to let my 16mo old walk around sainsburys with me?

(283 Posts)
Ozfrazror Thu 31-Jan-13 13:17:41

Only needed 2 things and ds recently loves walking everywhere so thought he'd enjoy wandering about with me in the veg aisle. He was indeed overjoyed at getting freedom from the trolley, but by the horrified looks more than one person gave me you'd have thought I was giving him knives to carry around!

Even though he was at the top of the aisle while I was in the middle at one point, of course I had a constant eye on him. However one particular older lady just kept looking between him and me with an obvious disapproval. So WIBU?

WorraLiberty Thu 31-Jan-13 13:20:19

It's up to you, he is your child after all.

But I always kept hold of my kids hands, it was second nature to really.

comingintomyown Thu 31-Jan-13 13:20:19

YABU because whether you have an eye on him or not everyone else will be having to watch out for him while rushing about getting their shopping

Take him to the park smile

WorraLiberty Thu 31-Jan-13 13:21:19

And also if he was at the top of the aisle and you were in the middle, no way could you have caught him if he decided to do a bolt.

HazeltheMcWitch Thu 31-Jan-13 13:21:30

Really? Erm, I guess he might have been getting in people's way. Or he was so tiny that he was hard to spot (until last minute) when pushing a trolley.

So - IMHO - fine to walk in Sainsbury's, but he should be with you, not up the aisle.

gallicgirl Thu 31-Jan-13 13:21:45

Nope. I've done that a few times. DD likes to push the trolley too.
Walking doesn't happen often though because she also likes to pick up goods from the lower shelves.

Narked Thu 31-Jan-13 13:22:45

It's not an appropriate place.

Patchouli Thu 31-Jan-13 13:23:11

It depends if he's walking with you or is halfway up the aisle away from you.
People don't like having to feel responsible for small children - which is what happens when you're the nearest adult.

DeafLeopard Thu 31-Jan-13 13:23:41

Thing is someone with a trolley load of stuff might not see him coming round a corner and could flatten him.

Floggingmolly Thu 31-Jan-13 13:23:43

When he's at the top of the aisle; he's just a millisecond from being out of your sight, actually. There's nothing worse than trying to avoid running over toddlers with your trolly when you're trying to shop.

DeWe Thu 31-Jan-13 13:24:21

I've let mine at that age, but you need to have a firm hand on them. I found reins very good for that sort of thing. At that size it doesn't take much for them to be accidently hit by a trolley, which can be very nasty.

forevergreek Thu 31-Jan-13 13:24:57

We always walk, but holding hands. I agree it shouldn't be up to others to avoid him with trolleys/ staff have lots of supplies etc etc

BigGiantCowWithAKnockKnockTail Thu 31-Jan-13 13:25:36

YANBU to let him walk rather than sit in the trolley.
YABU to let him walk that far away from you.

JacqueslePeacock Thu 31-Jan-13 13:26:25

Maybe YANBU but definitely YABI (you are being insane)! I tried this last week with 16mo DS. It was carnage! He pulled all sorts of things off the shelves, got in the way of trolleys and generally caused mayhem. It culminated in a meltdown because I wouldn't let him leave the supermarket with two large bottles of cooking oil that he was trying to smuggle out (they were at least half his height so the smuggling wasn't very effective!). I won't be doing that again.

recall Thu 31-Jan-13 13:28:15

YANBU...I let my children walk too, I think they are less likely to bolt if they get used to doing it, also I think they learn how to behave in public places if you allow them to be in them, and teach them how. Just ensure they don't cause a hazard.

recall Thu 31-Jan-13 13:29:40

Because I have three, I taught them to hold onto the trolley, just to keep some control.

Scholes34 Thu 31-Jan-13 13:30:08

All was looking good until you mentioned how far away from you he was.

Ozfrazror Thu 31-Jan-13 13:31:03

Well obviously I take him other places to walk about but I'm not irresponsible and 99% of the time he was right next to me. It was not about him being in the way or other people thinking they had to watch out for him, it seemed more that he was even allowed to walk around. He's actually my 3rd ds and I've always let them walk in public places. IME it has made all of them a lot easier to keep close by when they get older as they don't seem as desperate to run off. Each to their own but I don't think it's unreasonable, was just surprised at all the looks!

WelshMaenad Thu 31-Jan-13 13:32:46

Where IS an appropriate place for toddlers to toddle? A padded room?

Of course YANBU. It's why they gave legs. And as long as he wasn't raising holy hell, anyone who disapproves of a small human using their legs for the purpose intended is, quite frankly, precious. And a bit mad. And VU.

Viviennemary Thu 31-Jan-13 13:33:41

YABU. If it was totally quiet and hardly any shoppers then OK. But if it was busy with trollies blocking aisles and so on that was just not on. Accidently hit by a trolley and then the poor person with the trolley feels really guilty for having hurt a small child. Yes you are being totally U.

WorraLiberty Thu 31-Jan-13 13:34:07

I doubt the 'look' you describe in your OP was because your toddler was out of the trolley (like many other toddlers the world over).

It was probably because you were too far away from him and other people felt uncomfortably responsible for him - being the nearest adult.

Eglantyne Thu 31-Jan-13 13:34:16

DS still has a scar where he was hit in the face by a wire shopping basket. In Waitrose, which I have to say has the rudest posh old people I've ever met. No apology. He wasn't wandering off, he was in the pushchair at the time...

strawberrie Thu 31-Jan-13 13:34:58

"Well yes a bit because XYZ"
"No I'm not"

Sorry I think once he's half an aisle away from you, there's a fair chance a toddler will take off, possibly at speed and in a random direction, and could easily get hurt or cause some damage.

Whydobabiescry Thu 31-Jan-13 13:35:14

Sorry I don't think sainsburys is a great place for a baby to toddle around, he's quite likely to get bumped by a great big trolley, have his little toes crushed by a big foot or trolley wheel or pull something unsuitable like glass bottles off shelves. Just because you were halfway down the aisle I don't think you'd be able to prevent a collision with a shopper. If you want him to experience the shopping experience put him on reins or hold his hand so there's no chance of him getting in trouble. Also please try and think of the other shoppers, supermarktes aren't playgrounds they are place where people try to do their shopping in as little time as possible they shouldn't have to run the gauntlet of toddlers let loose just because their mothers thought they'd enjoy the experience.

YANBU to have him walk with you

YWBU to let him walk that far away from you. I have witnessed (and on a few occassions almost did it myself) children that sort of age being hit by trolleys many times.

As well as that risk it only takes one second of you picking something up for him to have bolted. There have been a couple of threads on here recently about this happening and its pretty scary. I would be inclined to get some reins if he wants to walk everywhere.

Narked Thu 31-Jan-13 13:36:14

If you have their hand/reins then fine. If you don't, it's a pretty stupid place to let them be half an aisle from you - people pushing loaded trolleys around the corner aren't going to be looking at 18 month old height.

FunnysInLaJardin Thu 31-Jan-13 13:38:30

YANBU. I do this with DS2 and have done for a couple of years - he is nearly 3. Provided you can see him, he'll be fine. I'm sure I get all sorts of looks, but because I don't care what other people think I don't notice them grin

HazeltheMcWitch Thu 31-Jan-13 13:38:36

Toddlers dart about, and laden trolleys are big, heavy and can be hard to steer. It is just not a good combination.

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 13:38:55

i think it is nice to see toddlers well toddle grin but what if somebody had whacked him with a basket or fell over him by all means let him toddle beside you but dont let him wander its a safety thing really especially in a supermarket

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 13:42:12

It was probably because you were too far away from him and other people felt uncomfortably responsible for him - being the nearest adult.

what worra said grin how many people have had heart in mouth moments when a young child is not with a parent I once saw a man in a shop whack a little girls head with a basket while her mum was trying to reach tins, a complete accident but it was awful to see

I did this too op and never got any funny looks! He would wonder off down the aisle a bit, but even then we were still in eye contact and only a few meters away! Obviously this is not something I would do on a busy saturday but on a quite mid-week morning, I can't see the harm... At 21 months I now give him "tasks" so that he is to busy to lob EVERYTHING in to the trolley grin

Angelfootprints Thu 31-Jan-13 13:45:18

Your brave! I let dd aged 14 months walk around the local shop to grab some milk. It was a horrible experience I refuse to repeat again for a long time.

<feels headache just thinking about it>

I think it depends on how busy the shop is. Fine to let him walk but I always hold my little ones hand or use her backpack reigns (sorry MN haters!). If it was very quiet a few steps ahead would be ok i think.

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 13:46:52

FWIW there is nothing wrong in you allowing him to walk but that is why you probably got a funny look I let mine walk and pick up and lob in the trolley but they really do need to be within grabbing distance ime

GreyGardens Thu 31-Jan-13 13:47:20

The whole world is not a giant playground for your toddler, so yabu.
Why not just hold his hand? Not only is it potentially dangerous for him, it could also be for other people, not to mention completely irritating.
THis ridiculous sense of entitlement from people with very young children and babies is the single most nauseating thing about Mumsnet.

Scholes34 Thu 31-Jan-13 13:47:55

When I'm pushing my trolley round the supermarket, I'm not on the alert for stray toddlers. If you've a constant eye on your DS, that won't stop and accident with a trolley if he's off down the other end of the aisle. You're not being considerate of the other shoppers.

atthewelles Thu 31-Jan-13 13:49:18

I hate seeing toddlers apparently unattended in supermarkets or shopping centres. It isn't always obvious that their mother or father is nearby watching them and I'm never sure if they've wandered off and end up standing there keeping an eye on them, looking around to see if there's anybody with them and wondering if I'll be accused of child abduction if I approach them to see if they're okay.
Even worse is when the parent comes up, glares at you and snatches the child's hand. angry

picklechops Thu 31-Jan-13 13:49:53

Yanbu provided the shop wasn't too busy. I do it with DS 21 months all the time. If I know it's going to be particularly quiet at the shop and hubby is with me, I even let him take his mini trolley. He loves shopping with me and helping take things off the shelf. Ignore rude looks.

WorraLiberty Thu 31-Jan-13 13:52:20

Actually mobility scooters are what scare me. They weigh a ton and can go quite fast.

I saw a toddler hit by one and her leg got quite badly mangled sad

It wasn't the driver's fault, the child just ran straight into her path at very close range.

Sirzy Thu 31-Jan-13 13:53:40

So you let him wander off in a supermarket? Fine as long as you don't mind him getting lost and more importantly don't shout at people when they inevitably crash into him with their trolley full of shopping.

Letting a child walk somewhere like that is fine as long as they are holding hands or right by your side at all times.

cantspel Thu 31-Jan-13 13:53:56

By all means allow your toddler to wander freely through the fruit and veg but dont moan when i or some other shopper knock him flying as we cant see him over are fully loaded trolley.

