Annoyed at Situation with Kids in Restaurant/movies
September 28, 2011
First the movie situation. Hubby and I went to see Plant of the Apes a month or so ago. There was a grandpa, dad and son (about 7ish) that sat right behind us. Honest to God, they talked thru the whole freaking movie. Mostly the grandpa "explaining" the movie to the grandson. And not only answering the kids questions but INITIATING questions such as "How do you like the movie so far"? REALLY????
We didn't take our kids to the movies until they were older and able to be quiet during the movie. We rented a LOT of movies to see at home instead of taking our young kids to movies that are not appropriate for them or that they couldn't quietly sit thru.
Now the restaurant: Friday night hubby and I don't have our kids so we go to eat at Oregano's. We are sitting next to a table of 2 couples (one couple possibly the grandparents but maybe not) and 3 kids (all around 5-8ish). the table next to them had a 20 yo male, 15ish female and 12ish female. Apparently they all knew each other. So the kids are VERY loud talking to each other. The adults basically ignore them and instead choose to speak even louder themselves so they can be heard over the kids. The only time the kids were told to be quiet was when they actually were banging on the plates. It got to the point that I yelled over "This is not McDonalds!" Yes, I did. And I don't even think they heard me but the table of the older kids did. The 2 older girls were facing us and kind of said something to the older brother but would then look at us everytime the younger kids were loud, which was pretty much constantly. We didn't do anything further but needless to say was so annoying we didn't enjoy our meal out at all.
We would never take our kids out if they behaved like this. We took things for them to play with quietly or we stayed at home until they were old enough to behave.
And these are just 2 examples, it actually happens all the time. Twe weekends ago we took our kids to the dollar theater to see Rio...again. There was a mom there with a baby, a toddler and maybe 4.5 yo. The dad came in half way thru the movie. The toddler basically ran up and down the entire length of the theater the whole time and the baby constantly kept crying out and of course she didnt take him out even when the dad showed up, she just walked to the back...like we still couldn't HEAR him??!! I'm a *little* more forgiving at a dollar theater during a kid movie but really, I think there should be SOME effort to teach your kids to behave or DON'T go out with them! None of them even SAW the movie!
I guess I'm wondering why people think its ok to do this. Like they are entitled also to eat out and take their family and if they choose to be loud and behave the way they do its a public place so we all just have to grin and bare it? Same thing for the movies? Actually chatting during the whole movie and not thinking its bother anyone else even after they are shooshed or told to be quiet. Do WE have to move to another table or seat to get away from the offenders? What do you think about this?
I never said my kids were perfect. I kept them home from the movies until they were SIX and the same thing for eating out. And I don't think I have to move at the movies when my husband and I get there HALF hour early to have FIRST pick at where we want to sit. Only to have to get up and move to get away from the chatters? I don't think so. And the restaurant is not intended as a free for all to run around, bang on dishes and excessively talk. It was packed Friday night and we had to wait 45 minutes to get a seat. My question was why this happens and clearly its because people do it because they don't CARE that they are ruining these experiences for others around them.
It's rude. I would have went and complained to the manager of the theater. not much you can do at a eating place. But this is why I am totally ok with establishments having a no children after "X" time. I have every right to enjoy my evening out without listening to children as the family who wants to go out with their children.
Wow, I agree with you on this one. I do not allow my children to ask badly in public. If they do, then we have to leave and they do not get to do fun stuff at that time. I am really ticked when I pay to sit in a nice place for dinner and children are disruptive. My children are 3 and 5 and we are just now starting to take them to sit down places a bit.
Wow, I agree with you on this one. I do not allow my children to ask badly in public. If they do, then we have to leave and they do not get to do fun stuff at that time. I am really ticked when I pay to sit in a nice place for dinner and children are disruptive. My children are 3 and 5 and we are just now starting to take them to sit down places a bit.
I don't know what Oregano's is (is that a chain?) but generally speaking if it's not a white-tablecloth restaurant then you should always be prepared for children. Yes, some people don't care very much, aren't considerate, don't manage their kids well, or are so happy to not be stuck at home that anything goes... but at a family joint or in a family theater, they are absolutely entitled to be there.
