24 answers

6-Year-old Boy Wrestling Around

My son is always telling me that at school and at daycare that he and his friends are always wrestling and jumping on each other and knocking each other down. I asked him why he couldn't just be nice and play nicely. Wondering if that is a boy thing.

He is also very sassy and have to give him "the look" and he quits, but drives me crazy.

Anyone else?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Okay, I am finding out that they tend to play like that. I grew up in a home with a sister so having boys is totally foreign to me. I do kind of like that at least I won't have to play Barbies.

Featured Answers

I know you got a lot of responses already....but I couldn't resist.

My older brother has 3 boys...I have an only child girl...
He once tried to play with her. He felt awful for making her cry, but her beloved cuddle bunny doesn't wrestle or like to be "body slammed". It was hilarious to talk about it years later.

It is a proven fact...

In a controlled environment, observing the difference between little boys and little girls when given a new object....

Statistically, little boys are more likely to experiment with it like a little boy....can I bite it? Change the form? what kind of noise does it make when I bang it on the ground? and for some...how far can I throw it?....and many other more rough observations.

Little Girls want to see how it feels against their cheek, smell it, see if its cuddly, or relate it somehow to a pet or living being.

There are always exceptions...but statistically....you have a normal little Boy.

2 moms found this helpful

I realize I'm way later than others in responding but had to chime in ... this is a *HUGE* "boy thing". There are about 6 little boys in my son's first grade class, all of whom walk home after school. The moms and I sit at the playground and watch as they work out their collective energies by wrestling each other to the ground. Once in a while, one will start fussing because they've gotten on the bottom of the pile--but this is extremely typical boy stuff. My son also plays that way with his big sister, and although she's petite, she can definitely hold her own against the big boys.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

Hi L.-

I wanted to let you know about some fascinating research conducted by John Gottman, PhD, out in Seattle, Washington. He talks about the importance of this rough and tumble play; play that changes from second to second, play that is highly charged. This play (with appropriate limits in terms of not physically hurting someone) is excellent for your child, whether it be a boy or girl. This is because ( and there is research to support this)this is one excellent way children learn to be highly engaged and aroused and be able to self soothe and calm down when the play changes. It is practice in self regulation of physiological arousal. The wrestling play usually happens between dads and sons, but again, it can be done by moms to sons and daughters too. Read Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child (Gottman) for more detailed information. But the bottom line is practice this type of play at home with limits and your child will benefit emotionally. It's fascinating information!

2 moms found this helpful

I know you got a lot of responses already....but I couldn't resist.

My older brother has 3 boys...I have an only child girl...
He once tried to play with her. He felt awful for making her cry, but her beloved cuddle bunny doesn't wrestle or like to be "body slammed". It was hilarious to talk about it years later.

It is a proven fact...

In a controlled environment, observing the difference between little boys and little girls when given a new object....

Statistically, little boys are more likely to experiment with it like a little boy....can I bite it? Change the form? what kind of noise does it make when I bang it on the ground? and for some...how far can I throw it?....and many other more rough observations.

Little Girls want to see how it feels against their cheek, smell it, see if its cuddly, or relate it somehow to a pet or living being.

There are always exceptions...but statistically....you have a normal little Boy.

2 moms found this helpful

After being mom of three boys and daycare provider to five other ones, I CAN tell you that it is a boy thing. Also, like the men who catch the BIG fish and they get away, there's a good chance he exaggerates just how much beating up is going on at daycare and school. My boys are more physical than my girls far more but it's not out of meanness, it just ...is... My boys have played soccer and football and wrestling to give them a more directed outlet for their physical side. Not all boys are like this, but if he's not being reported by his provider or teachers, chances are it's not out-of-the-ordinary or hurting the boys he's with. I've learned over the years that sometimes, I have to bite my lip and not look, it hurts me more than it hurts them!!

2 moms found this helpful

If it is really bothering him and he or the other boy are getting hurt, I'd be concerned...but if it is regular boy roughhousing and wrestling I wouldn't be. I have determined that the wresting, etc that my husband, brother, brother in laws and nephews do is really how they show their affection! As soon as someone gets hurt, they are done, and it is never the purpose. I think many boys and guys don't always know how to say, I really love you and don't feel like giving a hug, so they laugh and throw them down to wrestle! I know it sounds strange to most of us!

1 mom found this helpful

My issue is that while this kind of play seems to be normal. It should not be allowed in school or daycare. That is harsh physical contact and sure enough someone will get hurt and it could be badly. BTW-You can die from being hit in the heart the wrong way at the wrong time so if I were you I would speak to the people in charge about the problem. Just a heads up.

1 mom found this helpful

yes it's a boy thing-last week at my son's soccer practice most of the boy's had to have a time out from the coach because they were wrestling and not playing soccer like they were suppose to. and my son is only five.

1 mom found this helpful

I have a two and a half year old little boy and he loves to just playfully wrestle and roll around with my husband or I. Boys are rough and tumble, it is just natural. We explain to him that he can play and "tackle" with Mommy and Daddy at home but it is not ok at school b/c he could accidentally hurt someone smaller than us. So far we have not had a problem. He cannot wait to come home and play football with us!!! Good luck

1 mom found this helpful

L.,
My son is first grade as well- And Yes, regardless of what others might say- the rough housing is boy play. I fully feel it it healthy although the school is having issues with it at times. I am now having to learn how to teach him boundaries. Our daycare allows the older boys to "dog pile" and rough house- away from the smaller ones of course, but that is not acceptable at school. It tends to be a little confusing for him I think, but he is getting the idea.

1 mom found this helpful

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