I always pick up my fruit and veg last so it doesn't get squashed by the weight of the rest of the shopping. I am not looking for stray toddlers but have my eyes on the price labels as i see if they loose mushrooms work out cheaper than the value ones. Would be very easy for me to take a chunk out of his head with the side of my trolley.

Squitten Thu 31-Jan-13 13:54:44

YABU to let him wander around by himself, even if you could see him. Other people won't be able to see him and, more importantly, won't be looking for him until they crash into him with their trolley. It also only takes half a second for jars or bottles to hit the floor.

I always encouraged my older son to walk around the shop but he held onto the basket and was "helping" me so we're always searching for something specific and he wasn't allowed to go off on his own. I was purely concerned with other people hitting him with trolleys. He's 4 now and really good in the shops.

minibmw2010 Thu 31-Jan-13 13:59:23

YABU ... What if someone had gone into him with a trolley because they hadn't seen him and he'd been hurt? Would you consider that their fault, his or yours ???

I've been that person pushing the trolley where a little boy (maybe 2 or so) ran around a corner, straight into the corner of my very slow moving trolley and sliced his nose open, blood everywhere. I felt absolutely awful even though I'd been barely moving and couldn't have seen him, the mum clearly blamed me as she was biting her tongue and shooting me dirty looks but frankly none of that was my fault, it was hers for not keeping him close/under control. I remember it now I have a DS myself ... sad

valiumredhead Thu 31-Jan-13 13:59:37

I get very twitchy when I see toddlers anywhere near me, my balance is shot to bits and I'm always worried I'll knock into them.

I agree about banging into him with a trolley as well.

Let him run at the park.

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 14:02:00

<waves> @ valium me too

Pandemoniaa Thu 31-Jan-13 14:04:37

YANBU in letting him walk around a supermarket. Especially if you were holding his hand or keeping him very close indeed. But where was he and what was he doing for the 1% of the time he wasn't right next to you? Only I'd be a tad surprised to find a 16 month old wandering round on his own. Supermarkets aren't playgrounds and there are all sorts of unexpected hazards.

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 14:05:31

MY dd nearly dropped a few baskets on a little boys hands as he was wandering about the self scan where she was working she said wheres your mummy mummy was browsing the sale items, <rolls eyes>

5madthings Thu 31-Jan-13 14:07:21

Letting him walk in the supermarket if he stays next to you within a grab able distance fine, letting him wander off not fine for reasons already mentioned on this thread.

MrsKeithRichards Thu 31-Jan-13 14:08:55

I'd feel fucking awful if I knocked a tot over with a fully loaded wobbly wheeled trolley.

Cosmosim Thu 31-Jan-13 14:11:30

I saw a dad turn his head for a sec at checkout aisle and his little girl bolted, smacking face first into a loaded trolley. The dad gave the other person a filthy look (he was obviously expecting an apology) leaving the other poor shopper to loudly protest "she ran into the trolley - I didn't even have time to move!" That's why it pisses people off - when kids get hurt, parents expecting others to apologise about their lack of supervision.

NatashaBee Thu 31-Jan-13 14:14:17

I like to let DS walk as much as possible, but I wouldn't do it in a store where there are trolleys/baskets/things to pull off the shelves. I doubt I'd even be able to see a toddler in front of me if i was pushing a full trolley. If you want to let him walk then you should hold his hand or have reins on him.

YouOldSlag Thu 31-Jan-13 14:17:54

YABU. people are there to shop, they don't expect to have to look out for 16 mo children who are below eye level.

Just because you can make eye contact with him or see him, doesn't make it safe.

Shopping in supermarkets is stressy enough without toddlers walking about without their parents. (being able to see them doesn't count, you need to have their hand in your hand)

LabelsGalore Thu 31-Jan-13 14:18:10

That's why it pisses people off - when kids get hurt, parents expecting others to apologise about their lack of supervision.

Really?? When my ds, at that age, was 'walking in the shop', if something like this had happened I would have apologized profusely to the other person for my dc to be nuisance tbh.

I have always done that with my dcs, same of the pavement etc... and got the same stare 'because children are supposed to be completely under control, holding hands, in a buggy etc...' regardless if they are an issue, there is any safety issue etc...

dizzy77 Thu 31-Jan-13 14:21:52

I must admit I don't think I'd do this w 20mo DS without reins, and even then on a very quiet weekday. The supermarket is amongst THE most exciting places for his toddling (the b&q Christmas display area tops it) and I don't think I could bear all the risks.

LabelsGalore Thu 31-Jan-13 14:22:36

What if someone had gone into him with a trolley because they hadn't seen him and he'd been hurt?

Well as far as I am concerned, the way I handle a trolley is MY responsibility. Be it for a toddler in the shop, an old lady who doesn't look where she going or someone who some health issue disability (such being unsteady).
Exactly in the same way that it is my responsibility to control my car when I drive. Now of course, I could argue that there should be no cyclists on the road because 'if I don't see him/her, I might hurt him/her' but who in their own mind would say that cyclists shouldn't be allowed on the road because I can't be bothered to be careful?

Toddlers are members on our society just as much as anyone else. There is no reason to restrict what they do when it's not a nuisance just because we, adults, don't want to make the effort.

LabelsGalore Thu 31-Jan-13 14:24:42

Besides, toddlers do learn when they are given the opportunity to do so. whereas if they are always on a buggy/trolley, they have no such a chance and therefore still behave inappropriately in supermarket aisles

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 14:26:26

Toddlers are members on our society just as much as anyone else. There is no reason to restrict what they do when it's not a nuisance just because we, adults, don't want to make the effort.

WHAT so we are supposed to be looking out for free range toddlers in supermarkets just in case we might bang into 1 maybe we should let babies crawl or what about letting 4 yr old scoot along on scooters or bikes , as a parent is it a PARENTS responsibility to let their child be a part of society we cant just let kids wander randomly endangering themselves and other people, as I said before there is nothing wrong in letting a toddler toddle and explore but isn't it the parents job to keep them safe and out of the way of danger,

Narked Thu 31-Jan-13 14:28:16

It's a supermarket, not soft play hmm

Locketjuice Thu 31-Jan-13 14:30:14

Yanbu my 1 year old walks everywhere just got some baby reins so I have a little control over his wandering ways! He refuses to sit in a buggy, only you know how far you can let him go before hes a hazard to others wink its no one else's place to give you dodgy looks!

OTTMummA Thu 31-Jan-13 14:32:36

Sometimes It doesn't matter how careful you are, a child racing around the corner of an aisle into a slowly moving trolley will still get hurt. There are seats on trollies for a reason.

Locketjuice Thu 31-Jan-13 14:33:59

And everyone saying you should be holding hands tell my 1 year old that.... He doesn't quite agree!

Pandemoniaa Thu 31-Jan-13 14:36:33

Toddlers are members on our society just as much as anyone else. There is no reason to restrict what they do when it's not a nuisance just because we, adults, don't want to make the effort.

There's every reason to keep toddlers safe. This, imho, overcomes their rights.

For example, whilst I am very encouraging of my 2 year old dgd walking around in as unrestricted a way as possible, I'm not prepared for this lack of restriction to allow her the chance to run into the road and get knocked down by a car. Even if she gets the Toddler Liberation Front onto me.

Sirzy Thu 31-Jan-13 14:36:45

When a child is shorter than the trolley I am intrigued how people like labelsgalore expect someone to spot them when they run out of an aisle into the trolley?

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 14:37:26

I am intrigued how people like labelsgalore expect someone to spot them when they run out of an aisle into the trolley?

we have to be more vigilant confused

plantsitter Thu 31-Jan-13 14:37:32

I find the single most irritating thing about mumsnet not the sense of entitlement parents have about their kids but the sense of righteous anger people get about ridiculous things. It's a little kid walking about in the veg aisle of a supermarket. Presumably in the middle of a school/ work day. She's not letting her kids loose behind the fag counter or training them to trip up pensioners. The answer to this kind of question, op, is safety issues aside don't ask just do it. If somebody gets irritated or looses 10 seconds or of their busy day they'll have to deal with it.

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 14:38:08

Even if she gets the Toddler Liberation Front onto me


ilovesooty Thu 31-Jan-13 14:39:15

If you were shopping I don't see now you could have had your eyes on him all the time if he was in a different part of the aisle to you.

Perfectly reasonable to let him walk but your should be holding his hand. And no, I don't "want to make the effort" to avoid free range toddlers while I'm shopping. Their parents are responsible for supervising them and keeping them safe.

plantsitter Thu 31-Jan-13 14:40:28


Locketjuice Thu 31-Jan-13 14:40:38


'Training them to trip up pension

Locketjuice Thu 31-Jan-13 14:40:57


PeppermintPasty Thu 31-Jan-13 14:41:26

I agree that it's not the safest place in the world to let them loose but, this leads me to a favourite theory rant of mine that these days, people seem to expect children to be tied in, strapped down, pushed around on wheels, and I get the feeling that some think you cannot control your children unless they are securely imprisoned in something or other.

It's become the norm which I think is sad.

I am not talking about children who need to be carried or buggied, before I get a good old flaming.

AntimonySalts Thu 31-Jan-13 14:42:11

YANBU to let him walk.
YABU to not to keep him by your side and engaged with what you are doing.

Sirzy Thu 31-Jan-13 14:43:19

Plantsitter have you somehow managed to miss that it's the safety issues which most people are highlighting as why it shouldnt be done? Let them walk by all means but keep them right next to you not at the other end of an aisle

atthewelles Thu 31-Jan-13 14:45:54

Toddlers are members on our society just as much as anyone else. There is no reason to restrict what they do when it's not a nuisance just because we, adults, don't want to make the effort. [quote]

Are you being serious? Toddlers have no common sense and cannot just be allowed wander around busy places unrestricted forcing other people to constantly keep an eye out for them. And they are a nuisance if they're getting in people's way and wandering out in front of people's trollies.

nefertarii Thu 31-Jan-13 14:46:35

This thread is funny.

Op "aibu"
Posters "yes"
Op " no I am not"

Then people talking a out toddler rights. As parents it is our job to protect our kids. Letting them wonder about where there dangers is not restricting their rights.

I assume you must let you toddlers walk at the side of main roads unrestricted as well. If they wonder in front of a car, would that be the driver at fault as well?

MrsKeithRichards Thu 31-Jan-13 14:50:56

grin @ toddler liberation front

DoctorAnge Thu 31-Jan-13 14:55:46

There are better places to let your toddler " run free" than a supermarket.

amicissimma Thu 31-Jan-13 14:55:46

I'm intrigued by people who know what other peoples looks mean.

When I'm out and about, maybe in the supermarket, I'm going through stuff in my head. I might smile in the general direction of your DC if I'm thinking if something nice, or look annoyed if I'm thinking of something annoying, etc. Perhaps we should have expression police to arrest anyone who isn't beaming beatifically at all times.

Or maybe people should realise that other people have thoughts that don't concern them.

