Want to take petty obnoxious revenge on child-unfriendly cafe. suggestions?

(164 Posts)

Before I lay it all out, I am a person that gets frustrated when small children act up in cafes with no interference. I sympathise with the staff who clean up after messy child patrons and if my two make a mess, I usually clean most of it up myself. Today's cafe however had no recourse for their behaviour.

Myself and two mums (I'm a nanny) were at a toddler group this morning, our bunch are very good friends and wanted to play together after the playgroup was finished. We agreed to bring them to a playground nearby but since it was just about lunchtime, we wanted to feed them first an this cafe (we'll call it BC) was between both places.

There were three adults and seven children, ages between 2 and 4, and the staff firstly gave us no assistance in getting our group seated. No high chair was offered for the very small just-turned-2 year old, I found it later in the bathroom. The children's menu was farcical, everything came with chips and although mashed potato was on the menu you couldn't substitute it for the chips without paying extra. My lone vegetarian option was pretty rank too but beside the point. I ordered 3 orange juices for me and my twin mindees, we got tap water and a thimble of squash in it.

The kids were sitting nicely but got a little high spirited in each other's company, started singing. I was mid-drink and about to stop them but the waitress jumped in before them, shushed them quite aggressively and told them they'd have to leave if they didn't be quiet. The older kids clammed up but one of the younger ones got upset and started crying.

They gave us the bums rush from start to finish. My two only left the table to use the bathroom with me in attendance and we were mostly engaged in a quiet game of I spy with one of the older girls. The waitresses kept butting in to clear the kids still mostly full plates and sweeping under and around our table which, honestly, wasmessy but not that bad. Finally the two mothers got fed up and left. I stuck around to finish my crappy salad, and when they asked me if my mindee was finished, I was sufficiently curt with her that they backed off.

In the meantime, the manager had gone outside to talk to the mums, and he told them that three people had walked out and said they wouldn't be back because of the kids. Even if that was true, and I saw nobody leave except the mums, It was a gross overreaction to an admittedly large group of small kids.

To put this in perspective, I had the twins at Yo Sushi the week before (to see the 'food train') where the waitresses were so impressed by their willingness to try yakitori, edemame and eating with chopsticks that they were over every few minutes praising them and gave them free desserts. I take them to loads of eateries and I've never been treated with such contempt.

So, revenge? I'm thinking of taking the mindees there every day after playschool and only ordering tap water and tea. Which we will nurse for three hours while quietly doing a jigsaw on the table.

Pilgit Fri 21-Jun-13 20:06:00

Can understand why you're irritated! truly horrid of them. I wouldn't give them the custom. Just steer clear and stick to where they are welcomed.

SkinnybitchWannabe Fri 21-Jun-13 20:06:23

Was it a cafe chain? Because I would be emailing head office to complain.
I love your revenge idea though wink

KnittedWaffle Fri 21-Jun-13 20:06:46

Or you could do what someone in my area has done and write a scathing review on a local parenting site, prompting the site admin to remove the cafe/restaurant from their listings as 'family friendly'.
This one is directly near a play area too so they'll lose a fair bit of business (my first thought on reading the review was that I wouldn't bother)

Moominsarehippos Fri 21-Jun-13 20:14:23

What a shame! They don't seem to realise that folks with little kiddies are good business!

Just organise a local MN MeetUp (with kids) and see how they cope with 800 toddlers singing 'the wheels on the bus' for hours and hours.

ChippingInWiredOnCoffee Fri 21-Jun-13 20:18:58

What sort of place is it?

I just think there are places you do and don't take 7 toddlers.

It's a shame they weren't welcoming, but maybe you aren't their target customer and they don't want to end up like starbucks?! I guess that's their choice.

But I'm sorry it was crap and you had a horrible time of it... somewhere nicer next time!

notmyproblem Fri 21-Jun-13 20:19:43

You said the food was crap, the service was worse, and yet you want to go back there again? hmm To accomplish what, exactly?

So they didn't welcome you, so you didn't like it there anyway. So don't go back. They'll go under soon enough if they are that crap.

Honestly, life is too short. Name and shame them on social media if you need to but why waste your time and make a deliberate pain of yourself by going there again? Grow up.

TooMuchRain Fri 21-Jun-13 20:22:05

If it was an independent then cut them slack (unless they really promote themselves as child-friendly) -now is not an easy time to be running a small business and if they see people walking out then they'll panic

TSSDNCOP Fri 21-Jun-13 20:22:37

Why would you go back? You'll only sit there all angry and clenched waiting for inevitable confrontation.

Vote with your feet.

trying not to laugh at the menu comparisons between the Caff and Yo Sushi

josephinebruce Fri 21-Jun-13 20:26:02

Doesn't sound as if they want customers at all!!

Thymeout Fri 21-Jun-13 20:30:05

I'm sorry, but I think you were unrealistic in thinking that a group of 10, 3 adults and 7 small children between 2 and 4, no matter how well behaved, would not have a considerable impact on the other customers.

It was just you and your two mindees in Yo Sushi. Doubt if you'd have had the same welcome if there'd been 10 of you.

As you say, they got a little high spirited and there was mess on the floor under and around the tables, which the waitresses would have needed to sweep up in case anyone slipped on it.

I don't know why you think the manager was lying. I wouldn't have wanted to be eating there at the same time as you.

