to be upset that friends don't take DS into consideration?

(194 Posts)
DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 12:10:14

first time posting on MN, but I needed to rant to someone! I have a group of 5 or so friends, all without children. They've arranged a girlie get together(which is nice, but only arranged by said friend as she's been on fantastic holiday and wants to brag, sorry, share, her stories ((Not bitter really!))).

The brunch is planned for a weekend at a rather posh and stuck up restaurant which is NOT child friendly! Last time they made me leave my buggy on the street as they didn't want it inside the premises (there was room inside).

My DH works on weekends (they know this) and I don't have anyone to leave DS with, so if I want to go I need to bring my DS. Sitting at a posh restaurant on a sunday afternoon for a couple of hours with my 2.5 yr old DS is not my idea of a fun time, and thats if he even sits still, doesn't have a tantrum and doesn't throw food for 10 mins! I wouldn't mind so much but this is the millionth time I've tried to explain what it's like to have a 2.5 year old!!

At the end of my rope with said group of friends, and ready to have a tantrum of my own. Advice needed from wise MN on dealing with it and still maintaining friendships whilst getting my point across to them!

adeucalione Thu 10-Jan-13 12:15:04

If you have already explained it, and they continue to make arrangements that are not convenient for you, then I can only assume that they don't care - not in an unkind way, but in that it is a convenient time for the majority of people in the group, and you can't please everyone can you?

If they work, I assume that a mid-week brunch isn't possible for them.

On the bright side, at least they invited you - lots of posts on here from people who have been dropped by friendship groups once they have children.

Personally I wouldn't go, and ask if next time you can all do something in the evening, when your DH is around to watch your DS.

Or get a babysitter?

Well would you be offended if they hadn't invited you? Probably I am guesing.

This is obviously an invitation which does not extend to your baby as well. If you can get someone to look after him then all good, but if not then you can't go.

Realistically if they don;t have kids then they are not going to arrange a get together at the local soft play are they.

Sounds like you are being unreasonable and too sensitive.

Crawling Thu 10-Jan-13 12:16:30

Sorry I think you are being unreasonable there are 5 of them and they obviously like the place and find the timing good you can't expect people to drop everything and change plans just because your a mum. This is why its hard being the first one to have children if its inconvenient then don't go but others should not have to make their plans solely around you because you have a child.

3smellysocks Thu 10-Jan-13 12:16:31

Is there any chance you could wear your toddler out then take him to eat? Take lots of activities with you?

mrsjay Thu 10-Jan-13 12:17:44

I think you need to tell them you cant make it as you have nobody to look after your toddler people without children don't realise stuff it isn't really their fault maybe it is time to see them on your terms not theirs, I had this years ago with childless friends, the world doesn't revolve around our children sometimes us parents need to lose out and compromise with friends who have none,

Sugarice Thu 10-Jan-13 12:17:51

They don't seem very considerate towards you if you have continuously explained about suitable venues with a toddler but they've done it anyway.

I'd give this time a miss and arrange an evening out with them if I was concerned about missing out on get togethers.

Trills Thu 10-Jan-13 12:17:56

If your DH works weekends and you have nobody to leave DS with does that mean that you can't ever do anything child-free at the weekend?

Have you considered getting a babysitter?

Convict224 Thu 10-Jan-13 12:18:48

I feel your pain, OP.

But... talk to them. Say how difficult it is for you in that particular venue. Suggest one where you all could feel comfortable.

The thing is, not everyone gets children until they have their own.

SamSmalaidh Thu 10-Jan-13 12:19:02

OK, so this get together isn't going to work for you.

Have you tried organising something that is more child friendly? Or suggesting something at a time when your DH is available?

...and they have probably arranged this brunch there because it is not child friendly in the hope that you don't take your DS like you did last time.

There is a time and a place of babies, and a girly posh lunch is not one of them.

Def look into a babysitter and go and have some fun with your friends smile

financialwizard Thu 10-Jan-13 12:20:34

Just tell them that DP is working and that your experience of that restaurant with DS was not great last time. Then either suggest an alternative or tell them you can't go.

Sugarice Thu 10-Jan-13 12:20:54

Plus, 5 of them are childless so they don't need to be concerned about stuff Mums need to be aware of, sorry but that's how it is.

fairylightsandtinsel Thu 10-Jan-13 12:21:56

I think YABU to expect them to go somewhere that would be suitable for your toddler if they want to properly chat - even in child friendly restaurants you don't tend to linger, just eat and go. I Agree with those that say perhaps you should suggest an evening get-together.

Jenny70 Thu 10-Jan-13 12:22:31

It is hard when friends make plans that you can't fit in with, you feel left out. But realistically they don't have kids, they organised it and sadly you may not be able to come.

If you can think of a place/time that would be more suitable, either organise another time to get together or suggest it to main organiser... but they may not want to change it.

At 2.5 your DS isn't dependant on you, I'd be looking to find a babysitter and enjoy a day out without your DS. I know it costs more, but for a twice a year treat it may be worth it.

crunchbag Thu 10-Jan-13 12:22:52

YABU. A nice relaxed posh lunch in the weekend might not suit you but it does the others. It would be nice it they took DS in consideration but family friendly places are not everyones cup of tea. Is there really nobody else that can look your DS?

izzyishappilybusy Thu 10-Jan-13 12:23:00

Well it-shirts what happens when you are first to ha've dcs - its why so many of us end up with "mummy" friends

mrsjay Thu 10-Jan-13 12:24:02

I am not sure 5 childless women would want an alternative child friendly place tbh betty said a posh girly brunch and that is exactly what they have organised sounds lovely and I dont think if want to go to a kid friendly place either, op you need to get a babysitter I think or just take your son and hope for the best,

Sirzy Thu 10-Jan-13 12:24:32

The problem is you can't really expect them all to change plans for your son, it is up to you to make arrangements for him not you

I don't think you should take him with you. On this occasion, if you can't get a babysitter, I think you need to consider not going.
Can you arrange a get together at your house one Saturday on Sunday so you can be included and not have to worry too much about your son.
Could you cook a nice lunch or evening meal for everyone and enjoy each others company without having to go out?

ErikNorseman Thu 10-Jan-13 12:26:37

Wear your toddler?!?! grinhmm
People who aren't used to carrying wearing their 2.5 year olds might struggle to start. Plus it's the sitting in fancy restaurant that's the problem, not getting there, I think. Some places are simply unsuited to toddlers. Sorry OP, I don't think they want your DS there. You'll have to duck out.

thebody Thu 10-Jan-13 12:26:58

When you have children your life changes.

You choose to change your life.

Your friends haven't so your the one who has moved on not them.

You can't possibly be serious to take a toddler to a girly lunch in a posh restaurant.
Either get a babysitter or don't go.
Make mummy friends its loads easier.

Don't take him. With all the will in the world they don't want him there.

Permisson Thu 10-Jan-13 12:27:52

Could you suggest an alternative time when you could go without DS? Eg an evening. Perhaps in addition to the brunch? It sounds like they want an adult get together rather than a child focused one. Or alternatively can you suggest another seperate child friendly meet up?

mrsjay Thu 10-Jan-13 12:28:21

everybody is right don't take him try and find a baby sitter

Permisson Thu 10-Jan-13 12:29:23

Ah, x post, great minds think alike smile

iseenodust Thu 10-Jan-13 12:29:30

If it was an evening would you stretch to a babysitter? If so, get one for the afternoon and enjoy yourself.

Greythorne Thu 10-Jan-13 12:30:05

She said "wear your toddler out" ie make sure he has been to the oark and run round so he is physicalky tired, not "wear your toddler [in a sling]"!!!

mrsjay Thu 10-Jan-13 12:30:07

when dd was a baby toddler I had loads of childless friends I had her quite young and they would rather stick pins in their eyes than go to any child friendly place It is sad but we all sort of fell away from each other, friendships move on sometimes

maddening Thu 10-Jan-13 12:30:49

Next time you do thw arranging and arrange a baby friendly place.

ethelb Thu 10-Jan-13 12:31:38

you need to arrange something.

can you get them round to your house for saturday or sunday lunch/dinner?

And see if you can arrange a babysitter for this weekend.

Seeing as you now have greater needs than them I think you need to direct your friend a bit.

Pandemoniaa Thu 10-Jan-13 12:32:25

There are 5 of them and clearly the arrangement suits them and actually, I don't think you'd have a particularly good time if you had to take your child with you. So it looks as if you have two options. Decline, with regret, because you don't have childcare or get a babysitter.

Sadly, it is often a fact of life that until everyone else in your social circle has friends, there will be impractical arrangements made. It's not helpful and it can make you very cross but actually, just because one of you has a child doesn't mean everyone else has to change their plans or be judged as unreasonable because they don't.

maddening Thu 10-Jan-13 12:33:25

Or suggest them coming for lunch one day - take ds to soft play in the morning and he might nap while your friends are there - more relaxed and cheaper all round ( even childless folk like to save cash ) you could make a fab afternoon tea and ask friends to bring some little cakes.

