to want to kidnap these kids from the park?

(109 Posts)
Amykins35 Thu 02-May-13 22:57:04

We went to the park after school today and there was a mum with her friend and their children. She had a child of around 3 strapped into a Pushchair facing away from her and into a bush. He was screaming and crying and absolutely distraught and she was chatting and laughing with her friend like they couldn't even hear him. After we'd been there 10 mins or so he gave up and went to sleep. One of the other mums commented that he'd been crying like that for an hour beforehand. He woke again after a short while and was crying and thrashing about so much he tipped his pushchair over. His mum smacked him, shouted at him for knocking her shopping over and then Parked him further away before resuming her chat.
DD was trying to go on the slide but a baby of 14 months or so was crawling on it. His mum was sitting w

Maybe he was having a melt down and it was safer in the buggy than hurling himself down I front if people or in the way at the park? Best thing to do with tantrums is ignore which explains the chatting. The smacking sounds nasty but we don't know the full story.

Cloverer Thu 02-May-13 23:04:26

Some parents are shit. Yes, we don't know the full story but ignoring for an hour, shouting and hitting is still shit whatever.

TheChaoGoesMu Thu 02-May-13 23:07:32

Maybe he was tired and having a tantrum, which is why she might have turned him to face the bushes, less visual stimulation. She shouldn't have smacked him though.

My dd has had many a tantrum in the buggy. If I was to get her out she would thrash about and kick her legs and hit her head on mine. Put her down and she would hit the floor. Do I like her screaming in the buggy? No, but its a darn site safer than having her thrashing about in my arms.

I'd never snack I don't agree with it at all but kids throw tantrums sometimes big ones and talking to them or trying to distract them can feed the tantrum and make it worse. Ignoring is sometimes the only way to go.

thebody Thu 02-May-13 23:14:43

Difficult to judge without knowing the full picture really.

Amykins35 Thu 02-May-13 23:14:57

Would you really sit there chatting for over an hour while she was so upset though caffeine?

jacks365 Thu 02-May-13 23:16:44

My dd throws spectacular tantrums including throwing herself backwards onto the floor so the pushchair prevents her hurting herself however no child would cry for that length of time fall asleep and then continue the tantrums when they awoke. My dd can't keep a tantrum up for more than 2 mins. This sounds like a clear case of abuse then add in the unreasonable smacking. YANBU but that parent was.

LemonsLimes Thu 02-May-13 23:19:29

Poor kid. sad

Amykins35 Thu 02-May-13 23:21:23

Posted too soon. His mum was sitting nearby with friends but not really watching. After several minutes of DD waiting patiently his mum distracted him with a bottle of chocolate milkshake...which he then took back to slide, tipped it all over slide, slipped in it and banged his head very hard - then got told off for spilling his milkshake before his mum continued her conversation about how she could save money on suncream because he tans rather than Burns...!
AIBU to just despair and want to give these kids a huge cuddle? Situations like these just make me wonder what the child's home life is like if they're treated like this in public

Well to be honest I leg it home. Too many people out there thinking the worst over a child's paddy. Dd1 could have easily tantrums for an hour at three. Dd2 can be pretty bad if she's tired. There have been a couple of occasions where it's gone on that long but given I was at a bus stop by a main road getting her out was not an option. I'd rather a screaming child than one who hurt themselves trying to run off.

Amykins35 Thu 02-May-13 23:29:40

So there wasn't a bus in an entire hour? Sorry, not getting at you personally I just hate the thought of a child being upset for so long and it not being prevented/solved

Cloverer Thu 02-May-13 23:32:51

Screaming to the point of exhaustion, falling asleep, then waking up still distressed does not sound like a tantrum that needed to be ignored to me. Shouting and smacking also doesn't add up to a good parent managing their child's behaviour.

No there wasn't. It didn't show up. And the second one was late. I couldn't get home til it arrived. I'm sure if anyone saw they would be horrified but there was literally nothing I could do. Is been through my bag of tricks then some. Is she neglected ? No she's a happy healthy much loved child. And the thought that someone would wanna kidnap her over a tantrum that's a result of circumstances out of my control is upsetting.

Maybe she is a neglect ful mother or maybe the kid does it all the time and she's used to it and knows he will snap out if it, who knows. I don't agree with smacking as I said but on its own a tantrum is not really something that would concern me. I'd just be grateful that that day it wast my child.