We all have options about how to handle it. If some kids are running by my table and knocking into things, a visit to the moms to say "you may not notice this but my daughter's high chair keeps getting knocked, do you think you could have the kids be more careful..."
And the parents of the loud group may not remotely notice how loud they are -- I myself am a loud talker, and when my family gets together it gets louder and louder, and we don't realize it. So a quick, respectful and gentle "you guys may not realize but you're yelling and we're having a hard time hearing ourselves..." and if that doesn't work, talk to a manager and have them talk to them as well.
I get the frustration and annoyance, but when we approach others in public with more respect and politeness, we might encourage the same.
I am a grandparent raising grandchildren and I totally agree with you. This is why I fully support restaurants being able to have non-kid nights. Where only adults over 18 can go in and eat.
I would pay darn good money to a babysitter for a meal I knew was going to be calm and not having someone else's child running circles around my table and banging in to my chair or a child climbing over the back of the booth and falling on top of me, it really happened in OKC at Nino's on NW Expressway one night.
People, your kids are NOT cute and funny. They are annoying as all get out and sometimes I think they should be sent to the car.
I don't allow my grand-kids to act like this in any place except McDonalds and even then they only run around in the play area, not in the actual sitting area outside the play area. People have to tell the management so they can make these people tend to their children or leave.
I'm with you. People are stupid and selfish. i am guessing, if you had asked anyone one of them, they would have said, "We paid for our ticket/food. We are entitled to do what we want. You need to lighten up."
I have asked the hostess to deal with it. I have turned around, and said something to the effect of , "I'm not sure you realize this, but your voices are carrying. we can hear every word. You might want to keep it down." Kicking a seat back or anything physical I do NOT tolerate and have basically told people to stop point blank, nicely if it is a child, at least the first time. And I hav eeven gotten up and left or moved.
The thing that makes me feel better, a little anyway, is people like this live this way. They are endlessly self-absorbed and I am sure it shows in their friendships and family relationships. They also likely live in chaos and loudness all the time. That is not the life for me. I do feel bad for the kids though, because kids need structure and manners to be successful in this world and their parents are dooming them to fail in social situations.
Ugggh, yuck. I am so not that parent. I pretty much figured out that I wouldn't be a lackadaisical parent (pre-child) after a horrible red eye flight with an out-of-control 4 year old in front of me. Kid kept the whole plane up all night long and the parents allowed it. Manners should be mastered at home and demanded in public.
My biggest pet peeve is ill-behaved children in restaurants! We were at Buffalo Wild Wings last week for my daughter's birthday (she turned 1 and i decided it was my night to celebrate surviving a year with a toddler and a baby, so i wasn't going to be doing any dishes that night!). There were 3 women sitting at a table in the middle of the restaurant, all on their cell phones, all with big margarita glasses in front of them--and their 5 kids were literally running laps and playing tag around the perimeter of the dining area! More than once they knocked into my daughter's high chair as they were running by our table screaming and they even knocked my little boy over when dad took him over to look at the quarter machines. I was so pissed! it's never a child's fault for being undisciplined and have poor behavior--their parents were completely ignoring them and honestly had no idea where their kids were (which i found hard to believe since the whole restaurant could tell their exact whereabouts by the amount of shrieking and running by those tazmanian devils around the place! Uggggh lazy parenting is so frustrating!
Wow! You're complaining about kids making noise at a kid's movie? Here's an idea- get up and move. Same goes for the restaurant. Or maybe choose more adult films and more upscale restaurants that are less likely to have kids. It must be nice to have the world's most obedient children that have never melted down in public. Apparently your kids are perfect, otherwise you wouldn't be so quick to judge everyone else around you.
You know how dogtraining classes aren't actually for the dogs, but to train the OWNERS?
That's the problem, imho, with this country; we don't bring our kids out ENOUGH. Every other country I've lived in kids are EVERYWHERE. From infancy onward in restaurants, cafes, museums, lectures, bookstores, religious events. But in this country kids are shunned. Left at home with sitters or ONLY taken to "kid friendly" (aka no rules bedlams of noise and misbehavior).
2 things result; Kids do NOT learn how to act, and NEITHER DO PARENTS.
The well behaved kids in public aren't born that way. They learn through experience and tend to be brought out all the time. Their parents, too, have learned. They aren't frantic trying to keep their kids entertained, and they aren't F-it, i DON'T HAVE A CHOICE! Screw everyone else.
