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Should I be concerned about the violent things my grandson brags he has done?

Question:
My ten-year-old grandson brags about violent things he says he has done. I don’t believe he has really hurt or beaten up all the boys he says he has, but I am worried about his boastful attitude. Should I be concerned?

Answer:
You ask if you should be concerned, but the fact that you ask at all means you are concerned, so let’s start there. Next, why don’t you believe that your grandson has done some of the things he has boasted about? The possibility that he may have, and the fact that his ideation seems focused on violence, seems like a matter for some attention. Boasting about having committed violence is not a boasting problem; it’s of more interest to me if he is focusing a great deal on violence. Questions that come to mind: Is he angry about something? Is he being mistreated at school? Or elsewhere?

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