Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Your Children Are Appalling

Not yours.  I am sure your children are delightful.  Also, I never write about people who read this blog, unless it is nice (dear Belle, M and B, and Darcy: I miss you all.) 

A few weeks ago, I was in the lounge at shul (right next to the sanctuary), nursing Tatoe.  One eight-ish child, who I do not know, started doing backflips and off-the-couch somersaults.  In a room full of adults and toddlers and furniture.   (Oh, I forgot!  Before that she picked up someone's one-year-old and stood him up on a swivel chair!  Cue across-the-room dive with Noooooooooo!)

The third time she nearly fell on my nursing baby, I said, "Honey, I don't think this is a good place for gymnastics right now", which is the polite version of "What you are doing is stupid, inappropriate, and dangerous.  Stop now or I will retrieve your parental figure."

AND!  The little brat sassed me back.  She mumbled, so I'm not sure what she said (enunciate when being rude, child!) but it ended with "this is a FINE place to do gymnastics, but fine, WHATEVER."

I was completely appalled.  I am sure I never ever not once spoke to a stranger like that.  In fact, I called my mother to ask.  No, I did not.  I would have been grounded for forever!

Clearly, something is terribly wrong with this child's parents.  She is totally old enough to know better.

8 comments:

  1. I am generally amazed around here that children behave pretty well around babies on our very crowded playgrounds -- they don't seem to be paying attention, but they actually do a pretty good job of avoiding the crawlers, which can't be easy, and mostly are calm about being reminded/corrected/physically stopped from running my child over with a riding toy.

    However, the He's So Cute I Am Picking Him UP!!! thing is a problem with a small but noticeable number of children. The last time I had a dispute with a kid over this (I was kind about it -- she insisted she was good with babies and she probably is -- but it did end up getting to the "I said no and I meant no" point, at which point another parent complimented my handling of the situation, which was nice), I happened to later see how her parents dealt with getting her to leave the playground. They yelled at her for a while, then her father physically chased her down, grabbed her, threw her over his shoulder, and left with her like that. She was about 10. Cannot IMAGINE where she got the idea that other people's bodily integrity doesn't require respect.

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    1. When my child was two (during his tantrum phase) I admit, I did carry him out of places over my shoulder. Now that he is four, that hasn't been necessary because he has learned to respect my authority! (Except that one time last week, when I took him to the grocery store hungry and tired, and I had to carry him away from the toys that we never, ever buy. My fault, entirely.)
      It is no fun dealing with other peoples rude children. I feel sorry for the elementary school teachers that end up with these kids that lack all sense of respect for adults. I hope my child would never behave like that! Were you able/ inclined to speak to the girl's parent when they came to claim her, Jenny? (Considering you were an authority figure in the nursery, and they may not be aware of her behavior there.)

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    2. For the record, I wouldn't have thought much about a 2-4 year-old needing to be removed in that fashion, but a 10 year-old is different (especially, I think, when we're talking about a girl being manhandled by her father). This had all the look of a regular occurrence.

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    3. Nicole, you are erroneously assuming that her parents where ANYWHERE to be found. Ha!

      I carry Bug out of places screaming, too. I think, as a rule of thumb, when they're old enough to cross the street by themselves (i.e. not run into traffic) they shouldn't NEED regularly to be carried off. The occasional relocation may still be necessary.

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  2. Sadly, my 8 year old, who is normally a charming child, is suffering from some kind of temporary insanity and might well have done that even though, when capable of rational thought, she knows perfectly well that Bad Things Will Happen if she behaves like that.

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  3. I DO hope my children will be polite, and I do hope that kid was just having a brief glitch in her politeness software.

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    1. I think her parents were having a long-term glitch in the supervision software. It's endemic at shul.

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  4. Dear J -- we miss you too!

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