When The Neighbor Knocks....

A Post on Teaching Your Child to Apologize

Okay, writing this blog post kind of makes me smile. This post all stems from an incident that happened about a half hour to 45 minutes ago.

Benjamin started throwing a fit because I wouldn't give him my phone to look up toys to check out. (It is a funny thing he does. He loves his toys!) He has a tablet so I told him to use that if he really wanted to look at toys, but if he kept it up I would have to take that away as well. Well in his fits his new thing is to pound his foot on the floor. Yes, I have a foot stomper. I have no idea where this stems from or where he got the idea that it would be cool to pound his foot, but I guess it's better than hitting!

During his fit he was pounding his foot, and I told him to stop pounding his foot because we have neighbors and it is disrespectful. We live on the 3rd floor of an apartment complex and I am POSITIVE our neighbors hear all this commotion going on.

Mid-fit I get a knock on my door. I left him where he was in the kitchen to get the door. Sure enough, the dreaded day has arrived! It was my downstairs neighbor. He was polite enough I must say, asking if I could get him under control because his wife has anxiety blah blah. Dude, I know it's annoying. I'm annoyed too! I just told him I am doing my best, my kid is only 4 and this is how he rolls at times. (No reflection of me as a parent, kids have fits!) He stood outside my door long enough, in my opinion, and finally he said okay and walked away.

I shut the door. I really am not offended at all by this, it was bound to happen with all the pounding he does at times, but really it isn't even once a day. But either way, I have to teach my kid what is right and the fact he is offending the neighbors got me thinking.

So this is how I dealt with the situation. I had him sit at the table with his crayons and pencil and I had him write "Sorry" on the page and then color. He drew what he calls his Batman robot in the bottom corner and then I have absolutely no idea what the pink thing is.

Around noon, I told him before we eat lunch, we will go downstairs so you can give this note and two flowers (I have a bouquet on my table) to the neighbors and apologize for being disruptive.

We get to the door and no one answers. I knock again and same thing. After the third knock (I was NOT giving up after this effort and I knew someone was home; the TV was on) I heard someone coming to the door.

I explained to the lady who answered what had happened. That her husband had come upstairs and asked us to try to be quieter. She didn't even know he did that! Either way I told her we were sorry and that Benjamin had written a note and wanted to give it to her. She gratefully took the note and flowers and sat and chatted for a minute. Benjamin was super shy and didn't say a word. After he gave her the note and flowers he hid behind me hahaha!

All in all, I feel that this was a good way to handle it. He knows that is unacceptable to behave roughly and needs to learn to have others in consideration. And I think he hit a soft spot on her heart. Now she a face to picture when she hears the pounding :)

What would you do if this happened to you? Let me know in the comments below! I would love your feedback!


  1. Rachel this was a super smart idea! Way to go. Brilliant I say! Its so important to teach kids this at that age. Also I feel your pain. We currently live in apartment to! We just moved here a year ago not knowing the area where to get house... we moved to start a new fresh start in life. We hope to move to a rental house later this year near lease renewal time if God so sees fit for us.

    1. Haha thanks! I think it is important as well and since the incident he hasn't done it much at all. That is exactly what we did! We moved last February! We didn't know anybody here at all so house hunting begins this year now that we know the area better. The move has done our family amazing though and I love it here!

  2. I love the way you handled this! I think it not only teaches respect for others but also to have manners. I love this post! Thank you for sharing.

  3. Sweet. I like how you handled it. It's hard for anyone to apologize no matter what age you are. It's great to teach your kids early.

    1. It is so hard to apologize and my 4 year old is definitely no exception haha! Thank you!

  4. I love how you handled it!! Great way to teach the kiddo a lesson! Parenting is hard work! Apologies are sometimes hard for us to understand as adult, so it can be difficult for a little one to grasp. Great work!


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