... Not to have spoken to this mum?

(115 Posts)
Cooroo Wed 03-Sep-14 06:45:46

Driving home after horrible stressful day, I saw a woman with a 4 yo or thereabouts. They were skipping down the pavement together. Mum was waving arms about with every sign of having great fun.

I wanted to stop and say 'you are a fantastic mother and your daughter is going to have fun growing up with you'. And probably hug her. Mainly because i was feeling emotional.

Maybe best not to do this? But thank you anyway, unknown mother, for cheering me up a bit.

SecretSpy Wed 03-Sep-14 06:50:31

Sensible not to stop as you were drivingsmile

but I have told a mum how lovely it was walking behind her and her little boy as he plagued her with millions of crazy questions ambling down the street to our local shop. She was lovely with him.

Asleeponasunbeam Wed 03-Sep-14 06:58:50

Someone stopped me recently on a bad day, when I was trying to control my unruly 2 and 4 year olds (under the disapproving eye of PIL). They were spinning a postcard display, with those horrible but fascinating changing pictures of animals on. A lovely, lovely lady (in a wolef jumper) touched my arm and said 'You think they're letting you down, but they're not. It's lovely to see children so excited.'

I'm crying just thinking about it.

Similarly, an elderly man said to me, when DD was about 10 months old and I was in a cafe with her, 'You have such a wonderful connection with your daughter. We've been watching you all through our lunch and it has brightened our day.' I was struggling with PND and his comment changed our lives.

I try to pass it on, but am often too reticent.

diddl Wed 03-Sep-14 07:05:17

I would have thought that you were a completely patronising knob tbh.

Is having fun with your kid so unusual that it needs commenting on?

'you are a fantastic mother and your daughter is going to have fun growing up with you'.-just bleurgh!

Cooroo Wed 03-Sep-14 07:08:42

Maybe a good job I didn't then diddl. Funny how different we all are!

GingerSkin Wed 03-Sep-14 07:15:34

I wouldn't have thought you were patronising at all! Really diddl? Would you find that kind of comment sickening from a stranger?

I probably wouldn't have stopped if driving but had I been walking nearby I would have smiled and likely said something like "you two are having fun"

A lady stopped me in town the day before my holiday and said "whatever you've had this morning, I want some!" I must have just looked happy and excited but it was a nice feel good thing for her to say and not patronising in the slightest

Penguin0fMadagascar Wed 03-Sep-14 07:24:50

I think it's a nice thing to do. When DS1 was tiny I was struggling, and lots of people used to make nice comments about what a beautiful baby he was. Now I do it sometimes, and I know that actually they were being kind to me (obviously he was a beautiful baby, but not so unusual that he would have got so many compliments if I didn't look like I was about to crack up!).

Surely it's better to say something nice and risk someone thinking your patronising because they don't need support, rather than stay quiet and miss an opportunity to offer kindness to someone who might need it? (Mind you, I probably wouldn't have stopped my car to do it!)

LadyLuck10 Wed 03-Sep-14 07:37:26

I'm with diddl. Sounds a bit cringe tbh.

diddl Wed 03-Sep-14 07:50:26

Maybe if you are struggling it would be appreciated.

Or perhaps the simple "you two are having fun" would be met with a laugh & "yes we are".

OPs comment far too much imo.

Littlef00t Wed 03-Sep-14 08:03:23

I think it's nice. You'd have to be incredibly sure of yourself and confident not to get a little glow from a comment like that.

A random neighbour told me she was proud I was breastfeeding in a very mumsy way. It was a little odd but I was chuffed.

FacebookWillEatItself Wed 03-Sep-14 08:07:24

This was a spanotshot of their lives in the same way as when you see some dressed out harpie being nary with her children it is also a snapshot.

I am quite sure that very few of us are fantastic and fun all of the time, and very few of us are evil witches all of the time.

Most of us are human, with off days, but we try to make it up to our children by skipping with them sometimes.

FacebookWillEatItself Wed 03-Sep-14 08:07:51

that would be snapshot, not spanotshot {grin]

FacebookWillEatItself Wed 03-Sep-14 08:08:05

Oh FFS. I give up.

FacebookWillEatItself Wed 03-Sep-14 08:09:16

stressed out. STRESSED. Why does my laptop want to say dressed? WHY CAN AUTOCORRECT NOT MIND ITS OWN FUCKING BUSINESS??? angry

polkadotsrock Wed 03-Sep-14 08:13:57

I can't imagine it ever being patronising to be told you've cheered someone up just by having fun with you're wee one. I'd be delighted...though the little spoilsport refuses to skip with me.