As a young parent I was TERRIFIED at bringing my son out "in public" until I went to Italy. From that trip onward my son has come *everywhere* with me. And it's been relaxing. No fear. Just. Normal.
So, in my experience the 'trick' isn't waiting, or not going, or only going certain times, etc. The TRICK is having life be normal. Going out MORE.
None of the problems you mentioned were kid problems. They were parent problems. INEXPERIENCED parents. Who need a dogtraining class. So that they can actually CHILL instead of being freaked out or 'desperate'. NO ONE would expect a puppy cooped up all the time to turn on instant 'good behavior' because they're somewhere new/exciting/special. They'd expect the opposite.
GO OUT MORE WITH YOU KIDS, PEOPLE! OUT! OUT I SAY!!! Practice makes perfect.
I totally agree. Just b/c you are in a public place doesn't mean not everyone wants to know your kids are there. I have looked for a theater worker before and asked them to find us another seat. If they couldn't, then I would ask the worker to ask the people to please be quiet. I have no problem if they are being blantantly rude. Same goes for at a restaurant...I love it when the waiter asks why I'm requesting to move b/c I tell them the truth and they are always accommodating.
Movie talkers and table runners go right up there w/those ladies on their cell phones talking to someone about each outfit they try on in the dressing room. Bleh.
I am with you 100%. I also refuse to move at the movies. I arrive very early to the fave shows just so we can get those best house seats. We have even been asked to "scooch over" when seats all sell out and my hubby got into a heated debate with the teenage worker who brought a manager and in the end the manager FULLY agreed we should not have to move when we were not the ones who arrived late and needed to be squeezed in. The same holds true if someonelse is being the disruptive person. Why should I have to move? Make them. They are the ones causing the issue. Adults are just as rude, especially with cell phone behavior. Flashing then on all during the film, even answering the calls. I really love the ones who answer then scurry to the doorway to talk...DUH, you are still IN the theater, even tho you are by the door. We can still hear you.
We are frequent movie goer's. We try to go most Friday nights if there is something we really want to see. I see this everytime.
At a restaurant I really am OK with moving. My child , who is now 17 years old, was never ever allowed to act this way. One time I recall (at an Applebees) it was an issue for her. I was alone at the table to pay the bill and gather the meals in to go boxes as my husband took her to the car. She was about 3, I think.
I just really feel rudeness has become the norm for so many people. At movies, on the roads, in stores, at restaurants. Most places I go people are line cutting, on their phones in tighter public places, loud talking (and language issues with swearing, etc) and such. It makes me sad...and angry and frustrated. I stay home more and more as time goes on. Sad, but true.
ETA~ After reading some of the replies I will add, my own child went everywhere with us from infancy (movies were started pretty young and age appropriate for her). She was alway well behaved, except for the before mentioned Applebees incident. She did learn (as I think Riley above discusses) from an early age, to act appropriately. We came armed with her little "briefcase" of colring things, her little "guys" as she called them, and things to do quietly at the table. I never felt I needed to leave her behind to run to the store or the bank, or for dinner out at most places we could afford to go to. I do home childcare and am continually amazed at the parents I encounter who just can't seem to get any errands done (or their home cleaned or laundry done) with their own children with them. I do the in-home parts of that all week long with as many as 6 kids (all under age 4) in my home. I am not Superwoman...but if I can do it, why can't others manage these social and home situations with their own kids???
I'm in the camp that if the kid is not behaving, they need to leave, be at a more kid friendly place, or remove themselves until the "situation" is corrected.
Not familiar with the place to eat you mentioned, but is it an adult place?
Anyway, the same can be said about adults who are SO important they need to be screaming orders into their cell phones during dinner, or can't put it down long enough to order a coffee at Starbucks.
Rudeness and lack of manners cuts across all groups--not just kids and teenagers!
I guess there are people so desperate to get out of the house that they just don't care, but I'd be mortified.
