The Neighbor Boy

Yesterday as I was leaving with my excuse to go to Target, I called the neighbor boy a bastard under my breath. I feel bad even typing that and admitting I said it. Although Rob heard me say it which means it’s not like I could pretend I didn’t say it.

I do realize that Luke is going to meet children that are not nice. I realize that other children may influence him in ways that aren’t necessarily our ways of doing things. I understand that other kids are going to pick on him or tell him things about himself that aren’t necessarily true. I get all that. I’m not oblivious to that.

I also know Luke is not perfect. But I can tell you that all I ever hear about Luke is how sweet he is. How polite he is. How willing he is to get along. This is mostly when he is not at home which quite honestly is how I would prefer it, I guess.

Last summer when Luke and Ryan because friends it was good. Ryan told Luke what to do a lot, he seemed a little bossy and the two of them always had to do what Ryan wanted to do. And the bossy stuff was stupid too, like Ryan would come over here in his bare-feet and then when they wanted to go outside on the play set I would make them put shoes on because it gives them splinters. Ryan would tell Luke to go to his house and get his shoes. At first I didn’t really know this and Luke would do it. Finally, I caught on and one day I said, “No Ryan, you go get your own shoes.”

Ryan told me no.

“Ryan, go get your own shoes, Luke is not going to get them.”

Ryan told me no again.

Eventually Ryan got his own shoes.

Ryan would push Luke around in other ways too and last Fall Rob had a talk with Luke about what it means to be a good friend but also to stand up for himself.

I can’t remember exact situations last summer but I remember a lot of fighting between them but after talking to Ryan’s mom it seemed to only be happening here. There was also physical stuff always instigated by Ryan. I started to explain it to her a little of what was going on and she said, “That doesn’t surprise me, Ryan can be such an a-hole sometimes. Luke just needs to push him back.”

No way. No way was I going to encourage Luke to be physical.

She then told me that the fighting doesn’t happen at her house because Ryan knows he can’t there.

So that’s when I started to send Ryan home. He could come in and play but if he chose not to follow our rules, then go home.

That sort of helps. And then there’s Luke who is BEGGING to play with this kid. Because it’s his best friend, he says.

Over the winter we didn’t see too much of him, we still did but not like summer and fall so recently when it started to get warm, of course we did.

Over the winter Luke grew up a little. And he’s not doing what only Ryan wants to do anymore. And he let’s Ryan know this. However, this makes Ryan very upset.

Luke is very into golf, baseball, hockey, and football. Ryan is not. He’s just not into sports and that’s okay but every time he see’s Luke playing those things he yells mean stuff to him. “You don’t know how to play.” “You’re a bad boy!’ “No! You can’t be a football player!” “You are not doing it right!”

When Ryan does this in our yard, I send him home. But yesterday when I called him a bastard under my breath he was yelling it from the other side of the fence in his yard. BUT STILL!

Luke is very imaginative. He turns riding toys into a million things….one minute it’s a fire truck, the next it’s a monster truck or who knows. Sometimes when Ryan comes over Luke will ask him to play that with him but oh no! Not Ryan! Because, “This is not real, Luke. This CANNOT be a monster truck, you don’t even know what monster trucks are. You’re a bad boy!”

Ryan’s favorite thing to say to Luke is, you’re a bad boy.

So then I might ask if they want to watch a show together. Luke wanted to watch…Olivia, I think it was and of course Ryan said no because it’s a girls show. For some reason I don’t think it was Olivia because I specifically remember the show he told me about that it was not girly at all. Anyway, WHO CARES. Luke can watch whatever he wants!

On Easter Sunday we were out in the front yard. Luke was getting ready to ride his bike around  the driveway and Ryan didn’t want him to. I had just come out and sat down and I told Luke to put his helmet on if he did want to ride it so he brought it to me to help him unlatch it. Ryan ran over ripped it out of my hands (I had just taken it from Luke) and Ryan proceeded to throw it down our driveway because he didn’t want Luke to get it.

I sent him home. And I was not nice about it.

Two weeks ago when it was really warm, I asked Ryan’s mom if she wanted to take the boys around the block on their bikes. Ryan didn’t want to ride his bike he wanted to ride this big wheel thing. So we went. Luke was going up ahead, he knows when he has to stop and wait and he does. Ryan was so mad that Luke was going ahead us that he got off the big wheel and started running after Luke. Luke stopped because it was the stopping point for him and Ryan pushed him off his bike and on to the cement. He had scrapes all down the side of his tummy.

Honestly, that was the big moment for me that I almost lost it on his mom. And then on Easter Sunday when he took the helmet from ME and threw it away from me. Come on, kid.