DevonCiderPunk Thu 02-May-13 23:39:57

Amykins what support did you offer to this family?

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 02-May-13 23:43:44

This was all ho-hum explicable until the smack. No excuse for a smack so there's not much point arguing the toss about the rest of it.


JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 02-May-13 23:46:07

And would you really stay in the same place, outside, with a tantrumming child, Wheresmy?

I also had a championship tantrummer, but for my own and everyone els's sanity I would relaocate myself

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Thu 02-May-13 23:46:37


JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 02-May-13 23:47:09


TiggerWearsATriteSmile Thu 02-May-13 23:50:24

It's not even a funny attempt, sorry.

Cutesy name with added numbers, you get points for that. Just about.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 02-May-13 23:51:03

Oh Ok

Are we reporting then?

Amykins35 Thu 02-May-13 23:51:31

Devon - I was looking after 3 small. Children, a baby and 2 dogs so none. I don't think me going over and offering support would've been taken too well anyway - she'd probably have smacked me too!

Amykins35 Thu 02-May-13 23:53:12

Funny? Why would it be funny?

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Thu 02-May-13 23:53:33

You certainly kept your ears and your eyes open given that you had charge of 3 kids and 2 dogs yourself Amykins...didn't miss one word did you?



It was a bus stop! The bus coulda turned up any minute. If I'd have left I'd have missed it. Where exactly could I have gone. I wouldn't have sat in a park for an hour god no but I was actually trying to get home.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 02-May-13 23:59:09


Sorry, I wasn't clear. I meant, in the situation described int the OP, you'd move, wouldn't you?

JamieandtheMagicTorch Fri 03-May-13 00:00:03

X post - yes, I see you would

Looking after 3 small children and 2 dogs in the park yet you managed to pay that much attention to someone elses conversation?

Should we expect a thread about a woman in a park so engrossed in someone elses conversation she was neglecting the children she was with.

I believe about a third of this at the most.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Fri 03-May-13 00:04:57

Report then

Troll hunting is boring

So you didnt say anything to the mums or offer help, but you listened to their conversation enough so you could run to MN and talk about them.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Fri 03-May-13 00:05:37

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

I already said I wouldn't sit in a park for an hour smile but I would t judge a tantrum based on a snapshot of what I saw. Perhaps he'd been vile all day and the mum just wanted out the house. That's something we can all relate to isn't it?? The shouting isn't ideal but who hasn't reached that point with their kids, the concern is the snacking in all honesty but as no one knows if it was a one off or whether she does or all the time , kidnapping is a harsh thing to say.

Like I said she could be a lazy neglectful mum who drags her kids out whatever is going on. Or she could just be the mum of a drama king/queen child who had been in a foul mood all day and she was t gonna let it hold her prisoner in the house.
We don't know that's the point. Enough people on here post in tears after a public meltdown from their toddler. Others post in similar states cos their child is being horrendous. The advice then is nearly always - grab your coat and just get out the house. Get some air.

FreudiansSlipper Fri 03-May-13 00:14:41

well it s obvious from your posts op this woman was from a council estate spent money on fags and the children probably have different dads so what do you expect

sterilisation of such people is the only answer

DS2 is 7 months & when he's tired he can scream for 1/2 an hour easily. Even if I cuddle him & try to sooth him he still screams, he needs sleep. If he doesn't nap long enough he will continue when he wakes.

The smacking & shouting I don't agree with.

OP are you the same smug mum who never watches TV & has the lazy, obese ex who lets your daughter watch DVDs all weekend?

I'd like to know the secret of having three kids who are permanently so well behaved that a meltdown is the source of such confusion and terror that the only solution is to take them away. I certainly don't see y I should reward my child's tantrum with a snack or a treat just to keep her quiet so people like op don't condemn me to the shit mother pile. amykins there's a entire thread on here dedicated to the ridiculous triggers of tantrums. Go to search and type in cutted up pear. It's not that unusual, kids have meltdowns.

Jinty64 Fri 03-May-13 07:35:26

MrsHelsBels74 you have hit the nail on the head. OP has form for judgey threads.

TerrysAllGold Fri 03-May-13 07:37:39

OP, did you see someone giving their child a Fruit Shoot, another eating a Greggs sausage roll and a pit bull roaming the park unattended too?

Tee2072 Fri 03-May-13 07:41:42

jacks365 "My dd can't keep a tantrum up for more than 2 mins."

