Postcards from Mommywood: I Can’t Stand Brats — and the Parents Who (Don’t) Raise Them
Why won’t moms and dads teach their kids how to behave?
I love my four-and- a-half-year-old daughter more than life itself.
Other people’s kids? Not so much.
There are plenty of exceptions to the rule, but these days other people’s children can really get on my nerves.
I’ve always been one of those people who shot dirty looks at anyone with unruly kids in restaurants. I’ve asked more than a few flight attendants to move my seat when a fussy toddler was in the vicinity. And, I’ve always believed taking children to the movies after dark should be punishable by a fine.
I’ve discovered that having my own little girl has done little to increase my patience for badly behaved brats and their clueless parents. In fact, I’ve now got much less tolerance for temper tantrums and careless parenting of any kind.
Maybe that’s because there’s so much of it.
I know I’m fortunate that I can count on one hand the number of melt-downs my daughter, Madeline, has had. I’m sure luck has something to do with it. I’d also like to think that it’s because my daughter knows just what will and won’t fly – because I actually take the time to teach her right from wrong.
We have a no-whining policy in our house. Please and thank you go a lot further than I want and gimme that. My daughter knows that restaurants are not theme parks, and that a visit to a store does not guarantee her leaving with a shiny new toy. These are not rules as much as they are just the way things are. I consider myself consistent rather than strict, and everyone, at least on most occasions, seems pretty happy with the arrangement.
Truth be told, I guess my issue isn’t with the preponderance of obnoxious kids that have in recent months disrupted virtually every event I’ve taken my daughter to, as much as it is with their lazy, thoughtless parents. Why is it that so many parents are adopting an ‘It’s not my job’ attitude any time their child misbehaves in public?