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Old 06-08-2009, 06:16 PM
Location: Here... for now
1,747 posts, read 2,618,878 times
Reputation: 1208


Originally Posted by skbs View Post
I would like to know, since there are actually posters suggesting not to do the grocery shopping with children. How many of you actually have the luxury of NOT bringing your children with you shopping? My husband works about 75 hours a week.... and running in and out on the weekends with other things. I am just wondering if this is seriously an option for the majority of you.... if so I am very jealous......
Until DS was in preschool, he was with me almost always. DH travels for work and was usually only home on weekends, so most of the time, it was DS and me. And we had a great time! I so enjoyed his company that I never really thought of leaving him during the shopping trips. With the exception of that one time, he generally enjoyed grocery shopping!

Once he hit preschool, I sometimes shopped during school hours. Still, I took him many times, because he enjoyed it so. We usually had fun shopping.

Originally Posted by 33458 View Post
I understand that sometimes there is no food at home, no-one to watch child and you just have to get the shopping done because this is the only time slot available.
I can understand that, too. I can even understand if Parent is at the last aisle when the meltdown commences. However, in that scenario, perhaps Parent could pluck out the essentials (the diapers, the milk, the toilet paper), run to Customer Service, pay and go? Why continue to leisurely stroll among the cereals, candies and coffees (well, ok, coffee goes in the essentials group )?

Originally Posted by 33458 View Post
I always brought the diaper bag (backpack) and stuff in the diaper bag to try and occupy Sweet Pea...doodle pads, etch-a-sketch, some other age-appropriate BUSY ME thing. Cheerios, Gold Fish and spill-proof water were right there, too.
Same here. DS always had stuff to occupy himself with in the event he wasn't engaged with the actual grocery shopping.

Originally Posted by 33458 View Post
She also likes to help do the shopping...unbreakables...will pick out cans or boxes, carefully.
Sounds like our kids have the same temperament! As he got older, I made a game out of shopping and often used shopping as a learning opportunity. "Hmmmm if this box of Cheerios costs $1.25, how many will 2 boxes cost?" "Do you remember where the milk is? Can you take me there?" One of our favorite games, once he was elementary school age, was to try to guess the total order; whoever came closest WITHOUT GOING OVER was the winner. Bragging rights, only, of course .

Originally Posted by indie05 View Post
Shopping centers like Walmart are IMO public places... How many people have actually abandoned their carts while they were shopping because of someone else's screaming kids and gone home???? I do not have the time or energy to quit shopping half way and return.
As Parent, I abandoned once. As Observer, I don't think I've ever abandoned my cart. However, I have rushed through, getting done and out as quickly as possible. Quicker than I might have, had I not had to suffer through listening to some other parent's child meltdown. How I react to the parent is almost wholly dependent on how the Parent is responding (or not) to the meltdown.

And the difference between the tantrum kidlette and the person who is loudtalking on the cellphone (which is also obnoxious) is I can hear the kid in every nook and cranny of the store. There's no escaping the ear-piercing wails. At least the cellblabber's voice doesn't carry quite that far. Usually...

Originally Posted by indie05 View Post
What may be irritating to you may not be irritating to me and vice versa.
I agree. However, while I might have a high tolerance for the noise my own kid is making, I still need to be cognizant that OTHERS around us may not be as tolerant. In my opinion, it is not fair for me, as Parent, to inflict such mayhem and foolishness on others if I have the capability of taking control of the situation (such as taking Kiddo outside).

Originally Posted by indie05 View Post
Parents dealing with a melt down don't need other people's criticism
Therein is the crux of the matter. Parents who are actively dealing with the meltdown don't need criticism. They need support. However, parents who are blithely, deliberately, even defiantly ignoring the situation... They may need a reality check.

Originally Posted by dsh1127 View Post
If I am in a store now and see a kid having a fit, and see that the parent is trying to deal with it, but embarassed, I usually say something funny or nice to them, or just offer a smile, because we (parents) all have been there in one way or another. No need to make them feel even worse!
Bingo. I think most people can empathize as long as we see the parent trying to address the issue. Even if they aren't successful, at least they're making an attempt.

