Thursday, November 1

Bodily Harm All Around

I decided to join in the madness that is NaBloPoMo, although it won't be much of a challenge. For those not in the know, November is National Blog Posting Month. So lots and lots of bloggers commit to posting every single day during the month. I always post every day and have for over 21 months (give or take a handful of days when Verizon was trying to suck my brains out of my head). It won't be that hard to go the whole month. It wouldn't even be a challenge if I decided I would only blog about parents that annoy me. Cuz' really, those are everywhere. Or at least they have been this week.

Exhibit A crossed my path at Gymboree the other day. Apparently kids feet grow or something because while Alexis was busy wearing way cute sandals all summer, she went and outgrew all but like three pairs socks. Since you can only flip them inside out a few times before it becomes a little too obvious, I thought a sock shopping expedition was warranted. Off to Gymboree we went to dig through clearance bins. Alexis, of course, bee-lined straight for the television. The child that will not just stare at Sesame Street while I'm in the shower, despite my fervent pleas, cannot wait to watch Elmo on the TV in Gymboree. She ran over as fast as her little legs would carry her and prepared to flop down in a chair.

Just as Alexis' little butt was about to meet bright blue plastic, the little girl seated nearby in the bright orange chair gave her a shove. A shove hard enough to send her flying under the clearance rack, four feet away. I dashed over to check for blood and nurse the Category 4 Meltdown while ignoring the urge to go all Jeff Reed on the demon spawn's head. As tears poured down Alexis' chubby little cheeks, a woman previously perusing over-priced sweaters broke from her Very Important Cell Phone Conversation regarding ugly water heater repairmen to toss a nugget of wisdom over her shoulder, "Oh, she's not good at sharing." She then turned back around and resumed her discussions of Ted as her demon spawn unleashed on a second victim.

Anyone who does not see anything wrong with the woman's response, please leave now. I can't be your friend.

Yesterday Alexis and I had another lovely run-in. The mother of the little boy who ripped a book from Alexis' hand as she was holding it and asking me to read to her? Definitely not my friend. That woman was perhaps five feet away, certainly within hearing range, and sitting right next to a whole bookshelf of lovely books not currently in use. I was so proud of Alexis when she politely asked for the book back with a soft "Book, please?" I was even prouder of her that she didn't have a meltdown when the little boy didn't give it back. The whole time I was thinking that if Alexis pulled that, I would be over there making her return the book and apologize. But whatever. What REALLY got my blood boiling was when Alexis and I walked over to the bookshelf to pick out a different book only to have the first one launched directly at my head. Oh yes, it made contact. The mother, on the other hand, didn't. She just kept sitting there watching her little boy. Not one word to us or the little boy.

Is it just me, or are people letting their kids get away with way too much these days? (So asks the woman who let her Toddler eat Kit Kats for breakfast this morning.)


  1. See now, Kit Kats generally don't result in injury (usually, of course).

    It's scary to think of how this large population of undisciplined children is going to turn out in 20 years.

    It'd be fun to have an endless supply of parenting books to hand to the offenders, and walk away smiling.

  2. Yep, this is precisely why I got out of teaching. The parents create these little brats, then complain when a child tries to fight back! Have you watched SuperNanny? Those kinds of parents are everywhere. I seriously do worry about the future, because children are being raised with no accountability or restrictions.

    P.S. Do you know how to link to someone's site in a post? I can't figure it out.

  3. Jen, you're right. I wonder all the time why on earth parents aren't blessed with the common sense to actually raise their children. It's so bad that my kids are complaining about their friends' lack of manners.

    I don't do childcare because I'd surely offend a parent because I care.

  4. My jaw literally dropped at the "she's not good at sharing" comment. It must have taken every ounce of your willpower not to pummel that woman.

    I REALLY don't understand people who refuse to supervise or discipline their children. No child is perfect, but that is why parents and caregivers are there -- to CORRECT their behavior and TEACH them what is inappropriate.

    I remember a few years ago, when I was nannying for a three year old. I'd been with him since infancy and I have very strict rules about behavior in public. We were in a bookstore for storytime when a nearby child started howling, whining, and throwing himself on the floor in a fit while his mother did nothing more than roll his eyes. Steven watched the scene in horror before turning to me wide-eyed and saying, "That is NOT appropriate."

  5. "Anyone who does not see anything wrong with the woman's response, please leave now. I can't be your friend." - so cute! I think you're right - some kids are outta control and there their parents are just sitting by. That picture is precious of your daughter (Alexis - right?) - precious! See ya.

  6. Jayna--It really is scary to think that these are the kids that are going to be in classes with out kids and eventually the ones entering the workforce. Do you think they would think to read the parenting books?

    Jen--I thought about that. Initially, I figured both women would get was coming to them when their kids turn out like Britney Spears. But then I realized that it's really the teachers, other kids, and everyone else that will have to pay for this lack of parenting that goes on. I can't even imagine being a teacher anymore because you just can't do anything with someone complaining. (Oh, and I'll email the instructions.)

    Karen--That is bad when you're kids are complaining about other kids. For a kid to be so rude that another kid can see it is just plain wrong.

    Not the Mama--I just left. I figured that the woman was too stupid to even bother with.

    You're absolutely right that it's our job to TEACH them. I actually thought the book incident was a perfect opportunity to teach the little boy that he can't take things from other kids. While I hope Alexis figures that out without that kind of situation (especially the part where he threw it at me), I would welcome the chance to teach her how to be nice.

    You're story cracks me up. Goes to show kids can learn right from wrong pretty early!

    Kellan--I'm with you. It's not so much that the kids are out of control as it is that the parents just sit by. It doesn't even make sense to me.

    Alexis grins like that specifically to make us laugh, but I hardly ever manage to get it on camera. I've been on a mission lately because I NEED to remember that smile ten years from now when she's sassing us!

  7. wow, you habdled that so good! i would probably yell at the 1st mom for the stupid comment about sharing... and I would have yelled at the 2nd one for just sitting there and not controlling her kid...
    I am so not nice when it comes to dumb people like that...

  8. Tanya--I kind of regret not saying anything. I try to avoid conflict if there is no chance of anything good coming of it. So while I know those mothers are complete idiots who wouldn't have understood anything I said, I still wonder if there is anything anybody could do to help those kids. I'll never know if a comment from a stranger could have made them see the light.

  9. anglophilefootballfanatic.com7:37 PM

    Holy carp. I would've laid the smack down on those mothers. So says the mother who made her son have a time out at a birthday party a week ago for throwing a ball pit ball at a friend.

    That picture? Too much Alexis cuteness.