Thursday, July 21, 2011

“Sign” Of The Times?

I was taking my little guy for a stroll one day, when I noticed something in the window of a local pub. Upon closer inspection I saw that it was, basically, a cease-and-desist order for children.  Okay, maybe I’m being a bit dramatic, but you get what I mean. This is a pub, not a four-star restaurant. (Love the irony – it's called a “Public House”, but half the public isn’t allowed!)

What's the definition of a "well behaved" child, anyway?
Their version of good behaviour may not be the same as mine.

Then, today I came across a blog post entitled, “Hate Kids? Then the brat is you”. Naturally, I was intrigued! The author, Joyce Slaton, goes on to discuss her thoughts on why there is an abundance of (perceived) vitriol for kids these days. I think it’s a well-written, considerate article. But, some don’t agree with the author at all, as is evidenced by the plethora of comments on the article (94 at time of writing this).

The thing about this issue is that there will never be a “right” answer… only opinions from people who look at it through the context of very different life experiences. As a mother, I don’t expect a childless person to understand what it’s like to feel unwelcome or shunned from certain places because you’ve got kids. It’s hard to know what that’s like unless you’ve experienced it first-hand. It’s not fun, and it’s not fair – even if the establishment has a right to ban kids...or strike fear into the hearts of parents thinking of bringing them (and certainly not their strollers! LOL).

As parents, all we can ask for is some empathy when our kids act up. Even the best of days can turn into challenging parenting adventures (how’s that for positivity!), when a seemingly happy toddler spontaneously melts down.

I have an idea - let’s all use common sense, put ourselves in each others’ shoes and see how far that gets us. Maybe then there won’t be a need for that crazy sign. :)

1 comment:

Lisa Yeo said...

As a parent of 3, I actually welcome the signs. I wish more restraunts would if not ban children, have child free sections. The last thing I want when I go out for a nice dinner without my kids, is to listen to someone elses kids whining or acting up.