I remember one year on vacation, my husband & I taking our 2.5 year old out to eat (didn't realize the place was fancy schmancy til it was too late!). They had to literally dig out a high chair--the old kind with the metal tray. At one point, our son picked up a spoon and WHACK! WHACK! WHACKED! it on the metal tray....I wanted to crawl under the rug. We kind of took turns eating and walking him around looking at the pictures, light fixtures, etc. I don't think we've ever woofed down a meal so fast since! LOL
It is not just kids. My husband and I went to see Contagion last week by ourselves (a rare treat for us). The guy in front of us kept pulling out his phone and fiddling with it and right as the movie was starting a group of 6-7 people sat behind us and talked incessantly. We got up and moved after a few minutes.
We rarely take all of our kids to the theater, and when we do it is age appropriate and I am super conscious of their behavior. I barely see the movie cause I am keeping a constant eye on them ready to pounce on any problem. I am quick to take the younger one(s) out to the lobby if necessary. We only go to family friendly restaurants, and again are quite aware of and act on any inappropriate behavior. Once before our food even got there we flagged down the waitress and asked her to just pack it up in "to-go" boxes and took it home. I took the ill-behaved child to the car while my husband and other kids waited for the food. Whenever we are in public I want our experience, as well as all others around us, to be as enjoyable as possible.
I am SO with you on this!
I can't stand people who choose to inflict their screaming little darlings on the general public.
I don't literally think we should do this,
but it's fun to think about tranquilizer darts for loud mouthed ill behaved brats in public and their parents as well.
I'll admit my son isnt the best behaved sometimes and talks during movies but that doesn't mean he has to stay home while we go and do stuff. Some parents like spending time with their kids dispite the behavior.
Amen. This is why restaurants have instituted no kids policies. Unfortunately ill-behaved children seem to be the norm instead of the exception. Sorry, but it's true. I agree with you, running up and down the aisle at a movie is not acceptable, even if it's a kids movie. And just because a restaurant is "family friendly" doesn't mean children need to behave like animals. And yes, my child has behaved badly, but when it happens, she is removed from the situation. I don't expect others to have to suffer for her bad behavior. Mostly I just wonder what the parents can be thinking. Like when they are in the waiting room of our dental office and the kids start playing with the blinds (and I mean smacking them around) and the parents are sitting right next to them. I have to tell the kids to please stop it, and then the parents say "oh Johnny, don't do that." Huh?
I understand what you are saying. Nothing is more frustrating to go to the movies, pay thier high prices on tickets, popcorn, drinks and whatever else just to have to deal with people talking or on their phones texting (the light from them is soo annoying). I remember one time when the movie "The Passion of the Christ" first came out, a whole group of us got together with our prepaid tickets, waited in a long line to get in. Finally got in and had the fortune of having this family with small kids sit right behind us! One of the kids would walk back and forth constantly crying and hitting my husband on the back of the head. It was sooo aggravating!!! I didn't want to deal with them and miss any of the movie. That movie was so riveting that I could hardly take my eyes away from it. That family really ruined the experience for me. Besides the irriatating factor of it to all of us, that was not a movie for little ones to be subjected to!! Shame on the parents. We hardly ever go to the movies anymore because of these issues. People these days seem to have lost thier manners.
Not only is my kid one of the better behaved kids out there, but she often is the one noticing when other kids are not so well behaved. Sometimes if there's kids running around inside a restaurant, she wants to do it too, and I have to remind her that that is not what we do inside restaurants. She might say to me, "But they are doing it!" and I tell her, I don't care, doesn't matter, it's not right, and she is not allowed to do it. Sometimes now she will go up to the kids herself and tell them to stop, then all of a sudden the parents are stepping in, finally telling their kids to stop. Or she's telling the kids not to climb up the enclosed tube slide because it's not safe. I swear, she's going to end up being the hall monitor when she's finally in elementary school.
I've noticed too that sometimes when I have had to tell DD to stop doing whatever, that's when the parents finally say something to their own kids - like, oh, yeah!
People in general are rude. I would have asked the restaurant manager to be moved. I would have asked the grandfather to discuss the movie at home or moved myself or, depending on how bad it was, left and gotten a refund. But I know that by the time I GO to a movie, I've gotten a sitter, etc.
My DD knows we will leave and we have. People need not be afraid to leave and if they don't want to "waste money" then they need to teach their kids or not go til their kids are better about it.