You're lucky. My son once had a tantrum non-stop for an entire bus ride of 20 minutes.

But his record is just over an hour. Luckily we were home for that one.

I wasn't there so I can't judge the OPs story.

PoppyAmex Fri 03-May-13 07:46:13

Don't mean to be rude, but I seriously doubt that "I can save money on sun cream because he tans, doesn't burn" line confused

valiumredhead Fri 03-May-13 09:15:12

Apart from the smack that is exactly what I used to do with ds when he was over tired, he always had a good scream before nodding off.

Tee only 20 mins? God my ds would keep it up for double that, it was exhausting grin

ryanboy Fri 03-May-13 09:22:24

She was giving him zero stimulation so he would go sleep/calm down.
You have to stay strong in the face of tantrums !!

LadyBeagleEyes Fri 03-May-13 09:30:35

Another perfect mother thread from Amykins.

Tee2072 Fri 03-May-13 09:32:12

He only stopped that time valium because we got off the bus!

fromparistoberlin Fri 03-May-13 09:38:32

she sounds like a shit mum, OP I know what you mean

I dont buy the "you cant judge without knowing the full story"

sounds like at the least very uncompassionate parenting to me

and its depressing as you are essentually powerless OP

As "good" parents we naturally have compassion when we children being treated in a less than kind way

but I can see OP has received alot of [hmmm]

as a society we tend to walk on by alot, and then we get all upset when we read about Baby P

I wonder what his neighbour would have been told if she posted on here as I bet someone saw incidents like OP describes

I hate it that every fucking time someone expresses a concern they get called "nosy" or "judgy"

I think most of us are intelligent enough to distinguish between a bad day, and something worse

fromparistoberlin Fri 03-May-13 09:40:50

"well it s obvious from your posts op this woman was from a council estate spent money on fags and the children probably have different dads so what do you expect sterilisation of such people is the only answer"

WHAT THE FUCK???? you see. OP decsribes a clearly upsetting incident and get spoken to like that

I fucking despair sometimes

PoppyAmex Fri 03-May-13 12:17:05

I think it's about the general tone - there's a certain air of shadenfreude /glee / smugness in the OP's description, which probably makes people second guess the intention.

fromparistoberlin Fri 03-May-13 12:22:00

I dont know Poppy

here is what really upsets me (and I know my post was emotive!)

we are seeing every day that we have worrying levels of child abuse
we know that this comes from both neglectful parents, and from more sinister sources. and we know the damage it causes

and yet...if anyone ever dares post about this on MN they tend to get rounded on, and accused of being

fanning the flames of "paedo" hysteria

yet we also know that if more people DID something, this would lesson

yes we might not like a poster, or think they are being hysterical

However the message seems to be overwhelmingly critical

yet maybe they are not sure, maybe they cant ask people in RL, so they turn onto here

this is supposed to be a parenting community, so the prevalant attitude baffles me

Floggingmolly Fri 03-May-13 12:30:30

Why would the op "offer support to this family"????? What planet are you on, Devoncider? hmm

jacks365 Fri 03-May-13 12:39:48

I suppose i didn't pick up on the tone because what the op describes is all so common in my area. Some of what i see and hear would horrify a lot of you. When one of my children were in reception another mum was called in due to her sons language, she stood in the playground and said "he must hear it here we never f**** swear" she didn't even realise what she'd said. Another mum i know swears constantly at her 22 month old and calls him all sorts, yes people have bad days but those of you saying your children are like that would you be laughing and chatting while it was going on or stressed and uneasy. Ok maybe the op is a smug mum but then again maybe she's the one behaving like that and looking for validation for her appalling treatment of her dc. Which ever if i saw a child treated like that i'd think poor child.

Fakebook Fri 03-May-13 12:47:21

The smack was obviously wrong but a tantrumming toddler is a nightmare when you're out. Ds had two melt downs on Wednesday. One at a bus stop where he screamed for about 15 mins and then another when I was buying fruit at a market stall. I had one man go past saying "bloody hell", and then I had an old lady who was apparently an ex-health visitor asking me what was wrong with him and sympathising with me telling me "motherhood is a very lonely job isn't it?"...confused but even with the weird comments, she still stood with me and walked a little way with us talking to ds which quietened him a bit.

He went to sleep after 20 mins. I wasn't going to take him out and start hugging and soothing him as that would have given him the chance to get out of my lap and make a run for the pigeons and taxis.