Okay, so about me a little. I do make Luke do what Ryan wants to do when he comes over. I tell Luke that Ryan is his guest. I also try to always be around them so I can monitor. And I even go as far as far as to include Ryan in stuff like making Rob’s birthday cake and I let them help make their individual heart-shaped pizzas on Valentine’s Day. Whenever I hear Ryan say, “You’re not the boss, I’m the boss!” I quickly remind him WHO is the boss. And I especially love it when Rob reminds him. But I’m not going to cater to this kid. I’m not going to let this kid talk to Luke this way. He’ll have enough crap to deal with in life and I want him to hang on to his imagination and all that good stuff as long as he can and it PISSES me off that this kid is saying these things to him. SHUT UP, KID. I mean seriously, I find myself almost saying things to this kid that as an adult you are mature and should never say to a kid. You know like one those convo’s that might go like this,

“No, YOU ARE.”

“No, YOU ARE.”

“YOU shut up.”


Like that.

So you might be wondering how Ryan acts with Rob. Hahaha. One time Ryan’s mom asked me to watch him so she could walk down to the school (right on the corner) for her older son’s conferences. I said sure. But here’s where I get frustrated with her: she doesn’t tell Ryan she’s not going to be home. She doesn’t tell him anything and she just sneaks out after he goes downstairs to play with Luke and says to me, “I’m just going to quick go, he’ll get upset.” Um, okay…but now he thinks she’s home. So something happened and Rob was telling Ryan he needed to knock it off or he would get a timeout. Ryan said, “I don’t do time-outs”, and Rob said, “You certainly will here!” and Ryan runs out the front door and Rob goes after him and is like chasing him around the yard like a runaway puppy. First off, his mom isn’t home and Rob’s not going to let him go home to an empty house and secondly um….you don’t run from Rob. Ryan’s mom was just walking back down the street and Rob was so irritated I’m pretty sure he just waved at her and said, “There he is!”

And a few weeks back when we bought Luke a new golf set (plastic) Ryan was mad Luke was playing golf so we had Luke come in (I think we were getting ready to eat anyway) and I see Ryan through our big front window TAKING THE GOLF STUFF like he was going to hide it from Luke. Rob goes out there and recovers Luke’s stuff  and just comes back in shaking his head. WTF?? I mean, what do we do with this kid?

She reminds us a lot just how much of a jerk Ryan is, (her words) and Rob and I can’t help but wonder, aren’t you embarrassed? Why don’t you fix that instead of expecting other people to conform to him?

One day recently Ryan kept coming over and I kept saying Luke couldn’t play. He came over 5 times. I just feel like why do you even want to play with him??

Luke did say to me the other day that he didn’t want to play with Ryan anymore because Ryan is mean.

I know he will still play with him but I’m glad he’s started to recognize that Ryan is mean.

They were gone out-of-town for Spring break and the other neighbor boy on the other side of us asked to come in and play with Luke. They were downstairs for a good 3 hours. No fighting. The only time I saw them was when they came up to use the potty.

I feel like that is what it’s supposed to be like. Yes, some fighting. Yes, maybe he took this from me-okay we can work it out….but this Ryan kid and all this drama? AM I CRAZY??

Ryan’s mom is a really good friend of mine. We’ve gotten really close and I do have my reason’s from what I’ve seen of why he acts this way which this post is long enough so I promise I’ll come back tomorrow with that.  But she wanted Luke and Ryan to go to Spanish preschool together. There’s only 8 boys signed up and they would all be together until third grade.




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  1. Yes, I understand this. Luckily, for us, the little girl that we GREATLY dislike lives far away from us and B only sees her at preschool. B understands that she shouldn’t play with this little girl when she is mean and the teachers have now intervened and taught how to be a good friend as part of the lessons, but man, what a little b**ch this girl is. And I am super glad we are moving so B will not be with her much longer.

  2. umm, wow! I think what amazes me the most is that the mom recognizes it and tells you about it….. obviously, she’s telling you what you already know. Sounds to me like he probably gets this from an older sibling or even his parent… and it’s his turn to be the “big” guy. Good for Luke in realizing the kid is mean and standing his ground. Hopefully, the other neighbor kid will work out better! All you can do is be firm like you’re doing…. maybe, just maybe, it will rub off on the kid!

  3. oh my! you are in a pickle! friends with the neighbor boy’s mom is one thing–but the kid sounds like a terror–where is he picking up/learning this crazy behavior?? good for you for keeping your cool and enforcing the rules in your home so that they also apply to this kid. tough situation since the kid lives so close… good luck–sounds like you are coping better than i would!

  4. Sass

     /  April 24, 2012

    I’m so glad I read this so I know what to do if it happens to me! Crazy crazy kid but I think you and Rob are handling it so well!


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