We were at a Pizza Hut a few years ago, pre-DD with the stepkids. One family had a kid who was insane. The other family had a similar-aged kid who was so polite. DH complimented the second family on their well-behaved kid before we left.
I am in agreeance with you. I have always gone to Harry Potter's first midnight showing since the first one, #6 was RUINED for me by a screaming newborn ... I actually had to leave and ask for a rain check - I could not stand the next day when everyone asked me how it was. I do not take my child to these activities if he can not contain his energy properly. My son got to see Cars 2 as his first movie and did VERY well; we tried to see Kung Fu Panda and left before the previews due to his inability to properly participate. I can not stand it when people do not address their own kids in public - I just do not bother to go any where other than quickie places for now.
I agree with you. I think alot of parents nowadays are simply way too lenient and accepting of bad behavior. There is such a strong hatred toward spanking your kids. That's why some of these kids will never learn to be respectful. Spoiled, bratty kids = immature adults. Back when I was a kid, if you got out of line, you got spanked. End of discussion.
I would have told you to shut up! All you said they were doing was talking loudly... they were not running around the place and they were told to settle down when they actually DID misbehave with the plates. Did ya think that maybe that is just normal for all of them (loud)? I have 5 brothers and sisters and we all tend to talk loud. I have been to places where a table of adults were all talking loud.
Yes I do believe I have the right to go to a public place and enjoy myself. The whole "kids should be seen and not heard" thing alot of people have makes me sick. Talking a little loud and laughing should is just fine. If they are shouting and screaming and running around the place and banging stuff... that is a problem.
I am not familiar with the restaurants you are describing. Unfortunately, people come in all shapes and sizes and are pretty rude and uncooth these days. Your comments to them will not change them because they're stupid and ignorant.
You can do this...when you do have a date night, I certainly would be going to a more upscale place where children are less likely to be. Sit in a quiet corner and enjoy yourselves over a lovely drink. Also, patrons at a movie theather young or old can be escorted out if they are being disruptive. I have gone to the theater manager in the past and may may miss a portion of the movie for the 30-90 seconds but the manager of the theather handle the disruption. Works everytime..that way I miss only a few minutes of the movie vs being annyoyed during the 90 minutes. :)
Movie theaters here do not allow children in the theatre after 6pm for "R" rated films. I'm not sure what the rating is on the film you saw, but I would have just moved to a quieter place so I could hear the movie. Yes, it is annoying when people talk through a movie, but some people just don't care if it bothers others. As for the dollar theatre, you were seeing a kids movie. When I see those movies at a theatre I go with the mindset that there will be noise, laughing, babies crying and whatever. Now, the restaurant situation would have driven me crazy too. I would have talked to the manager to see if they could get them to quiet down. If not, I would have told the manager thanks for trying, and we would like to be moved to different table. If they would not grant that wish then I would leave the restaurant. . Whe we are with our kids 24/7 and we have a chance for a "date night", the last thing I want to deal with is loud children. You can't change the way people raise their kids, but you can control if you stick around it or not.
Ugh, that's so annoying!!!
I'm so NOT that mom that lets my kid do whatever he wants... I'm the exact opposite! It's all about respecting others... Even at McDonald's, I wouldn't let my son run wild screaming.. It urks me to see parents not controlling their kids..
I just give those parents dirty looks and "hope" they catch the drift~
Talking through a movie, whether little kids, teens or adults, is rude. People seem to have forgotten how to behave in public. I don't think you need to wait til kids are older than 7 for movies! But the father and grandfather should not have spent the movie talking and should have shushed the kid. As for Rio in the dollar theater, I'd expect it to be full of kid noises. Sure, you should not let a toddler run thru the theater and you should take the crying infant out but it was a bargain kiddie movie. If this happened when you (or I) paid $11 to see The Help, I'd be furious
As for the restaurant, family groups can get loud, when you've got a large group. If this is a chain restaurant like Olive Garden or Chilis, like that, those are family style restaurants. When a restaurant is packed, people will speak loudly. Now, I do have a problem when kids are allowed to jump on booths, run thru the restaurant, throw stuff on the floor or shriek in the restaurant. I also do not care for toddlers and young kids at restaurants that don't have booster seats and kiddie menus - places where in the past, I've worn a dress and paid a babysitter, only to be seated with a toddler at the next table shrieking or announcing "I have to do poopies!" while I'm eating a $25 entree. Some people don't care to pay for a babysitter or don't believe in going anywhere without their children. They have no desire for a childfree experience and aren't thinking about those who paid someone else to watch their kids so they could have their occasional date night. Parents are not considering that there are some places that are not appropriate for young kids and we have become a much more casual society in general which is sometimes not a good thing.