FlossyMoo Wed 03-Sep-14 08:19:57

I was in a restaurant a few years ago with DH, the in-laws and Dc's ( 9, 8 ,5 & 5). They can be quite loud and I was always a little on edge when we were in quiet places as I didn't want their behaviour to ruin other peoples meals.

I'm not sure if this elderly couple could see my anxiety (or heard me do the gritted teeth whisper of sit down/be quiet/don't hit your sister) but just as we were finishing our main course they came up to me and told that I had a wonderful family and they had never seen so many well behaved children. They said we were a joy to watch as you do't see such large families these days.

At that point I could have cried. I have never forgotten it. smile

AliceInGallifrey Wed 03-Sep-14 08:23:59

I would have been chuffed if you stopped me in the street. Sometimes it's nice to know your doing something 'right'

Around 2 year ago dd was having a melt down in a shop - the worst she ever had. All over a ball that I would not buy her, me and dh had just bought or home together so had a trolley each with house stuff.

We got the tuts and muttering so and the girl at the till actually told me I should have just got her it angry

We had just got back to the car when I realised a mum with a boy twice dds age was following me , I honestly thought she was going to have a go at me. She didn't. she told me I'd done a brilliant job not backing down standing my ground and keeping my cool.

I could have kissed her it boosted my confidence, and made me realise not everyone tuts in disgust.

If the blonde lady from the north east Is reading this - thank you smile

feelingmellow Wed 03-Sep-14 08:24:27

I always try to say something nice to a person with a newborn, just because I remember how good it felt when it was done to me. It never occurred to me that it could be regarded as patronising.

knittedslippersx2 Wed 03-Sep-14 08:32:57

When dd was 3 we took her to the West End to see Beauty and the Beast. A very well spoken elderly lady stopped me on the way out, she said she just had to say how well behaved my daughter had been during the whole performance and how it was so lovely to see her enjoy the show. It made my day to be honest.

PlumpPartridge Wed 03-Sep-14 08:36:28

I will always try to pass along a positive thought to a stranger - if that means someone out there thinks I'm a patronising douche then hey ho. I think more people appreciate the gesture than not.

Sootgremlin Wed 03-Sep-14 08:43:15

Yes it is a snapshot, but even if she'd been shouting all day, having a positive comment when she was having fun and it was all going right might help her have a less shouty day tomorrow, or she might remember it when she's having a tough time and it might help.

I had a similar experience to asleeponasunbeam, I'd had a really difficult week with my Baby, and that day had been in tears and just unable to pick myself up, felt like I wasn't really enjoying him or engaging with him properly. In desperation for a better afternoon I met my husband in a cafe for lunch and after a little while of being there, chatting to ds and walking him round the little garden, an elderly man came over and said how lovely it was seeing me interact with my son, and it was clear to see how much he was loved and how nice it was to watch me enjoying him and making him part of everything.

Perhaps it does sound a bit much when you write it down but it helped me for the rest of that day and through many a day after when I began to doubt myself or felt I didn't know what I was doing.

rainbowfeet Wed 03-Sep-14 08:43:23

Asleeponasunbeam .. Your story brought tears to my eyes. grin

If I attempt to skip, sing or dance with ds aged 2.5 in public he cringes & says stop it mum!!!!

EmeraldLion Wed 03-Sep-14 08:43:23

I think it's a lovely thought op, but that specific comment would probably be a 'bit much' for a lot of people (me included) and would probably leave them feeling a bit uncomfortable.

It is nice when you get positive comments though rather than the numerous 'you've got your hands full'! that you get when you have two young kids with you. I just think a 'That looks fun!' comment is less full on.

BaldricksTurnip Wed 03-Sep-14 08:51:11

I think positive comments from strangers are lovely. When DH and I were bringing our first son home from hospital, the midwives on the ward were saying goodbye to us and said that they thought we were going to be great parents and that our son was going to have fun with us. He's 6 now and I'm still chuffed about that comment.

PoppyAmex Wed 03-Sep-14 08:53:24

That's lovely, OP.

I'm Latin and probably not as self-conscious as British people, so often do approach people with positive comments and never had a bad experience.

I did however had a sad experience last month; at softplay hell and was watching this little girl (must've been about 7 or 8) looking after her small brother and drawing in the black board.

A group of older children were being rather mean and kept erasing the little brother's drawings, throwing the chalk away and just generally being goady and provoking her. She handled the whole thing with such grace and dignity, whilst protecting her sibling I was actually a little bit moved.

I saw her later sitting with her mother and complimented her on her beautiful children and the impeccable behaviour of her girl. Her mum answered "oh my boy is a terror but boys will be boys. She, on the other hand, is a stubborn little shit so you must've caught her on a good moment" shock

I just wanted to hug the little girl.

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