Maybe you could have helped soothe him? I always get people talking to ds in shops when he's crying and he stops within seconds of a stranger talking to him.

Goldenbear Fri 03-May-13 13:21:34

I agree with Fromparistoberlin, abuse does go on, shit, bullying, haven't a fucking clue parenting goes on but it if it is ever mentioned on hear the OPs are rounded on, accused of being 'judgey' and in all probability misunderstood what they saw and heard. Equally, they will use their own parenting tales to make light of whatever anyone explains they have seen to normalise it.

Ignoring a toddler screaming for an hour strapped into a pushchair facing away from you and then smacking the child is SHIT parenting and it's STILL shit even if you yourself have done the same. Giving a child a snack in a pushchair to placate them is 100x better than leaving them to get distressed for a prolonged period. As long as you have proved who is the boss though I suppose that is the main thing when you are a parent???

HeffalumpTheFlump Fri 03-May-13 13:25:46

FreudiansSlipper Fri 03-May-13 00:14:41
well it s obvious from your posts op this woman was from a council estate spent money on fags and the children probably have different dads so what do you expect

sterilisation of such people is the only answer

-- I really hope this was sarcasm aimed at the OP rather than an actual comment on the situation.

And I'm quite new to this site, why would someone make up a story to post on here? Does this happen a lot? confused

If we fed snacks to a tantruming child every time not only is that rewarding the behaviour you would have a very fat child on your hands. Toddlers throw tantrums it's what they do best.

crikeybill Fri 03-May-13 13:33:15

FFS you know what, there ARE shit parents about. There ARE parents that don't care. Why is it every single time a post like this appears people have a reverse judgement contest to see who can find the most outrageous shittybehaviour acceptable.

Sometimes there are no excuses, the parents are just shit.

Goldenbear Fri 03-May-13 13:39:57

Not every tantrum, prolonged ones, where you have tried other things.
If you think a 'snack' is a 'treat' frankly you need to address the issues you have with food. Food is not a 'reward' and it is a really unhealthy view to pass on to your Children.

I have a close to 6 year old DS who is slim to skinny and a 2 year old daughter who is equally slim. They have healthy 'snacks' and unhealthy ones sometimes but they never have food 'rewards'.

wonderingagain Fri 03-May-13 13:40:45

Over the years I have found there are fewer low-level shitty parents. Somewhere over the past 15 years it seems people are aware that you can't treat dcs like shit and that social services aren't an urban myth.

However I have noticed a few incidents where adults deliberately and very loudly threaten their dcs almost in a 'you just try and say anything' kind of way aimed at the onlooker. So "shut up or I'll smack you in the face", etc etc. Really loud, usually in a supermarket.

I usually do or say something, usually directly to the child, like 'are you ok love'. The bullies hate that. I think more people should.

Yes there are shit parents. And smacking a child and yelling at a child is shit. But on the same note we can't assume every toddler meltdown is the result of abusive neglectful parenting.

Imagine the reverse. " I saw a toddler being fed snack after snack after snack just to keep her quiet"


" a kid was being violent and all the mum did was cuddle him"

If what she saw was so bad then y didn't she do anything about it??? If a kid was being beaten you wouldn't just walk past you would call someone or jump in and try and stop it.

What she saw wasn't great parenting admittedly. But a hysterical toddler in a buggy has happened to all of us.

Goldenbear Fri 03-May-13 13:47:18

Oh and Toddlers throw tantrums - yes but IMO and experience some you can minimise before they blow up and if you are a parent that cares about your chid's distress you should try and do this.

Too many parents view their children as adversaries to be ignored, dismissed- it is really depressing.

crikeybill Fri 03-May-13 13:47:45

Yes caffeine I do see what you mean. If it was that bad why didnt she intervene. I have before, and then got a mouthful grin but the shitty parenting that was happening in front of me did stop.

No it wasnt the worst thing in the world, but a hysterical toddler strapped in screaming, falling asleep through exhaustion, waking up, screaming somemore, must be so so unhappy. Removing them from the situation and just paying them some more attention, maybe go for a walk would just be so much more preferable to ignoring them and then the inevitable smack sad
And yes I do also wonder what happens if that happens in public.
I do...

Goldenbear Fri 03-May-13 13:53:35

I didn't say feed them endless snacks I said perhaps trying one, like an orange is not the end of the world. You seem to suggest food is a reward and the distress for 30 minutes at a bus stop is better. I don't think so.

