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Old 12-30-2015, 07:25 PM
 
2,442 posts, read 1,801,339 times
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OP, you were all jerks. You and the other guy for complaining and the parents for not taking the kid outside.


When I'm tempted to judge parents in restaurants I imagine that they're travelling and traffic was awful so they totally missed the window to feed the kid, and they're cranky because they're jetlagged and not sleeping and then the restaurant was slow with their orders, and because it's raining and they still have to drive half an hour to get to where they're staying they can't tag team. Or maybe they thought everything was fine up until the point the food came out so they were trying to eat up and get out ASAP. See? You too can be a kind and compassionate person.

It's harder when the person is someone you know and you know they don't even ask their kids to remain seated and quiet in restaurants. What else were tablets and phones invented for?
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Old 12-30-2015, 07:30 PM
 
2,442 posts, read 1,801,339 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vacanegro View Post
I once talked about this with a French friend commenting that I saw very few children in French restaurants. My friend commented that many French will not bring their children to a restaurant until they can behave - usually at least 9 or 10.

I was surprised to hear of this.
My kids have been good in restaurants from birth. It is a lot of prep and work, and partly lucky genes, and we don't eat out often. And occasionally I'll make a bad call on mood or timing that even electronics can't save.

But French people don't give their babies food to hold and eat, or even their own spoon until they are old enough to be neat, so they're not exactly paragons of good parenting. Plus their restaurants open so bloody late! Can't tell you how many times in France we've eaten from the aupermarket because there was no way our kids could last until the restaurant opened.
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:01 PM
 
2,442 posts, read 1,801,339 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AfternoonCoffee View Post
Curious what precious nugget of parenting wisdom you possessed to raise (teach) 6 month olds to be well-behaved and sit quietly? As in, what actual techniques you used, that you can teach the rest of the Internet?

I have very well-mannered children, but I don't kid myself that I taught them those skills by 6 months old. However, in raising my 4, I have noticed something interesting: they're all different. Some were quiet, some were loud, some were predictable (some were very unpredictable!) some thrived on a set schedule, some could be easily distracted with food, some with a certain toy or game or song. Figuring out those traits was vital to going out-and-about, but there was nothing I "did" to a 6 month old to make him "behave"
I'm not the person you were asking, but things that I found useful at that age were nursing them (wouldn't give finger food at a restaurant, too messy), and just general tag team parenting. From memory there was a lot of one adult carrying baby around while the other ate or baby sleeping or nursing in my lap while we ate. One if mine was awesome, I could latch them on, and the time taken for them to nurse and sleep would be just about exactly how long it would take to order and eat. We got a lot of compliments on that kid's behaviour in restaurants.

For toddlers the first line of defence is considering exactly how they are feeling before you decide to take them out. And consider the envornment too. If it's snowing and they skipped their nap there will be no wandering out with them if they lose it. Then make sure you have tons of toys (duplo are great, jigsaw puzzles, etc), sit in the corner of the room and sit the child/ren on the floor in the corner with the toys. I used to bring food for them in case service was slow.

Once they're a bit older (4-5 ish) they'll be more interested in tabletop toys like wikistix (awesome for restaurants), colouring, puzzle books, card games, etc. Again, bring food, or feed them before you arrive. At this age they can (barring ADHD) be reminded of the two golden rules of restaurants: stay in your seat and don't make noise.

And of course, electronics are always a godsend at any age. Although, by seven or eight a child should be able to cope with just colouring or wikistix or cards or a book. By nine or ten you could actually be going out with no props and having a normal conversation with a person who reads the menu, discusses the options and then orders for themselves!

Eating really early is useful too. The restaurant will be mostly empty and those people will be other parents or crotchety old retirees who wouldn't be happy no matter what.
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:30 PM
 
Location: The Heart of Dixie
1,359 posts, read 964,004 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katarina Witt View Post
Yes, people who expect to eat in abject silence should stay home.
Nobody said anything about abject silence. I expect to hear a child babbling or occasionally laughing or shouting, but screaming or having a fit is NOT acceptable. If you can't control your child, hire a babysitter or stay home.
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:36 PM
 
6,128 posts, read 3,331,721 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katarina Witt View Post
Ah, the "slippery slope" of child development. A child who acts out at two, will be a bum at 22. Not how it usually works! Sometimes the change in kids as they grow up is amazing!