WeleaseWodger Fri 21-Jun-13 20:37:58

I have to admit I was rolling my eyes thinking riiiight when you described how your high spirited mindees started SINGING and you were just about to get to telling them yourself when the waitress jumped in. Unless she can leap great distances in 2 seconds, then you had time to shush them yourself and didn't.

rockybalboa Fri 21-Jun-13 20:48:50

I wouldn't waste your energy on revenge and just vote with your feet. We've been to two soft play places this week, one smelt really sweaty and menu was mainly chip based but at the other today (less smelly, good cake) the owner cleared DS2's less than half eaten plate of beans on toast away whilst he and I were queuing for a drink for him. My bag was on the table and she didn't clear DS1's plate which was 1/2 eaten. When I raised it, she got really snotty and said "well how did I know you were coming back to the table?". I was so astounded by her snottiness that having ensured that she was going to bring a replacement, I didn't have the enthusiasm to say something to her about how fucking snotty she was and might want to rethink her customer service but I wish I had. Bitch. I just won't go back. She was the spray the table with anti bac spray whilst you're still sitting there and Hoover under your feet type too. Fucking annoying.

thefuturesnotourstosee Fri 21-Jun-13 21:34:21

The worst I ever had was at a Japanese place in London where I took DD when she was 4. They were unwelcoming, seated us in a horrible side room and were really slow with our service when it was obvious that they were quick with everyone else. Understandably dd was getting a bit upset and started asking loudly when the food would come. Eventually a snooty watiress came over (after half an hour waiting) and told her to be patient. I said if it wasn't there in the next 5 minutes we were leaving. It arrived a minute or so later luke warm. We had a few mouth fulls and dd wanted the toilet so I took her and when I came back they'd cleared our table saying they'd assumed we'd finished as "in Japanese culture no one goes to the toilet before they'd finished a meal". I refused to pay and never went back

Bizarrely the best service we've had with children has been from a Japanese resturant in Birmingham (Woktastic behind the library for anyone who knows Birmingham). Always friendly, always willing to help. They strap DS (10 months) into high chair for me and bring little bits they think he'd like to try and also brilliant with DD (7). They do a buffet price so you can pick what you want off conveyer belt and if they don't have something on it they'll do their best to find it for you. Every time I even start tidying up mess produced by DS I get told not to be silly. Nothing but friendliness and kindness towards the children from every member of staff from manager down.

YANBU OP just don't go back. It doesn't sound like they want your custom so take your business elsewhere.

DoJo Fri 21-Jun-13 21:35:17

Why should everywhere be child friendly?

thefuturesnotourstosee Fri 21-Jun-13 21:37:23

Meant to add - there's a restaurant near our house that does not accept anyone under 8. There is actually a sign on the door "No under 8s please". Needless to say we do not frequent the place. At least they're up front about it though.

IwishIwasmoreorganised Fri 21-Jun-13 21:41:34

Leave a crap review on Tripadvisor and never set foot in the place again.

OwlinaTree Fri 21-Jun-13 21:41:36

But they had a children's menu chipping and DoJo. If you don't want people with children in don't have a children's menu.

CloudsAndTrees Fri 21-Jun-13 21:42:16

It's weird that you are talking about revenge.

Revenge for what exactly? The fact that they didn't fall over themselves to welcome you?

You were in a large group. Family friendly does not usually mean groups of ten friendly. However well behaved the children were, they will have had an impact.

Why do you think the manager followed people who were already leaving to tell them that other customers were put off by them when you were still inside? Why wouldn't he have just talked to you? That sounds weird too.

But I can well believe other customers were put off by your group, and if you didn't like the food there anyway, you should be able to get over the non event pretty quickly.

ChunkyPickle Fri 21-Jun-13 21:43:02

I wouldn't give them the business even in revenge. In my experience they'll be giving the same rubbish service to everyone, so they won't be around for long.

ICantRememberWhatSheSaid Fri 21-Jun-13 21:50:19

It sounds like the restaurant were rude but, if I had walked into the restaurant,and seen your party I would have walked right out again. blush

I usually avoid places where there are lots of little kids. There is absolutely nothing wrong with taking kids out to cafes and restaurants, and I used to take mine out all the time. It is just that I prefer places with fewer kids much in the same way I prefer places which don't play loud music.

BTW. If I am out at a cafe and a little kid plays up I would NEVER say anything or give disapproving looks. I am not a judgey pants.

DoJo Fri 21-Jun-13 21:52:40

There's a difference between making a small provision for children and actually wanting them there. Also, they may be happy to have older children who would still want a child's portion but not singing toddlers.

ChippingInWiredOnCoffee Fri 21-Jun-13 21:54:40

OwlinaTree - yes, and one highchair. One or two children with their parents for a meal, 7 toddlers with 3 adults - not quite the same.

OwlinaTree Fri 21-Jun-13 22:12:25

I was lolling at mn meeting of 800 singing wheels on the bus.

I don't have children but I would be OK with them in a cafe in the daytime. It's when I've paid an arm and a leg for a meal in the evening that noisy children irk me. At 930 toddlers should be in bed not in a posh restaurant ( unless it's wedding when they should stay up till midnight)

Now I will run and hide...

tearsofrobertsmith Fri 21-Jun-13 22:14:00

Oh yikes, it's only food...it's a cafe, not a high end restaurant in the evening where people are having a special night out- people saying if they had seen your group they 'd have left???? OP - just give them a wide bearth in future, leave a review on trip advisor and go on in your head querying why such establishments get away with such poor service. I've eaten in many countries, nowhere but Britain have I seen tiny diners treated with such contempt.
I do believe that people should be able to eat in peace but a cafe with a children's menu is not somewhere to get precious about.
Op - yanbu.

Lazyjaney Fri 21-Jun-13 23:37:28

"What a shame! They don't seem to realise that folks with little kiddies are good business!"

It depends on how much the folks with kiddies spend vs the customers they definitely will lose.

This may come as a shock but small businesses generally don't welcome losing money as their profits are on a shoestring at the best of times.

SinisterBuggyMonth Fri 21-Jun-13 23:53:42

This reminds me of a few years ago we were looking for a restaurant to take baby twins to for a family meal. Uncle was having a nice chat to the owner when he mentioned that ideally we would be looking to eat in a non smoking restaurant. The owner replied gruffly "then find another restaurant!" before slamming the phone down.

