Someone I love is being hurt, can I do anything?
February 5, 2008 2:47 PM Subscribe
I think the way my brother parents is damaging my nephew. Should I mind my own business?
posted by esereth to Human Relations (49 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Bottom line: I have a serious problem with the way my brother and his wife are raising their son. They yell at their not-quite two year old for everything. Even for hugging me, his aunt. "Don't teach him to hang on people! He ain't a baby!"
He's too big to spank (very large child, looks like a four year old) so they flick him with their fingers to make him cry, sometimes smack his head. Very little affection, no praise, lots of screaming. He doesn't talk and is terrified of everything, even new toys. However, he is very well behaved, which they credit to their discipline.
Don't suggest I call CPS; I simply won't. It isn't bad enough for that. Also I have no influence over my brother; if I were to overtly meddle (ask him to reconsider his child rearing tactics) he'd step up his mistreatment to prove he could.
They all live with my mother, who has some say in how the baby is raised, and she is the main source of affection for my nephew. However she is a weak woman and would not openly defy my brother.
I'm watching this sweet little baby become more and more messed up every day. I think. Maybe I need to mind my own business. Maybe a rough rearing isn't that big of a deal.
What do I do?