I felt a kindred connection when she came in with your daughter today. I too, was seeking out a family friendly restaurant that I knew my boys would be happy eating at. A few times I too, had to remind them to use their “inside voices”, and even took Alex’s flip flops off him. I would rather him sit with his feet dangling barefoot, instead of him constantly going to grab them off the floor.
Parent’s, I feel, have a connection of understanding when we see each other usually. I cringe when I see articles, or posts online about someone judging another Mother. In a world full of Alpha moms, we are constantly looking to prove we are the “better” mom. I
am usually the Mom, on the plane jumping in with snacks for the crying child, or passing a lollipop or juice box at take off. I look the other way at louder kids in a theater, or restaurant. So, today, was shocking.
When your daughter started going on, about how she wanted to have her Mac and Cheese look identical to Colin’s, it was cute. When she started screaming about it, another story. Then, the unthinkable happened, she got up and started running around the restaurant. Up and down the rows, refusing to sit down. The two girls that were sitting adjacent to us had originally also thought all the kids were cute. It wore off, fast.
What followed next, led me to writing this post. The little girl continued running away, and around from her mother yelling, “F You, F You, F YOU” (but obviously full word). I wish I was exaggerating by saying you could only hear kitchen equipment in the restaurant. I don’t think anyone knew what to do. The boys knew it was wrong, and just went on ignoring her and eating. However, I couldn’t help notice everyone’s faces of shock, and disgust.
It is one thing to try to ignore your child’s behavior, but to tolerate that language is ridiculous. I can tell you, we don’t say that in our house. A couple other words have slipped before, but not that. Our kids still think Shut up, is bad.
The Mom continued to bring her child back to the table for the third time and told her she wasn’t talking to her. She looked younger, but its no excuse. I had Colin just before I was 22. I have constantly been judged when I’ve been out with the boys. I have enforced expected behavior, and have left shopping carts before. I follow through.
I broke the silence when the Mother got up yet again, and said to the boys, “I love you just a litttttle bit more right now.” This resulted in a chuckle and people getting back to their meals.
When the Mom came back again, I think we all figured she would be leaving. No, no no, she LET her daughter ALSO get her ice cream sundae (a normal ending at Friendly’s). You read right, her bad behavior was rewarded. The Mom told her she wasn’t talking to her, let her run around, not eat any of her meal, BUT get ice cream. WHAT!?!?!? By this point, as the little girl carried the tantrum on, the girls next to us asked to take their ice cream outside. The table behind us, they did the same. Soon, we were left alone while the boys had their ice cream, and ate quietly. After 3 minutes, they left.
I left mortified. I wanted to feel bad for the girl’s tantrum. We have had our tantrums at the grocery store, toy store, restaurants. I think it was the language that immediately turned me off. All I could think is she is the reason some restaurants ban children. I left with the opinion of,”her parenting sucks”. Everyone has a method, some are dead wrong, others are open to interpretation. Sorry, call me still dumbfounded from this today, but is anyone else seeing this? How would you have felt?