25 April 2012

"Brat" Bans

No one likes a screaming kid or crying baby in public, even the most understanding of parents. Fortunately for me Natalie is so amazed with her surroundings while out and about that really no matter how tired she is she stays pretty content. I usually like to leave her with a sitter when I go out to eat or grocery shopping anyway, simply because it is that much easier when she's at home. Not every parent has the option of leaving their child with someone while they have a nice lunch out or run errands though and kids will throw fits from time to time. You can't control it. I've always been understanding of this, even before the thought of becoming a mother ever crossed my mind. Not everyone is so accepting though and there are many "no kids allowed" policies springing up at restaurants, movie theaters, hotels, airlines and even grocery stores around the country.

It's no secret that the traditional notion of getting married and popping out babies is becoming less desired for a lot of people. I'll admit that I didn't always want kids. That didn't last long and I realized how important having a family was to me. I don't have a problem with anyone who chooses not to become a parent. I do have a problem with the snotty attitude of childless people though.

Every time I see a little kid having a meltdown in public I turn my head the other way. I know it's like a siren when you hear a child screaming, you have to look in that direction, but I have seen so many people stare, whisper and give dirty looks to the parent whose child is misbehaving. It's downright rude. Do you think it's helpful to do this? Do you think the parent will say something that will miraculously stop the temper tantrum because you, holier than thou you, gave them a death stare? People need to travel with their kids. They need to go to the store and other places while their children accompanies them. Is it really that hard for you to ignore a baby needing to be fed or a whining child?

I am not saying children should be allowed to run wild and misbehave. It is the parents responsibility to teach their child how to act. Kids are kids though. The younger they are the even harder it is to console them when they're upset. And yes, they might freak out in the middle of an aisle because you told them they wouldn't buy that new toy. Is your life really that much harder because you had to walk by that?

None of us were magically cast into perfect, well mannered adults. We all started off as annoying, antsy, impatient little beings who got on someone's last nerve. It really disturbs me how intolerant the world is becoming of children. This is how our species goes on. What ever happened to children being the "future" and not a nuisance to society?

17 Thoughts :

Jazz April 25, 2012 at 12:23 PM  

I so agree with you on this post.
I admit, I get so pissed when there's a child or baby screaming on the bus at half 7 in the morning when I'm practically still asleep, but I never give the parents/grandparents, etc. dirty looks, the kid can't help the fact it wants to cry! I just stick my earphones in and get over it.
But some of the other jerks on the bus have to make such a big deal about it.
There's this woman who gets on the bus, with a pram with a baby in it and she also comes with twin toddlers, obviously taking them to nursery. And when one of them starts winging, or when the mother asks everyone to get off the bus so she can get the pram and kids past (the bus gets so busy, like loads have to stand until you generally can't fit anymore on the bus, so when she gets off, loads have to get off the bus as well so she can actually get off!), SO many arses from college winge and give dirty looks. They're the one's acting like toddlers.
Grrrrr. And to be honest if I didn't look like an absolute freak, I'd happily like to have a good temper tantrum on the bus when I'm in a bad mood, so I'm pretty jealous of those kids and babies that can get away with it!

(And just read your previous post - I like posts that give opinions, so please do more!)

Shannon April 25, 2012 at 12:38 PM  

I'm one of those people who didn't react appropriately to children before becoming a parent. I remember getting frustrated if a kid sat behind me on a plane or if a kid threw a tantrum at the table next to me at a restaurant. Now that I'm a parent, I feel awful for all those judgmental thoughts.

The other day I witnessed a kid throwing a tantrum at Target. My heart went out to that parent and I totally understood why the parent was doing what he was doing.

I wish I would have known all this before having Tay.

Krista April 25, 2012 at 12:53 PM  

Unfortunately I think a lot of people just don't understand what it takes to "control" a child unless they really do have one of their own. Hopefully though more people will be raised with good manners themselves and realize that giving some poor over-stressed mom a "death stare" is indeed rude and of absolutely no use in resolving the situation.

Emilie April 25, 2012 at 1:14 PM  

I totally agree with you!

Stephanie April 25, 2012 at 1:17 PM  

I too often wondered why the parents couldn't control their kids when out in public having a tantrum. It wasn't necessarily the tantrum itself, it was either the parents yelling at the kids or the kids screaming and the parents completely oblivious. Now that I am a parent, I am more understanding. I dread the day we have our first public tantrum though.

Shannon April 25, 2012 at 1:18 PM  

Ok, I totally agree with what you're saying.

Unless the behavior happens to be my all time hated pet peeve: when your kid is kicking my seat, turned around staring into my booth throwing things (or spitting...I've had that) while I am eating, etc. and the parent doesn't correct the behavior...NOT okay. (I certainly don't take it out on the kid, as they are a product of their raising). In those situations, I am frustrated with the PARENT. NOT THE CHILD.