The restaurant folded 6 months later.

tearsofrobertsmith Fri 21-Jun-13 23:57:09

But who are these consistent customers? Folks with little kiddies are pretty lucrative I would think judging by what I must have spent over the years. A quid for squash, 2 to 3 pounds for beans on toast etc.

RoxyFox211 Fri 21-Jun-13 23:59:13

Shushing a singing child?? Unless they were singing really ReAlLy loudly or you were in a posh exclusive adult only type venue i really dont see why they should be shushed at all :s if im in a public place with dd and shes singing, chatting etc i just think at least shes not screaming or throwing a tantrum! which would probably be the outcome if i did try to stop her...particularly when hungry/ bored. I think that that would cause a lot more annoyance to other customers! honestly we are so intolerant of kids, bearing in mind they make up a huge proportion of the population, yet the majority of the world is aimed at adults. Adult sized loo's, sinks, food, etc etc. Dont be too noisey your'll disturb the adults grin hmm bearing in mind you are a large group paying they could be more welcoming. I completely get your point and would have given them short shrift. yanbu

ladymariner Sat 22-Jun-13 00:00:59

Here we go again....

LilacPeony Sat 22-Jun-13 00:03:21

If three people walked out and said they won't be coming back because of the kids then that's enough revenge. You don't need to do anything else.

Just to clarify a few things, might not make sense as am kinda drunk noe, tis my dads birthday and I had a rough day with female mindees exhibitionism getting out of control (not at said cafe, funnily enough)

When the singing happened, it started with one of the little guys singing about the rowboat thing to himself, I took a swig and I think I was so incredulous thst they had given me tap water and a millemetre of miwadi thatwhen my mindees joined in I didnt react fast enough. However, they were never reenacting a wagner opera, they were still prerty quiet.

Yo sushi is just a hipster bragging example, please excuse me gor beimg a pretentious shite. I bring mindees to everything, zombie walks to art galleries, and I'm a stickler for good public behavior. One of the mums eewere with is even stricter than me.

And the creepily irnic thing is that every flagpole in the surrounding area had a placard from one of the groups trying to keep abortion illegal over here. Not kidding, every single flagpole.

Thank god we were long gone begore I had to chase girl mindees naked bike riding arse down the road after her bath, god knows what would have happened.

ICantRememberWhatSheSaid Sat 22-Jun-13 01:21:06

You do sound kinda drunk noe wine grin

You also sound like a lovely nanny

SingingSands Sat 22-Jun-13 01:42:14

Jeez, if I owned a cafe and a party of ten walked in I would be delighted and do what I could to impress them. Ten drinks, ten food orders, I'd take more cash in an hour than the rest of the day put together.

They had a kids menu, they obviously want to cater for families. Best revenge? Spread the word that they are family UNfriendly, it certainly appears to be true.

ThoseArentSpiritFingers Sat 22-Jun-13 01:48:55

Are you in Scotland by any chance? Places seem familiar...

burberryqueen Sat 22-Jun-13 01:52:38

Ireland i would say.....

SacreBlue Sat 22-Jun-13 01:58:07

grin flagpoles and anti abortion - not in NI by any chance?

I've taken my DC out to vair naice places since he was wee and never had any bother. I'd just choose a different place next time and/or have let them know that I wasn't happy with the service.

It is tough in business atm and some people are not the nicest, if they are that bad their footfall will, well, fall. OTOH, 7 toddlers could be a bit daunting for even the nicest folk so a comparison between yo sushi with 2 and the cafe with 7 may not be an equal one.

Hope you find a more suitable place next time.

Mimishimi Sat 22-Jun-13 02:00:42

Go there with a group of friends, only order a couple of drinks between you, and when you see a child walk in and as soon as it makes the slightest sound, start complaining loudly and walk out.

NapaCab Sat 22-Jun-13 02:13:48

You got bad service and bad food so put it down to experience and give the café a wide berth in future. Treat it the same as any other bad dining experience i.e. either speak to the manager at the time if possible or, if not, then give a bad review on any relevant website.

They sound like they had no idea how to handle customers but they could have been like that to you if you were a group of adults too e.g. rolling their eyes at any special menu requests, clearing away plates too soon, mixing up orders and all the other things that crap restaurants do regardless of the presence of children.

theodorakisses Sat 22-Jun-13 09:06:55

Was it eye spy in loud parenting? I would have probably left, my interest in how good Oscar's alphabet sills are is minimal.
I did, however clean a tearoom years ago that had a sign in the window tat said "no prams, no pushchairs, no unrestrained toddlers" and someone put a witty nappy trough the letterbox on a Saturday night which wasn't discovered until Monday morning and I couldn't really argue with the principle...

theodorakisses Sat 22-Jun-13 09:07:17

Shitty not witty fgs

mysticsash Sat 22-Jun-13 09:48:53


Customers left because, because no adult could control the group of annoying children. I would have left as well. Instead of petty revenge why don't you instill some manners and social graces into the children.

I would love to hear the customers that had to leave due to excess noise, or the poor staff version of this event.

Too bad, smelly nappy through the letterbox is a no go because the mindees are toilet trained now.I could encourage girl mindees budding naturism by agreeing with her thst everyone would just love to see her bum.

(Just for the record, I'm not actually planning on going back there, let alone taking revenge. I was just having a rant and entertaining a few outraged customer fantasies.)

And no, I spy was not loud parenting. I'm not a parent and kids kept spying the same things over and over, getting basic colours wrong and giggling about poo.thankfully they did all of this quietly.

I brought a cat into a bar once and was treated with less contempt. And the thirteen giggling teens frlm our retro fashion group on pink Wednesday, we were dealt with very professionally. And the place I brought the twins to after zombie walk, when we were covered from head to toe in fake blood, didnt bat an eye. Methinks my standards for professional service are a tad too high.

theodorakisses Sat 22-Jun-13 15:33:58

You can't say you took a cat into a bar without further details! You sound ace!