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Thu 10-Jan-13 12:34:57

If you do take him, the ipad is your friend- download a load of Peppa and you wont hear a peep out of him for my friends tell me.

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 12:35:50

Betty_ it is an invitation which is including DS as they've asked what timing fits his schedule/ And of course I wouldn't expect them to arrange a lunch at soft play! Dur!

Thanks the rest of you! Possibly being sensitive but this is the hundredth time I'm dealing with related issues towards having/not having kids!

CheeseandPickledOnion Thu 10-Jan-13 12:38:20

Sorry UABU. There are 5 childfree women who want to spend a nice afternoon in a posh place. 5 over 1. Presuming they work all week, they are probably looking forward to their weekend, and probably don't want a squirmy, shouty child there, hence their decision not to move it just for you.

I think you need to accept that they don't want to all have to change their plans to suit you, and that perhaps it would do you good to find childcare and go alone.

SamSmalaidh Thu 10-Jan-13 12:38:30

What kind of child friendly place would be your choice Dharma?

CheeseandPickledOnion Thu 10-Jan-13 12:41:37


So they asked what suited his schedule? Ok, then they obviously don't understand the problem you have with taking DS to that particular place.

Were you clear with them about that?

maddening Thu 10-Jan-13 12:41:43

Here here with the ipad - I have ben nd holly on my phone for such occasions - ds is v good in restaurants - I take him out all the time otherwise I'd never see anyone and everyone says how well behaved he is - but if I see the slightest bit of ds getting bored I have toys and tv to distract him - he stays calm and it doesn't escalate - once you've lost it it's too late imo.

RunnerHasbeen Thu 10-Jan-13 12:42:10

Have you tried asking one of your friends with children if they can watch him. If I had a friend who was giving up their social life because they were too worried about asking me to watch their child, I'd be a bit sad about it and would bend over backwards to help. 2.5 years is a long time to be giving up lunch dates with friends and working everything around a child, surely there is someone he would rather be playing with than coming to the lunch with you.

Honestly, ask someone, IME most other mums would be happy to look after him and you can always return the favour another time. The worst that can happen is they say no and you have to ask someone else.

Betty_ it is an invitation which is including DS as they've asked what timing fits his schedule/ And of course I wouldn't expect them to arrange a lunch at soft play! Dur! ..........OP, that comment was made tongue in cheek!! Dur!

But yes 80% of your group are childfree - either get a babysitter or don't go.

ShatnersBassoon Thu 10-Jan-13 12:43:29

"it is an invitation which is including DS as they've asked what timing fits his schedule"

So they are taking your son into consideration. I don't think you can expect them to work out a venue that suits you more than all of the others. They've tried to make the plan work for you, so I don't think you can be upset with them.

RunnerHasbeen Thu 10-Jan-13 12:44:18

Or you have to get in there first and take the driving seat when making plans to see them. You can't take offence or complain about the "100th time" if you are not saying where you would like to go or making any effort to arrange to see them.

Betty_ it is an invitation which is including DS as they've asked what timing fits his schedule/ And of course I wouldn't expect them to arrange a lunch at soft play! Dur

And thinking about it nowhere in your OP did you say that so don't be so bloody rude. God, if you are are moody as you sound then no wonder they are not making it that easy for you to attend.

MadBusLady Thu 10-Jan-13 12:47:15

Looking on the bright side, if the invitation includes DS that's a nice sign, isn't it? They obviously don't have a problem with him being there, and they obviously don't see you any differently to how they used to. The flipside is they won't have made the connection between you letting off steam about parenting and the lack of buggy storage space at their preferred venues, unless you spell it out.

Would it be possible to get there and back by taxi, ie so he only has to toddle into the taxi and then into chair/highchair at restaurant? At least then the buggy wouldn't be a problem.

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 12:47:28

SamSmalaidh - anything would be preferable to a place that is very, very, stuck up white napkins, cut glass, extensive wine get the picture.Nice food tho!

Sugarice Thu 10-Jan-13 12:47:56

Dharma don't get stressy if the points given aren't what you want to hear.

Dur!! hmm

lynniep Thu 10-Jan-13 12:50:51

I think you have to accept they arent willing to change their 'requirements' for you, and tbh I don't really see why they should, since you are quite outnumbered as a parent. Its a shame, but it happens. You need to find childcare, or not go.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Thumbwitch Thu 10-Jan-13 12:53:39

I think you should decline this invitation if you can't get a babysitter; explain to them again (if you can be bothered) that it's not an appropriate setting for your 2.5yo; and if you want to continue being friends with them all, perhaps find a place that would work for you AND them next time, and suggest that you, as a group, alternate child-friendly and nonchild-friendly venues, so you don't miss out on every get-together.

You honestly can't expect people who don't have much/any experience of children to completely "get" why taking a 2.5yo to a posh restaurant can be a trial, no matter how often you explain it. And you really don't want them to find out the hard way.

Patchouli Thu 10-Jan-13 12:56:57

So, now you're saying that they are considering your DS?
(naptimes/schedule etc)

BertieBotts Thu 10-Jan-13 13:00:26

A play date sounds like a perfect idea if you can arrange it - do you know any other mums through playgroups etc?

They probably don't understand what it's like to have a toddler, and they won't do until they have their own. 2.5 is a tricky age for eating out because they're old enough to be annoying with the mess creation rather than cute, and yet not old enough to sit quietly with a colouring book or join in the conversation etc. It only really works at something like a family event where everyone's prepared to chip in at keeping the toddler entertained/involved a little bit - unlikely with an adult ladies' lunch.

SamSmalaidh Thu 10-Jan-13 13:00:39

Well they are doing their best to consider your DS! Why haven't you suggested a more suitable venue if there is somewhere he could sit quietly and behave nicely?

Why haven't you suggested a more suitable venue if there is somewhere he could sit quietly and behave nicely?

Is that possible for a 2 year old? grin My DS was well behaved but not sure about the sitting nicely bit, lol.

SamSmalaidh Thu 10-Jan-13 13:06:40

Depends on the 2 year old of course, but I have taken my DS out for many restaurant lunches/dinners and he can behave fine. Though we always go to Pizza Express/Giraffe/Las Iguanas type places - not Maccy Ds but not super posh grin

crunchbag Thu 10-Jan-13 13:12:07

I'd think that a posh restaurant would be a better place to find somewhere quietly to sit than pizza express, especially in the weekends.

Patchouli Thu 10-Jan-13 13:24:47

It's a shame too as it sounds like you just can't wait to hear about the holiday.

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 13:25:13

BertieBotts you are so right! It has been fine when he's being cute but when he starts playing up and tantruming when bored then he will be handed back to me, which is of course as it should be!

flowery Thu 10-Jan-13 13:33:04

I wouldn't want to bring a child to a girly lunch tbh, I want to concentrate on catching up with mates rather than miss half the conversation and not be able to properly relax, and would see meet-ups with childless friends as an opportunity.

Rather than getting fed up because the group don't go places which are child friendly, why not just never bring DS with you when you meet up with those friends and ask if future meet ups can be in the evening and/or find yourself a weekend babysitter so you can get some me time.

neolara Thu 10-Jan-13 13:39:15

I'm not sure finding an alternative restaurant is a viable option. Most 2 1/2 year olds will struggle to sit still or play quietly without running around for longer than about 20 mins. So unless the "new" restaurant has a playground / play space attached, I reckon it's going to be hideous anyway. And your childless friends, who have picked an upmarket restaurant, probably would rather stick pins in their eyes than go to a playbarny place. As frankly would I if I had a choice, and I have 3 kids.

Happilymarried155 Thu 10-Jan-13 13:46:40

Yabu, as others have said most of the group don't have children, they shouldn't have to arrange all thier girly get togetherness around you and your child. Maybe find a babysitter or explain you can't come this time as its not a suitable place to bring DS but you hope to come next time!

purplefairies Thu 10-Jan-13 13:49:22

I'm a bit shocked by the number of threads telling the OP basically to drop her friends and find new mummy friends. As the childfree one in a group with two close friends pregnant, I find that quite hurtful (and it doesn't leave me very optimistic about the future). Her friends might be thinking they're doing her a favour giving her an opportunity for a break from her DS.

sooperdooper Thu 10-Jan-13 13:49:53

YABU, it works for the majority of the group - if it doesn't work for you, don't go

Next time why don't you make the plans instead? I think you're being a bit silly tbh

Mayisout Thu 10-Jan-13 13:54:23

So you have a hard-working DH and a gorgeous 2.5 yr old DS - they are single and have no DCs. And they won't make an effort to accommodate you.

Hmmmmm mystery to me, you'd think they'd love to have their noses rubbed in the fact that they are still single to alter their plans to suit their one married friend with a DC.

I was hugely jealous of friends with partners when I was still single.

StuntGirl Thu 10-Jan-13 13:54:32

But they are considering your DS, they just don't 'get' that there's more to consider than nap times.