Nanny0gg Thu 31-Jan-13 14:57:04

If you must do it (and I think YABU), then that's what reins are for. Half an isle away is far too far away for you to have any control and it's not for other shoppers to do it for you, or to deal with the fall-out when your DC is injured.

My DGC was a nightmare in our local shop, and refused to hold hands, and would try and bolt off if I was distracted.
Can't do it with reins on!

MrsKeithRichards Thu 31-Jan-13 14:58:14

I agree amiciss you see threads like this all the time. I genuinely don't think people get the looks they say or think they get. get O think people do something they perceive as a little edgy or against the norm and assume people care.

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 14:58:58

I love the TLF they should all wear little dungarees and go running through the supermarket with their bibs waving grin

I let DD (2) run around the supermarket. She's on reins with me but she is running. A couple of reasons... She is very high energy so needs to be walking/running all the time. We go to the park hmm beach and other places. Dance, soft play, garden, everywhere. She never stops. She eats well and is a tall, thin toddler. Unlike all the toddlers I see that never get out of a buggy or car. They go, buggy, car, buggy, trolley, buggy, car. It's a miracle their legs work.

I couldn't let DD get half an aisle away though. She would terrorise the villagers.

Pandemoniaa Thu 31-Jan-13 15:01:30

I also wonder where all these looks come from and think there are a fearsome number of imagined slights going on. I know that most of the time when I'm out, I'm thinking about my own stuff. I'm not standoffish but equally, I'm not interested in fuming over other people's behaviour. In fact, if I was genuinely judgy over something then I suspect I would take particular care to look even more "away with the fairies" than normal.

Charmingbaker Thu 31-Jan-13 15:13:00

Haven't read all the posts, but my 2yo has been walking round the supermarket since he was around 16 months. If he's in the right mood he loves it. I either point to the things we want or hand them to him and he puts them in the basket. He knows to stay beside me and never picks things up without my say so ( he points to things and if I say no he moves on). He queues up with me without any problems. If he's not on a cooperative mood he goes in the buggy ( tends to only be when he's tired). I don't let him out if it's really busy, i tend to go when it's quiet. The staff in my local supermarket (it's quite a small one) all know my DS and always chat to him.
I see it as him learning vital social skills, he can be very boisterous and strong willed but he does know how to behave when in shops and walking outside. It's important that children learn how to adapt their behaviour to different settings.

HyvaPaiva Thu 31-Jan-13 15:18:02

I think he'd be better right next to you, holding your hand at all times.

OP, if your DS was hurt either a little or badly, for instance knocked over by a trolley/hit in the face with a basket/tripped over by an adult who didn't see him, would you put the 'responsibility' for that on the other shopper or you?

I hate always saying 'I'm disabled' but I am and so many times small children have ran/toddled right into me and it literally pushes me over. It's not their fault but I wish for my sake and theirs that the parents would keep a hold of them. You're letting him toddle into other people's paths and it isn't fair on him or them.

NaturalBaby Thu 31-Jan-13 15:18:41

It hardly sounds like he was wandering in front of trolleys and mobility scooters. A toddler is a few meters away in a supermarket and so clearly the mother is going to let him run free down a busy road into on coming traffic hmm. It's her 3rd dc, sounds like she's a fairly sensible mother to me.

YANBU, my toddler loves a bit of free rein toddling in the supermarket. When he shouts 'walk!' and runs in the opposite direction I make sure I rein him in.

FunnysInLaJardin Thu 31-Jan-13 15:19:17

the attitudes on this thread are the exact reason why I was terrified of DS1 doing anything or making any noise which would inconvenience other people. I see parents of other first born children behaving in the same way. Trying to over control their child and nervously checking no one else is judging. Making apologies for the fact their children and behaving like children.

That is why with DS2 I adopted the don't give a shit what others think approach. provided I know my child is safe and I have assessed the risks I am not going to take any notice whatsoever of what other people think I should or shouldn't do. And neither should you OP!

Sirzy Thu 31-Jan-13 15:22:16

It hardly sounds like he was wandering in front of trolleys and mobility scooters from the other end of an aisle she wasn't in any position to stop that happening.

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 15:27:10

That is why with DS2 I adopted the don't give a shit what others think approach. provided I know my child is safe and I have assessed the risks I am not going to take any notice whatsoever of what other people think I should or shouldn't do. And neither should you OP!

so it is ok for a toddler to wander if you think that then fine just dont come on here saying some stupid old fool knocked over my baby , nobody actually said the toddler should be in the trolley or whatever they just said the baby was too far away and what if.... the world does not orbit around children

atthewelles Thu 31-Jan-13 15:27:49

There's a happy medium Funny between over controlling your child and allowing them to annoy other people and get under their feet. The OP could have let her toddler walk around while still making sure he kept close to her and that people with trollies weren't at risk of banging into him and then feeling bad about it.

JacqueslePeacock Thu 31-Jan-13 15:30:15

Oh my god, where do you all get these 16mos who stay by your side, ask before getting things off shelves and don't touch things in shops unless you say they can?! What am I doing wrong???

Iggly Thu 31-Jan-13 15:31:01


Because he's your third DC you'll be more blasé, I'm willing to bet.

Keep him near you. My DCs love running about but I've only let ds walk around without holding my hand very recently - he's 3. And he doesn't run off, he's old enough to reason with. A 16 month old - no way!

Iggly Thu 31-Jan-13 15:33:33

Trying to over control their child and nervously checking no one else is judging. Making apologies for the fact their children and behaving like child
This isn't about PFB vs not.

This is about a 16 month old - that's just entering toddlerhood.

In the same way I wouldn't let a 16 month old walk down the street without being in reins (hand holding isn't fair on them as too uncomfy), I wouldn't let mine walk around a supermarket without being right next to me.

Kalisi Thu 31-Jan-13 15:33:33

Yabu to allow ds to get out of arms reach. He could easily have bolted into an oncoming trolley or pulled a load of stock on top of him. A Supermarket is not the place for toddlers to have free range.
I know that people are always going to be judgmental but the whole "fuck em they'll have to get over it" attitude is so ridiculous, especially if you can avoid inconveniencing everyone else by just getting some reins

Locketjuice Thu 31-Jan-13 15:36:15

Jacque.... I want them to come and train mine smile see if he is willing to hold hands and walk nicely then wink

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 15:36:53

Oh my god, where do you all get these 16mos who stay by your side, ask before getting things off shelves and don't touch things in shops unless you say they can?! What am I doing wrong???

well of course you dont actually get toddlers who automatically stay by you and dont touch a thing that is what reins and hand holding and trolley seats are for grin

when dd1 got a bit older she would wander in front a little she once picked up a packet of bodyform and yelled MUMMY MUMMMMMMMMMMY HERE IS YOUR LADY NAPPIES blush

Hand-holding: screams, drops to the floor, over-dramatic screaming on floor, writhes around. Always.

In Trolley: Alternates between screaming and plaintive whimpering. Punctuated by trying to fling herself sideways or climb out. Always.

Reins: Complains but is tolerable.

Some people have more compliant children. Some people have leg-clingers, some have bolters. I wish people would realise that it is not always their amazing parenting that has made their child's behaviour so awesome. DD is incredible at some things (not my great parenting) and dreadful at others (not my fault).

Sorry, that wasn't directed at you mrsjay. I've realised it looked like it was...

thebody Thu 31-Jan-13 16:08:57

Well I had 4 and I didn't get blaze over the safety of number 4.

Up to you op but I used reins, hand holding or trolly seat with fruit.

I usually go to the supermarket as a mission to grab and run and probably wouldn't see your toddler and would probably mow it down.

Also remember Jamie bulger?? Takes a second for a child to be snatched or injured.

Roam at the park.

atthewelles Thu 31-Jan-13 16:10:13

I don't think anyone has said they are amazing parents on here MrsTerryPratchett just that letting a toddler run around the aisles of supermarkets is unsafe and unfair on other customers.
You seem to be arguing a separate issue.

FunnysInLaJardin Thu 31-Jan-13 16:10:46

no Iggly it's not which is why I didn't use the term PFB. It's about parents with some experience knowing how to parent their own children and opposed to how I personally felt as a new mother.

FWIW I agree that if you are going to let your children walk in the supermarket it is absolutely your responsibility to keep them safe and if an accident does happen then you rethink your strategy. You shouldn't blame anyone but yourself if things don't go quite to plan. That includes choosing to take your child shopping when it is quiet. Obv charging around a busy supermarket is far from ideal.

From the tone of the OP's post nothing lead me to believe it was busy or that her child was in any kind of danger

FunnysInLaJardin Thu 31-Jan-13 16:12:07

atthe she didn't feel bad, she felt judged. Quite different

I don't mind your toddler toddling about if I can see him but if he gets twatted in the face with my handbag or a wire basket because I can't then yes, that's your problem.

And yes I will feel terrible and apologise profusely but I will still be thinking you should have held his hand.

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 16:15:50

Sorry, that wasn't directed at you mrsjay. I've realised it looked like it was...

I didnt really honestly smile

Hullygully Thu 31-Jan-13 16:16:28

Isn't the point of supermarkets that they have a big place to run around in?? Espec now Woolies has gone.

atthewelles Thu 31-Jan-13 16:19:56

Funny I meant the people who ran into the toddler were often made to feel bad about it by the parents.

nickelbabe Thu 31-Jan-13 16:21:00


i had 3 separate people panickingly tell me that DD was escaping out of the door a few weeks ago.
she wasn't and i could see her (she was only a crawler so no way she could get far)
sometimes other people are annoying.

and yet at playgroup a couple f weeks ago, she gagged on some food, and i was at the other side of the room. and 3 mums said there and randomly commented that she had just choked on some food. pissed me off because if she actually had been choking and not just gagging, why did they say it so nonchalantly and why did noone at least try to help?
wish people would use the right words for things!

atthewelles Thu 31-Jan-13 16:21:47

Well, that's true Huly. I, myself, often like to sit in the trolley and get DH to whizz me up and down the aisles. Oh, we do laugh.

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 16:23:22

I sometimes like to stand on the trolley and go weeeeeeeeeeeee grin

greenpostit Thu 31-Jan-13 16:23:27

I think probably YABU. I didn't let mine walk round the supermarket at that age - they always went in the trolley.

He was way too far away from you IMO. He wouldn't know to move out of the way if a trolley came round the corner quickly and was about to hit him. Sometimes staff are pushing those 6-7ft tall wire things and it would be hard for them to see a tiny child. Some people are using motorised chair (not sure if correct term) but there have been cases where children have been seriously injured by being knocked over by them in shops/shopping centres. People spill stuff in supermarkets, he could slip on it because he is not as aware as an older child/adult.

There are obviously risks to him from wandering around but also he could easily start unloading stuff from shelves and I think that it's quite bad manners to fiddle about with stuff that you clearly won't be buying and possibly cause a member of staff to have to sort the shelf out.