Interesting points of view, everyone!

Old 06-08-2009, 06:30 PM
Location: Middle America
35,817 posts, read 39,346,783 times
Reputation: 48613
Originally Posted by scarmig View Post
Walk the cart to the service desk, say, "I'll be right back to collect this," and take kid outside to calm down. Make sure to point out to kid that the trantrum did not get him out of shopping (no reward for bad behavior), then return, collect cart, and finish.
Absolutely. NEVER reward nonpreferred behavior, you'll only reinforce it and pretty much ensure that it will happen repeatedly. Don't give the payoff.

I work with students with autism, and in addition to their regular school academics, we do community setting outings, including grocery shopping. These are students with heavy histories of tantrums, and they're a pretty wide range of ages and sizes. The cardinal rule in dealing with tantrums, whether they are produced by individuals with autism or not, is to NOT give in to them. Take a break, time out, remove the person temporarily from the situation if need be, whatever, but ultimately, you want to go right back to the task that was being performed and see it through to completion. Tantrums are about control - "I don't want to/can't stand to be here anymore." If you give the person throwing the tantrum control of the situation, you will deal with it repeatedly ever after. Consistency is key.

I also would never consider being anything but kind and helpful to a person working through a child having a tantrum in a public place. Providing they weren't smacking the kid around or anything, of course. Then I'd be horrified at the parent, not the kid.

Last edited by TabulaRasa; 06-08-2009 at 06:39 PM..
Old 06-08-2009, 06:37 PM
Location: (WNY)
5,384 posts, read 9,587,018 times
Reputation: 7646
I have to say, when my daughter had her melt down I didn't leisurely do anything. I SPED my way through the last two aisles, knowing what I had to grab.... it was on my way back to register anway. I then ZIPPED through and paid and got out of there as fast as I could. I almost RAN out of that store.... and my daughter wasn't rolling around on the floor kicking and screaming.... she was in the cart crying and I was trying to get it to stop the whole time. I was mortified and wanted to just GET HOME. The fit wasn't around a nap time, she wasn't hungry, it came out of left field... all of a sudden she just got tired and crabby....it wasn't like I could have planned it and I wasn't there for an hour.... There was nothing I could have planned on. I go with a list... and know what I need to get for each trip...come on I have two kids in tow... I have to be prepared! I love how all of the posters on here have offered suggestions on how to PREVENT this LOL.... sometimes you just can't plan what a kid is going to do next... sorry but you can't! And if you have a full load and you are basically done and heading to the check out anyway- as the parent in THAT situation I was just thinking "get out... just get out..." and I booked it down the last two aisles, chucked a couple of things in my cart and ran to the check out.... I was fast and got it done...stares, glares, and all.... hasn't happend since and I never judge a single soul or cast a stone upon anyone's situation... YOU NEVER KNOW what is going on....or when/if it will happen to you!

Last edited by skbs; 06-08-2009 at 07:10 PM..
Old 06-08-2009, 07:52 PM
Location: chicagoland
1,636 posts, read 3,654,307 times
Reputation: 1061
Originally Posted by JustJulia View Post
But according to that reasoning, a screaming child has every right to be in a store as long as management allows it. If you are in someone else's home and don't like the other guests, you should leave, not insist that the host kick them out. The offending "guest" is not trespassing unless management says so. I believe this disucssion is about ethical or social responsibilities to leave, not legal ones.

I'm not a fan of screamers, just pointing out the issues I see.

Exactly. Of course I agree that a parent should respect others and do their best to exit with a screaming child/infant! But if the parent is supposed to adhere to the fact that someone else can't tolerate a screaming child and they need to "respect" others, then those that are bothered by those children should ALSO respect and maybe offer a little empathy...