I fully think it's okay to speak to a parent if their child is behaving in a way that negatively impacts me, only under the circumstance that the child is old enough to understand corrective behavior and then APPLY the correction... aka..over 4 years old (maybe younger in some cases) should be able to listen to a parent and obey orders. IMHO.

Good post though, definitely gave me perspective :)

Venassa April 25, 2012 at 1:28 PM  

I'll admit that the sound of a whining child really annoys me, but that also includes mine. I don't look down on anyone or give anyone any kind of look because a child is upset. Now if they're letting their child run wild and really misbehave, I will sometimes give a bit of a look. I worked in a grocery store and have seen a few times when parents will let their WAY too young child run off touching and knocking things over while they looked the other way.

Sarah April 25, 2012 at 1:41 PM  

Yeah for opinion posts! Did it feel good? :)

I'm with you on this post and am actually flying alone with Drew soon. I'm SUPER nervous, not because Drew is loud, but more about pissing off the people around me. It shouldn't be that way.... people should understand that he's not even 16 months and he's going to be a bit louder than a well behaved 3 year old.

Danielle-Marie April 25, 2012 at 4:02 PM  


Kristin April 25, 2012 at 4:23 PM  

YES!! I think there is a definite difference between a baby or toddler who has a meltdown somewhere (I have SO been there many times, but I take Leah out as quickly as possible and people still stare! :( ) and older kids that are just wild with parents who do nothing in which case I will give a sideways glance of disapproval. :)

Denise April 25, 2012 at 7:19 PM  

Some people are so selfish! They just need to remember that they were a kid once and they were the ones screaming in the grocery store!

LOVE MELISSA:) April 25, 2012 at 10:14 PM  

Girl, I LOVE this post!! I hope people have the same mentality when we go on the plane with our little ones!! I am afraid I won't experience compassion from anyone when my kid is having a meltdown!

P! April 25, 2012 at 11:47 PM  

I love Sean opinion posts- they totally make my day! I know that I've been guilty of giving a dirty look or two to the children living in my apartment complex, but that's only when I hear these little kids cussing and acting like they're 30 years old and running around with no parental supervision whatsoever. I completely agree: it's the parents' responsibility to teach their child how to act, therefore I shame the lousy parenting more than anything.

I have no doubt in my mind, though, that you're a fabulous mommy and will raise Natalie into an awesome, polite young lady. Besides, sometimes the things kids scream in tantrums are the hilarious family stories later on in life. Hope you're doing well- I've missed you!!

marie April 26, 2012 at 12:08 AM  

When I see a bratty child I don't put blame on him, I usually look (not literally) at the parents and think they somehow went wrong with discipline. There are normal tantrums & then there are just downright spoiled kids. Trust me, I've had my share of tantrums, but I refuse to have rude, selfish & bratty kids.

AEG April 26, 2012 at 12:55 AM  

I totally agree with you! I'm not yet a parent but honestly I love kids enough (and have at least babysat enough) to completely understand...
It just so happens that today while I was working a client came in with her 3y.o son who, being curious, pulled the fire alarm. Being understanding, I told her "its ok" and dealt with the problem.

Megan April 26, 2012 at 8:12 AM  

Oh, let me tell you a story!! haha.

When I was 6 or 7 months pregnant with #3 I went to Florida on a plane with my then 1 year old and 4 year old. We were on our second flight back home, crammed in a small airplane in two seats. I had to hold my second daughter in my lap with my big 'ol belly. And we had NO ROOM. We had to wait for take off and I didn't want to give her the bottle until we were up in the air. She would make a noise every now and then. She was NOT screaming or crying. Some woman would make comments behind me, yet never make herself known. She finally said out loud that the baby needed to shutup. I stood up and turned around, still no idea who the woman was. Never looked at me or anything. All I could imagine was being one of those people on the news who gets kicked off a flight. Luckily, a woman and her husband were sitting alone in 3 sits and let us take that row.

Kids will be kids, and the only time I believe they shouldn't be out is when they are at a restaurant that doesn't have a kids menu. Otherwise, I always say: if you wanna travel without kids drive. Eat without kids then stay home.

love this post. :)

Giggle Business April 27, 2012 at 6:59 PM  

too right very nicely put!!! philip is usually quite good but he does have his meltdowns like any other child. I admit I get embarressed as i cant do anything to calm him down (because he wants daddy when hes like this!) I cant stand people who look at us mums who think we are bad as we cant control a tanturm even though all kids have them. I cant believe grocey stores and restaurants where you are are putting up no children signs!!!! they are places where people take their kids on a day to day basis and thats just discrimination how can they get away with that?