And for a 16mo who tried to refuse or climb out of the trolley, I would use the trolley strap and a set of reins to belt them in safely. Good idea to give them a snack to fiddle about with to keep them occupied as well.

atthewelles Thu 31-Jan-13 16:24:20

Can you do wheelies MrsJay. I'm brill st those

mrsjay Thu 31-Jan-13 16:25:44

knowing my luck id tip it onmyself so i just go weeee those mini trolleys are the best for it

Hullygully Thu 31-Jan-13 16:26:37

I do whizz down aisles if they're empty. I htought everyone did.

Hullygully Thu 31-Jan-13 16:27:23

Everyone must have hated me then when the dc were young. I let them run around and if they were in the trolley we whizzed and sometimes I spun it in circles. oh dear.

atthewelles Thu 31-Jan-13 16:30:44

My dc like to play swordfights with the baguettes. I always make them put them back on the shelf when they're finished though.

FunnysInLaJardin Thu 31-Jan-13 16:31:49

I see atthe and agree that if you let your child run about you take responsibility for it's behaviour.

nickel that sort of stuff really annoys me. I've had that done to me at school when other people have run after my children and I have to say They are fine, leave them alone. It's like the ultimate insult on your parenting ability! I know that he will stop at the gate like he always does and if he doesn't he has to hold my hand until he learns how to behave

FunnysInLaJardin Thu 31-Jan-13 16:34:03

Hully they will have been judging you and whispering about what a bad mo fo you were. And they do it to me and I Don't Give a Shit grin

Hullygully Thu 31-Jan-13 17:01:15


LabelsGalore Thu 31-Jan-13 17:06:54

I had to lol at the assumptions that people are making following my comments.
So just to clarify:
- If a child is running around in a shop (whatever the age), of course you are suppose to stop them.
- If a child rushes out of an aisle and bump into a trolley this is the child fault
- And the 'freedom' that you give to a child is clearly limited by his own ability to not put himself into a dangerous situation.

Having said all that, I maintain that there is no reason at all to have all toddlers in a trolley/buggy/reins on the grounds that some/most toddlers would run around.
And that it's your responsibility to be in control of your trolley. You can't just say 'oh I didn't see her' because you weren't that careful.

NaturalBaby Thu 31-Jan-13 17:12:01

'Because he's your third DC you'll be more blasé, I'm willing to bet. ' I'm actually more attentive with my 3rd.

The other end of a supermarket aisle is still close enough to intervene if a toddler is about to get into trouble. I have many, many examples of when I've been further than arms reach from my toddler(s) and intervened to keep them safe/out of people's way/stop them breaking things.

The anti-toddling brigade are just fueling my 'don't give a shit' fire.

Sirzy Thu 31-Jan-13 17:14:20

But often you won't see them. Surely thats not hard to understand. You have a full trolley and therefore you can't see things infront of that trolley which are smaller than the trolley.

And why SHOULD i have to watch for small uncontrolled children when I am shopping? I am busy making sure my son doesn't get in peoples way and trying to do my shopping.

LouMae Thu 31-Jan-13 17:16:56

Honestly when I'm shopping I get deeply engrossed in what's on the aisles and thinking about what I need. I don't always pay much attention to who's in the aisle, I avoid adults and trolleys because they are big enough to catch out of the corner of my eye. I'm the sort who could easily flatten a rogue toddler who was half an aisle away from their parent.

specialsubject Thu 31-Jan-13 17:17:22

if it is quiet and he is within reach, it's fine. Otherwise no. Supermarket, not playground.

still, better than a DIY store where there is lots of lovely dangerous stuff to pick up and heavy stuff to pull down. Saw that recently, took two near-misses before the woman finally picked the kid up. AFTER I had gently relieved him of the table lamp with which he was about to hit himself in the face.

ilovesooty Thu 31-Jan-13 17:32:01

And why SHOULD i have to watch for small uncontrolled children when I am shopping?

Exactly. If I've got a full trolley I'm not expecting to have to look near floor level just in case some toddler not under proper supervision is roaming around.

fluffyraggies Thu 31-Jan-13 17:46:06

YABU. Your first responsibility as a parent is to keep your child safe. Not to use them on some crusade to make the world child friendly.

Not giving a shit about what others think or might do is not the attitude i'd want from someone in charge of my safety. Do you drive like this too??

What on earth is all this about children wont learn to use their legs or learn to interact with others unless we let them roam as they please rather than strap them in buggies like the 'old days'? Children are being treated like a nuisance?

I bet most of the posters on here were in the trolly or the buggy in the supermarket when they were little. I was. My DCs were. Amazingly I and they have managed to grow up capable of shopping and interacting with people AND more importantly have respect for others because we weren't bought up thinking the world must revolve around us.

maisiejoe123 Thu 31-Jan-13 17:46:15

A couple of months ago I was on my own pushing a trolley and I guess a 2-3 year old came haring around the corner and banged her face into my trolley causing a nasty mark and of course tears. I just froze even though I knew it wasnt my fault.

The father came striding up, bent down to speak to his son and basically told him thats what happens when you run around. I told you not to do this and this is what happens when you decide to run off on your own.

Tbh - I think he gave the right reaction. A supermarket is not a playground.

Cantbelieveitsnotbutter Thu 31-Jan-13 18:01:11

My ds did from 9 months. Can't see any harm in it.

Cantbelieveitsnotbutter Thu 31-Jan-13 18:01:57

But he was walking with me not running round

Pandemoniaa Thu 31-Jan-13 18:03:05

My ds did from 9 months. Can't see any harm in it.

I've been waiting to use this all day, so....

Did you mean to sound like a gf?

Pandemoniaa Thu 31-Jan-13 18:03:35

Dammit. You've now posted a perfectly reasonable second comment.

Ozfrazror Thu 31-Jan-13 18:12:03

Interesting comments and like some have said, pos it was annoying for other shoppers. BUT hey guess what people…we both made it home unscathed and no unsuspecting trolley pushers took the side off a head/mangled a leg or squashed a toddler today so I must have been more careful and observant than a lot of you have decided to give me credit for!
Think I might carry on doing what I feel comfortable with concerning my own dc and not lose any sleep over what anybody else thinks - Thank you and goodnight grin

goldenlula Thu 31-Jan-13 18:12:36

YANBU to let him walk with you, as in holding your hand, on reins or holding the trolley if he can be trusted not to run off, but he should not have been allowed to wander as he could have been hurt. I let dd 20 months out of the trolley for a short while the other day but she held my hand or the trolley the whole time. I would not have done the same with ds2 as he was a bolter and still is!

minibmw2010 Thu 31-Jan-13 18:20:08

So why bother asking then if all you're going to do when you get a majority of answers you don't like is to thumb your nose at us and run off? What a surprise ... angry

YouOldSlag Thu 31-Jan-13 18:23:49

So you ask us what we think, then tell us you don't care what we think?

Well that was a waste of time...

Kalisi Thu 31-Jan-13 18:25:34

Well that was lucky Op, it's a shame you haven't taken anything else away from this thread but yeah you just keep doing what you're doing then hmm

Goldenbear Thu 31-Jan-13 18:25:36

YANBU- people should look where they're going and then they wouldn't push their trolleys into small people. How about if the small person was a very small adult, is it acceptable to plough into them because it has irritated you that people who aren't average have dared to walk around in public? If you don't want to look out for people you could potentially injure by walking into them- stay inside!

Anyway, how hard is it to steer a trolley, you don't exactly see people belting around the aisles with them at 30 mph!

I knew there would be lots of use of the word 'entitled' on this thread. Here's another couple of words that come to mind regarding some comments on this thread- miserable and grumpy!

maisiejoe123 Thu 31-Jan-13 18:26:59

Sadly I think the OP has a sense of entitlement to using the supermarket as a playground for her child. And of course if anyone trips, or her child trips or pulls something off the shelf or god forbid starts stuffing something inappropriate into their month it will be 'someone' elses fault.

Goldenbear Thu 31-Jan-13 18:28:42

How many 'entitled' remarks Is that now?

Kalisi Thu 31-Jan-13 18:31:25

Hey, if it looks like a duck and sounds like a duck......

crunchbag Thu 31-Jan-13 18:34:39

If I had been in the aisle I would have looked around for you too, maybe even have that look on my face, I don't know. But it wouldn't be because I was disapproving of a toddler walking around but more to check that he wasn't lost.

Just keep him close for all the reasons mentioned before.

kinkyfuckery Thu 31-Jan-13 18:36:20

If you only needed two things, why did you need a trolley?

Wallison Thu 31-Jan-13 18:39:28

It's not entitled but it is a bit precious and also a bit dangerous. He wasn't hurt, but that was down to luck. I still go a bit hot thinking about the time that a (badly-supervised) toddler ran into the bottom of the shopping basket I was carrying one time in Waitrose. Her mother probably thought that it was all charming and an enriching experience for her to handle the kumquats or whatever as well, but really in a crowded environment with lots of hard surfaces, glass bottles and stuff that can be pulled off shelves, you need to be supervising your child properly, not nodding fondly on as they sprint down the aisle away from you.

MamaBear17 Thu 31-Jan-13 19:17:22

I take my 18 mo to the supermarket on reins. I hate the idea that she could suddenly run off and get hurt. I dont think you we bu to let your baby walk, but I do think you should have had a tight grip on his hand.

FunnysInLaJardin Thu 31-Jan-13 22:06:00

I'm with Hully RRRRRRaaaaHHHHHH. I am going to let my children loose on you all, RAHHHHHHH.

FunnysInLaJardin Thu 31-Jan-13 22:07:43

I nod fondly as my DC run away from me because, hey, I don't have to look after him. I just expect everyone else to do it for me. So it's win/win for me

"I must have been more careful and observant than a lot of you have decided to give me credit for!"

Or maybe the other shoppers were the ones being more careful and observant, making sure they didn't squash your child. That shouldn't be their responsibilty.

I let mine walk at that age, but always held a hand or made them hold the trolley. It's a busy shop not a playground.

How would you react if another shopper crashed their full trolley into your child while they were wandering down the aisle from you?

If I did that I'd feel awful, but if the parent started having a go I'd give them both barrels.

NapaCab Thu 31-Jan-13 22:35:06

It's not so much 'YABU' as 'how the hell did you do that and not end up with a £100 worth of damaged goods?!? If it was my DS who is the same age, half the supermarket would have been destroyed with every glass jar on a low shelf smashed to bits. So I don't think you are BU as such, just very brave! Either that or your DS is well-behaved and holds your hand, unlike mine.

Tertius Thu 31-Jan-13 22:42:15

YANBU - I do this.

JollyRedGiant Thu 31-Jan-13 22:47:18

I don't get why you asked.

I make ds walk as much as possible. If we are out around the village we usually don't take the buggy. He is 21mo but we've been doing this since last summer.