Try and get a babysitter for this one, or say thanks for thinking of us but it really isn't somewhere suitable for children, but you can't wait for a catch up another time. And then take the bull by the horns and organise that one yourself, that way you'll know definitively that you'll have a babysitter/child friendly place/delete as appropriate.

thebody Thu 10-Jan-13 13:54:44

Not saying drop these friends but its horses for courses. You don't just have one group of friends do you? I have lots of different groups, some younger than me some older. Some child free wild ones and some really staid mums. Different venues and different activities.

I would rather stick pins in my eyes than have lunch with a 2 year old ( except as a cm) as mine are now all older.

I don't see the problem. Leave him babysat or don't go. Of course he will dominate the lunch that's what toddlers do and I expect your friends would be bored ridged if they are childless and you will end up hairless.

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 14:01:03

LynnieP and some OP on here
I think you have to accept they arent willing to change their 'requirements' for you, and tbh I don't really see why they should, since you are quite outnumbered as a parent. Its a shame, but it happens. You need to find childcare, or not go.

I was very much of this frame of mind BC, but having kids has changed my opinion somewhat on what I will do to remain in touch with this particular group. I am prepared to make concessions for others (and have made many) Things like choice of restaurants; (nearer for those who don't drive, are veggie/meat-eaters/don't like a particular cuisine/ ex-boyfriend works within 10 mile radius, etc ; going out and standing in a packed bar when 6.5 months pregnant as it was someone's birthday and they would be miffed if I didn't go; waiting in a restaurant for 45 mins with a hungry baby as one of said friends was hungover. Yes, in all cases, I couldve not gone/left/not agreed, but as I said I wanted to make concessions and not feel like I was giving my friends just because I'd had a baby. Is is selfish to ask for a little bit in return? I'm ready to be flamed for this one!

MadBusLady Thu 10-Jan-13 14:03:23

I was very much of this frame of mind BC, but having kids has changed my opinion somewhat

Well, yes. So that tells you where your friends are now.

Have you articulated your needs to them? Really, you need to spell it out in letters a mile high, with no resentment or drama, and see what they do next. This stuff just won't be occurring to them for one moment, honestly.

WhateverTrevor Thu 10-Jan-13 14:05:46

You've ignored everyone who has suggested getting a babysitter.
You can either pay for one or ask one of your mum friends to have your ds in return for you doing the same for them.
If your dh works long hours you need to sort some childcare arrangements out.

I would not go to the venue with your ds as you will be stressed and not enjoy it and possibly spoil it for your friends.

wonkylegs Thu 10-Jan-13 14:06:21

I was (and still am in some areas) the first of my friends to have a baby (mines now 4)
I wouldn't expect them to rearrange plans to be child friendly but I wouldn't also write off places as being to posh for kids. We've posh taste in restaurants and that didn't stop when we had a kid... So DS has been for many a posh lunch. 2.5 is admittedly probably the hardest age but you must bring lots for him to do.
I've done similar lunches with a bag of treats, bribes, small toys, colouring, DVD player & headphones.... We've now also added iPad or iPhone to the mix, loaded with toddler games (Hatch! Is extraordinarily simple but has kept DS happy since he was 2)
Take him to the park for a run round first and you might even get a bit of a sleep too.
If you really can't face it you have 2 choices - babysitter or don't go.
It gets easier as more friends have kids but to be honest if you've got professional friends lots don't have kids til quite late (like mine) or at all - so posh lunches (thankfully) will still be on the cards for many years to come.

MadBusLady Thu 10-Jan-13 14:16:05

Are you sure you just don't really want to go? As in, don't feel up to a posh restaurant for some hair/clothes/arse size-related reason (and we've all been there), don't really want to sit and listen to someone banging on about their expensive holiday and so are inventing reasons why it's all outrageous and impossible?

I wouldn't blame you, but really if you don't want to go, then don't go.

Proudnscary Thu 10-Jan-13 14:17:44

Five of them, one of you. Majority rules.

I think it's you that's not really thinking about their wants and needs. They want to go somewhere swanky for a laugh and a catch up. They don't want to go to a 'child friendly' place where they will be interrupted constantly.

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 14:17:57

Absolutely not ignoring the babysitting suggestions. My normal one is not available and neither is back-up one unfortunately.sad

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 14:20:21

MadBusLady LMAO! You may very well be right and the seasonal plumage
weight gain doesn't help!

MadBusLady Thu 10-Jan-13 14:24:43

I have lurked under many a duvet on such occasions. wink Nothing wrong with bowing out once in a while, if it's not done resentfully.

Bonsoir Thu 10-Jan-13 14:26:02

I think that you are the minority party here (only person with a child) and you need to arrange babysitter.

DewDr0p Thu 10-Jan-13 14:29:06

We were the first of our friends and both families to have dcs so I know what it's like. People vary wildly in their appreciation of the nitty gritty of having small children ime.

Could you invite them to drop round to yours/you go and meet them all after the lunch? I'd say something like "oh it sounds fab but I think little Ds would be a nightmare in there - we'll sit out the lunch but why don't we meet up afterwards?" Or just arrange another catchup at your house or somewhere more appropriate.

Backtobedlam Thu 10-Jan-13 14:34:29

I have my own young kids but when arranging a girlie lunch/get together I often suggest inappropriate places for kids as I like the oppertunity to spend time alone with my friends. I have always just assumed everyone can get some else to have their children for a few hours, it sounds inconsiderate writing it now, but its never really occurred to me before. Your friends are probably the same, just don't think rather than doing it to exclude you. If there's no one who can have your ds suggest meeting them after for a quick coffee in a more child friendly place, or at yours.

AmberLeaf Thu 10-Jan-13 14:36:06

Do you feel like its a lip service 'consideration'? like saying he can come and when will be good, but knowing full well its not do-able?

You do need some other friends though, who are happy with a bottle of wine and some nice food at one an others houses.

PrideOfChanur Thu 10-Jan-13 14:36:07

"Yabu, as others have said most of the group don't have children, they shouldn't have to arrange all thier girly get togetherness around you and your child."

In some ways,whyever not? They probably have more flexibility,barring work (Did you say if you work,OP?).I would be prepared to change when or where I met my friends quite a lot to actually see them,because the point is that I want to see my friends - where we go and what we do is secondary.Doesn't work if you want to do the activity but aren't bothered who with of course.

I think you need to look into childcare,so you can have some childfree time with friends when you want to,and tell your friends very clearly and specifically what would work for you,to see if you can find a compromise everyone is happy with

whois Thu 10-Jan-13 14:37:19

OP are you for real?

You are the only one of your friends who have children. They can't really meet for brunch during the week as they work.

There is no way they will want to go meet in soft play or a playground or another toddler suitable venue FFS.

I am 100% they don't want you to take the ankle biter and are meaning for you to get a babysitter.

So either don't go, or find a babysitter. Plenty of agencies or you must know some other parents who can recommend a sitter.

Or you could arrange a get together add that way you can choose the venue. But to be honest you sound like you don't like them very much anyway.

grumpyinthemorning Thu 10-Jan-13 14:37:43

Seems I'm tho only one, but i think it's unfair of your friends to not make allowances for the fact you have a child. I'm very lucky, my friends all adore DS and make a point of not arranging stuff at places I can't take him, or checking I can get a babysitter when arranging evenings out. I understand having a child changes your life, but how many of these "friends" will complain that it's not fair when it happens to them?

The suggestions to make "mummy" friends - I see absolutely no reason to completely change your friendship group when you become a parent. It's nice to be able to still feel like you.

Look into local babysitters, but also ask your friends to make a few allowances. It won't kill them.

AmberLeaf Thu 10-Jan-13 14:41:25

You're not the only one grumpy, I agree.

sweks Thu 10-Jan-13 14:42:19

I know how you feel dharma. Similar thing happened to me, in fact they just stopped inviting me! I think if you explain how you feel and they are good friends they will be more flexible. They may just need things spelling out to them. I felt they weren't interested in my child and that was hurtful but when I explained how I felt, I realised how wrong I had been in assuming this!
I do agree sometimes you need to meet up with them without kids but in this particular case if they knew your situation ie hubbie working, no one to look after your son, and they really wanted you to come out they can plan to go to a more child friendly place eg nice pub restaurant.
Suggest an evening meet up with friends without son, then you all get the best of both worlds.

YABU. You've got a cheek expecting anything. Didn't you get the official notification that nothing you want counts for anything once you gave children. Funnily enough I didn't know this and it was Mumsnet of all places that told me I was a non person for having children.

MulledWineAndScully Thu 10-Jan-13 14:43:21

I'd be embarrassed if my friends made compromises around me and my DD.
I'd much rather they did what they wanted and either I wouldn't go, or I'd get a babysitter.

I definitely don't think you should take your DS to this venue anyway - it sounds like a total nightmare and I don't think your friends, or the venue, will thank you for it.

justmyview Thu 10-Jan-13 14:45:30

Do you really only have 2 people you could ask to babysit? I'd suggest you try to cast the net a bit wider. You might be able to join in just for the main course and then scoot off

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 14:46:36

Maybe reading some of OP before commenting.. No one suggesting meeting in the week, nor am I suggesting a soft play either and yes I am for realconfused

Thanks I was feeling like I might be going be crazy asking or compromise, esp bearing in mind my latter posting!