To answer MANDY B's post--Yes, that is exactly what that means. (Don't mean to single you out.)
There are certain behaviors that are appropriate for certain places. There are certain behaviors that are not appropriate for certain places. Whether adult or child, if you don't recognize which go together, then you should stay away. (Maybe that would be a fun game to play with the kiddos--"Which of these things go together?")
I enjoy being around children. I think that my baby is the coolest little person I've ever met, and I would be content to drag him around with me EVERYWHERE. Here's the kicker, though: I am nursing him on demand (meaning that I cruise around on weekends pretty much naked from the waste up); I talk to him constantly, and he talks (babbles) back, often times enthusiastically; I can't always predict when or how loudly he'll cry or do his whiny thing or when he'll suddenly demand to get off my lap and play on the floor. Et cetera. It just would not be appropriate for me to treat every place like my living room. It also would not be right for me to allow my children to treat every place like my living room.
I, too, would have requested to move, both at the movies and at the restaurant.
I did not read others posts, but wanted to put my 2 cents in! I run a home daycare...5 days a week, 12 hours a day...so when my time comes to get out of my house, I do not want to hear screaming, naughty kids if I am trying to dine or see a movie! I do not mind at all if people dine w/ their kids, or go to movies, but there is a level of expectation that kids (and adults) show some respect for others around them! That means keeping talking to a minimum in the movies and using table manners in a restaurant...unless it's McDonalds! LOL! I know kids are not perfect and sometimes have moments...I'm a mom! But taking them out to eat is the perfect time to teach good manners! You can still have fun and enjoy being out and not have to make others around you uncomfortable or irritated!
That's just me...obviously, I am NOT going to get upset if I am seeing a kids movie and the theater is full of silly, loud kids! I expect that! And I won't go to a family restaurant and get mad that kids are there! Again, that's why it's a family restaurant! But I do agree that it's ok to teach kids respect and manners, especially if they are misbehaving!
There are lots of things that would happen differently in an ideal world. People would be more aware of other people. Kids would be taught better manners, and not have problems like ADHD. Or, Parents would be able to afford to leave their kids home when they want an evening out. Or they would have the decency to stay home, no matter how long they had been suffering from cabin fever.
Unfortunately, our own behavior is the only behavior we can control. And our kids' behavior, to some extent, but don't all toddlers get restless and noisy in public at least once in awhile? The best you can do is to ask others to be considerate of your needs. Yelling at a table full of kids doesn't really teach them how to behave, it just teaches them that when you're big and powerful enough, you get to yell at littler people.
I have sometimes left movie theaters and restaurants when some part of the audience is too disruptive, or when someone fills the space with strong perfume (makes me seriously ill). Movie management has always been accommodating and either given me my money back or offered passes to my next movie. Restaurant owners are always regretful and polite.
I think if more people left situations that were just too much to endure, a gradual "education" of the general public, and perhaps even basic requests on movie screens (beyond turning off your cell phone) might occur. Or not.
Because of excessive perfume, I had to give up season tickets to some local musicals that I really wanted to support and enjoy. I was probably not the only one: I learned that the next year, subscribers were asked (in very small print) not to wear strong scents for the comfort of other people in the audience. I doubt that it made much difference in practice, but it was a start.
ADDED after your So What Happened: You've answered your own question. People do these things because they don't care about the experiences of others. Yup. And there's really no way to make them care, other than to ask them to consider your needs. If that doesn't work, then reality demands that you either endure the situation, or acknowledge it and move/leave. When you argue with reality, reality is gonna win, every single time.
while not angels, my kids know how to behave in public. why? because they have been out there since birth. if they were going thru a difficult stage and refused to behave, well we either left or took turns eating/watching movie. they know that the same rules at home apply out. all i have to do is say "behave and you might get a treat. don't and we will have a time out in the bathroom. your choice." they don't always get a treat but they typically avoid the bathroom. if they continue to misbehave we go home and the fun is over. they made the choice not us. it's all about consistency.
rude adults are a pet peeve of mine. i do complain to the manager about them and let him know that he is driving away good business by not curbing their behavior.