He ALWAYS gets strapped into the trolley in the supermarket. Until he is sensible enough to stay by my side and not touch things I'm quite comfortable with him thinking there are no other options.

wiltingfast Thu 31-Jan-13 22:49:32

God sometimes MN is pure cracked. Can't believe the preciousness of posters. Unreasonable to let a toddler walk about a supermarket on his own 2 legs?! Unreasonable to expect adults in the vicinity might watch where they are going (as they should be anyway) and not bang bump into others including small people such as toddlers?!

God forbid anyone would be put out even a small bit by a child seems to be some people's attitude. It's amazing any kid ever manages to grow up and disentangle themselves from some of the apron strings around here! [Hmm]

I do the same OP, no one's seemed put out never mind hit them with a trolley. I see other parents do it too. I don't think anything of it. YANU, MN is alas.

FairyHanny Thu 31-Jan-13 23:19:33

Oh God, OP's one of those people who lets their kids wander all over the place in the supermarket/on the pavement/anywhere really and not give a fuck whose way their delightful offspring get in or what havoc they're wreaking and woe betide whoever does not share this opinion of their child and marvel at their 'independence'. It's lazy parenting.

Hold your kids hand OP, control your child and keep them the fuck out of my way.


Benbunny Fri 01-Feb-13 00:09:56

My thoughts on this question is treat others as you would like to be treated yourself. I understand that some may think a toddler is cute running about and exploring life -which it is.

On the other hand I can see the other side.

People will worry the child is lost and look around for the parent (which is when they will directly at you),

The next most important thing is we do not know what has happened in someone's life. They may have been told someone they love has a terminal illness, or just lost someone they care about. Just because they are supermarket shopping that doesn't mean life is lovely.

What I really would like to say is simply life is not always lovely, be tolerant. You don't know what others are going through.

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 10:42:09

BUT hey guess what people…we both made it home unscathed and no unsuspecting trolley pushers took the side off a head/mangled a leg or squashed a toddler today so I must have been more careful and observant than a lot of you have decided to give me credit for! [Quote]

Or you were just bloody lucky. Or other shoppers had to keep an extra careful eye on him and were wondering why his stupid mother was up the other end of the aisle and leaving it to random strangers to watch out for her kids.

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 10:45:24

YANBU- people should look where they're going and then they wouldn't push their trolleys into small people. How about if the small person was a very small adult, [quote]

A small adult is still an adult and will have the sense and instinct to move out of the way of trollies, mobility scooters etc. A toddler will not. That is the difference.

recall Fri 01-Feb-13 10:47:47

Fairyhanny So you expect people to strap their kids down for your convenience, keep the fuck out of our way ! Lazy parenting is strapping them in gadgets and wheeling them about because its easier, and then wondering why they go mad when they are allowed to walk freely. Its not all about YOU !! The toddler has as much right as you do to walk about, just because they don't do it in a straight line does not make them a second rate person. You were once a toddler ( unless you hatched fully formed, scales and all )

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 10:49:38

I have to laugh when posters start making direct comparisons between an adult and a child and talking about 'rights'.

recall Fri 01-Feb-13 11:20:44

I have to laugh when posters start expecting children to be seen and not heard

recall Fri 01-Feb-13 11:23:14

How will a child gain the instinct to move out of the way of trollies mobility scooters etc if they aren't allowed near them ?

Sirzy Fri 01-Feb-13 11:34:10

Same way as they learn anything else, but being taught and shown, a child who is an aisle away from their parent isn't being shown how to behave.

Are some people seriously missing that the vast majority of people have said children walking is fine, children wandering off not fine.

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 11:38:10

No one is saying children should be seen and not heard; just that you use a bit of common sense and consideration when it comes to how much freedom you give them. A 16 month old toddler has absolutely no understanding of danger and no concept of anything beyond his own needsr and it is therefore both unsafe and unfair on other cutomers to allow them to wander around a supermarket with a parent not very close by.

BubaMarra Fri 01-Feb-13 11:47:12

So at what age is it socially acceptable to let children walk on their own two feet? Where would be the line?

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 11:49:10

Where did anyone say a child couldn't walk on their own two feet?

JacqueslePeacock Fri 01-Feb-13 12:32:59

NapaCab thank goodness someone else has a 16mo like mine. I was beginning to feel I must have done something terribly wrong.

Goldenbear Fri 01-Feb-13 13:26:12

A small adult could easily be mowed down by a trolley if the trolley pusher expects to be able to push their trolley around without thought for anyone in their way. If you're pushing a trolley, the onus is on you to look where you're going, if you can't do that then I would suggest you use a basket. It is entitled and selfish to think that life is about convenience for you and compromise for others- including toddlers!!

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 13:29:37

A small adult will not just stand in the way of a trolley coming towards them or wander out in front of it regardless. In the same way that if I see a staff member pushing one of those large cage things I know to step out of their way or walk around them. A toddler will not do any of those things.

It is selfish and entitled to say 'my toddler has a 'right' to wander where he likes and its up to everyone else to keep out of his way if they can't see him over their shopping trolley'.

Goldenbear Fri 01-Feb-13 13:30:36

Oh and I agree with whoever said that it is lazy parenting to strap them into something all of the time. It is hardwork socialising a child and teaching them accepted norms in how to behave in public. It is usually lazy parents you see with older children in buggies that can't be bothered to go through this process with them. Although I'm not suggesting older children shouldn't use buggies but I hate to see a 3/4 year old desperate to get out of a buggy and walk but the parent is too lazy to deal with that situation.

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 13:30:56

And no one said trolley pushers shouldn't look where they're going. We are saying they don't have x-ray vision and a tiny child will not always be visible to them no matter how careful they are.

MarianneM Fri 01-Feb-13 13:34:59

Ooh, I bet the shoppers at Sainsbury's LOVED me and my DDs the other day when I took them there for a fairly comprehensive shop and DD2 (aged 2.5) climbed out of her buggy repeatedly (although she was strapped in - she just wriggled out of the "harness") and RAN away without looking back. At least twice I caught her by the exit doors and once she was climbing a set of stairs.

While I sprinted after her I had to leave DD1 (aged 4) on her own with the buggy and the shopping and ask her to wait there until I come back.

This went on for a good while.

Took the girls to the shop to give my stay-at-home husband a break from them.

I think people should be a bit more tolerant.

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 13:37:35

What has that got to do with the OPs question Marianne. We're not talking about high spirted toddlers who escape from their buggy. We're talking about someone deliberately letting her toddler wander away and get under other shoppers' feet. You seem to be looking for criticism where it wasn't given.

Goldenbear Fri 01-Feb-13 13:38:41

I don't think a toddler should wander around the shops on their own- that's just plain irresponsible, goodness knows what carnage she'd cause but this is not what the Op is talking about. I let my 2 DC pull a trolley basket thing around our 'Sainsburys Local', my DD is 21 months and she holds it with her brother who is 5. She is fine with that but that's only because we had to do it a couple of times before she got the rules, rules of shopping that is.

My point about small adults is how about if they don't see you coming, is it acceptable to plough into them because they should have moved out of your way- how ridiculous!

MarianneM Fri 01-Feb-13 13:39:33

Oh dear, I get the message.

Have a nice day atthewelles

Sirzy Fri 01-Feb-13 13:41:45

Although I'm not suggesting older children shouldn't use buggies but I hate to see a 3/4 year old desperate to get out of a buggy and walk but the parent is too lazy to deal with that situation.

You may hate to see it, but please don't judge and certainly don't assume its down to lazy parenting. My son would love to walk everywhere but as he is asthmatic when he is ill that sometimes isn't possible so he goes in his pram.

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 13:42:46

Goldenbear, you seem to be putting words into people's mouths. No one said it's acceptable to plough into small adults. Some of us said its unlikely to happen because small adults still have common sense and quick reactions and will usually step out of the way of a trolley in the same way that average size adults like me will step out of the way of a moving object if I can see its likely to hit me.

You have a nice day too MarianneM.

Goldenbear Fri 01-Feb-13 13:46:00

My response was to the person who was suggesting it was lazy to let them walk around everyday places.

coraltoes Fri 01-Feb-13 13:48:41

If I see another kid on a scooter in waitrose I will force it to eat liver until the parents cry for mercy. Same goes for toddling kids who are not being kept close by. Liver will teach them.

"BUT hey guess what people…we both made it home unscathed and no unsuspecting trolley pushers took the side off a head/mangled a leg or squashed a toddler today"

No thanks to you though, was it?

It was thanks to all the other people who were forced to take precautions regards to your child, because you didnt.

But hey guess, what, who cares? As long as one silly parent thinks she can behave like this, then the rest of us will just have to bow to it and be considerate, because entitled people like you, arent going to.

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 13:53:41

Coraltoes could you also give liver to kids who are allowed to play chasing up and down the aisles while their parents ponder which brand of biscuits to buy.

Sirzy Fri 01-Feb-13 13:54:44

the best i saw a few weeks back was a child being allowed to push a toy car up and down an aisle whilst the mother stood chatting on her phone paying no attention.

FrankenFranny Fri 01-Feb-13 13:56:20

I always let my 17 month old on the loose in sainsburys.
To be fair though when I go it's not busy and I'm always next to him.
He does run off but I'm always there to grab him.
About the park comment, I would take him to the park if people didn't insist on letting their dogs shit all over it. It's a massive problem where I live, so a stroll around sainsbury's is fine IMO.

FrankenFranny Fri 01-Feb-13 14:01:34

Having said that he doesn't do it often, so it's a novelty when he does.
I give home something to hold and he thinks he's helping.

Goldenbear Fri 01-Feb-13 14:03:43

Yes but this is what you are implying as you seem to think the shopping experience should be about being the most convenient and least stressful for you. That's a very selfish stance to take and shows a complete lack of empathy for other people. These other people maybe slower old people, blind people, deaf people who don't hear you coming towards them, very small adults, children on their own who are quite small but older, people with very young children. I'm afraid daily life, out in public involves a lot of compromise, I would hope my DC develop an understanding of this as they are going to become very cross adults if they don't.

AmberSocks Fri 01-Feb-13 14:06:25


atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 14:07:32

I'm glad you brought up elderly and deaf people as again, they are likely to be seriously inconvenienced by tiny toddlers being allowed run around while their parent is up at the other end of the aisle.
No one is implying that the shopping experience should be about being the most convenient for themselves; they are saying that it should be about considering the majority of the shoppers, the staff, and the safety of your own child.

Sirzy Fri 01-Feb-13 14:09:55

But Golden, letting a child wander off in a supermarket (which the OP did do) doesn't teach them anything and makes things potentially harder and dangerous for people like the older or blind people because a young child hasn't yet learnt to have an awareness of others.

A child walking holding onto hands or a trolley is being 'controlled' by an adult who can ensure that they are learning an understanding of things and developing an awareness of important social skills.