MulledWineAndScully Thu 10-Jan-13 14:46:36

But the friends WANT to go to the venue. Why should they not go just because one member of the group has a child, and it's a non-child-friendly place?

They have 3 choices - either don't go (why should they?), or go and don't invite the OP (which would be worse for her), or go and do invite the OP and hope she can get childcare. They've quite sensibly gone for the latter.

MulledWineAndScully Thu 10-Jan-13 14:48:26

By the way OP I do sympathise, I of all people know how difficult it is, and I have zero social life.... I'm jealous of the fact you even still get invited to stuff! envy

sooperdooper Thu 10-Jan-13 14:52:14

I'm assuming that during the last 2.5 years you've had your DS you must've met up on some occasion without him, and some times with?

Just accept that not every social situation is going to be child-friendly, possibly (I'll probably get stoned to death for this) they do want to have an adult get together without kids, especially if they don't have any themselves, which is perfectly reasonable

If you don't want to go on this particular occasion then just don't go - and you make a suggestion of where/when you next meet up that's more convienient for you (and accept that it may not be convenient for them)

witchface Thu 10-Jan-13 14:52:58

My friend was the first to have children. Suddenly everything had to revolve around him. I would make allowances and go places which were suitable for a baby/toddler but i hated it. I did not adore him. I never got to actually speak to her. It never occurred to her to get a babysitter.

Now i have my own it is no different. I still do not adore her child (now children) and i would much rather we got babysitters and did something adult for a change.

People make a huge mistake when they think others will think their little darlings are amazing.

Viviennemary Thu 10-Jan-13 14:55:22

I suppose you've a right to feel a bit peeved that your son wasn't taken into consideration. But if none of the rest of the group have children they are unlikely to want to go to a place with lots of children and soft play areas and the like. I wouldn't really. The only way round it is to suggest a meeting in the evening when you can go without your DS.

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 14:56:00

MulledwineAndScully its few and far bwtween these days, which is why I'd like to go and catch up. I think maybe they just don't get having kids which is why getting together always seems to be a real struggle between what's achievable for them vs me sad

GregBishopsBottomBitch Thu 10-Jan-13 14:57:04

Girlie nights with my friends always end up being at my house, because im the only with my own house, i have a child and while my friends are understanding of this, i do sometimes prefer to be, Greg and not just Mummy all the time.

ivykaty44 Thu 10-Jan-13 14:57:56

Op why don't you invite your friends round to your place one vening when your dc is in bed - that way you can all have a catch up and girly chat without having to worry about your dc as they will be asleep in bed. You could plan to order a take away and sink a couple of bottle of wine.

If you take charge of the organising of some events get togethers then you will get to go to said gatherings.

On the lunch date - can you not turn up later after they have eaten so you can see them for a while and have a drink - but not let your dc get bored with a long lunch? You are a mother now and sometimes you will have to make sacrifices - sorry but you can't just go out and do stuff you did before

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 15:00:14

GwendolineMaryLacy grin I think I missed that email

AndBingoWasHisNameOh Thu 10-Jan-13 15:01:15

Could you rearrange for a date when you CAN get one of your babysitters?

sooperdooper Thu 10-Jan-13 15:03:19

I think maybe they just don't get having kids which is why getting together always seems to be a real struggle between what's achievable for them vs me

And why should they, they don't have them smile

They proabably want a child free catch up - I know sometimes when I see my friends and they bring their kids it's just a running commentary of them talking to/about the child, not an adult conversation, which can get quite wearing tbh

sweks Thu 10-Jan-13 15:04:08

BTW ... Now all my friends have children and mine are a bit older I am the one compromising on places we go and when. That's what good friends do IMO

Floralnomad Thu 10-Jan-13 15:06:07

Sorry haven't read all the replies so this may have been said but could you not host at your house on this occasion ,they could all bring a dish !

fuckadoodlepoopoo Thu 10-Jan-13 15:15:23

Is there another restaurant that would be better for you that you could suggest?

I can remember not understanding how difficult certain situations are for those with kids. Now Im the one constantly explaining it to people, including relatives who want to have Christmas dinner in restaurants every year. How hard would that be with little children who just want to be playing with their new toys and who can not sit still . . . ever!

I even have to explain it to my in laws who think there should be no problem taking my children to my counselling appointments(!), or looking after them at the same time as moving home, knocking down a wall, or when i need to take my husband to hospital in an emergency and he needs a lot of help around the car park and hospital. They thought i was being a bitch to ask them to help in an emergency with their own son. They have had children but i suppose have forgot that practically carrying a full grown very sick screaming in distress man makes it hard to hold on to two small children (with a tenancy to run off) in the car park.

Anyway Im ranting. I know how hard it can be to get a babysitter, as you can probably tell i don't have family that are willing to help. Too often on here people say Oh just get a babysitter! It costs a fortune and its bloody hard to find someone that you can instantly trust with your children!

Its nice that your friends did think on you, they just don't really get it.

nannyl Thu 10-Jan-13 15:21:57

Ok my baby is only 16months (but i know what toddlers are like, ive nannied for 10 years too)

but she has been (including as recently as last week) to 3 very posh 100% un-child friendly as you can get restaurants.... including 1 Michelin star restaurant. 2 of these dont even have any high chairs (which i think shows they dont want toddlers either)

I have to say it has honestly always been fine. (though i agree not as relaxing as pre children)

(she has never in her life eaten jars or processed foods and eats what we eat, which can include lots of unusual things that im guessing at least 80% of people wouldnt feed a 1 year old)

She eats off the main menu, (no childrens menu at those places anyway, but I always choose her proper food (not sausages / nuggets etc) even if they do have a kids menu) i have taken my own travel highchair to these places and make sure there is a change mat in my change bag as i know there wont be any baby changing unit in the building, but its fine

My grandparents and mum / step dad like fine dining and i dont intend to not attend meals im invited too because I have a baby / toddler

She has enjoyed herself, added more unusual "adventurous" foods to the long list of things she eats, and i dont think her presence has hindered the enjoyment of anyone else dining at the same time either
I am always VERY conscious that the last thing otherpeople eating at these places want is noisey / "badly behaved" children disturbing their meal (that they are paying £££ for)... or else they'd be at brewers fayre / harvester etc!

Hullygully Thu 10-Jan-13 15:23:12

They won't understand until they have children themselves <bitter experience>

To them, you chose to have a child and you have to adapt, not them.

Maybe skip that meal but invite them to your house one evening.

grovel Thu 10-Jan-13 15:26:26

I don't think YABU but I don't think your friends are either. The truth is that if 5 out of 6 people want a relaxing get-together in a good restaurant then the 6th just has to decline or make complicated arrangements. It goes with the turf of motherhood.

grovel Thu 10-Jan-13 15:27:03


Kalisi Thu 10-Jan-13 15:44:53

Yabu I'm afraid. Your lifestyle has changed through becoming a Mother but it is unreasonable to expect everyone else to 'think like a parent'. Chances are, your childs babysitting needs have not crossed their minds.
It's no different to getting a weekend job and then moaning because your friends all go out on a Saturday. You are the minority, you will have to sacrifice a few gatherings.

fuckadoodlepoopoo Thu 10-Jan-13 16:09:49

Nannyl. Don't be too smug now will you hmm

The only other person I've known as smug as that had their mouth firmly closed on the subject once their second child arrived, and it turned out that it was the nature of their first child that made it so easy, not her superior parenting as she seriously thought.

jammietart Thu 10-Jan-13 16:12:32

I've had similar things happen with friends as I had DS 2 or 3 years before the rest of my girlfriends started their families. It's a bummer but either get a sitter or ask your DH to take the day off work. Things change when you have children and trying to maintain the status quo will only stress and upset you. And at the end of the day you have a DS, which is better than brunch (most of the time!).

Georgia1982 Thu 10-Jan-13 16:24:09

I can understand that you feel left out, but you have to see it from your friends' perspective. They don't have kids and want to go to this fancy restaurant, so why should they all miss out just because you have a child?

Also they probably don't want your child there (sorry), as it's really annoying when you are trying to have adult conversation and there is a small child being annoying.

If this is a one off, then don't take it personally, just either get a babysitter or don't go.

However if this always happens that does seem inconsiderate and I would have a chat with your friends and suggest that sometimes you meet in more child-friendly places, or at your house. If they are your true friends they will be happy to accommodate you sometimes (but there will still be times when they still want to go to the fancy places....)

Permisson Thu 10-Jan-13 16:40:12

Nannyl a 16 month old is rather different to a 2.5 year old. And yes, I'd guess you are lucky with your daughter's behaviour rather than it being down to your unbelievably smug parenting.

