Let me know when my child has done something wrong

One of one of my child's friends said something to him, quite stupidly in ear-shot of an adult.

He said something that didn't sit right with me.

To give a little context, the boys are 7/8yrs old and were being driven somewhere when they were overheard.

The boy said something quite odd, quite severe for a child of that age to say.

I understand that children at this age often say things or use language that they don't fully comprehend. Although I would often overlook such actions, this time I felt that the severity unusual for a child of that age.

The boy said something like "why don't you try and kill yourself."

I am quite sure the boy doesn't understand the implications or even the reality of what he said. But, that's a big enough thing to say to another child, for it to need a little investigation or at the very least acknowledgment.

The big question is do we tell the parents?

I believe we should. I believe there's a way to approach it which won't be accusatory or negative.

To strike a good relationship with other parents, especially those who will look after your child, you have to have a level of trust. I would want honesty and openness to go both ways. I would like to tell the parents what their child has done. Not because I think they have an obligation to punish that child or even address the issue. But for transparency! If my boy did or said something like that I'd want to know about it. I'd want to know where that came from, why he used it and how much he actually understood.

I wouldn't want a parent to hide it from me.

I hope that I can have a conversation with another parent knowing that my actions come from a place of respect and transparency. Not finger pointing or placing blame. In return, I would hope for the same from them.

Confrontation is something I struggle with and dislike. But with confrontation comes congruence and honesty. It may not be something you want to hear but ultimately and eventually you'll be glad you heard it.

The incident between the two boys was a while ago. Unfortunately, the window for me to present this to the parents has passed. My uncertainty and indecision let me down this time but I hope that if this happens again, I can have an honest conversation with any parent.

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