Floggingmolly Fri 01-Feb-13 14:12:21

You're obsessed with comparing very small adults to toddlers, Goldenbear.
No adult, no matter how small, is anything approaching toddler size. And elderly people who can't move very fast, by definition will not be racing around corners into the path of someone else's trolly.
Life does indeed involve a lot of compromise; but it's a two way thing, not just everyone else making compromises regarding your children.

Goldenbear Fri 01-Feb-13 14:12:33

My point about cross adults demonstrated by Coraltoes above. If you want to avoid children with scooters I wouldn't go to Waitrose.

NaturalBaby Fri 01-Feb-13 14:21:20

'deliberately letting her toddler wander away and get under other shoppers' feet.' That's not a bit what the OP described.
What my look like total neglect to a stranger is nothing of the sort to the mother. The OP didn't mention any other shoppers or trolleys - presumably because there weren't any in the aisle at the time or her child wasn't in the way.
Some posters seem to be looking for deliberate carnage inducing parenting where the wasn't any.

Goldenbear Fri 01-Feb-13 14:21:40

Floggingmolly, you do get adults that are as tall as toddlers. Was the OP's child running? I'm not expecting anybody to make compromises regarding my children. From your tone - an intolerant one, I can't imagine you making any compromises yourself so in what way would it be a two way thing? The fact is it is a lot harder taking a toddler and other children around a shop than it is for your average, normal adult on their own- what about demonstrating some understanding of their situation and try and avoid ploughing into their children- which incidentally is not that hard to do!

Floggingmolly Fri 01-Feb-13 14:25:44

I never plough into anyone with my trolley, Golden, either toddlers or toddler sized adults. I still don't think supermarkets should be used as play centres.

FunnysInLaJardin Fri 01-Feb-13 14:25:48

this thread has taken a bizarre turn and no mistake

'You're obsessed with comparing very small adults to toddlers, Goldenbear'

That has to be comment of the week

Goldenbear Fri 01-Feb-13 14:28:45

My 21 month old wants to do what her brother is doing - not always possible of course but it is possible to teach her to hold on to the handle of a wheely basket, I know because I've done it successfully. I don't want her in the buggy screaming to help- it is unnecessary. As an adult I would presume your understanding of life is a lot better than a 21 month old, why can't you be less of a grump and show a bit of kindness, especially as in my case my DD helps her brother with no problems to other shoppers.

I think some adults are never happy unless their finding fault and moaning about others.

Sirzy Fri 01-Feb-13 14:29:55

A child on a scooter shouldn't be in a supermarket. No excuses

FunnysInLaJardin Fri 01-Feb-13 14:33:28

a moped would be OK though I am guessing Sirzy? I think toddlers should be issued with mopeds for the express purpose of getting around the supermarket

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 14:36:20

Naturalbaby the OP said she got horrified looks from several people so presumably there were shoppers and trollies in the aisle at the time. Also, you don't know when someone with a trolley is about to suddenly come around a corner and if you're half way up the aisle and away from your child you're not going to be much use in that situation.

Goldenbear Fri 01-Feb-13 14:37:53

I don't think a child should be scooting up and down the aisles but from a practical point of view scooters that are turned upside down to balance on pushchairs get in the way more IMO. Or if a child is carrying it around quite clumsily they end up bashing people accidentally with it. If the child hops on it and the parent is pulling it, what is the difference between that scenario and a child in a buggy?

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 14:39:48

Goldenbear you seem to be saying that if a child is hit by a trolley it is the adult's fault for not looking and 'ploughing into' them. Personally, I think that's quite a selfish and inconsiderate attitude. Some toddlers are just too small to be seen and a supermarket full of people pushing trolleys is not a suitable place to let them wander around without a parent beside them to pull them out of the way of harm. It is unfair to blame a shopper for accidentally hitting a toddler with a trolley while the parent is several yards away letting the toddler wander at will.

MrsDoomsPatterson Fri 01-Feb-13 14:43:40

I have commited the MN sin of all sins and not read the whole fred, but I will say....there will be that day when you need, really need your little beauty to sit in that seat. You know they won't....right? grin

NaturalBaby Fri 01-Feb-13 14:58:09

Yes, there were other shoppers about giving horrified looks (2 or 3?) - but it was hardly rush hour.

If someone wants to fly round a the corner with a trolley then they should be going slow enough to stop. Even if a trolley is being pushed too fast, being a few feet away isn't a guarantee that a child is going to be run over. Mums can move pretty fast when they need to move toddlers out of harms way - particularly when they are actually watching them, which the OP was doing.

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 15:01:25

They can move fast, but they're not wonderwoman. It just makes sense to keep a small toddler within arms reach in the supermarket. The majority of posters on this thread have said that; but yet a minority still insist on their right to ignore what most people want and annoy other shoppers in the supermarket. confused

Sirzy Fri 01-Feb-13 15:03:30

Exactly atthe I don't understand why someone would want to let a 16 month old wander off. Seriously, why? If anyone can give a sensible explanation it would be great!

5madthings Fri 01-Feb-13 15:16:05

I am busy making sure my children stay safe at the supermarket and that they don't get in anyone else's way. My children are my responsibility and yes I am careful with the trolley and look where I am going but if a toddler comes running round a corner and crashes into my trolley that is their parents fault for not keeping them safe.

Accidents happen and whilst I take care I am not responsible for the safety of someone else's child because they won't keep them safe themselves!

My children have all walked from a young age but I still keep them out if peoples way and keep them safe.

Move the scenario toddler running along in a footpath and trips up an elderly person or a car reverses out of a driveway. People can be careful but accidents can still happen and they are more likely to happen if you let your toddler run off.

NaturalBaby Fri 01-Feb-13 15:19:51

Well, I don't agree that toddlers should be wandering around a supermarket if the mother is at the other end...but I just find the horror expressed by some posters that a small child is allowed to wander a few feet away is a bit over the top.

atthewelles Fri 01-Feb-13 15:22:59

I haven't seen anyone express 'horror'. Irritation, annoyance and disapproval yes, but not horror. The OP asked a question and the majority of posters on here have explained why they don't think she was reasonable in her view.

landofsoapandglory Fri 01-Feb-13 15:25:28

I have committed the MN sin of not reading the whole thread too! I can not see how any child who was at the top of an aisle, when their parent was at the bottom is under control TBH.

I hate saying 'I am disabled' but I am, I walk with sticks, I have severe SPD and my back and pelvis are held together with plates, screws and pins. Some days it is all I can bear to wear a soft pair of leggings, if a toddler came running up the aisle of a supermarket and head butted me in my pelvis I would be in agony and quite cross.

I don't venture into shops very often but when I do I look out for trolleys, people with baskets, small children with parents, mobility scooters, people in wheelchairs, buggies, toddlers on reins or holding hands and shop workers with crates, not toddlers having free rein.

Toddlers don't need to be roaming free in a shop, yes they need to learn so put them on reins, or have one of those back pack things and keep them close to you whilst they learn.

5madthings Fri 01-Feb-13 15:28:27

But its not area feet away its the other end of an aisle unless this was a very small shop the aisles are longer than a few feet?

coraltoes Fri 01-Feb-13 15:34:45

Goldenbear you clearly think far too highly of your parenting to realise your kids should not impact negatively on other people, nor should you, nor your pets etc. if someone goes out for a shop at waitrose and my dd ploughs into her on a scooter, it is not right to say the shopper should just avoid the store. She is there to do what the store was designed for: buy food. My dd ought to scoot at the park, where nobody would be surprised to encounter her.

Liver I tell you, fucking liver to all the self entitled prattish parents too.

coraltoes Fri 01-Feb-13 15:37:31

Anyway I shop online to avoid these sorts of things...people have forgotten to respect boundaries of others

NaturalBaby Fri 01-Feb-13 16:43:52

The child was in the middle of the aisle, the mother was at the end. How big are your supermarkets?! If he was getting in the way and being a nuisance then any sensible mother would move him/carry him/put him in the trolley.
Toddlers on the rampage are hardly the biggest anti social activity that we have to deal with these days.

Sirzy Fri 01-Feb-13 16:48:17

the aisles in my supermarket are certainly a size whereby a child half an aisle away could not be easily grabbed before getting in someone elses way. I would suggest you must have a very small supermarket!

NaturalBaby Fri 01-Feb-13 17:21:36

Either that or I move faster than your average mum. I've had plenty of practice with 3 under 3's and 2 runners. They've done plenty of toddling round supermarkets and never had a collision with anyone or any trolleys.

crashdoll Fri 01-Feb-13 17:32:37

I've only skimmed the thread but why would you want to take that risk that your child may get smacked with a trolley? That's not mentioning the possibility of the child causing accidents.

BettyandDon Fri 01-Feb-13 17:38:39

Well I think your toddler has every right to waddle in a supermarket. He is a member of society like everyone else. I am sick of seeing near 5 year olds in buggies and the like. Its ridiculous. People should expect to see preschool children in the shops with their mothers and adjust accordingly.

A supermarket can be a great experience for a toddler. Loads of fun and learning opportunities. They shouldn't be strapped in and zipped in and out as if it is not an appropriate environment. Yes they may hit a trolley or be hit, but accidents happen at the park too. And yes, the mum should have them in view / quick grab at all times...

Maybe more supermarkets should have those cars that kids can sit in and drive around (common in shopping centres).

I guess it's the old 'seen and not heard' argument with regards kids in restaurants etc. I think kids should be everywhere barring smelly old pubs!

Sirzy Fri 01-Feb-13 17:42:13

what is the difference between a child being pushed around in a car and them being in a pram or trolley?

crashdoll Fri 01-Feb-13 17:44:41

I am sick of seeing near 5 year olds in buggies and the like.

I am sick of people judging when they know very little about it. Those children could have SN/health issues.

Floggingmolly Fri 01-Feb-13 17:50:47

Maybe more supermarkets should have those cars that kids can sit in and drive around. hmm. Was there a full moon last night?

manicbmc Fri 01-Feb-13 17:52:02

Not the old 'seen and not heard' phrase, just because people don't want the inconvenience of other people's children when they are doing their shopping. Fgs.

It is dangerous to let a child that small be that far away in a shop. Yes fine to let them toddle about (in reins or holding hands) but not fine to let them roam.

I had to avoid several young kids tearing up and down the aisles on Wednesday.

Pandemoniaa Fri 01-Feb-13 17:56:35

If you want to avoid children with scooters I wouldn't go to Waitrose.

Fair enough. We'll go without shopping if it means that your child can use Waitrose as a playground. How unreasonable of people not to realise that this simple solution is available, eh?

manicbmc Fri 01-Feb-13 17:58:01

Scooters in supermarkets are a massive bugbear of mine. Scooters are for outdoor play in appropriate areas.

If your silly enough to let you child run/toddle around the supermarket unsupervised and they bash/knock into my trolley and start crying, don't expect me to apologize.