And you're right, the "offending guest" is NOT trespassing unless management says so. I have yet to see management ask a parent to leave in the middle of a shopping trip because of some tattle-tail. What a silly thing to do. I could just see a grown adult going to the front desk saying "excuse me manager, I cannot shop because of the kid in isle 7. Can you please ask them to leave so I can shop in peace." Talk about selfish and self-centered. I hear a couple of you calling the kettle black ONCE AGAIN. Not suprising.
Old 06-08-2009, 07:59 PM
Location: chicagoland
1,636 posts, read 3,654,307 times
Reputation: 1061
Originally Posted by indie05 View Post
Wow this sure sounds condescending to me... If you have an issue with my kid throwing a tantrum you are welcome to talk to management about it...I don't care to hear anyone else's opnion on raising my child.... so "calling me out on it" Please try it out on someone.

It's funny how the same people who claim "your time is not more important than mine" or "your child is no better than mine" or "your no better a parent than mine" sit here and say the EXACT SAME THING they are claiming you to do.

I love how they claim that YOUR time is no more important than "THEIR TIME" yet they expect you to bow down to them so they can shop as they please.

It goes both ways. I would hope that a parent would tend to their child in such a case OUTSIDE of the store if the kid was in a "rage." However, if the parent does not and going with the line of thinking that "your time is no more important than mine" I would deal with it rather than crying to the manager who probably isn't going to do a goshdarn thing exept maybe go that parent and quietly say "see that jerk over there, could you maybe try to quiet down your kid so I don't have to hear him complain anymore? thanks."
Old 06-08-2009, 09:37 PM
1,986 posts, read 3,466,057 times
Reputation: 1288
Too bad some people can't grow up and act like adults.
Old 06-09-2009, 08:42 AM
199 posts, read 569,445 times
Reputation: 108
Too bad others can't accept that diff people have diff views.

No one PLANS to have their child metldown in public... If your children are angels, great.....if your children are normal kids...welcome to the club...Most of us have been there at least once. How you deal with it is as diff as your parenting style and your kid's temperment. (Again I'm not saying NOt to deal with it)

If the children have a mental issue or some other health issue...Shame on you for not trying to understand what some one else is going through on an everyday basis. (Tantrums are not confined to stores you know)
Old 06-09-2009, 08:49 AM
1,831 posts, read 3,732,962 times
Reputation: 1222
My son has had many a tantrum at the store. Depending on the length and severity, I have reacted differently. I must admit that I didn't immediately leave, but I'd speed up the shopping. If I were there with another adult, I'd sometimes send him to the car with the adult. What happens with him is that he gets sensory overload and anxiety, but it depends upon the store. So now, I am selective about where I take him, and I take him shopping as little as possible. When the kids are with their dad every other weekend, that's a good time to shop. I also will offer a reward for good behavior or a consequence for bad behavior. These days for him, it's more of not following directions instead of falling out.

And yes, if you are a single parent, or can't afford a babysitter, or your spouse is constantly working, or you don't have a strong support system of parents and relatives available for babysitting, it can be tough to leave that cart or to leave the kids at home.

As for disapproving strangers, I imagine it's a pain to hear piercing wails. I don't like to hear them myself. But some people are quick to get ticked if a child is barely causing a ruckus. I would ignore them.
Old 06-09-2009, 08:51 AM
Location: mass
2,905 posts, read 6,419,172 times
Reputation: 4967
Lol, I remember my daughter throwing a major fit at Target once. After giving her a couple minutes to get a hold of herself/threaten her/cajole, I dragged her outside the store. I sat on a bench, turned the carriage around so she wasn't facing me, and sat there for 10 minutes while she went bonkers.

When she calmed down, I sat with her for a couple minutes till she was ready to go back in.

I have had to do this with my son, too.

I really don't see any alternative to leaving a store with a kid having a tantrum. Why would you stay?

Of course, unless you are at a grocery store getting something you desperately need, then you just grab the necessities as quickly as possible and get out of there.
Old 06-09-2009, 09:05 AM
4,267 posts, read 5,140,780 times
Reputation: 3579
If I have just spent the last half hour shopping and have a full cart and my kid has a meltdown I proceed to the checkout lane, pay for our stuff and go home. If people are annoyed with my screaming child while I wait in line to pay for my groceries, the best thing that they could do is let me go first. I don't expect anyone to do that, but if it's that annoying to them, why not? If I see a child having a meltdown in the store I simply ignore it and go on with my day. Kids have meltdowns, it's not that big of a deal.
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