If I saw someone feeding a child carrot stick after carrot stick I would think they were sensible, had planned their journey properly and considered their child.

My dd's tantrums are always because she's had to go back in the buggy. I can't help what time buses turn up and I can't help the fact that she would also strop at me holding the reigns or stopping her from walking about. Forgive me for thinking that the tantrum in the buggy is a better option than having her run about next to a main road!!!

She's not ignored neglected smacked and yes she does have snacks. But I sure as hell aren't going to feed her constantly cos we could be at that bus stop a while!!!!

But clearly I'm just shit as tantrums are judged merely as sign of abuse.

fromparistoberlin Fri 03-May-13 14:02:09

"If it was that bad why didnt she intervene."

I think when its low level shit parenting its REALLY hard to intervene though, I am heartended by some of the comments here, and I think if I saw hitting I would intervene

But to be honest if I saw that, I would do nothing either, sad

I still cant fucking get over the comments on this thread however, pasted below for peoples reading pleasure:


Amykins what support did you offer to this family?

It's not even a funny attempt, sorry.

I believe about a third of this at the most.

So you didnt say anything to the mums or offer help, but you listened to their conversation enough so you could run to MN and talk about them.

well it s obvious from your posts op this woman was from a council estate spent money on fags and the children probably have different dads so what do you expect

OP are you the same smug mum who never watches TV & has the lazy, obese ex who lets your daughter watch DVDs all weekend?

OP, did you see someone giving their child a Fruit Shoot, another eating a Greggs sausage roll and a pit bull roaming the park unattended too?

Goldenbear Fri 03-May-13 14:06:08

Taking a child to a park that needs a nap is pretty cruel. It's inconsiderate parenting as you are teasing the child. It is a highly stimulating environment for a child, how the hell are they meant to sleep in this situation? Positioning the buggy so that they are facing the bush is not going to stop them being aware of their environment. Why couldn't the parent get off their arse and push them around a bit to get them off to sleep. It is incredibly unkind and the smack gives a pretty good impression of the shoddy parenting the OP was witnessing!

I dragged my 3yo kicking & screaming to the car yesterday morning because he refused to eat his breakfast nicely. Quick call Social Services. My son can go from happy clappy to screaming melt down in a split second, there isn't time to minimise it. And usually he does this because I've said 'No', the only thing to stop it is for me to give in which isn't a good idea either.

If any of you perfect parents could give me a few pointers I'd be more than grateful angry

With you hels I'd love to know how I can stop breathing wrong and setting off my child who incidentally at that point has eastern had a drink been outside had a nap watched tv read a book... Obviously I'm abusive or she wouldn't do it. hmm

Goldenbear Fri 03-May-13 14:13:54

You clearly said up thread that you weren't going to reward the tantrums with food. Nobody thinks tantrums are a sign of abuse but someone's reactions to them or lack of reaction to them in the OPs case is IMO an indication of their compassion for their own offspring.

I don't reward with food- point is it happens even if they have just eaten or been doing something nice that was keeping them happy til the split second where all of a sudden.......

Some kids have horrendous tantrums and nothing works to calm them down. Yes some tantrums you can head off but some you can't. My youngest dd has awful tantrums and it can be over something simple like her biscuit breaking in half or she wanted to get on the no 10 bus when we need the 12 hmm

Nothing NOTHING will calm her down if she is hellbent on screaming. Occaisionally I can distract but not often and when she goes for it even speaking calmly to her or eye contact will have her kicking and spitting so she just gets on with it. She calms down quicker if I ignore her (sometimes 30 mins)

I always give her a cuddle and a kiss when she calms down though, her little heart is racing and it must really scare them.

D0oinMeCleanin Fri 03-May-13 14:19:37

Blimey I thought our park was rough, where the hell do you live?

All of that going on in one park, on the same visit? It's almost unbelievable hmm

Inaction is sometimes , in itself, action.

Goldenbear Fri 03-May-13 14:31:45

Oh right so are you saying abuse and neglect doesn't go on and that we are all just trying our best? Well that's a fallacy isn't it, nothing to do with 'perfect parenting', some people are really not trying their best, so why pretend that they are. Most people are muddling through but others are abusive.