Goldenbear Fri 01-Feb-13 19:05:09

It was a fucking joke- jeez!

coral, you do sound like you need to let go, loosen up a bit, you seem to have a 1950s attitude to go with your 1950s food tastes!

I didn't say scoot around as they please!

Cantbelieveitsnotbutter Sat 02-Feb-13 10:54:41

I once saw a child riding their bike (she was about 9 so virtually adult bike size) round tescos. I thought that was a bit excessive ........

ducks from flying buns

NaturalBaby Sat 02-Feb-13 15:12:05

'people don't want the inconvenience of other people's children when they are doing their shopping.' I don't want the inconvenience of grumpy old women when I do my shopping. Haven't got much choice in the matter though do we?

'It is dangerous to let a child that small be that far away in a shop'. Dangerous? Dangerous?!? Wandering unsupervised down the side of a busy road is dangerous, wandering a few feet away in a supermarket is not.

FairyHanny Sun 03-Feb-13 12:38:42

.recall But letting such a small child walk around without holding their hand is lazy parenting. Actually no, it's downright irresponsible.

Midlifecrisisarefun Sun 03-Feb-13 13:34:02

I have committed the offence of not reading whole thread. blush
I would have no problem as long as I then don't see a thread like 'I shouted at lady in spupermarket because she knocked over my DC with her trolley'
As long as OP realises the safety of her DC is HER responsibility not other shoppers then its her choice.
I ofen am thinking of more thing at once when shopping and wouldn't be looking at knee/thigh level for unattended children.

PrettyKitty1986 Sun 03-Feb-13 13:44:26

You shouldn't have to dodge your trolley around free running toddlers just because the parent is too busy/lazy/whatever to actually...parent. YABU op. Half an aisle of distance between parent and young toddler is dangerous, both for the toddler and other shoppers.

ilovesooty Sun 03-Feb-13 14:38:44

I was in Sainsbury's yesterday and was approached by a lovely young man doing a customer satisfaction survey. I asked him what the biggest complaint was, and he said "children not being controlled by their parents". After that the store got busier and a toddler almost ran head first into my trolley - I managed to swing it away just in time. Where was his mother? Halfway up the aisle unable to get to him after he'd bolted.

soverylucky Sun 03-Feb-13 14:42:07

This drives me totally mad!

You are trying to get your shopping whilst looking after your own children when some toddler is wandering around. Mum or dad just smile as if to say " I know my kid is sooo cute" and I am thinking " get your child out of the way so that they are safe and I can do my shopping in a reasonable amount of time."

My children knew they could walk as long as they held on to the trolly or my hand. If they didn't do this they went in the seat.

manicbmc Sun 03-Feb-13 14:46:12

NaturalBaby, why does not wanting to be running into other people's small children make me grumpy? Just because I expect people to be doing their shopping in a shop and looking after their own kids? Odd hmm

It is dangerous. There are huge trolleys with food on being rolled around to be put on shelves. And there are other people with trolleys who might not see other people's precious bundles wandering about and bash into them.

Why does not fawning over other people's kids make me a grumpy old woman?

There is a time and a place for most things and I don't think the supermarket is the place to let small children roam about.

fuzzpig Sun 03-Feb-13 15:25:38

Walking next to you on reins or holding hands, in a quiet shop, fine.
Wandering half an aisle away at that age is not fine IMO.

<thanks heavens for Tesco online>

Goldenbear Sun 03-Feb-13 16:51:19

No one's asking other people to admire their toddlers- I'm not looking for affirmation of my toddler's cuteness when I visit supermarkets. Believe it or not I'm a very busy person aswell and need to get my shopping done quickly, I don't have time to pander to other customers grumpiness and intolerance. Children and small people have as much right to walk in public as adults that are normal height. If we are discussing a toddler and not a small adult, as long as an awareness of safety exists, I don't see the problem.

Sirzy Sun 03-Feb-13 16:52:56

But letting a child go off out of arms reach isn't showing an awareness of safety!

Goldenbear Sun 03-Feb-13 16:54:28

The grumpiness is attributed to people who just cannot tolerate any kind of person or lifestyle that is not their own choice. It is nothing to do with admiration of toddlers IMO.

manicbmc Sun 03-Feb-13 16:56:05

But a 16 month old baby won't have that kind of awareness.

I'm not asking anyone to pander to me. I'm asking that people use a bit of common sense when they are in a busy place and keep their children with them.

Yes children have as much right to walk in public - the key word there being WALK. Not run about.

manicbmc Sun 03-Feb-13 16:56:39

Or ride on a bloody scooter

Goldenbear Sun 03-Feb-13 16:57:52

What in a supermarket aisle? I think if you are off average fitness, you're going to be faster than a toddler, which makes it safe.

crashdoll Sun 03-Feb-13 16:59:43

The grumpiness is attributed to people who just cannot tolerate any kind of person or lifestyle that is not their own choice.

Letting your baby wander halfway down a supermarket is a lifestyle choice?

I like toddlers. I think they are hilarious and cute little people. I don't want to accidently ram one with my shopping trolley because they are completely out of my line of sight. I wouldn't push a big trolley of food in a playground, so I would not expect toddlers running free in a supermarket.

Goldenbear Sun 03-Feb-13 16:59:51

Who said run? I still think their is no difference in pulling a child around on a scooter and pushing a buggy- you have the same control over the situation.

Sirzy Sun 03-Feb-13 16:59:53

Which would mean running/speed walking in a supermarket - and you think that is safe?

Its simple, let your child walk but keep them next to you either by holding hands or using a backpack or similar.

supermarkets are not playgrounds, children don't need freedom in them.

manicbmc Sun 03-Feb-13 17:00:30

You stand comparing kumquats, or whatever, toddler is already half an aisle away. You are distracted for seconds, look up and toddler is off. Could be in any direction.

What's so wrong about teaching a small child to hold your hand and stay close anyway?

Goldenbear Sun 03-Feb-13 17:01:49

It is definitely a different understanding of child rearing Crashdoll. However, I was making a broader point about certain kind of people that are intolerant!

crashdoll Sun 03-Feb-13 17:03:10

Even if they don't run but they walk, I still cannot see them if I am pushing a trolley! I genuinely do not want to ram a small human being with my trolley. It's for their safety!

crashdoll Sun 03-Feb-13 17:04:13

I'm happy for you to label me as 'a certain kind of person' who does not want to cause harm to a child in Tesco. If that makes me intolerant, then so be it.

manicbmc Sun 03-Feb-13 17:04:47

I may have given the impression that I am a 'tutter'. I am not. I have nothing against small kids in supermarkets.

I do believe that some parents, the ones lacking in sense, seem to think that everyone in the world should be looking out for their kids, instead of them doing some parenting and doing it themselves.

Sirzy Sun 03-Feb-13 17:06:15

Exactly manic

ilovesooty Sun 03-Feb-13 17:07:16

You stand comparing kumquats, or whatever, toddler is already half an aisle away. You are distracted for seconds, look up and toddler is off. Could be in any direction

Exactly - which is what happened on my supermarket visit on Saturday. While that mother's little person was exploring the world he was lucky not to be badly hurt. It all boils down to the fact that toddlers don't have an adult level of awareness of safety and in some environments, like supermarkets, it's appropriate to keep them under control.

ilovesooty Sun 03-Feb-13 17:08:49

crashdoll I don't spend my time peering around below knee level while pushing a trolley either.

Goldenbear Sun 03-Feb-13 17:09:02

I don't personally think any such thing!

MysteriousHamster Sun 03-Feb-13 18:48:13

There's a lot of fuss in this thread.

I online shop when possible - but it's not always possible and sometimes we take my 2.5 year old DS.

He always starts off sat down, whether bribed with books/toys/food or just willing to sit down for once. After a while he starts whinging to get out and I will judge how busy it is and then I'll let him out if doing so will cause people less convenience than the sound of him yelling to get out.

I stay by him but he does occasionally try to get ahead of me. If he's doing this and it seems dangerous I just pick him up. But generally it's under control.

If I let him get so far ahead he could bolt into a trolley then yes it would be my fault. But I do think shoppers should be able to generally see what's going on around them. Can you guess a toddler is about to bolt out at the end of an aisle? No. But if you can see one toddling in the middle distance and you just ignore that, then you're responsible too.

Shopping is a fact of life, people with little kids have to do it too. Toddlers can be a pain, but so can adults who don't look where they're going. Don't really see what all the fuss is about.

NaturalBaby Sun 03-Feb-13 20:38:59

Is it really so hard to believe that it is possible for a toddler to wander a bit, and that if they wander to far or start getting in the way then the mother will intervene? I've managed to get through nearly 5 years of parenting 3dc's without a supermarket incident of the type some posters are obsessing about. Are trolley's crashing into wayward toddlers really that common an occurence? Really??
Maybe I'm lucky to have got this far without tutting, grumpy old ladies ramming their trolleys into my dc's because they are further than arms reach from me.

Are the mothers of toddlers on this thread really the type to let their toddlers run screaming up and down the aisles? Nobody agrees that is acceptable.

Next time my toddler wants to toddle in the supermarket I shall go armed with chocolates, flowers and gin to pacify potential grumpies.

blondefriend Sun 03-Feb-13 21:22:33

At what stage/age should children be allowed to wander off and make mistakes? My dd (4) is allowed to go to the end of the next aisle to get bananas (or whatever it is I've sent her to get). She's been doing that for years (2?) and I am now slowly getting my ds(2) to do the same (1 or 2 items per shop and then back in trolley). Sitting in the trolley is boring and they end up having tantrums. At the checkout they load items onto the belt and pack bags at the other end. I keep them occupied with jobs but occasionally they do take off and I have to fetch them back. I would never expect someone else to do it for me but surely that is what parenting is about - allowing them to make small mistakes and showing them what the boundaries are.

BTW neither of them have been hit by a trolley - although if they were I would probably just tell them it was their own fault for not standing back and allowing the other person to pass like a polite child should do.

forevergreek Sun 03-Feb-13 21:29:19

blondefriend - i wouldnt let my 3 year old wande rinto the next isles yet. i trust him but he could easily walk out the door if he fancied and would be directly on a main road. i also wouldnt trust other people not wandering off with him. i would say around 5 years? on average. he still walks next to me atm, even without my hand as has no idea he can wander off in a store

blondefriend Sun 03-Feb-13 21:39:12

Sorry - I should have been clearer. My DS (2) is always within sight and no more than 2 meters away (not quite arms reach but in rugby-tackle reach). DD (4) is allowed to go to the next aisle in a supermarket she knows well (she will go to the bananas whilst I'm still with the apples). They occasionally push the boundaries but I see that as growing up and they get disciplined accordingly (back in trolley or in time out). Once I can trust one stage I go to the next. Although I probably wouldn't let my 16 month go to the end of the aisle in a crowded supermarket I would let them wander slightly (in sight) in an empty one as it helps them learn simple commands and boundaries. Safer here than on a busy road. The biggest thing I've found is to keep them busy - if they're bored they'll soon run off. If they're doing simple jobs then they stay close - even if I do end up with 15 packs of processed ham.

