Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Oh My God, I am One of Those Moms

Today we met with our mom's group at this really awesome cafe designed and owned by moms. It has this great play area for kids and their is seating all around for parents, as well as tables to block the kids from easily escaping. It is a great place and only 5 minutes from my house. I can't believe that I haven't been their before, especially since I am a coffee shop/cafe whore. I love them....

Anyway, so the kids of all ages are playing. Of course kids are going to bet bumped and their will be the occasional fight/struggle/tantrum over a particular toy, etc. I don't much worry about that stuff. There was a moment and I must say I was so happy that my child was completely unphased. Two boys about 4 or 5 were struggling over one toy--because all of the kids play together, there really aren't that many toys that are geared towards the older kids. One mom picked up her son and removed him and the other mom did the same before their was really a problem. Both boys let out piercing screams and all of the other kids stopped and watched as the boys through their loud, but short lived tantrums. All, except for my little Minnow who kept on singing to himself and "cooking" on the play kitchen stove top. It was hilarious. Here are these two boys screaming so loud and crying, I am certain they could be heard 3 doors down; all of these other kids are staring and my little one was just playing like nothing was going on.

Anyway, there are bully's everywhere. I know that. But really, at what point do you remove your bully child from the mix? There was one boy who was hell bent on ruining the afternoon for all of the other kids and parents--except for his own who were doing "work" (sewing and writing). He pushed kids of all shapes and sizes. And not the kind of pushing that happens when you are trying to work yourself into a better position--the kind of pushing where you use two hands and push. So he did this about 2 or three times and I would hear "Now Eddie don't do that" "Eddie don't push" "Eddie". All the while I am thinking "get the fuck off of your ass and grab your child before he hurts one of these little kids." He was finally put in timeout--which consisted of sitting in dad's lap while mom talked to him--not much of a punishment in my book.

Yes, I know I only have a 16 month old, but I've watched enough supernanny episodes to know that holding your child in your lap while you talk to them and give them positive attention isn't really what needs to happen. (No, I don't really watch supernanny--I've taken child psych). Sorry if you didn't get the little bit of sarcasm that is dripping off of the supernanny/child psych comment). I just think I have common sense.

Anyway, so after maybe 2 minutes in dad's lap little monster Eddie gets down and gets to play again. He lasts about 2 minutes before he starts pushing, etc again. Dad goes to get him and mom says "You can just give him a warning". I am think "What the fuck was that timeout all about. Wasn't he already warned and punished for doing the same thing? He gets to start all over with a warning?" But of course I say nothing. Until he pushes my son. And he pushed him good. My little Minnow is pretty tough and he was crying.

So Eddie gets put in time out. With mom holding him telling him she isn't mad at him but he can't push kids. Maybe if this was his first time out in public or his first time pushing a kid ever, I might buy that timeout method, but this kid is a bully.

I finally said "Maybe he shouldn't be in here if he can't play well with others" and then I walked away. It was time for us to go anyway. As we were leaving I hear "Eddie, you don't push other kids." I looked right at mom and dad and said to one of my friends "I think their timeout strategy is really working. I'm glad Eddie is so well-behaved that they can just let him play while they get their work done."

I feel kind of bitchy and snotty. But when is enough enough? They were about 15 kids between the ages of about 9 months to about 6 there playing. This kid was the only kid who was being downright mean and the only one who was continually allowed by his parents to be a bully.

What would you have done?


sarah said...

Way to go Dawn!! There is always that one kid there to ruin it for everyone. I am such a wimp I don't know what I would have done, but I think what you did was awesome. Parents definitely need to hear that it is not ok to continually let your child beat up and ruin the fun for all the others. Stupid parents :)

*~JESSIE~* said...

I would have done the same thing you did. They were sure off base in the way they handled it. Good for you!

Becky said...

I would have done the same thing. My husband cringes sometimes because I have no problem parenting other people's misbehaving kids when they do nothing! I think it's the "oldest child" and the teacher in me. I can't stand naughty kids and worse is bad parenting! Good job to you!

Anonymous said...

OOOH. I wish I had your balls :) We were at the Children's Museum last weekend and these two 5-6 year old girls kept ripping the pretend food out of Amelie's hands and trying to knock her over. I wanted to throttle them. Dude, she's 13 months old and can barely stand on her own! The mom was oblivious, yet standing RIGHT THERE. I guess I haven't been around other moms and their jerky kids enough yet to say something. I was shocked into silence.


Malia'sMama said...

You gooooo girl! I hate that crap, too! And, as a highschool teacher, I see what these "coddled" kids become... sad.