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Boys and soft toys


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#1 ~strawberry~

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:03 PM

My son (10y/o in gr5) has a friend coming over and it's been suggested (not by my son, by another family member) that I should hide all his soft toys.

He is dealing with some bullying at school and at one of his sports, he has ADHD, ODD and anxiety, so school and sport is not an easy ride for him. My family member is concerned that he acts quite young for his age (common for ADHD kids as their social and emotional development is delayed) and that he will be bullied further for how he acts.

Do other boys this age still have soft toys?  Should he be hiding this side of himself? I don't want him to feel ashamed about still needing his comfort toys (which they very much are), but I also don't want him to get picked on for it.

Sorry if this is not the clearest, my mind is all over the place right now. Would really love some help on how to handle this. Thanks!

#2 Elizabethandfriend

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:12 PM

I think by the age of 10 most boys would have a couple of favourite soft toys in their room only - probably connected to a character or TV show.

#3 Jenflea

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:13 PM

Leave them where they are.

It's HIS space so he can have them out if he wants, don't make him change to suit some family member's opinion.

I know of at least 2 12 yr old boys who still sleep with their single parents. I know of a few 8/9 yr old boys with soft toys.

Don't buy into society's BS about boys not liking certain things or not being allowed to show their softer side IN THEIR OWN ROOM.

If it's a friend then I doubt he'd care, if the friend makes a comment then you know he's not a good friend after all.

#4 PrincessPeach

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:18 PM

Going by my 7 & 9 year old nephews, they still have a couple soft toys in their rooms, but that is all.

I found he is worried about being teased, maybe get him to pick 5 of his favourites to leave out & the pop the rest in the cupboard for the play date.

#5 Crombek

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:20 PM

Leave them. Raising it with him will send the even more damaging message that there is something wrong with him. It is his safe space.

There are plenty of boys that age who have soft toys in their room, whether they still role play with them or not.

#6 Mrs Twit

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:21 PM

My 11yo (almost 12) DS still sleeps with his favourites. I don't know if he takes them on a sleepover, but if someone stays over or visits he doesn't take them off his bed. I imagine he will be taking at least one to Gr 6 camp - it is on the what to bring list - Soft Toy (Optional).

#7 spr_maiden

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:23 PM

Maybe give him a few phrases to counteract negative comments about his soft toys - "it's an inanimate object, it can't hurt you, you know" in a scoffing tone comes to mind, rather than getting him to put his soft toys away.

#8 MarciaB

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:25 PM

I absolutely do not think there is anything wrong with a 10 year old playing with soft toys and/or sleeping with them and I suspect it is very common and more "usual" than not.

Having said that - personally I would put all but maybe 2-3 away in a "safe" place.

If your son asks, I would simply say that you did not know whether new friend would be kind to his special toys and thought it best this time to put them away.  If he wants to - he could leave them out next time and if he comes looking for them, show him where they are and he can pull them out if he wanted to.

Hope he enjoys his play!

Edited by MarciaB, 24 May 2019 - 12:27 PM.


#9 Fresh Start

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:27 PM

View PostJenflea, on 24 May 2019 - 12:13 PM, said:

I know of at least 2 12 yr old boys who still sleep with their single parents. I know of a few 8/9 yr old boys with soft toys.

Oh, I really thought my almost 8 DS and almost 10 DD would get sick of sleeping with me soon! Maybe not.

DS sleeps in his room for sleepovers and makes sure all evidence he usually sleeps with me is hidden! That’s his choice not mine.

#10 2_little_boys

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:33 PM

My DS16 and DS12 both still sleep with their soft toys.  Actually DS12 has them above his pillow in is bookshelf.  DS16 sleeps with about 4 or 5.

#11 Weavile

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:37 PM

DS (9 year 4) still have heaps of plush toys, sleeps with them, plays with them, even takes them ti school sometimes, so I am on team leave them.

#12 a letter to Elise.

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:37 PM

My almost 10 year old has two very special soft toys, plus a whole tribe of others in steady rotation on his bed. No one has ever commented on them. I think it’s pretty normal. He likes cute things, and actually says he wants them around, as he’ll only be a kid once, so he will enjoy it while he can!

He has a pretty quirky bedroom, with bright curtains with flowers and animals, a big sky mural on one wall, and until recently, a polka dot canopy over his bed (we only took it down because it was dirty). None of his friends has ever commented on any of it.

#13 mayahlb

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:40 PM

Well going by a number of 10yr olds I know they still play with soft toys. Actually my boys play with their soft toys (mostly beanie boos) just as much as they okay with LEGO.

Why should you child have to hide what he is interested in? It’s his space, he’s perfectly fine to have what’s important to him in his space.

BTW my son is also in yr5 and is 10. He often takes a plush toy to school and the majority of the class love playing with it, taking turns on who get it on the desk. Role play using it etc etc.

