I found this theme really interesting, and intriguing… almost poking on us, parents of our
loving well-behaved little ones:
“Everyone loves kids, right? Right! Except when they don’t. This week, we’re particularly interested in what you think about kids in adult-oriented places. I think most of us can agree that it’s not a good idea to drag little Sally to a bar at 1AM, but what about a museum? A fancy restaurant?” [Michele M. from King of States].
Well, as a parent of 3 little kids (oldest one just turned 7), moving every two years, due to family work requirements, having to adjust not only to a new country, as well as to new cultures, new languages, there’s yet the expectation that [shockingly!] my kids should also re-invent themselves and adjust/adapt to new social demands/requirements, showcasing the pristine behavior only found in movies about expat children attending boarding schools, spending their spear time learning an instrument and being part of book clubs!
Clearly, that doesn’t happen. It never did, and very likely, it’ll not happen in any future…
This theme, discussing the pros and cons of having children in adult-oriented/adult-only social places got me thinking. And I began reading through what others had to say about it [I’m such a curious cat!].
I’m always searching for resources related to raising children in multi-cultural settings, I take part at parenting forums, I respond/comment on discussion lists, I blog about raising TCKs, and seek help for that…
I’m also the ‘household fairy’, you know, that one silent worker, that makes the breakfast show up in the morning, the lunch packs being ready before the school bus turns the corner… the ‘laundry fairy’, the intense PTA volunteer. Unfortunately, there hasn’t been enough time to ‘school’ my children on the ‘perfect social behavior‘ [whatever it is or means] – I’m still trying. And my children are also trying to learn, the best they can. They’ve been to restaurants, airports, family gatherings, embassy functions, social events, you name it!
So, answering the original question, should kids be allowed at adult-oriented places? PROBABLY NOT. And I’m stating that as a MOM, speaking my heart out from my life experience, as a mother, and a former teacher. NOTHING AGAINST children. Love them. Deeply. But in my very humble opinion, there are some adult-oriented places that little ones should no be taken to – and that includes some of our beloved evening pubs, bars and dining places – unless the latter is kid-friendly, otherwise, one should only take a [especially the very young ones] to a bar or pub, if looking for some unforeseen sickness, and a parental headache for the following days! 😮
But, should we, as parents, carry out our frustrations to a public setting? Would it be enjoyable to ourselves, and to others?
Kids deserve people to respect them. And, do you believe they [the children] would be receiving their deserved share of social respect, if others [adults] would feel uncomfortable with their presence? Tough call.
My parents always had to travel for work. We moved a lot. We were also three children, the only difference was that, being the oldest one (9 years older than the youngest), I was responsible for their social behavior.
A ‘quasi-responsiblity‘, if I could put it like that. And I remember getting the ‘rolled eyes’ from others, the ‘evil looks’ at restaurants. There was no nanny at that time. Two working parents. Going out to restaurants was a rare treat – we definitely had to ‘earn our way’. Today, I’m the parent. I’m the one flying with
screaming kicking bored wonderful children. 😮 The ‘looks’ towards me are still there. I can feel them. And I’m sure my children also sense them coming…
For all that, even if it’s hard, logistically challenging, last-minute need, try to find yourself a baby sitter. That’s my little 2 cents of advice, and one may do whatever it wants with it, even completely discard it. Just my humble suggestion…. Adult-oriented places are for adults only [clever conclusion, right?!].
Unfortunately, for the ones who would like to spend quality time with their children, tagging them along wherever they go, I’m sure there’ll be other alternatives… they’re called ‘kid-friendly places’. Trust me, kids don’t enjoy adult-only scenarios. I’ve been there. I’ve tried both ways, and I’d stick to the second one. It’s safer for the adult parent, the adult company, and for the children.
Good luck to all of us raising kids – what a tough job, man! 😮
What about you? Had something else in mind? Are you curious about what others are saying at this ‘poking’ theme? Take a look at other impressions:
- Dp Challenge: Kids (cloudandmountain.com)
- Weekly Writing Challenge: Mind the Children (itlnbrt.com)
- Parenting and Temperament in Childhood Predict Later Political Ideology (psychologicalscience.org)
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