Hello all. I am a 23 year old graduated student currently studying abroad in another country. I am posting because I am having some difficulties with my host family and I don't know what to do.
I have currently been here for two out of the three months that I will be living abroad, and for the most part I've been able to compromise through all obstacles that have been in my way regarding my family. But one problem has been getting increasingly more difficult to handle, and that is my 7 year old host sister's violent behavior.
More and more, as she has become comfortable around me, my host sister has been throwing more tantrums when I don't let her have her way. She hits, slaps, bites (not hard but enough), tries to rip my clothes, and one time even threw my phone. I respond calmly by saying "Please don't do that, I wish you wont do that, If you continue this behavior we cant have fun anymore... etc." But that only seems to instigate her more. Sometimes I try to exit the situation by moving to another room, but she will grab my arm or bar the door.
Normally I would feel comfortable telling parents when children I babysat at home were acting up. But I feel more nervous to because A. I am living and utilizing resources in someone else's home. and B. The parents seem to tolerate her behavior (She once slapped her mom because she was laughing at something her daughter did, and the mom just gasped and then laughed, She once kicked her dad in the head (again not hard, but enough to get her point across) and the dad just responded with "Don't").
I am very conflicted because my host parents are wonderful and have been so hospitable towards me, but I don't know how much more of my host sister's behavior I can take. I have the option to move into a dorm (which are reserved in case host families don't work out) but I only have 24 more days left and I don't want to ruin the relationship I have with my host parents by leaving. Any Advice?
I understand what you are going through because I went through the same thing with my dad's side of the family. I was in someone else's home in a different state not country, but I also dealt with a selfish violent and self-centered young girl. I decided to leave because her parents and grand parents couldn't control her. You can stay and talk to them and hope they discipline their daughter or you can move into a dorm. Most likely if she always been that violent and they haven't taught her right from wrong and that she is too old to be behaving the way she has you staying there and telling them isn't going to change anything. Or you can be the wake up call they need. And you should never take abuse silently just because your in their home.
Utlimately this is your decision and you have to choose what's best for you.
It sounds like the parents are in fact enabling this child to act the way she does. They turn a blind eye to aggression.
Yes, you should leave because she is getting physical with her bad behavior. And yes, you should tell the parents why, very gently and with hope that they will seek family counseling.
But you should not be the victim of this family's dysfunction or this child's aggression.