MrsCampbellBlack Thu 10-Jan-13 16:47:31

I could have taken ds2 anywhere - he was the easiest baby/toddler in the world. The other two - umm not so much wink

I think your friends want to chat and catch up and that's not going to work with your toddler there. Is there no chance they could switch to an evening when its a lot easier to get babysitters?

Nanny -my DS was a brilliant eater till he was about 18months....ate everything I cooked him, I didn't use jars, did everything from fresh and I probably felt as smug as you sound.

My DS is now the fussiest kid I know...hmm Karma sure bit me on the arse for that one!

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 16:50:20

nannyl wow!bully for you! My DS would be running around the restaurant like a mad fool, but I actually like the fact that he doesn't just sit around placidly. You are lucky your DC does.

And I'm not suggesting we always go to child-friendly restaurants and eat chicken nuggets you know!

thebody Thu 10-Jan-13 16:51:55

Nannyl stick at one. It's a bloody doddle as you said. More kids not so much.

CloudsAndTrees Thu 10-Jan-13 16:57:51

You are being ridiculously unreasonable. You are asking for them to make a concession because you have a child. They have done that by asking when nap time is.

But that's not good enough for you and you want more. You want them all to go somewhere where they would prefer not to go, and that's too much to expect I'm afraid.

Perhaps you should arrange the next get together, and if it has to be at the weekend, get your DH to book a day off work or find a babysitter.

deleted203 Thu 10-Jan-13 16:59:55

I think you have to accept that your friends are looking forward to a child free, girly lunch in a posh restaurant with wine, laughter and adult conversation. They have asked if you want to join them, but it is clearly not going to be the place to go with a 2.5 yo who will be 'running around the restaurant like a mad fool' as you say. I think YABU to expect them to take DS into account. They don't WANT him there. They want a child free time (with you, if you can make it). Not unreasonable of them, as they don't have kids. I think your decision needs to be can you/do you want to spend time with them as one of the girls or not. Not just on this, but probably most other occasions. Because there isn't really a reason why child free women would want to spend time with toddlers generally. If you are not a mum (and often if you are) toddlers are pretty boring to be with.

SwitchedtoEatingCheese Thu 10-Jan-13 17:00:48

Agreeing with thebody. I used to take my pfb to lots of nice restaurants and he too would eat anything on offer, sit quietly while I congratulated myself on my parenting skills.

Now I have 4 kids and I can even the staff in MacDonalds sigh as we walk in.

SamSmalaidh Thu 10-Jan-13 17:10:24

To be honest if your DS would run around then even a child-friendly restaurant isn't going to be suitable.

Get a babysitter/don't go in this instance, and in future either arrange something for when your DH is at home, invite people to yours or wait for the summer when you can do beach/park picnics.

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 17:12:55

sowornout A bit harsh! Got any kids?! Whilst I think my DS is pretty amazing (most of the time) I don't think toddlers are boring! And the reason they should want to spend time with him is because of me, surely confused maybe being naive but I thought that what friendship was about?

I don't force them to spend ANY time with my DS nor do I shoehorn him into social occasions- in fact 2 of them haven't seen him for over a year as I have purposely arranged social occasions without him or during nap times, exactly as other mn suggest

Adversecamber Thu 10-Jan-13 17:13:08

I am a parent but can honestly say it just does not sound like a child friendly lunch date. Once you have dc unless you have childcare on tap and that is very few of us, never me btw you just cannot go out to certain events.

I actually would not have wanted to take DS at that age and he was a very well behaved toddler.

nailak Thu 10-Jan-13 17:16:54

Yanbu, if I was organising a get together for five of my friends I would try and accommodate everyone, if that meant I had to change the location from my rave restaurant to pizza express then I would. Having everyone there is more important.

deleted203 Thu 10-Jan-13 17:29:51

Dharma I've got 5 kids! It wasn't meant to be harsh - just realistic. Honestly, I don't think women who haven't got kids really find toddlers very interesting. And although I thought my own kids were amazing when they were little, (and still do) I didn't expect anyone else to particularly want to spend time with them or to find them as fascinating as I did. Now mine are aged 7 to 20s I have to say that I would find a lunch where 5 of us had no kids with us and one of us had a toddler very wearing. I DO think it's a bit naive to think that because your friends love you they will necessarily love spending time with you that involves someone shouting 'Mummy! Look' or interrupting conversations every few minutes.

LIZS Thu 10-Jan-13 17:41:23

But they are taking your ds into account , asking you re timings etc, or at least think they are. However by going along with the arrangements you seem to be trying to pretend that it isn't an issue and really need to be honest with them as to what his needs and behaviour are. Your priorities have changed but they probably won't get the impact of that other than to find you a bit flaky. Does you dh not get any leave so you could propose an alternative date he can cover ? If ds goes to preschool/nursery would one of the staff babysit him for you for a few hours. Really it depends how badly you want to maintain these friendships but I think you need to remove ds from this scenario to do so.

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 17:42:30

Sowornout 5! I'm in awe - can barely manage 1!
But then isn't it like saying they are not interested in me, if they're not interested in spending any time with DC? It's like saying - yeah we know you've got a huge part of your life that takes up a big part (not all!) of who you are now, but we're not the slightest bit interested, other than a passing, "how is he?"??? It's like me not being remotely interested in friends new job which takes up all of their time,for example. correct me IBU obviously!

MooncupGoddess Thu 10-Jan-13 17:54:36

I expect they do want to see him - but not to have their whole lunch dictated by him. Can't you suggest an alternative social event (round to yours for dinner? child-friendly museum?) to invite them to?

deleted203 Thu 10-Jan-13 18:00:22

Hmm...I know what you're saying, Dharma but I'm not sure that being interested in you necessarily means they do have to want to spend any time with DC. Obviously, I don't know your friends and how keen they are on children, but liking someone doesn't necessarily mean suddenly being keen to accept their new interests, IYSWIM. Would you be interested in a friend's new job? Or would it be a passing, 'are you busy at work?'. What you are asking them to do is spend 2 hours with a small child, and they may well not want to. If one of them suddenly developed a passion for playing ladies football would you be prepared to stand on the sidelines for 90 minutes on a cold Saturday afternoon cheering them on, or would you simply say, 'how's the footy going?'

I know DS is a huge part of your life - kids are, obviously. But I don't know that you can automatically assume that your friends will be keen to embrace your new life. It sounds to me like they are happy to see you on the same terms as before - ie all girls together. I don't like dogs much blush. And I know it's not the same as children (obviously), but I have a friend who bought a puppy that she thought was ADORABLE - and treats him like a child. But I don't actually want her hairy-arsed, badly behaved, huge, bouncing animal coming round to my house with her. (And if I'm honest, I don't really want to go to hers for coffee now that it means her dog has his chin on my lap and is panting and drooling all over me, or standing up and putting his paws on my shoulders). You know your friends, and I don't, but maybe they don't want to spend time with you if it DOES include a small child racing round. Either way, it's clear that this brunch won't be a child friendly occasion, I'm afraid.

DontmindifIdo Thu 10-Jan-13 18:12:04

OP - you have 2 choices here, either 1) decline the invite saying it's not going to be suitable for DS so you'll miss it this time and you hope everyone has fun or 2) suggest the weekend after or weekend before if you can get a babysitter those dates. (but don't be upset if they can't do those, they will go with the majority date, only fair)

If you do 1 - I suggest you also send a message saying "by the way, evenings are a lot easier for me these days as [DH] is home to look after [DS] and [DS] is no longer at a stage where it's easy to take him along to meals and us be able to chat without the whole thing being about him! Is anyone free on X, Y or Z night for a couple of glasses of wine/a meal out?" then you arrange for one you know DH will be in and you can do.

If you are able to change the date, while you are there, can you make a point that it's so much easier with DS these days for meals, so again, keep repeating that evenings are better.

harryhausen Thu 10-Jan-13 18:18:39

Sowornout. You are so right. Great post.

Dharma, going back to the practical - would you consider using a professional babysitting agency? My childminder (who's rated outstanding by Ofsted and is utterly wonderful) works for an agency sometimes. She gets asked for now by certain families. If you took the plunge maybe you'd find another childcare option?

Otherwise, if you've really exhausted all your babysitting possibilities, I would just sadly sit this one out. I have 2 dcs, but would have utterly hated taking them to a get together like this. Even though, we often eat in restaurants as a family - I would never relax enough to enjoy any girlie conversation.

Don't you ever want to just go and chat to the girls and feel free for an hour or two? God, I'd go mad without my child free coffee catch ups.

Part of parenthood is actually arranging babysitters, and leaving your young child home in safe capable hands, rather to drag them out to boring restaurants. It is not fair on other diners, and not fair on your child either!

I honestly dont understand how some parents fail to understand that bringing their child to every friggin event is inappropriate. If they want a nice posh lunch or evening out, why on earth does this give you the right to insist your child is in tow?

OP, you may feel you have grown up, or out-matured them, but I think you need to grow up some more and understand that cute as your child is, he does not belong in absolutely all social settings.