Mintyy Sat 22-Jun-13 15:35:24

Oh dear, not again!

I just don't see what is wrong with some eating places being for adults or adults and older children only.

Going out for lunch in a cafe is a treat for me! It is not something I can afford to do every day. I just would NOT enjoy being in a place with a group of noisy toddlers. I really WOULD find somewhere else if I had not ordered yet.

But this is apparently unreasonable?

Floggingmolly Sat 22-Jun-13 16:24:06

They were either singing or pretty quiet, they couldn't possibly have been both, and you should have stopped them before the manager had to step in.
The food being crap is a different issue entirely.

theodorakisses Sat 22-Jun-13 16:34:36

I think a cafe is usually considered a place where you would encounter children. I may not like it but I would leave and consider it my choice rather than be outraged. I do find it tedious when we have an evening planned at a posh resteraunt and friends bring their toddler not because they don't have a childminder and actually have a live in maid but because he needs the life experience and I do object to endless singing and clapping and, no exaggeration, nappy changing on the table.

edwardsmum11 Sat 22-Jun-13 16:37:55

Tbh I'd never give them my custom again and mention them as bad to as many people as possible and on review sites.

theodorakisses Sat 22-Jun-13 16:39:28

What if a group of adults with learning disabilities were in a cafe and being noisy? Would they also be kicked out? What about threads about families who have children who make noises, drool and shriek and have had heartbreaking humiliating experiences? I have quite sensitive ears and do something's think FFs but after being reduced to tears so many times on mn, I try hard to be more tolerant. Loud parents however are another story. Still traumatised from being asked to clap in business class on a long haul flight after tabitha did a particularly smelly shit in her potty in the aisle and the mum actually woke me up!

ShellyBoobs Sat 22-Jun-13 16:40:00

I'd have been out of there like a shot if I'd been one of the other customers.

How on earth you can think everyone should be a happy with a group of 10 - mostly toddlers - invading a cafe, I have no idea.

Being child friendly is different to being a creche.

theodorakisses Sat 22-Jun-13 16:44:40

I can see it isn't a great thing but not sure it's invading. Surely it's just a group. Just as irritating as being stuck in an eaterie next to a hen party or group of arsehole sexist builders, surely? Thinking about a cafe in Forest Hill when I was waiting for an interview and was heckled by a gang of men in high viz jackets for imply walking in.

theodorakisses Sat 22-Jun-13 16:47:05

As many on mn will attest, I am not a tolerant or child orientated person but I am struggling with this one. I think people should be able to take children to a cafe, it isn't a pole dancing club or library, just a cafe.

5Foot5 Sat 22-Jun-13 17:33:26

I think people should be able to take children to a cafe, it isn't a pole dancing club or library, just a cafe.

Well I agree with that and we took DD to restaurants from before she was 2 with no problems. But she was always well behaved (yes I suppose I am a smog!) and, the crucial point her I think, it was one child with one or two adults.

I think there is quite a bit of difference between taking one or two kids somewhere and turning up with seven of them.

zoraqueenofzeep Sat 22-Jun-13 18:51:42

I would walk out if three adults came in with seven young children, especially if those children were singing. Why are you doubting the managers claims that people left because of your group? Just because you were oblivious to the irritation caused to others doesn't mean it didn't happen, it sounds quite likely given the circumstances and their attitude toward you suggests that you were equally oblivious to the childrens behaviour which forced the staff to intervene.

If you want to be treated with respect then you have to have respect for others, be considerate and mindful of how your behaviour and that of the children with you is affecting others.


sameoldIggi Sat 22-Jun-13 19:13:58

Why would the people who supposedly left have added that they would not be back? do they imagine you will go there with 7 children every day? Weird.
They weren't nice to you when you arrived, so the rudeness wasn't based on how your kids behaved.
Had a lovely staff member in Burger King today stop me from picking the food dropped on the floor from my baby's highchair. She then kissed his toes.
Not expecting toe kissing from every cafe, but it was a nice touch!

Solari Sat 22-Jun-13 21:43:21

grin at 'witty nappy' . I was trying to figure out what that meant before I saw the correction - had visions of a clever note or poem written on the nappy.

I'll say it again, the kids weren't being badly behaved. They were sitting nicely, they weren't running around and they were making impressively little mess for a set of toddlers. The singing wasn't even loud enough to drown out the lady who was loud pensionering about her recent medical procedure in grim detail. They only got as far as 'gently down the stream'.

Maybe I should teach them surfing bird for future rude cafe encounters? And Solari, thanks for the tip, aa few sarky jibes written on a nappy could be brilliant. Leave it with me....

Okay, got one, please help me out if you can:

There once was a cafe called *@ams,
Who cringed at the sight of our prams
We were all stunned
When our toddlers they shunned
And also the food was....pure shite.

WentOnABearHunt Sat 22-Jun-13 22:09:35

in a cafe, at lunch time, people with children, and children - who are also people, are just as entitled to be there as other people.

If I am ever out and hear kids making noise, playing up etc I am just thankful its not mine that's doing it. smile Frankly I am sick of getting evil looks form people if my children dare make a sound in a cafe! And bloody hell... singing.... how very dare that child be happy and having a nice time, they should sit and be seen and not heard!! I would rather listen to singing than a child screaming.

Other people are annoying, with their loud conversations, and phones ringing and laughing and sometimes coughing and sneezing too. Bah. If people cant tolerate other people in a public place maybe they should have a sandwich and a coffee at home instead.

rockybalboa Sat 22-Jun-13 22:16:05

Never mind the cafe, I need more info about the cat in the bar..

