy. This post did help with the q-tip issue anyway... Thank you both for your input! I'm going to have to ponder the idea of "a control issue" a little more...

Tamz, Glad we could help. One can never be too careful when involving another person in their childrens lives as a stepparent, ya know? And remember I am on the outside looking in so to speak, so my knowledge is definitely limited. Just throwing some stuff out there, so you can, yes, Good luck! p.s. my son is 17 and now I'm thinking of going and checking his ears! lol

Hi tamz, I too have a hard time accepting other's opinions or observational comments, especially when it comes to my children. You know your son best, so do what you feel is right for him. I actually stopped cleaning my boys' ears w/ Q-tips b/c their dr told me it only pushes the wax in further and has probably been the cause of their repeated ear infections. Since I stopped the Q-tips, they haven't had one ear infection, so go figure. As for the chewed up toy, I wldn't worry about it too much. You weren't there, so you really have no idea what happened. If your son says he didn't chew the toy, and he doesn't have a habit of doing this, why not believe him? It's more likely that the dog did it, but you can't be sure of that either. Just explain to your BF that no one saw it happen, so no one shld be blamed. It's hard not being sensitive when it comes to your children. I know I become very defensive w/ my boys as well. Talk to your BF, and explain how you feel. I'm sure he'll be more careful the next time something like this happens. I don't think your BF intensionally meant any harm.