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Dear MIRIAM: I FEAR MUM'S LOST CONTROL.

Byline: Dr MIRIAM STOPPARD

Dear MIRIAM MY best friend's son is three and she seems helpless trying to control him. I'm driven crazy when I'm around him. He's the most undisciplined child I've ever seen.

Having a conversation with her is impossible as he's constantly tugging at her for attention or running around.

I would love to tell my friend she needs to be tougher. How can I do this without offending her? I don't have any children myself but, when I do, they'll be much better behaved.

WE'RE not in Victorian times when children were expected to be seen and not heard. He's too young to understand the concept of being on his best behaviour for visitors.

Children are often restless and noisy.

No matter how honourable your motives, I would advise against criticising your friend's parenting skills or her son. It will make her defensive and you could lose her friendship.

Try meeting her for coffee or a quick lunch at a time when her partner is watching the boy so you can talk to your heart's content in peace.

CAPTION(S):

RUNNING WILD: Her boy
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Title Annotation:Letters
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Jan 11, 2007
Words:188
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