There are definitely times people can minimise it but they are obsessed with what they think is the 'right way' to be a parent and how they should be 'the boss', they get into unnecessary confrontation ALL of the time with their children. Like I said they see their own children as their adversaries.

I'm not a perfect parent, frankly I don't give a shit if you think that, my opinion is what it is, it just isn't yours, you'll have to get over that I'm afraid.

jacks365 Fri 03-May-13 14:34:51

I agree caffeine my policy is to ignore tantrums however the op said crying which could just mean not having his needs met rather than a tantrum. Also can you say you'd be chatting and laughing while your child is behaving like that? I couldn't. Yes people have talked about when they've had to ignore tantrums but none of them were ever doing what would class as a leisure activity, none of them had much choice with regards to where they were, waiting for a bus, food shopping, there is a difference.

Ghost comments that she hugs her dd not smacks her and that's what makes the difference for me. You can see the parents expression when they care and when they don't, you can see the frustration when they see their child suffering in some way but can't do anything

I never said abuse & neglect don't happen but I don't think you can judge a situation unless you know the full story. In OPs case, do we know that the child didn't have special needs of some kind, we don't know what the parent has already tried, you don't know the mental state of the parent etc.

How the parent reacted in this case (smacking etc) isn't how I'd have reacted but we honestly don't know all the details.

NotYoMomma Fri 03-May-13 14:42:02

I don't really believe you could hear all of that detail while having 3 children and 2 dogs to look after, and why you couldn't have asked the other kid to me Your dd have a turn

Goldenbear Fri 03-May-13 14:42:12

Both my DC have had epic tantrums do have epic tanrums, there is no way I would see strapping them into a buggy, ignoring them and facing them towards a bush in a higly stimulating environment as a clever solution to this. It just isn't, in fact I would suggest the opposite - it is a very stupid solution. If this parent had thought this through (if indeed she has the brain cells to do so) she could have reduced the tantrum to 5 minutes or just held him and calmed him down and you know, showed a very small child some love. In a park there is no safety worries so she could've easily done this.

PoppyAmex Fri 03-May-13 14:50:59

fromparis I totally understand where you're coming from and it makes perfect sense to me.

I guess I just feel the OP can't have it both ways;

- Either it wasn't neglect/abuse and she chose to read the situation in the worst possible way and came here to judge.

- Or all the conclusions she drew were correct, in which case she didn't act on it and this post isn't helpful at all, is it?

I think this is what often rubs people up the wrong way, the hand wringing "poor children" type of posts from passive people who just come across as rubberneckers.

Disclaimer: Not saying this is necessarily the OP's case, but the whole "want to kidnap these kids" talk actually comes across as pretty flippant to me.

everlong Fri 03-May-13 14:51:27

Oh come on now.

This situation isn't great by anyone's standards.

It sounds like the child needed a bit of time, a push on the swings, a walk round the park, a snack. I don't know.

We've all been there. It's exhausting at times and we don't always do the right thing but hitting and ignoring a baby that's upset is shit and there is no getting away from that.

LemonsLimes Fri 03-May-13 16:09:53

I agree Everlong

everlong Fri 03-May-13 16:35:02

Poppy my guess would be if the OP had gone over to offer help she would have been told to do one.

She obviously wasn't bothered about people seeing her smack a distressed child was she?

Going over would have made an awful situation much worse.

Seriously how many of you would go over to assist?
IMO that looks more judgey and smug than keeping your nose out.

Goldenbear Fri 03-May-13 16:50:27

There are also people that always assume the best of someone and a situation, even when a parent's demonstrable behaviour is evidently at best very poor parenting, at worst abuse. I don't understand why people think like this- it is either because they are very naive, cowardly or are pretty similar IME!

PoppyAmex Fri 03-May-13 16:56:40

You're right, everlong but I didn't mean someone witnessing child abuse should try to assist, rather the oposite actually.

OP managed to glean a hell of a lot of detail from the woman's conversation so if she is convinced it was abuse, perhaps she should've tried to get some identifying details and report the situation.

A lot of hypothetical "ifs" here, but like I said, either she thinks it was abuse in which case she should've called the Police/SS or she didn't and s indulging in a spot of shadenfreude shrugs

Yesterday in the school playground DS(2) was having a screaming tantrum in the pram. I was deliberately ignoring him because I knew he was overtired and needed to drop off, and would likely be fast asleep within a couple of minutes, before DS1 came out.