Goldenbear Sun 03-Feb-13 21:39:15

When I had my first DC who is 6 in June, I used to be very anxious about the impact our presence was having on any given environment- tbh the anxiety was prohibitive as I was always worried about inconveniencing others. I used to regularly walk everywhere as I didn't have a car at the time and didn't want to annoy people with our presence on the bus or train. When I look back i'm quite saddened by that as I feel it limited my DS's early years. With DD (21 months) I didn't want to make the same mistakes as ultimately the anxiety was isolating. I've come to the conclusion that you cannot please all of the people all of the time. Given that that is the case, what is the point in fretting over what people think all of the time. Be civil- yes but apologetic for your presence- no!

ilovesooty Sun 03-Feb-13 21:43:00

Maybe I'm lucky to have got this far without tutting, grumpy old ladies ramming their trolleys into my dc's because they are further than arms reach from me

What has age got to do with it?

blondefriend Sun 03-Feb-13 21:46:51

I've come to the conclusion that you cannot please all of the people all of the time.

If there was one piece of advice I could go back and give myself it would be that. FFS every single parenting faux pas fits into that. If I fed my dd one bottle I was wrong but if I BF her in public it was just as bad. Wish I had just relaxed and stopped worrying about everyone else around me. I will be judged for parenting - we all will - but 99.9% of our children will grow up without being malnourished, kidnapped, serial killers etc. Unfortunately I'm addicted to these sites which doesn't help. ;)

PrettyKitty1986 Sun 03-Feb-13 21:54:57

Letting your child have more freedom is a gradual process. I let my 5 year old go out of sight to the next aisle to get something. I let my nearly 3 year old go out of my immediate reach (maybe 1/3 of an aisle distance) to get something to help.
I wouldn't dream of letting a 16 month be at the end of an aisle when I'm still faffing with something half way up. Massive difference IMO.

manicbmc Sun 03-Feb-13 22:00:38

I have no problem with people shopping in a sensible way, teaching their kids sensible things. I think 16months is too young to understand about not running off and knowing to keep out of the way of trolleys.

The ones I get narky about are tearing up and down supermarket aisles and their parents do not care. They ride about on scooters and this is all perfectly fine in their parents eyes.

I don't tut and I'm not grumpy. Plus I'm not that old really. All I ask is a little common sense, especially when it is busy.

MythosLivetheDream Sun 03-Feb-13 22:02:22

I have a 17 month old and can imagine the mayhem she'd cause in the supermarket. YABU.
Now I'm going to worry about knocking a toddler unconscious while trying to get the shopping done asap...

MyHeadWasInTheSandNowNot Sun 03-Feb-13 22:06:24

It is not safe for a small toddler to be walking around a supermarket like that. I don't think it's great for them to be holding your hand, they are far better off up in a trolley. People are paying attention to the shelves and thinking about what they need - they often enough stuff in their trolley not to be able to see someone that small or swinging a basket about - your child is one distracted thought away from a nasty accident.

But do as you please, you don't seem to think YABU.

NaturalBaby Mon 04-Feb-13 09:44:50

The OP's point was about one particular old lady... there's no need to take everything so personally if you're not a grumpy old lady.

manicbmc Mon 04-Feb-13 09:48:36

You've insinuated that the lady was grumpy. Just because she gave apparently disapproving looks does not make her grumpy.

OP also states that a number of people gave her these looks, which might imply that quite a few people thought she was being unreasonable to let her 16 month old go quite so far from her.

NaturalBaby Mon 04-Feb-13 13:42:54

or might imply that quite a few people think that it is far more dangerous to toddle in a supermarket than it actually is.
Grumpy is obviously an offensive word to some of you, I'll refrain from using it if it causes so much upset.

We are not the parents who let their dc's ride scooters or race up and down the aisles, we intervene when our toddlers get in the way or try to pull something over, while expecting other shoppers to tolerate our dc's because they are so darn cute.

If you have such big issues with wayward kids in the supermarket then take it up with the kids or negligent parents.

atthewelles Mon 04-Feb-13 13:57:50

No one is saying toddlers shouldn't be allowed walk around supermarkets natural they are saying they shouldn't be allowed wander half way down the aisle on their own given that, in a supermarket, people are pushing trollies full of groceries - which can be hard enough to steer at the best of times, never mind having to keep an eye out for stray toddlers darting around.

It's simple common sense. However, despite the fact that the vast majority of posters on here have said they find it annoying, inconvenient and dangerous to have toddlers roaming around several yards away from their parent you and a couple of others are still insisting it is okay to do it and everyone else is just 'grumpy'.
Ever heard that expression 'everyone's out of step except me'?

NaturalBaby Mon 04-Feb-13 14:19:03

No one is saying that toddlers should be expected to have free rein of the supermarket either, if we want them to run around exploring then we'd rather take them to the park/soft play/toddler group.

It is inconvenient and annoying - when was the last time you tried to do a food shop with a toddler?! I let my toddler walk because I intervene when necessary, and guess what, I use my common sense. As I said above, I've never allowed any of my dc's to cause so much havoc in a supermarket that they've had a collision with a trolley or any other shoppers. I'm insisting it's o.k to do because I am not one of the parents who ignores my dc's screaming and running up and down the aisles getting in everyone's way. There is a middle ground which applies to most parents.

Enough with the grumpy word, I've already addressed that.

atthewelles Mon 04-Feb-13 14:34:03

I think its up to other people to decide if you've addressed it Natural, rather than commanding people to agree that you have.

NaturalBaby Mon 04-Feb-13 14:54:09

I'm not commanding anyone to do anything, let alone how to parent their own children.

atthewelles Mon 04-Feb-13 15:31:10

No one's commanding people how to parent their children. They are explaining to the OP why she was getting annoyed looks from other shoppers, because she asked AIBU. People are perfectly entitled to express their views on children's behaviour if that behaviour impacts on them.

fluffyraggies Mon 04-Feb-13 15:52:14

When trying to decide if something is, on the whole, a reasonable thing for me to do, or to allow my kids to do, or not - i tend to remember something my dad used to say:

Imagine if everyone did it.

It's a simple thing, but he was right really and it's a pretty good rule of thumb.

Yes, one toddler toddling around miles away from their parents is livable with on the average shopping trip. But that's only because it is just that one. The parents of that one are enjoying the luxury of everyone else having the social awareness to keep their very young children close by or in the trolly, knowing that otherwise it would be chaos!

Goldenbear Mon 04-Feb-13 16:59:25

Ever heard that expression, 'tolerance only for those who agree with you is no tolerance at all.'

manicbmc Mon 04-Feb-13 17:02:54

Natural, I haven't implied that I think you lack in common sense. I actually think what you're saying is fine in the most part.

But I think the OP was unreasonable to let a child that age be that far away from her.

atthewelles Mon 04-Feb-13 17:05:35

No I haven't Goldenbear. Did you just make that up? And by the way, it is the greater majority of posters who find toddlers running around the aisles of supermarkets annoying. Can you not just accept that, instead of stubbornly insisting that you're right and the majority are wrong?

Noodled Mon 04-Feb-13 17:07:48

Am now left wondering whether the time my toddler lay on his belly whilst clinging to the front of the trolley as I swept (literally) along was better or worse. He wasn't in the way and polished the floor nicely but did attract the off glance.

manicbmc Mon 04-Feb-13 17:09:25

That would have made me laugh, Noodled. grin

Goldenbear Mon 04-Feb-13 17:30:24

Atthewellies, I never, ever said that toddlers should run around supermarkets- please provide a quote to back this up? You keep asserting that everyone is in agreement with you, are they? I think you'll find a sizeable minority are not and if that's the case you'll have to accept some people think differently to you I'm afraid!

No I didn't make the quote up. It is a very fitting quote for those bursting at the seams with indignation on this thread- ring any bells?

NotSoNervous Mon 04-Feb-13 17:32:11

I'm split, YANBU to let him walk around the shop with you but I think YABU to let him be that far away from you so other people would have to keep watch of him while there pushing their trollys and make sure he doesn't walk in front of them

NaturalBaby Mon 04-Feb-13 18:35:28

So if nobody agrees that it is unreasonable to let toddlers run all over the supermarket, why are we arguing?
Everyone's version of how far is too far is slightly different based on a million and one variables, but if you are too far to rush in and prevent glass jars smashing to the floor/a trolley smashing into your dc then that's obviously too far. Shoppers without a small toddler in tow will perceive any the distance to be too far when a mother who can sprint like Usain Bolt will be confident to let their little angel toddle an extra couple of feet.

Peacocklady Mon 04-Feb-13 23:01:55

Dd nearly got flattened by a trolley pushed by an old man while she was hovering at checkout. No way would I let a 16 mo that far from grasp.

atthewelles Tue 05-Feb-13 10:52:07

Goldenbear I have not 'assered that everyone is in agreement' with me. I have stated, correctly, that the majority of posters on this thread are in agreement 'with each other' regarding the issue of toddlers wandering around an aisle.

And people who happen to disagree with the minority of posters on here are not 'bursting at the seams with indignation'.
It is very hard to take your posts seriously when you seem to adapt the script to suit your arguments.

NaturalBaby Tue 05-Feb-13 11:01:04

The majority of posters in agreement about wandering toddlers aren't necessarily right, just because they are in the majority.

atthewelles Tue 05-Feb-13 11:03:57

But if you have evidence that something you are doing is obviously annoying the majority of other shoppers in the supermarket would you not just stop doing it? confused

Goldenbear Tue 05-Feb-13 12:29:38

Agree with Naturalbaby, a majority in agreement does not make what they're agreeing about, right!

How am I adapting the script? Some posters do seem
Intent on being offended, shocked, outraged about every day life. It is a totally disproportionate response to the OP's decision to let her child walk very near her in a shop. What is the big deal? I have never once seen a toddler mowed down by a trolley. Most normal people go around assessing the risk of an activity for their child based on the likelihood of something resulting in a problem. In weighing up that risk people are likely to include in their decision making process a consideration of whether they have witnessed an unsafe outcome with that activity before. if they have not they will probably let their child partake in that activity. Personally I have never seen a toddler mowed down in a supermarket and seeing as I am right next to my toddler and 5 year old when I let them pull the trolley basket thing I don't think it is unsafe.

NaturalBaby Tue 05-Feb-13 12:34:23

My 'evidence' is that none of my dc's have ever been involved in a crash/collision/supermarket demolition derby, there fore what ever I am doing as a parent is working perfectly well. We are not obviously annoying shoppers - we don't get tuts and looks and huffs and complaints when we go shopping, the opposite actually.

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