Viviennemary Sat 22-Jun-13 22:22:46

If it was awful then what is the point in going back. A lot of people go to cafes for a quiet drink and to read and don't want to listen to children singing and playing I-spy. I make a sharp exit when there are noisy children.

Its not that interesting, I was moving house and my dad had gone ahead with my stuff, so all Ihad to take with me was my handbag and tthe cat. Then I missed jy bus, had to wait two hours for the next one so I went to a nearby bar to wait and of course took the mog with me. The waitress gave her some leftover salmon.

mrsfuzzy Sat 22-Jun-13 22:29:23

quite simple do go there again op, forget the'revenge' thing because that's plain daft and remember some people don't like kids full stop let alone toddlers.

ChewingOnLifesGristle Sat 22-Jun-13 22:46:06

There's another side to this for sure.

Three people didn't walk out for no reason.

TraceyTrickster Sun 23-Jun-13 00:04:08

Some places are just not child friendly. When my dd was 6 months old, we were on holiday in UK.
We went to a Bella Pasta with friends, DD started to whine, DH got up to put her in her buggy and take her for a walk.
4 older drunk women (with their 20 something daughters) yelled at me for ruining their evening and told me to 'fuck off and don't bring your kid out until she is grown up'. They were obnoxious. The manager said nothing, but just watched. However the grown up daughters apologised for their loud obnoxious drunk mothers.
After that I could not face eating out...so we took takeaways to our hotel room.

Sadly I do find many places in UK- especially London- hate small children, and regard you as a scourge. Still we now pump far less into UK economy that we ever did, with that being one of several unwelcome encounters (no breastfeeding in here type things)

SpecialAgentTattooedQueen Sun 23-Jun-13 08:36:19


They were rude but seriously? Revenge? Isn't never going back and complaining to people enough 'revenge?'

Grow up FFS.

xylem8 Sun 23-Jun-13 09:30:39

There is a huge difference between an adult taking 1 or 2 kids into a café and a group of 7 toddlers, playing games, singing, making poo jokes and hell of a food mess under the table.They didn't like you, you didnt like them.Get over it and move on!

arabesque Sun 23-Jun-13 11:39:02

Sorry, but if several people walked out while you were there then your group must have been making an unreasonable level of noise.So on that count YABU.

The food being crap and refusing to substitute mash for chips without charging is a separate issue and I would find that very annoying.

ICantRememberWhatSheSaid Sun 23-Jun-13 11:49:23

The cafe were rude but I find it hard to believe that the toddlers were not singing loudly. I didn't think toddlers were capable of. 'quiet' singing. confused

Chandon Sun 23-Jun-13 13:07:32

If 7 toddlers walked into a caf where I was having lunch I would think "oh sugar!" And instead of ordering coffee I'd leave! Bound to get noisy and turn any place into a playgroup area, also tots with their "thimble of squash" are hardly great customers, are they?

notso Sun 23-Jun-13 13:29:00

I would have left on reading the shite childrens menu I think.

Emilythornesbff Sun 23-Jun-13 15:39:29

Just don't go back. Is it a chain? I missed that if you've already answered. I'd do as someone else suggested and e mail head office if it is.

I feel increasingly frustrated at the segregation of children in our country. It seems parents or carers are often expected to consider only going to "child friendly" eateries. Places where the food might be crap, the decor unpleasant and everyone there has a few toddlers in tow.
Children are just people. The idea that they should only be able to be seen in designated places is a bit ridiculous (ok, i'll draw the line at nightclubs and places where everyone's pissed or stoned).
So, some people don't like being in a cafe where there are children. Ffs. Get over yourselves. Or just hang out in strip clubs.
What if i don't want to eat my lunch in the same restaurant as a bunch of unattractive people or ppl with the "wrong" accent?

So. I have no vengeful ideas (maybe watch reruns of "Revenge" for tips) but i hear you. Very annoying.

Cornishpasty2 Sun 23-Jun-13 15:44:08

Was in a pub a few weeks ago at 8.30pm, a large party of diners were letting two kids roll round the floor - I was hughely irritated by this, but a cafe?? With a children's menu? They should maybe stop doing children's menus and put a sign on the door saying adults only, then people will assume it's an x-rated cafe, lol.

Emilythornesbff Sun 23-Jun-13 15:45:20

You know who makes mess and noise?
The group of adults with severe learning disabilities that my friend looks after.
Should they not be able to go out like the rest of us? Or just to designated areas so no one has their prissy little self important afternoon coffee spoiled by their presence.n

ArtemisatBrauron Sun 23-Jun-13 15:57:39

Sorry but if I was in a cafe and a massive group of toddlers and their mums/nannies came in and they all started singing etc I'd have the rage. I don't go to a cafe and expect it to turn into a daycare centre.

Floggingmolly Sun 23-Jun-13 16:13:03

You think a children's menu would have made kids rolling on the floor acceptable, Cornishpasty? A children's menu means just that ;
they provide child size portions (and possibly make high chairs available), it doesn't make a cafe the equivalent of a soft play centre.

Emilythornesbff Sun 23-Jun-13 16:52:49

If you don't want to encounter children.
Stay at home.

ICantRememberWhatSheSaid Sun 23-Jun-13 17:01:18

Our town has lots of cafes. One is deliberately aimed at parents with little kids. Several are often full of parents with little kids - they have space for prams and kids meals. There are also a couple which don't have room for prams and don't offer kids meals. There is something for everyone smile

I don't dissaprove of people going out with their kids. I used to take mine out all the time but now I avoid the cafes with kids in. I don't tut or give snarky looks but I prefer not to be disturbed by little kids. I also don't wont to be disturbed by Muzak or groups of drunk people.

ArtemisatBrauron Sun 23-Jun-13 17:50:09

Emilythorne don't be so ridiculous. If you don't want people to get annoyed/complain about your bratty, annoying kids then stay at home with them or teach them to behave themselves.