BackforGood Thu 10-Jan-13 18:20:00

I agree with sowornout.
They are getting together with the girls, for chat, wine, good food, laughter, and your ds isn't invited. If it were me, I wouldn't want to take him either! If these girls are your friends then arrange a babysitter, if you're not that bothered then decline. It's not difficult.

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 18:34:37

pureQuintessence who said anything about "grown-up or "out maturing" people? And who's insisting on dragging DC to every event? If you'd read the OP you might realise that's not what I'm getting at.

But thanks for the feedback as I'd never even considered getting a babysitter

I read your OP Dharma, and the subsequent posts.

catwomanlikesmeatballs Thu 10-Jan-13 19:13:15

Your comment "My DS would be running around the restaurant like a mad fool, but I actually like the fact that he doesn't just sit around placidly." says it all. Nobody else is remotely interested in your child, get over yourself. I have a friend who allows her toddler to run around restaurants like that and it's astounding how oblivious she is to the filthy looks people direct toward her and her very annoying child (not his fault obviously) who is constantly pestering them. We live in an area where most people like and smile at children, I've only ever seen horrible reactions when out with her and her kid in response to his hideous behaviour and her constant adoring/oblivious gaze. Nobody wants to be in the company of someone like that or seen out in public with them. Nobody's impressed.

I would bet anything that your friends have purposely chosen the posh restaurant where they know you feel unwelcome bringing your son in the hopes that it will encourage you to get a babysitter or stay at home. That way they don't have to hurt your feeling by telling you the truth of how they really feel and their meet up doesn't get ruined (along with all the other diners meals).

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 19:23:16

catwomanlikesmeatballs you are making some broad assumptions there, assuming that 1. they wouldn't tell me and 2. I'd actually be comfortable letting him run around like that....bit passive aggressive really. But maybe that's how you roll based on your rant about your "friends" child..

TandB Thu 10-Jan-13 19:39:19

It's a shame when you have to miss out on something, but I think YABU.

Your friends want to do something specific - a nice, weekend brunch in a posh, adult restaurant. They're clearly quite content for you to bring your child (and not everyone would be - there have been plenty of threads about that on here) and they've given his routine some consideration, but it's hardly fair to expect them to also effectively ditch their plan and do something else instead.

I don't think it is unreasonable to expect your friends to consider you to the extent of sometimes doing things which you can attend with your child, or attending child-free things that you arrange at a convenient time for you, but I do think it is unreasonable to effectively expect them to not do something the five of them want to do because it isn't convenient for you. It's not as though you can never go to anything they arrange - you do have two babysitting options, just not for this particular date. When you have small children you get used to taking your nights/lunches out whenever you can and in whatever form you can manage. Before children you have the luxury of choosing where, when and how - you can't expect them to entirely give up their right to whatever social life they want just because one member of their group no longer has quite the full range of options that they have.

Even if they changed this to a different type of gathering, what would happen the next time one of them fancied a posh weekend lunch? Are they simply not allowed to arrange something that you can't do? I think you just have to accept that you have to give this one a miss. Plenty of people miss out on things that their friendship groups do for all sorts of reasons - it's hard to arrange something that suits everyone. It's just one of those things.

sweks Thu 10-Jan-13 19:39:21

It's a shame that their seems to be such personal attacks on dharma, give it a break. She is just asking some opinions andfirst time on the site ... Cat woman, your post is in no way helpful to the question asked.
This is supposed to be a site where people feel comfortable to post their problems and not be the receiver of personal attacks based on Assumptions

TandB Thu 10-Jan-13 19:40:41

And what sowornout said!

TandB Thu 10-Jan-13 19:44:07

I don't see personal attacks confused

I see people disagreeing with the OP - as they are quite entitled to do when someone posts specifically asking for advice.

justmyview Thu 10-Jan-13 19:44:49

I'm with sowornout - it's useful for us all to remember sometimes that our children are more interesting to us than to other people. That's not such a bad thing

sweks Thu 10-Jan-13 19:57:56

'Nobody else is remotely interested in your child, get over yourself.'

'I would bet anything that your friends have purposely chosen the posh restaurant where they know you feel unwelcome bringing your son in the hopes that it will encourage you to get a babysitter or stay at home.'

The above are from catwoman ... Those are personal and based on assumptions made of the OP and child. How do you know this?! I agree we all have our own opinion, But put it across less aggressively and based on fact. Then it becomes a constructive comment.

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 19:58:03

Thanks swek! As a first time poster I am slightly surprised at the number of outright personal attacks comments you get on MN...example Catwoman's quote "get over yourself" . WTF?

I can take criticism/opinions as much as the next MN but am starting to feel as if the rumours about the bitchiness on MN are true. Sorry to all the supportive, objective MN - don't want to lump you in with the "bad lot"

TandB Thu 10-Jan-13 20:03:15

That's not a personal attack!

Plenty of people on MN are told to get over themselves.

"Get over yourself" = not a personal attack
"Get over yourself, you utter dick" = personal attack

flowery Thu 10-Jan-13 20:07:26

OP don't be put off. smile You do sometimes come across posters on MN who can't seem to express an alternative opinion without being unpleasant with it. But most can do so in a polite pleasant manner. I just try and remember that people give an impression of themselves with their posts, and leave it at that.

sweks Thu 10-Jan-13 20:16:49

It more the 'Nobody else is remotely interested in your child' that I think is unnecessary, not 'get over yourself'. Plus swearing is not necessarily any more aggressive then other words. I am all for a good debate and other opinions.

Agreed flowery, well said.

TandB Thu 10-Jan-13 20:20:39

That's that poster's opinion. Disagree with it, by all means, but you can't realistically call it a personal attack.

I wasn't terribly interested in other people's children pre-DS1 and I don't expect everyone to be interested in mine now.

Thewhingingdefective Thu 10-Jan-13 20:21:07

Sorry OP but YABU. Your friends' plans don't have to be made with your child in mind. You can't expect them to understand how it affects you if they are not parents - and why should they?

It is up to you to arrange babysitter/childcare. If you can't, and the venue is not child-friendly, send your apologies and invite them all over to yours to catch up another time.

It sucks to miss out on get togethers with friends, but when you have a toddler that's the way it goes sometimes.

Fecklessdizzy Thu 10-Jan-13 20:34:45

I'm afraid it's a babysitter or sit this one out OP, your mates want a nice civilized adult meal and that's just not going to happen with a toddler!

Once you have kids things tend to divide neatly into three categories - Sprogs Essential / Sprogs Allowed / Sprogs An Act Of Social Suicide. This is definitely No. 3! grin

JustFabulous Thu 10-Jan-13 20:45:39

This is a lot of drama over nothing.

You tell them you can't go as you haven't got a baby sitter. They either say, never mind see you soon, or they offer to meet on a different day. You will know then if they want the child as well or not.

If you don't want to go to this restaurant, ever, then you just say that and see them another time.

nannyl - do you mean to sound as smug and looking-down-on-everyone-who-isn't-like-you as you do?

DontmindifIdo Thu 10-Jan-13 20:46:21

OP - have you tried moving it to the weekend before/after if that would mean one of your two babysitters would be available? Because it sounds like you've accepted they have a perfect right to arrange a non-child friendly thing, it's just that because of the particular date you can't get alternative childcare so have to not go or take your DS which will you know will be a nightmare.

If you try asking your babysitters if they could do one of the weekend's before or after, then call your friends and say you can't bring DS to that event, would they mind terribly moving it to X or Y date instead, if not, you hope they have fun and you're up for dinner one evening instead if that works for them.

You might find that while you might need to miss some of their group met ups due to not getting childcare now your DS is no longer in the 'easily portable' stage, that doesn't mean you have to miss them all if you are prepared to get involved in organising things for times you can do. They'll be other time pressures your other friends have so some of them might on occassion miss meet ups, it's just having DS you have more time constraints than they do.

OP, you sound very ambivalent about this event anyway. You've referred to the restaurant as being "stuck up" hmm which doesn't sound like a ringing endorsement to me.

As a person without children, I can say that if I'd planned a nice lunch out with five girlfriends and one of them rocked up with a 2.5 year old toddler then I would be inwardly seething. Contrary to what some on MN think not everyone without children lives a glamorous life of cocktails, shoe shopping and entertaining lovers. For me a nice lunch with friends would be something of a rare treat, I'd save up for it, and would really enjoy it - so a rampaging toddler would be the last thing I (or any of the other diners, I guess) would want.

Other OPs are right, whether you like it or not, other people are just not that into your DC. I will ask about them, maybe chat about them for a bit, happily coo over some pics, but share a lunchdate? No way. You've already said this toddler will be running round the restaurant which is a safety hazard as well (both for restaurant staff and for your DC). Children do alter the social dynamic of a outing - you may not notice it, but trying to converse with someone who is simultaneously wrangling a toddler is very difficult. Please leave the toddler at home, or suggest an alternative. There are masses of things you can do as a group that could involve your DC, but this is not one of them.