#14 Fourteenyears

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:40 PM

View PostFourteenyears, on 24 May 2019 - 12:40 PM, said:

How many are there?

My 14 year old, who socialises in an age appropriate manner,  still has a handful on display in his room.  He has never seemed self conscious about it and his friends don’t seem to find them weird.

My 9yo girl, on the other hand, is seriously obsessed with stuffed toys. She has an insane number of them in her bedroom.   And her friends can’t help but comment because it is well out of the ordinary.

So yeah, age and gender is one thing, but there comes a quantity of stuffed toys that is ‘weird’ regardless of the other variables.

How many are there?

My 14 year old, who socialises in an age appropriate manner,  still has a handful on display in his room.  He has never seemed self conscious about it and his friends don’t seem to find them weird.

My 9yo girl, on the other hand, is seriously obsessed with stuffed toys. She has an insane number of them in her bedroom.   And her friends can’t help but comment because it is well out of the ordinary.

So yeah, age and gender is one thing, but there comes a quantity of stuffed toys that is ‘weird’ regardless of the other variables.

Eta:  we don’t hide them for visits though.  Her friends find it quirky but she IS quirky and that is part of her charm.

Edited by Fourteenyears, 24 May 2019 - 12:42 PM.


#15 Future-self

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:41 PM

This makes me want to cry.
He’s a kid. Your family member is asking him to hide aspects of himself just in case they’re not considered mundane enough or in case someone notices something that isn’t exactly the same as their own room.

Tell your family member that heading through the teen years it’s going to become increasingly difficult to make sure your kid knows that they are ‘enough’ and increasingly hard to make sure they don’t commit suicide because they don’t feel anchored to their lives and families and friends or ‘’enough’. Tell this family member that you are not going to be the first person in your sons life to let him know that his toys, his likes, his space is embarrassing and he should hide anything different tor interesting about himself.

#16 Melbs2010

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:42 PM

My eight year old son has heaps of soft toys in his room.  He no longer carries them around or plays with them but always has at least one (sometimes four) for sleep.

I wouldn't pack them away especially if they help with being comfortable

#17 seayork2002

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:43 PM

My son is 11 and has probably 50 in his room and more in the garage same as his car mat and his 'babyish' doonah covers.

he does not want to change a thing, he is in high school next year so we offered to re do his room for him he said

'I am perfectly happy with my room the way it is'

'I am perfectly happy with my room the way it is'

#18 dadwasathome

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:45 PM

Leave them. DS11 has only taken his out of his bed during this year, but still had Totoro clearly on display. Next to all his aircraft models

#19 ali-song

Posted 24 May 2019 - 12:51 PM

My DS14 still has a couple in his bed - I think there’s a shark, an echidna, and an ankylosaurus. Never hidden them from anyone.

#20 mintpatty

Posted 24 May 2019 - 01:01 PM

My deep voiced, pimply faced, braces wearing, super tall DS13 still sticks his teddy under his arm each night, in his room which is decorated with (computer game) Assassin’s Creed merch from a show bag. Melts my heart.

It’s unfair your son is having a hard time at school, but he shouldn’t have to hide who he is. I hope his catch up goes well.

#21 Literary Lemur

Posted 24 May 2019 - 01:05 PM

My 14 year old loves his soft toys. He has them on proud display. If he needs to video himself for some reason he likes to include them. I think he took one to year 8 camp. He is very social and has lots of friends. It's never occurred to me to ask him to hide them.  

What is this family member like in general?

#22 seayork2002

Posted 24 May 2019 - 01:08 PM

View PostLiterary Lemur, on 24 May 2019 - 01:05 PM, said:

My 14 year old loves his soft toys. He has them on proud display. If he needs to video himself for some reason he likes to include them. I think he took one to year 8 camp. He is very social and has lots of friends. It's never occurred to me to ask him to hide them.  

What is this family member like in general?

That reminds me on the packing list for cubs (and scouts I think) for some of DS's camps it actually mentions taking one!

#23 AliasMater

Posted 24 May 2019 - 01:09 PM

My 13 year old love his plushies.

#24 Babetty

Posted 24 May 2019 - 01:10 PM

My 10 year old DS has 4 soft toys on his bed and a tub of assorted ones in a corner of his room. He's never put them away when friends visit.

#25 Veritas Vinum Arte

Posted 24 May 2019 - 01:14 PM

My 12 & 14yo DSs have had to limit the number of plush toys due to space restrictions which we build. My 14yo still has Lambie (which he has had since birth) on his bed plus sheepie and magic mickey. My 12yo has ony 15 or so on his bed at present.... but is really looking forward to 2m time when the house is finished and he can get his storage box stuffed full of plush toys back.

DD at 10 took a teddy with a light for a tummy on school camp recently.






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