I like children - I actually work with them. But there is no excuse for parents foisting their badly behaved children on others rather than removing them or bringing them up properly.

Emilythornesbff Sun 23-Jun-13 21:22:08

artemis how rude.
It's really not called for to make abusive remarks about my children, whom you have never met and I did not mention.

I stand by my point that children have as much right to be in a cafe as adults.

Mintyy Sun 23-Jun-13 21:32:19


ArtemisatBrauron Sun 23-Jun-13 21:46:27

I was not making abusive remarks about your children whom it is patently obvious I have never met and indeed I was not assuming you even have children in RL.
I was making a rhetorical point.
I could just as easily say, emily how rude, how dare you demand that I stay at home constantly simply because I do not want to be subjected to badly behaved children.

I am sure your children are lovely. And I agree that in principle, children have as much right to be in a cafe as adults. They do not have the right to ruin that experience for other people though. The right comes with the responsibility to behave - even if the responsibility is de facto exercised by the parent on behalf of the child if the child is too young to reason for itself.

Uh, I may have already said this but only three of the seven kids were involved in the singing incident. The other four were having their food divvied up by the mums. The small toddler started it but he's a mumbler, he was pretty low on the decibel scale. Then my two joined in while I was WTF-ing about the juice. After the waitress jumped in there was no further singing, just small toddler crying far louder than he had been singing.

For more speculative revenge that I would never actually take, maybe I could round up a cabal of K-pop fans for a meet in said cafe. A few blasts of Gangam Style would make Row your boat seem a lot less annoying.

Emilythornesbff Sun 23-Jun-13 21:57:02

But I didn't say that ppl should stay at home to avoid badly behaved children.
I glibly pointed out that it would be a way of avoiding children because of some remarks which suggest that children are a nuisance by their very presence.
Good or bad behaviour is a separate (and subjective) issue.

And my remarks we not directed specifically to you, whereas you referred to my children in your post.

scottishmummy Sun 23-Jun-13 22:07:13

you're very petty,if I paid your wages I'd want a well mannered nanny not petty nanny
no business needs to entertain or gush about your mindees,nor should you expect it
the singing was probably a cacophony of noise,with adults presuming it beautiful

RazzleDazzleEm Sun 23-Jun-13 22:12:00

what's badly behaved though?

The comments I see on MN are about nothing, just highly entitled easily irked people wanting all Dc to be locked away so their ultra precious time is what they call teacupful.

Another poster on another thread said DC are just easy bloody pickings. They are.

they do have to come out sometime you know to know what its like in public and how to behave.

i would rather have DD banging a spoon in a caff' and be told no by me than taking her somewhere rather more upmarket and going through the rigours.

RazzleDazzleEm Sun 23-Jun-13 22:13:24

what they call peaceful blush

Emilythornesbff Sun 23-Jun-13 22:15:21

razzle agree.

snooter Sun 23-Jun-13 22:21:05

There is a difference between being not particularly child friendly & actively child unfriendly. I'd go back just once, to buy a cheap snack & try hard to leave a smelly nappy somewhere obvious.

scottishmummy Sun 23-Jun-13 22:26:24

I hope this is hyperbole,and no one would enact such pettiness
else I'd hope the cafe owner returns your soiled nappy to your handbag
it all smacks of entitlement and everyone has to love the children singing

ArtemisatBrauron Sun 23-Jun-13 22:37:11

emily I really, really wasn't directing my comments specifically at your children - I didn't even know you HAD children. For all I knew, you were a teacher, a nanny or someone with beloved nieces/nephews weighing in. It was a (badly worded, obviously) piece of rhetoric.

I would never presume to know what someone's RL children are on one post online, esp. one which didn't describe their behaviour.

I agree that badly behaved is subjective, and I am (because I work with kids) probably more tolerant than many people who glare at a dropped spoon/crying newborn. However, I really do think that sometimes, even oftentimes, parents of very noisy children just don't hear the noise/crying etc anymore as they are so used to it - I have been in lots of situations where a child is screaming/running about like a wild thing/climbing on stairs in a cafe obstructing the waiters and the parents have looked on indulgently/not seemed to notice at all. Not ok. Sorry if you disagree.

Scottishmummy, it is the most outlandish hyperbole. In real life the most I'll likely do is advise fellow mums/nannies in the area that the cafe provides sub-par service.

What irks me about this is that if all the kids had been singing, if they'd been running around getting under the waitresses feet, if they'd been throwing food the treatment would have been more justified and I'd have been failing as a nanny to look after them properly. They did none of these things, the cafe staff were anticipating them and attempting to make us leave before we were ready, which is discrimination, pure and simple. Its like the cafe owner that told my epileptic friend to go have her seizure in the bathroom when she clearly couldn't move. In thisday and age, its unnaccepptable.

Now, enough of this serious business, more revenge plots!

I read about a guy that served his resignation letter as icing on a cake. I could bake a batch ofcup cakes, each iced with a complaint about the service. It would be deliciously bizarre.

scottishmummy Sun 23-Jun-13 22:55:27

if unhappy take custom elsewhere.money has more impact than indignant ire

pennefab Sun 23-Jun-13 23:59:05

Message with your feet (ie don't return). I was recently at outing with 6 children (ages 8-11) and 8 parents. Mortified by children's behavior. Surprised (pleasantly) by indulgence of owner/staff (it was an off-time, thankfully). I will recommend the venue wholeheartedly b/c of their accommodation of unruly children.

Speak with the feet - pro or con.

Emilythornesbff Mon 24-Jun-13 04:58:15

Ok atremis. I see that you didn't mean to refer to my children.
I think it's a shame that my assertion that children should not be segregated To designated crappy eateries, and not welcomed in public, leads anyone to believe that I am suggesting everyone should be happy to be surrounded by "badly behaved" marauding toddlers.