It's not about the change in kids, it's about the parents that don't change and don't teach their kids the meaning of the word "no" and give everything the kid wants until, all of a sudden, it's twenty years later and the kid hasn't learned lesson one about being responsible for himself.
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:49 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
85,027 posts, read 98,908,697 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kokonutty View Post
It's not about the change in kids, it's about the parents that don't change and don't teach their kids the meaning of the word "no" and give everything the kid wants until, all of a sudden, it's twenty years later and the kid hasn't learned lesson one about being responsible for himself.
Yes, well, per those women's predictions, my daughter is now living a life of crime and communism. (An old family joke.)
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Old 12-30-2015, 10:32 PM
 
Location: Central, NJ
2,313 posts, read 4,822,097 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherTouchOfWhimsy View Post
Is say my kids were behaving in restaurants consistently by age five or so. I'm pretty sure I'm not just looking back with rose-colored glasses... I have photos of us in nice restaurants in Germany, and I'm sure there were no incidents during that trip, except for one dropped (and broken) glass (yes, I still remember that!). They were 4 and 6 years old. I can't imagine not taking them out for ten years! Teach them when they are babies/toddlers and he prepared to hustle them out the door if (when) they get restless or loud, but don't let the sourpusses who don't want to see a kid out in public make you stay home all the time!

I think your memory is probably correct. And please - 6 months? That's before they start acting up! My son was never "bad" but we still stopped eating out during the toddler tears. We would pin him in at the table so he couldn't fulfill his dream of chatting up the other diners. But if the majority of the time wasn't spent with his butt willingly in a seat then it wasn't time for dining out. We didn't stick a computer in front of his face or expect everyone else to deal with nonsense. We went out early and corrected in hushed tones, took a break and tried again. If he had been a screaming mess we would have been mortified. This was just dropping crayons in Houlihans. And when we went out to eat on vacation just after he turned 5 he was delightful! You have to keep trying in appropriate ways to teach them how to act but I think many people just think of their own convenience/entertainment. And bring their children out when they're overtired and overhungry and aren't there to teach them how to behave in a restaurant.
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Old 12-30-2015, 10:40 PM
 
4,586 posts, read 4,419,526 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brooklynnetman View Post
I was out to dinner with another person tonight at a casual steakhouse, and the restaurant was empty because we were there early. Across the dining room was a two or three year-old little boy who was screaming and crying so loudly that you could've heard it from outside. I'm not sure why he was acting this way, but the parents were simply ignoring it, shushing him softly every now and then. He was also running around. It was aggravating me to no end and the person I was eating with as well. The tantrum went on for a good twenty to thirty minutes, and an angry man in the booth behind us tried to get the attention of the child's mother, but he was ignored. His waitress came over and politely asked if the man needed something, and he said to her, "I can't eat with this screaming going on, and I was wondering if something could be done to stop it." The waitress really couldn't do anything about it, and the child's mother heard this and yelled, "He's just a baby!" I applauded loudly after the man complained, and the person I was eating with yelled at me, saying that the complainer was a jerk and that I am too if I agree with him. That didn't change my opinion at all, and nothing will. If I wasn't eating with anybody else, I would've said something also, and I'm glad this guy stepped up. The parents did eventually take the child outside and he calmed down. Opinions?
I'm a parent, and this would pi$$ me off too.

The few times we ever eat out (outside Disney places), if one of our kids decided to throw a fit, one of us would simply take them outside for a minute to calm down. Parents get used to tune kids out, but in a public place that's just not acceptable to me! I want to eat in peace if I spent money & gas to get to X restaurant end of story.

It's called "parenting", and it doesn't stop when going in public.
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Old 12-30-2015, 11:38 PM
 
Location: Mt Shasta , Ca.
1,809 posts, read 1,247,863 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wmsn4Life View Post
The mom overheard the guy complaining, and that's what got them outside. The server didn't do anything.

If it had been a table of women laughing loudly for 30 minutes, should someone have complained? Or guys telling bawdy jokes loudly enough to be heard?

What if it had been a large group with annoying, nasal voices or accents??? Should THOSE people be asked to leave?

Until you have a kid, you don't know what it's like. All parents are different, and they parent differently. Some people (like us) jump up at the first peep. Others are SO used to a higher noise level that they don't get why it bothers people SO much.

I hate passive-aggressive people, and so I would advocate for speaking directly to the parents, not the server. But APPLAUDING after the dude complained??? That's just a d*ck move.
I'd take a screaming kid over a table of drunk women (or men) any day which has happened to me and alot of us - and yeah the clapping was just as childish as the kid screaming .
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Old 12-31-2015, 12:38 AM
 
764 posts, read 496,551 times
Reputation: 687
Quote:
Originally Posted by WildColonialGirl View Post
OP, you were all jerks. You and the other guy for complaining and the parents for not taking the kid outside.


When I'm tempted to judge parents in restaurants I imagine that they're travelling and traffic was awful so they totally missed the window to feed the kid, and they're cranky because they're jetlagged and not sleeping and then the restaurant was slow with their orders, and because it's raining and they still have to drive half an hour to get to where they're staying they can't tag team. Or maybe they thought everything was fine up until the point the food came out so they were trying to eat up and get out ASAP. See? You too can be a kind and compassionate person.

It's harder when the person is someone you know and you know they don't even ask their kids to remain seated and quiet in restaurants. What else were tablets and phones invented for?
There's nothing jerk-ish about it. There's no excuse for misbehavior. Customers are all within their right to complain to a business establishment. The business establishment can handle it as they please.
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