In the meantime a little girl (probably 3) came up to me and said "He wants you. He's crying." I would have been a bit hmm if an adult had said it, but as it was I smiled and thanked her for noticing, but explained that he was tired and needed a sleep so I was trying to let him.

I wouldn't have left him an hour, obviously, nor walloped him, but I don't think a snapshot of "ignored him while he was crying" is in itself an indicator of careless parenting.

Goldenbear Fri 03-May-13 17:17:49

Well exactly, those are the differentiating factors- you didn't smack him or leave him for an hour to cry it out.

I can well see why the OP noticed this parent and what she was saying if she was close enough. How big are the play areas you go to and is your local play area full of lovely parents smacking their babies, who have been screaming for up to an hour as they are forced to take a nap at any distress in a stimulating environment, where children usually play, not sleep, facing a bush?

LaGuardia Fri 03-May-13 17:23:17

I hope that, in my lifetime, smacking children will be deemed a criminal offence.

loofet Fri 03-May-13 17:25:38

Hmm. Well in this instance I really can't see an excuse for just leaving him strapped in a buggy screaming faced away from her, not one. Its a park, I imagine a lot of open space, so there are no safety concerns if she let him out of the buggy. Also I don't see any need to be in the park, sounds like she was purely there to socialise so she could have gone home to get him down for a nap.

It's different from a situation where you can't physically leave i.e on a bus or train. She could have got him out to try cuddling him or got up and pushed him around/just pushed the buggy back and forth. I can't really see an excuse for it tbh, I tried to find one to justify it but couldn't at all.

I've been in situations where my DC have had tantrums on a bus or train but that's entirely different, I couldn't just get up and leave as she could have done. I didn't just sit there though and leave them too it. I actively tried everything in my power to calm them. I don't actually think I could just listen to them scream, it distresses me as much as them.

Never any excuse to smack, ever. I can't defend this woman at all tbh, I just can't reason with her behaviour. Sounds to me like she'd rather not have a child -shrug- She seems to prioritise gossiping over her DC anyway...

5madthings Fri 03-May-13 17:29:40

Smacking not good.

Perhaps screaming himself to what he does, some children do and plenty of people think cc and cio is ok to get a child to sleep, I could never do it myself.

As an aside op, yoi say you were at the park with your three kids and two dogs, i do hope you didnt have your dogs in the play area and they were on the lead in a place with so many children likely to be running around?

Floggingmolly Fri 03-May-13 17:51:45

Screaming themselves to sleep at three, 5madthings? That'd be a bit extreme, don't you think?

5madthings Fri 03-May-13 18:01:40

Yes i do think its extreme but some kids do. I have always co-slept etc with mine but i know my sister always screamed/cried no matter what my mum did and she would go to sleep better left to cry.

There was a toddker at toddler group tiday, the mum was trying everything to comfort him and nothing was working, poor mum was frazzled and eventually she put him in the pushchair where he cried for a bit longer then went to sleep. He just needed to be put down and left alone.

As i said mine all co-slept and i woukd never do controlled crying or cry it out etc. But it does work for some children if you agree with it...

My ds4 usec to grumble to himself when going to sleep and if i disturbed him he got more upset, he wanted me to lay by him.but not cuddle him, if i tried to cuddld him he would get more upset but he wanted my presence next to him.

Funny things childrrn.

The scenario the op describes if its real sounds shite but its a snapshot.

Lets hope the op is the perfect parent and a considerate dog owner if she is going to judge grin

Goldenbear Fri 03-May-13 18:52:07

I think it's quite dangerous to make a mockery of that concern with the 'perfect parent' comments. Of course no one can be perfect it is not necessary to be so before you show concern for people being seriously mistreated. It is an expectation of a civilised society that people care about the treatment of others.

kotinka Fri 03-May-13 19:04:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ChairmanWow Fri 03-May-13 20:01:58

I think the general point was that we don't know why the child was left crying. My DS will only calm down if he's ignored - and he tantrums by wailing, which even my DH mistakes for crying. Talking to him when he's like that winds him up further and prolongs the tantrum.

The smack was, of course, wrong. There's no excuse for that. The conversation snippet is bollocks. OP either had her hands too full to be able to eavesdrop or should have been keeping an eye on her own 3 kids. I'm also wondering how happy the other parents were with her bringing 2 dogs into a play area. Strictly forbidden where I live and with good reason.