Littleballofhate Mon 24-Jun-13 05:14:21

Ah, to be in Italy again..it seemed that our dc were not only welcomed at any place we stopped for a meal, but often scooped up and taken off to be fed bits of yummy food.

MintyChops Mon 24-Jun-13 05:46:09

Oh! I think I may have guessed the cafe from your poem..... Is it on the Northside? Fairview?

Right on the nose MC. Excellent sluething.

Lazyjaney Mon 24-Jun-13 07:39:36

They did none of these things, the cafe staff were anticipating them and attempting to make us leave before we were ready, which is discrimination, pure and simple

They are a private business, not a childcare centre.

And despite your protestations, I suspect most people reading this are looking at "7 toddlers singing quietly" and "3 people walking out" and, applying their own experience, strongly suspect you are under-egging their disruptiveness.

The Cafe did nothing wrong, you and they just disagree as to how delightful a set of customers you were.

MintyChops Mon 24-Jun-13 08:43:58

Ha! Am going to change my name to Sherlock...... The food there is shite, shame they were so rude and wanky to you.

arabesque Mon 24-Jun-13 11:49:24

I will recommend the venue wholeheartedly b/c of their accommodation of unruly children. Quote

But others would avoid the venue like the plague for the same reason. It can be very hard for restaurant managers to make the right call. Whatever they do they're going to be criticised by one group or the other.

arabesque Mon 24-Jun-13 12:09:14

OP Is this cafe in Dublin?

Irish people aren't great at complaining or showing their annoyance in restaurants, so if three people walked out that would be quite significant.

Emilythornesbff Mon 24-Jun-13 13:46:54

littleball good point. I'm in turkey ATM and we're constantly "mugged" for cuddles and squeezes with the DCs.

LucilleBluth Mon 24-Jun-13 14:05:29

If you would walk out of a cafe because people came in with toddlers then you are a complete and utter miserable bastard, miserable, miserable miserable twat smile

Mintyy Mon 24-Jun-13 14:54:35

Clearly that is utter nonsense Lucille smile

ladymariner Mon 24-Jun-13 16:03:47

lucille are your arguments always so well reasoned and thought out......hmm

anklebitersmum Mon 24-Jun-13 16:25:27

I have to laugh at the 'well I'd walk out if a group like that walked in' brigade.

Quite frankly, po-faced customers leaving because my friend and I had walked in with our children (5 for me, 3 for her) would probably do us a favour as regards seating them all. That's right folks, 8 children and just 2 adults shock hmm

Revenge by patronage is a bit odd though. Quite frankly if I experience dreadful service, shoddy waitressing and inedible food then I make my complaint in fountain pen writing to the most senior person associated with the establishment I can find, tell at least ten people how dreadful the place is and don't go back. Ever.

Lovecat Mon 24-Jun-13 16:40:38

I'm with Lucille. I'm often in cafes without DD and I really can't see why people posting on MN (who either have children, work with children or at least don't object to the vast majority of the other posters posting about their children) hate children so much (and automatically expect them to be badly behaved) that they'd walk out.

If you do have children, walker-outers, you must have very low standards of behaviour with your own 'brats' (to quote an earlier poster) if the mere sight of children walking in is enough to send you fleeing into the night. There are plenty of bars that do coffee these days if you really can't take the possibility of encountering preschoolers...

Lovecat Mon 24-Jun-13 16:41:36

aargh. Night = street. No idea where night came from!

ICantRememberWhatSheSaid Mon 24-Jun-13 17:01:17

Wow! Charming post hmm . I prefer to avoid places with little kids, if I walked into a cafe and there were loads of little kids I would walk out.
I don't understand how this makes my DCs brats . What an insulting and ridiculous thing to say.

We have lots of cafes in our town and I choose to go to the ones where there are fewer little kids. It doesn't mean I dissaprove of people who go into cafes with little kids or that I dislike little kids. It simply means I like a nice quiet and relaxing atmosphere. I don't like loud music in cafes either. So what!

LilacPeony Mon 24-Jun-13 18:26:05

I can't get my head round three different people leaving and saying they were not coming back just because some quiet, well behaved toddlers had come in. It doesn't seem believable. Isn't it more likely to have been the singing and the "small toddler crying far louder than he had been singing" that the OP mentioned that they had had enough of? I'm thinking maybe the toddlers were making an awful racket over some time so that people couldn't hear themselves think.

ophelia275 Mon 24-Jun-13 18:47:27

Leave a bad review on Yelp/Qype/All in London (everything that lets you review them)?

Moistenedbint1 Mon 24-Jun-13 19:35:25

^you know who makes mess and noise?
The group of adults with severe learning disabilities that my friend looks after. Should they not be able to go out like the rest of us? Or just to designated areas so no one has their prissy little self important afternoon coffee spoiled by their presence.^

Hear hear! Precious dicks.

Cannot believe anyone needs to ask why an establishment should cater to children ... Seems where children are concerned, being exclusionary is ok. Lovely, inclusive multicultural Britain.. Passionate about "diversity".

Just not children..

Lovecat Mon 24-Jun-13 19:39:23

I was quoting ArtemisAtBrauron when I said 'brats' and I made it very plain I was quoting, Icantremember, so hmm right back at you.

I just think that if you see little children coming and walk out without even waiting to see how they behave then it's a bit sad. You assume they'll be noisy and not allow you to relax. They've as much right to be there as you have.

rainrainandmorerain Mon 24-Jun-13 20:32:09

Seven? Seven. Seven toddlers. Three adults. Hmm.

I have two pre-schoolers. I'm v tolerant of kids in cafes and expect to be tolerated myself. If I was meeting another parent with one or two children, I'd head to one of the nearest cafes without a second thought.

