So one time I was at the house alone with the kid. I turned my back on him for a couple minutes, he came walking into the living room from the kitchen carrying a butcher knife almost as long as his leg. I yelled at him got that knife away from him. When the mom got home I told her the story and she laughed and said 'oh Damien!' (kid's name was Damien)
When I told my friend later he sort of buried his head in his hands and said something about how hard it was and he was always mean to the kid and having to yell at him because basically he was the only adult in his life that kept him in check. Probably my friend should have found a better way of handling Damien, but on the other hand some situations are more difficult than others.
Four years old can be taught to cut soft vegetables under close supervision. However, if you constantly yell at four years old, four years old will learn to ignore everything except yelling.
Not that occasional yelling harms that kid or something. But, yelling often is more of adult emotional reaction, not a rational reaction to real acute danger.
A 4-year-old is old enough to know what they are and aren't allowed to grab, in terms of common household items.
> However, if you constantly yell at four years old, four years old will learn to ignore everything except yelling.
If you consistently show a four-year-old that only yelling will be followed by physical intervention, then they will learn to ignore everything except yelling. If you consistently show a four-year-old that a quiet "I'm going to count to three... one... TWO..." will be followed by physical intervention, then they will learn to pay attention to that.
The default attitude of most four-year-olds is "make me" and if you let them know what will result in you making them do the thing, they will pay attention.
Not that I never yelled at kids. I did. But this reaction on that situation sound like that.
So, he was probably wrong in how he handled it, but it was quite heartfelt what he said, he was handling it as well as he could, and perhaps that was badly. It was hard for me to second guess him under the circumstance.