DewDr0p Thu 10-Jan-13 20:57:22

Thanks nannyl you've given me the best laugh I've had in ages.

Thing is I could and did take ds1 anywhere and everywhere. It was posh lunches galore. With ds3, we couldn't even risk a quick coffee!

Definitely don't have any more grin

drownangels Thu 10-Jan-13 20:59:17

Speaking as some one who has kids I would be cheesed off if a few of my mates got together ( as we do on a regular basis ) and one turned up with a toddler, as harsh as that sounds!

I want to enjoy my friend's company sometimes without having broken conversation or having a toddler as a centre piece. More so if it was a splash the cash sort of afternoon.

Find a baby sitter if you can,maybe another mum who you cn repay the favour for.
Any way sometimes it does you the power of good to be kid free for a few hours and catch up on life and chats.

MorrisZapp Thu 10-Jan-13 20:59:25

Everybody is different but I can't see what possible enjoyment or relaxation could come from trying to control a wild animal ie a toddler, in a restaurant setting of any kind.

I have a toddler. I don't take him to restaurants of any description, it would be hell. If I want to catch up with friends, I do it when dp can stay home and let me go child free.

As child free women, of course they don't know what's involved in looking after a toddler. But I am a mother, I know exactly what's involved, and I wouldn't do it. Nor would I inflict it on others, if they were child free or just had babysitting.

Girly lunch is what it says on the tin. Don't take junior. It changes the whole thing.

MorrisZapp Thu 10-Jan-13 21:02:39

Also, are you happy for your friends to talk frankly about their sex lives when your kid is earwigging? Why should five adults have to stick to child friendly chat? That would hack me right off too. I'd smile and make a fuss of the toddler, of course. Then ring up the others afterwards to moan about it smile

fuckadoodlepoopoo Thu 10-Jan-13 21:08:39


A friend of mine used to take her baby out to restaurants all the time (she also likes "fine dining". He was fantastic, would sit lovely and eat anything. Until . . . one day he just changed, throwing food everywhere and shouting! While his mum was picking up the food and apologizing to the other diners (and planning her exit) he pulled himself up in the highchair and pissed all over the tray!

drownangels Thu 10-Jan-13 21:09:09

Op. I think what soworn out put in her post was spot on and not harsh at all.

I have made a point of not really mentioning my kids to friends and others unless they specifically ask or the conversation was relevant because generally speaking I am aware of how boring other people's children are, especially if you haven't got any. Even more so if you fancy a great afternoon pushing the boat out and having fun and wine!

I don't quite see what the problem is, you've had an invite and you either make arrangements to attend or not.

If you think the restaurant is suitable for your child, he's invited and you're happy to take him, then take him. If not, find a babysitter or don't go.

Personally, I'd not be impressed if there was a toddler running around a post restaurant. DD is okay in the likes of Pizza Express, with lots to do and a quick succession of food grin but both DH and I need to engage her in a lot of conversation and it's not the same, or as relaxed as when DH & I go out on our own without her. I'd find a babysitter and have a lovely girly (adult) brunch.

posh not post. You can see I don't get out much smile

hellymelly Thu 10-Jan-13 21:13:46

I do feel your pain. We went to a really beautiful amazing wedding when dd1 was 4 and dd2 24m. Only one other couple had children. We were stuck on a boat in hot sun for over two hours, unable to let the girls run about because of the danger of them falling in, and with no suitable food for a toddler, all very adult canapes etc. I nearly cried I was so tired out from the late night before trying to settle them in a strange place, and the stress of it all. If we'd been single it would have been bliss. It is hard when you have a toddler and everyone else is childless. Even when you have babies and all your other friends have teens (am older mother), as they do forget. One friend expected me to leave my 9m old fully bf baby overnight to go to hers for an event. That's why so many mothers of v. young children hang out together, its so much less stressful. I don't really have friends my age locally with young ones, as here I am Granny age, so i'm either with women 10-15 years younger, which can he hard, or with women who don't have to deal with the constraints of small children. I say no to a lot of invitations! Its getting easier now my little one is 5. Your friends will start having babies too and be a lot more sympathetic. But maybe you need to do a rota for choosing a venue, so that every fifth time or whatever, you can choose, and go to pizza express or somewhere that suits small children. Or one of them could babysit for you now and again? I think you sound very cross and resentful and should tell them how you feel tbh.

HollaAtMeBaby Thu 10-Jan-13 22:31:35

YABVU. It's one occasion. If you want the activity to suit you and your DS, you should take the initiative to organise the next get-together: invite them all over to your place for lunch or arrange a picnic in the park. Even if your friends don't mind you bringing DS to the naice restaurant, other diners will, and it doesn't sound like you'll be abe to enjoy yourself much either.

Mayisout, as a single, childfree woman, I can assure you one thing I never think when spending time with my many married friends and their children is "waah, if only I could have this life". I like children, but after a few hours of noise, mess, poo, having my face sneezed/coughed on, interrupted conversations, and small people trying to follow me into the loo, I am DESPERATE to return to civilisation. You are the epitome of Smug Married - it's a shame that you wasted your single years pining and whining for 2.4 children and a new build town house in Surrey <shudder>, but please don't feel sorry for those of us who have the imagination and courage to enjoy our independence and make the most of it.

DharmaBums Thu 10-Jan-13 22:49:55

hollaatmebabyif you're not interested in kids then why are you on mumsnet at this time instead of enjoying your fabulous single,child free life? hmmm

HollaAtMeBaby Fri 11-Jan-13 07:19:53

Where did I say I'm not interested in kids? confused I actually gave you some good advice from the perspective of a childfree person with sprogged-up friends (several of whom have chosem me as godmother) and you're responding with sarcasm... no wonder your friends don't feel like going out of their way for you. Did you mean to be so rude? May I suggest you FOTTFSOFAWYGTFOSM?

There have been many threads on why childfree people post on mumsnet you'd know that if you'd bothered to look around before starting your whiny thread but I doubt you'll be back so never mind smile

Ahem. OP is new, so FOTTFSOFAWYGTFOSM needs translating.

Fuck off to the far side of fuck and when you get there fuck off some more.


Dharma - unfortunately, in many of your responses, you haven't come across terribly well. It doesn't come across as if you actually want to go anyway, even if you were able to get a babysitter. I'm afraid what others have said is true "majority rules" and "not everyone is interested in your children". They are friends with YOU. You happen now to have a child. That's your choice. Your friends may be happy for you but they don't have to spend time with your child, coo over it, talk incessantly about it, spend a rare lunch out together being constantly interrupted by a child etc etc. Yes, they may show a little interest because you are their friend, but your life has changed, not theirs.

While things aren't like they were in the 1950s - thankfully - in that children are "seen and not heard", sometimes the balance does swing too far the other way and things can become too kid-centric. You are still Dharma. Mummy is only ONE part of you. Biggest part quite possibly. It's been said before and it'll be said again, but while YOUR child/children may be the centre of your universe, they aren't the centre of other people's.

Oh, and there have been no personal attacks, perhaps some have been a little forthright but I would have assumed that althoug this may be your first posting you have lurked for a while and seen the lie of the land and how AIBU works.

Oh, and I too don't have kids, because I can't have them. But I am a godfather, and have friends with kids, so I find this site useful. Want to have a go at me for being here??

Oops - first line second para should be "in that children AREN'T 'seen and not heard'"

Fecklessdizzy Fri 11-Jan-13 08:43:56

Holla was just telling you how she felt BEFORE she had kids! Like myself and many others she wanted facetime with her mates, not their offspring ...

YAB increasingly U.

Fecklessdizzy Fri 11-Jan-13 08:47:48

Shit, just re-read Holla's post and she doesn't blush AAARGH!

Sorry. Ignore me.

Still being a bit PFB, though.

Sugarice Fri 11-Jan-13 08:57:22

Thanks swek! As a first time poster I am slightly surprised at the number of outright personal attacks comments you get on MN...example Catwoman's quote "get over yourself" . WTF?

I can take criticism/opinions as much as the next MN but am starting to feel as if the rumours about the bitchiness on MN are true. Sorry to all the supportive, objective MN - don't want to lump you in with the "bad lot"

There has been no bitchiness on your thread at all, you've had honest responses from people responding to your question of AIBU!

You are being very touchy hmm

adeucalione Fri 11-Jan-13 09:12:46

Oh good it's one of those AIBU where everyone tells the OP she is indeed BU but she gets increasingly cross about it and ultimately refuses to accept it.

You don't sound very nice OP - lots of good advice on here, and several thoughtful posts from people who don't have children, should you choose to listen.

Hullygully Fri 11-Jan-13 09:49:26

Dharma, they really aren't interested in your child.

It isn't like a "new job" new jobs can be interesting to discuss, but little children aren't, "Oh he can walk now, or say "supercalifragi..." It doesn't compare.

When I had my first dc, none of my friends had kids and they all told me in later years how unspeakably dull it was...then they had kids and were sorry.

That's how it goes.

Be grateful if even your own family are interested...