LemonsLimes Fri 03-May-13 20:24:43

I wonder if the mother and friend could be bothered to break off from their chatting and laughing to offer the child a drink while they left him distraught for an hour. The fact that he fell asleep and then woke up again shortly aftewards crying and thrashing around suggests to me there was some need that wasn't being met. (Other than by smacking and shouting of course. hmm

Goldenbear Fri 03-May-13 20:56:53

I don't get why it is so unlikely that someone would hear someone's conversation in a park. I always hear peoples' conversations due to the fact that you are often in close proximity to other parents watching their children. I have 2 children in tow, one of whom has just turned 2 and likes to leave the play area given any opportunity, despite the level of concentration required I still hear things within earshot. You almost always here obnoxious people because they draw attention to themselves.

horry that's a lovely little snapshot smile

Amykins35 Sat 04-May-13 22:41:26

I can't believe people excuse this with 'he was probably overtired' and that mkes it ok! It's his mums job to ensure he doesn't get overtired, if she failed to do in the first instance she should certainly make an effort to soothe him rather than ignore him and continuing chatting. Whoever gave the standard MN response of 'maybe he had SN' - surely it'd be even worse then if he's being physically punished?

Caffeine - you really need to get a bus timetable...!

amykins I know the bus times thanks. The drivers clearly don't!!!

ThoughtsPlease Sat 04-May-13 23:04:30

Amykins how many children do you have and how old are they?

jacks365 Sun 05-May-13 00:12:50

Amykins i got stuck for an hour waiting for a bus because it had broken down, it happens. Caffines post clearly states that 1 didn't turn up and the next was late. Sometimes we can't do anything about crying children due to circumstances beyond our control ok your park incident doesn't sound like that but there are legitimate reasons sometimes.

It was me who mentioned SN, I'm assuming you have a wealth of experience of SN children to KNOW what was best for that child.

And how exactly do you prevent a child getting overtired if you have 2 that refuse to sleep until they can't physically stay awake & have been through the ensuing carnage?

Btw I'm not excusing the smacking, am thinking more about the apparent ignoring. It's late, I'm tired & can't remember the exact OP.

FarBetterNow Sun 05-May-13 05:24:11

Of course there are safety concerns in a park - the swings mainly.

Maggie111 Sun 05-May-13 10:48:51

YANBU OP. The worst journey of my life was to sit near a "family" with a beautiful girl aged about 3. She chattered and babbled and asked lovely child questions about what she saw out of the window. Her Mum repeatedly told her to "Shut the fuck up."

I didn't know what I could do, if anything? I just planned to pick the girl up and run off the train with her. I still think about her now and wish I'd have done something different.

How adequately were you supervising 3 kids a baby and 2 dogs if you were earywigging so well on every other word the parents were saying?

Geezer Sun 05-May-13 11:10:53

Amykins, get your head out from up your own arse for a moment and tell me how a mother is going to make it her "job" to ensure a child doesn't get overtired if, for example, that child screams half the night and won't settle come what may?

And don't tell me the answer is to stay at home, just don't even try going there.

OhLori Sun 05-May-13 11:18:20

I sometimes have thoughts/experiences like yours OP, and Maggie, sometimes I say something (usually non-confrontational e.g. I address/comfort the child) but sometimes its not possible for a variety of reasons.

(Ignore Geezer's vile words, you always get some nasty angry folk on these threads).

toffeelolly Sun 05-May-13 11:29:58

Some people are alway's quick to judge other's.

Geezer Sun 05-May-13 11:44:54

Get over yourself, OhLori, I have a perfectly valid question despite that you don't like how I put it. I don't like the nasty way the OP is taking such a superior attitude and think that's pretty vile, tbh.

A mother making it her "job" to see that her child doesn't get overtired is, in the case of some children at the very least, a laughable suggestion. Try it with a child who screams all night, every night.

ohlori - Would you really go over to a complete stranger whose life you have no fucking clue over and attempt to "comfort" the child?

ChairmanWow Sun 05-May-13 19:43:33

Look, if you don't like it then say something to the parent or, if it's serious enough, report it. It's the coming on here and tutting that gets on my nerves. Does starting a thread on MN ensure that child is well parented? No, it doesn't.

There are huge assumptions being made about this woman and her friend. Yes, she could be selfish and neglectful. She could also be exhausted and stressed and her friend might be the only adult she's seen that day. Who knows? Not us.

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