Years ago, my sister (mom to 4 kids) and I went out to lunch. There was a table with loud squirmy kids next to where the maitre d' tried to seat us. My sister asked to be seated at another table. Once seated, she said, "Instead of asking if people want a smoking or non-smoking section, hosts should ask if you want kids or no kids."
So now there's no smoking in restaurants (yay!) but I still think asking about kids is a great idea!
FYI - this got posted to the home page so that's why your getting responses after you posted a reply, in case you were wondering.
What works for us is to go during non-peak hours so there aren't so many people since more people = an increase in the problems you described above. It works *most* of the time.
I really hate to move too but I do it anyway just so I can put the incident behind me and move on :0) That's the other beauty of going during non-peak hours...you get to move to another seat/table because there are plenty available.
It does annoy me to be out alone with the hubby and get seated next to a rowdy kid. We have asked to be re-seated before in those situations and the restaurants are usually pretty accomodating. As for the movie, again, you could move seats. When I'm out at a restaurant with my kids, they are expected to stay in their seats and not be loud. My son, who is 3, is a bit strong willed and can sometimes get unruly when he's bored, especially if he's tired. But, he also knows that if he starts to have a fit, we are headed for the door. I will find a corner in the front of the restaurant (usually in the space between the two sets of doors) and make him stand with his face in the corner until the tantrum stops. When he's done, we can go back to the table. At least that way, the whole restaurant doesn't have to hear it. If he doesn't stop (he usually stops before we even get away from the table now because he knows what's going to happen), then we leave the restaurant. I did this at Steak n Shake the other day. Even though it is just a "diner" type restaurant, the behavior was still inappropriate and the consequence was the same, whether it's a diner or Carrabbas, etc. My husband ended up taking him to the car while my daughter and I finished our lunch and I got my son's food to go.
I will tell you that if the kids are out with just my hubby, he is pretty oblivious to them, so he is less likely to handle the situation, simply because he tunes them out and doesn't even hear them. The only time he pipes up is if I correct them first. I think it's a man thing, but doesn't frustrate me any less. I'm the disciplinarian in this household, unfortunately.
Bottom line, it is annoying that others don't control their kids, but not much you can do other than move seats or ask them to handle the situation (which may backfire if the parents are defensive about it).
I hear ya! It never fails that my husband and I leave our kids with my parents and go out on a date night, choose a nicer place that you wouldn't think was kid-friendly and we get seated next to someone else's yammering brats all night. It is sooooo unfair! We never take our kids to anything nicer than Chilis. Firstly, we don't want to blow a wad of money on food that they won't even eat, and secondly we don't want them to disrupt other people. As hard as we try, there have been times when they haven't behaved in public. Why can't everyone else have the same consideration??!!??
I am going to definitely agree with you on the theater. I can't stand to see when people walk in with their small children. I have always brought my daughters to theaters since they were about 3, but they were always very well behaved (lucky for me!) - actually they would usually just fall asleep :)
For the restaurant, its kind of hard to say. That is probably the restaurants fault for not seating them close enough together for them to not have to talk so loud. Now if it was someones screaming, crying kid - you better beleive they better take them out of there! I don't think it is fair to deny kids to be taken to a sit down restaurant, as long as they are well behaved.
I havent read the other answers. I get so irratated when people let their children/grandchildren behave like that. when I was little if I had dared to try to act like that my mom would have snatched me up and took me into the bathroom and gave me a swift wack on the backside. and let me say this, that only had to happen 1 time before I knew better. and I wasnt running screaming either, I just started to talk back and trying to get out of my seat, I was 3 years old. the one and only time I acted up in public. people refuse to discipline/punish/parent their children these days. they just swear if they tell little johnny "no" he'll be scarred for life and hate them forever. It is just ridiculous, sad and lazy IMO. My children are all very young, Ian is 2 1/2 and the twins are 9 months old. but we take them out with us when we are able to afford going out. and they are well behaved, we get compliments all the time. not because they or we are perfect, but because we started teaching them at a young age. our toddler knows he is to eat, stay in his seat and not scream/yell/throw food etc. we have to tell him to settle down sometimes, but that's about it. It is not hard to teach your children nor to discipline them. you just have to start when they are very young and be consistent. our 9 month old twins understand what the word "no" means. of course they dont listen every time, but i'd say at least half the time when we tell them no they stop what they are doing. easy!
