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Banning Kids: Part II

I am the first to admit that as parents, we are all different. We all have things that are important to us that are not important to other parents, and vice versa. We discipline differently, we reward differently and we are all making different choices and have our own parenting styles that we’ve come up with that fit our own lives. And that’s great. I know there are things that I do or don’t do, that might not fly with their moms. Just as I see other moms who do or don’t do things that wouldn’t fly with me. But whatever, to each his own. As long as you’ve got happy a kid, more power to you.

But if your parenting choices start to directly impact me or my children, then we may have a problem.

Recently I came across a news story about a pizza place in Atlanta Georgia, which has banned crying kids. Posted on their menu reads the following,

“Dear all present and future patrons: GCP is proud of its reputation as a family restaurant, a title that we will work to keep. Unfortunately a number of our diners have posted unpleasant experiences because of crying and unsupervised children. To ensure that all diners have an enjoyable lunch or dinner with us we respectfully ask that parents tend to their crying tots outside.”

This is brilliant.

I wrote previously about how I don’t agree with restaurants out right banning kids. I DO however agree with them implementing policies regarding unruly or unattended children.

I believe that as a parent you should have the right to enjoy dinner out, even with your kids. But that right should NOT infringe upon others right to a quiet happy meal. Which is why in my previous post I explained that as a parent you should go the extra mile in setting up a positive dinner experience and be willing to leave if your child doesn’t settle down. Period.

This restaurant in Georgia and rereading my previous post on Life360 got me thinking about the issue of parents who don’t parent. Something, sadly, I see all the time where I live.

Parents who allow their children to run wild while they either don’t pay attention, don’t care, or don’t even stick around. Now if you want to raise an unruly child who enjoys climbing up and then jumping off the roof FINE. That’s your choice. But don’t let your child play those same games at the local park while you read a book or go for a walk, leaving me (or other attentive parents) to be the one to tell your child to stop. And yes, I will tell your child to stop. And when your child asks me why, I’ll tell him because I’m not ruining my afternoon at the park dealing with some other kids broken arm because his mom wasn’t around to tell him to stop.

This is the same exact thing as parents who take their children out to dinner and think it is perfectly OK to let their children climb up and down the seats and yell and throw things. If that behavior is allowed in YOUR house at YOUR table, great. But not in public and not at MY house.

As I said before, you can parent anyway you want, as long as your parenting doesn’t mean ME having to deal with your wild child throwing macaroni and cheese at me from your table at dinner or me having to attend to a cracked skull because you didn’t feel like telling your child to stop jumping off the jungle gym.

Parent how you want, as long as it doesn’t mean ME having to parent for you.

How do you deal with other people’s unruly unsupervised children at the park or in public?