My oldest child is 10 (11 soon), and my youngest is 7.
I was the first in my group of friends to have children.

Most my friends were uninterested in my child, and also uninterested in arranging times to meet which were child friendly. I remember one spectacular lunch in London where I brought my oldest, 18 months old at the time, and rather than a girly lunch it turned into nappy changes and feeding mayhem. It was the last time I saw them. I really should not have subjected them to this. Trying to combine lunch/dinner with friends, with a small child in tow is a recipe for disaster, and I really admire your friends for putting up with you and your "running around like a mad fool " child thus far!

If I had realized sooner that my friends wanted to see me and much as I adored my child, they were not keen to see my child, and hear about sleepless nights and milestones. Little as I was interested in hearing about endless nights out. I could not give my friends my attention and listen to them, and talk to them, when my focus was on a little sleeping, feeding, yelling, grizzling, impatient, cooing, running, flailing bundle of joy, which incidentally hogged the entire event.

You need to find childcare. Or new friends. Mummy friends with interest in your childs nappys contents. Or focus your mind to talking about what your friends are interested in too.

Incidentally, I kept ONE of my child free friends. She was happy to come to my house, spend days with me and my oldest, have evenings in at my house, etc. She never tired of listening to poo and goo.

She has just had her first. And now that I am far away from the baby stage, and thinking about KS2 for my youngest, SATS and getting my oldest into a good secondary school, my old good friend bore me senseless. I am now repaying her kindness and understanding, travelling to the far side of beyond to spend days with her and her child. Nodding sagely and sympathetically to her woes, sleepless nights, pures, milk, nap times, etc. I can forget about cinema trips, and dining out with her. For now. I cant wait until her child starts school! Maybe one day we will be on the same planet. Or I might have to procreate some more! grin

Adversecamber Fri 11-Jan-13 10:06:36

It will be very interesting to see how interested you are in their dc if they have any.

Dc leave home one day you know and before that they become smelly hormonal teenagers if you become a martyr and make no life away from dc you will find yourself utterly bereft once they leave. Thinking of my dsis here who is not coping at all as her last two dc are about to up sticks and leave our home town.

Trills Fri 11-Jan-13 10:08:45

hollaatmebabyif you're not interested in kids then why are you on mumsnet at this time instead of enjoying your fabulous single,child free life? hmmm

If you can't see anything on MN that someone without children would be interested in talking about then you must be reading very different threads to me.

Either that or you are just very unimaginative and unable to see things from other people's point of view, or understand that other people might be interested in different things to you.

mrsjay Fri 11-Jan-13 10:18:26

hollaatmebabyif you're not interested in kids then why are you on mumsnet at this time instead of enjoying your fabulous single,child free life? hmmm

see you are being rude and thinking the world revolves around children many childless people use mumsnet for chat or whatever there is no disclaimer that this is a special club forums are for all, there is hundreds of topics childless people and parents can chat about , I have grown up children I hardly ever talk about them on here

Trills Fri 11-Jan-13 10:21:37

So you think that childless people would find nothing of interest on MN...

Yet you think that your friends should arrange their social lives so as to include your toddler?

I'm confused. confused

Hullygully Fri 11-Jan-13 10:22:39

I never talk about kids on MN, or very rarely

Much more interesting stuff to talk about.

plantsitter Fri 11-Jan-13 10:31:07

There is just no explaining to people who don't have kids - they don't understand. I didn't myself, and cringe when I think of the way I behaved towards my sister and others who had kids when I didn't. It's not as easy as 'getting a babysitter'. Perhaps when your 2.5 yr old is asleep in the evening it is, but at lunch time? Err... nope.

Just don't go, arrange something at another time at your house or something, and when they have toddlers and your kid is a civilisedish 5 yr old, ask them if they'll meet you just after lunch for a walk down a canal towpath (or something equally as impossible to manage with a toddler).

Lafaminute Fri 11-Jan-13 10:31:45

Don't bring him whatever you do. Get a babysitter or don't go and don't be angry. Someday they may have their own toddlers and will fully appreciate the difficulties of accommodating a toddler but for now they don't have to make that effort - and why should they: you're one of 6. Enjoy it if you go - don't hold it against them if you don't.

shesariver Fri 11-Jan-13 10:41:00

hollaatmebabyif you're not interested in kids then why are you on mumsnet at this time instead of enjoying your fabulous single,child free life? hmmm

Did you mean this to sound so rude?

Why do some women when they become mums expect others to be so interested in their chidlren just because they are friends? The only children Im really interested in are my own and I couldnt abide listening to other Mums prattling on about how many words wee kidy can say now or how many poos they have don in their potty. Friendships change when someone is a parent and someone else isnt, doesnt mean they cant be friends at all of course, just a different type of friendship.

Yakshemash Fri 11-Jan-13 12:48:10

Loving this patronising assumption that childless people don't 'get it'. Of course we get it. That's why we don't have kids.

Bring on the starched napkins, I say.

OP, this is not a 'mums only' sanctuary. Your friends (yes, the ones you don't seem to like very much) might be on this thread...

Trills Fri 11-Jan-13 12:57:02

Of course we get it. That's why we don't have kids.

<snurk> grin

Trills Fri 11-Jan-13 12:58:44

If you are the first of your friends to have children then they probably remember being looked after by the 14 year old who lived next door and so assume that getting a babysitter is not actually that hard.

Fecklessdizzy Fri 11-Jan-13 13:08:39

Anyway OP, I thought you wanted the child-free persons viewpoint on sprogs at adult get-togethers?

What you're reading is probably what your mates are thinking but are too nice to say out loud because they like you and value your company!

Trills Fri 11-Jan-13 13:35:06

I would hazard a guess that they think that you coming to brunch will make the brunch better (because they are your friends and they like you) but that you plus 2 1/2 yr old coming to brunch will make the brunch worse (because toddlers do not enhance every social situation).

So they've chosen a venue where the option is for you to come alone or not at all.

Either that or they just picked a place that they thought they would enjoy and you would enjoy, and not given it any more thought.

DharmaBums Fri 11-Jan-13 14:00:35

thanks everyone for your advice! have very politely declined brunch, due to lack of babysitters and arranged another evening date in February at an equally nice restaurant without ds.
btw apologies for offending anyone-didn't mean to be rude. just realising that you come across differently when not face to face! was just trying to defend others who'd written to be supportive and then got flamed. best wishes to all I'm off now!

plantsitter Fri 11-Jan-13 15:27:42

You weren't rude!

If you're childless and you really do get it, then can you understand that always issuing invitations people with kids can't attend makes it seem like either you don't actually want to meet up with us any more, or that in fact you don't get it? If the former, it would make things a lot easier if you lot would say 'sorry, it's not you, it's me. Or actually it's your kids'.

Trills Fri 11-Jan-13 15:40:10

Where does it say that they are always issuing invitations that she can't attend?

Absolutely not ignoring the babysitting suggestions. My normal one is not available and neither is back-up one unfortunately.

This suggests that she does sometimes have babysitters available, so why wouldn't her friends assume that she could get a babysitter for this?

plantsitter Fri 11-Jan-13 15:46:19

Assumed (p'raps wrongly) when she said ''I wouldn't mind so much but this is the millionth time I've tried to explain what it's like to have a 2.5 year old!'' they were always issuing invitations that were difficult for her.

I wasn't really sagging childless people off - just trying to say they are maybe not being horrible but thoughtless.

Proudnscary Fri 11-Jan-13 15:52:08

Totally agree with Scuttle and the rest of the 'boo! down with children' gang wink

Seriously I have two kids but have always understood that only I, my dh and my mother think the sun shines out of their arses and that everyone else thinks they're perfectly sweet but as boring as fuck after five minutes.

These women want to have a chat, a catch up and a laugh and they don't want kids around. I wouldn't either before or since I had mine.

Crinkle77 Fri 11-Jan-13 16:02:31

If that is the most convenient time for the majority it would be unfair of you to expect them to change the date. However if that were the case then they could atleast try and find a compromise on the venue

BonaDea Fri 11-Jan-13 16:05:54

I'm a bit torn on this.

On the one hand, I figure why should they sit in a 'family friendly' place with other people's screaming brats flinging food around when they themselves don't have kids and just want to go out for a nice civilised lunch.

On the other hand, they do seem to be making it nigh-on impossible for you to go along and enjoy it, which seems harsh.

It sounds like you and this lot are just at very different stages in life and so perhaps are going to inevitably drift apart a little bit. It is probably no one's fault, but just the way it is...

Proudnscary Fri 11-Jan-13 16:07:50

Bona - maybe they are making a point? Purposely arranging it in non-child friendly places because they don't want the little boy to come? It's poss to love your friends and their children but not want to spend time with the kids. Time is precious for childless people too!

amicissimma Fri 11-Jan-13 16:56:21

Can I warn you that this happens at the 'other end', too.

When the majority have DCs old enough to leave alone, and there's one who still needs childcare, the first lot start losing interest in arranging times and places to suit people who can't leave their DC. It's just life's phases. Nothing personal.

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