Oh how I hate that plus the rednecks that put their feet up on the back of the chair at the theatre or let their kids kick the chairs! GRRRRRRR that is SO annoying! Only thing that can be done is to complain to the ushers or manager to please do something. Try to memorize where you're sitting then try to describe the people & where they're sitting to the ushers/mgr at the theatre & tell the offenders that if they're not more respectful, you will report them to the manager or just don't say anything to the offenders then go tell on them anyway. Some theatres will even reimburse you if it's before 15 mins into the movie if you're dissatisfied. As far as the restaurant, sometimes you hafta be the bigger, more mature person & ask for another table/booth. Just ask the waitress/waiter to re-seat you or the host/hostess depending on the restaurant. I'm like you, I get annoyed & sometimes loudly exclaim my dissatisfaction "Excuse me, waiter?? Would you PLEEEEZE reseat us? Those patrons over there are being SO loud & disrespectful to others that we just can't enjoy our meal here..." I do hafta add though I ESPECIALLY hate this behavior when it's in the public library of all places...THAT is definitly NOT someplace a person or kid should be allowed to speak above a whisper, much less run amock but yet...now it's allowed. *SIGH* I do wish things were the way they used to be sometimes...getting thrown out of a business or library for getting just a tad out of line. Things were a whole lot better then when ppl were actually respectful of others. Hope this helps, good luck!!
If my kids act like that we leave. They learned early on and we are complimented all the time on how well behaved they are. We have gotten gift certificates and free desserts for it! I used to work at a theater so they know how to behave there. One or two questions I'll answer...anymore than that and they know to wait until after. However, on the rare occassion that my hubby and I do get out alone, I guess I more sympathize with the parents than get annoyed. I guess because I know what that's like as a parent and I just thank God that I'm not the one dealing with it in that moment.
We started taking our daughter to restaurants on a regular basis when she was an infant. She was always very well behaved and quiet - of course, I made sure of that by timing the meal for when she was hungry and I brought quiet toys to keep her busy. I can honestly say that I don't every remember my husband or I having to take her away from the table because she was disruptive. We believe she learned how to behave because it was always part of her life and good behavior was expected. I think people are afraid to use the word "no" when they're kids are misbehaving. I also think they tend to tune all the noise out - hello - I can't do that so you're kid's annoying me! I would ask to have my seat moved if possible. nothing worse than having a meal out (a rare treat for us) by sitting next to a little monster.
Your question stuck with me so I've now decided to respond. I understand your frustration with people talking and/running around in a movie theater. Clearly the parents should have "shushed" their children and/or left the theater. As for the restaurant, there are restaurants that I hate to go to (even if there are no kids) just because it is so loud with their music and the customers in general. Assuming you were not at one like that, it is reasonable to expect kids to behave and speak in a normal speaking voice but keep in mind that it may have sounded louder to you because you were right beside them and kid-free for the night.
If you keep kids home "until they know how to behave" then how are they supposed to learn to behave when out? If you keep them home until they are 6, you then have a 6 year old that hasn't been in the environment and may not behave to someone else's standard.
Yes, some bad behavior may happen because some people don't parent and/or don't care but some cases they may be trying but some kids are harder to control than others. Additionally, everyone has different standards.
As a parent I would think you would be more sympathetic to those with a crying baby. Did it ever occur to you that maybe they just "needed to get out of the house" regardless of having their child with them just as much as you needed your "kid-free" night?
My suggestion is for the restaurant, ask for a seat that is not around families with kids. When we go to a restaurant, if there are babies and little kids around, my husbands says we do not want this table, etc. and we go where we want to sit. You are paying the bill, sit where you want. As for the movies, I totally agree, but sometimes you have to be a little more forgiving when people are whispering. Maybe this grandpa was excited to take his grandson to the movies for the first time. You never know what their story is.