If I was meeting several other parents, with several other pre-schoolers, and realised we were going to be a crowd, with 3 plus buggies, and certainly more than 7 children... I would suggest a soft play meet up, or the specifically child-and-parent cafe in town (no entry without a child), or offer that we meet at my house.

I appreciate this was more of a spur of the moment decision. I think 3 adults and 7 toddlers is pushing it though.

Btw, when I eat out with my kids, I say to the staff upfront, 'I know they will make a bit of a mess, even if they are trying to eat nicely - but if you give me your dustpan and brush and a bit of kitchen roll, I will deal with the worst before I go."

sometimes they tell me not to worry about it, but appreciate the offer - sometimes they are happy for me to have a quick sweep under the table and take the worst off the top. It takes so little time, but makes such a difference. I've seen some mums with toddlers walk out and leave an appalling mess behind them which is all the worse if staff can't swoop down instantly and it all gets trodden and mushed up around the floor. (and btw, if you do offer to clear up a bit, you might hear what the staff think of those parents' behaviour).

If it is a shared social space, I think you have to have some consideration for other users if you want to be treated with consideration yourself.

SugarMouse1 Mon 24-Jun-13 20:46:24

At the end of the day its up to the café who they want in- its their livelihood!

Why couldn't you have found a more suitable place to eat? A soft play café? Harvester? Nando's? Carluccio's? A supermarket café?

You would probably be the first person to complain if a group of loud footie fans came in while you were there! How is that any different?

rainrainandmorerain Mon 24-Jun-13 20:56:44

Also - if I was having a work meeting with one or two colleagues, I might well suggest we meet at a cafe. Maybe up to 5 of us, at the very most. I think that's the max you can comfortably accommodate around a cafe table without crowding other people out/having to rearrange furniture/just dominating the space.

More than five and I just don't think a cafe is appropriate for a work meeting. It's not just about children in public spaces.

Moistenedbint1 Mon 24-Jun-13 21:07:43

Hey good marketing opportunity here - a commercial establishment which serves food and osctracizes self-entiltled child intolerant types.

ICantRememberWhatSheSaid Mon 24-Jun-13 21:45:39

I agree that parents with little kids have every right to go to a cafe, especially ones that offers kids meals etc but I have every right to AVOID the little kids as long as I don't say anything or give anyone 'the evils'. I am always sweetness personified as I quietly back out of kid filled cafes. It is my choice. I dont dissaprove and I don't judge I just choose to go somewhere else.

Incidentally, I don't know why some posters assume that people who don't want to go to cafes with lots of little kids in would react negatively to groups of customers with learning difficulties. confused I would always do everything I could to make anyone with learning difficulties feel comfortable and welcome wherever I was. It is very unkind to make a connection between people trying to avoid groups of little kids and people discriminating against people with certain types of disabilities. sad

TBH I think it's a bit pathetic to make that type of argument.

ICantRememberWhatSheSaid Mon 24-Jun-13 21:55:03

Perhaps you could clarify whether you think us 'walker-outers' have very low standards of behaviour with our own DCs or not.

A simple Yes or No would help me understand your post because it reads that you think we do and that you are referring to my DC as brats.

rainrainandmorerain Mon 24-Jun-13 23:09:41

Comparisons between adults with disabilities and children are pretty insensitive and out of order.

And there's a huge difference between a child with learning disabilities/autism being out and about in a public space, and some entitled parents or carers thinking that a cafe is a suitable space for a large number of 2-4 year olds.

SugarMouse1 Tue 25-Jun-13 00:45:31

If you are serious about revenge then you are very childish indeed, these people were only trying to make a living.

Kytti Tue 25-Jun-13 01:36:57

rant on tripadvisor. smile YANBU

Kytti Tue 25-Jun-13 01:40:25

rainrainandmorerain I often go out with groups of up to ten children, as I myself have four and my friends have two or three each too. Having said that, we do try to do kid-friendly stuff, and I try to avoid cafes like the plague. Esp little ones. smile Still think they were horrid to OP though.

McGeeDiNozzo Tue 25-Jun-13 04:42:54

Pretty difficult to find a good place for that many kids that isn't a major chain. You need to find somewhere with a) PLENTY of space b) stuff to do for the kids and c) clear evidence that other kids use the place... I know of one such outlet that's a family-owned place, but that's probably the exception rather than the rule. You mention Yo Sushi, but they're a well-established chain.

I'm not saying 'avoid small businesses', but I do think you should probably have left when the high-chair shenanigans started to get out of hand.

Emilythornesbff Tue 25-Jun-13 06:40:57

Unless one is paying for exclusive use of a venue than a work meeting delegate has no more "right" to be in a cafe than a three year old.
My money (and by proxy, my children's money) is as good as anyone else's.
The idea that children should only be able to frequent fast food chains and soft play venues and should be frowned upon or excluded from social settings is discriminatory and really quite draconian.

And no. Proprietors do not get to "choose" who uses their establishments.
That went out with the abolishing of apartheid.
By all means, if you don't want to stay in a place that is occupied with individuals othen retain age then that is your choice. But I think it's erroneous to claim this is a fair approach that should be held up by cafe owners being given the right to make perfectly law abiding people to feel unwelcome.

SpecialAgentTattooedQueen Tue 25-Jun-13 06:44:57

... Did you seriously just compare Arpatheid to cafes that aren't child friendly?!?! shock

Emilythornesbff Tue 25-Jun-13 06:50:08

If you have trouble understanding my point (which is that ppl shouldn't be discriminated against because of their age) then have an insightful friend explain it.

SpecialAgentTattooedQueen Tue 25-Jun-13 06:52:55

No I got your point, I just can't believe that was your chosen casual example.

But since you are being quite snidey, I think I will just disengage with you.

McGeeDiNozzo Tue 25-Jun-13 06:55:03

'And no. Proprietors do not get to "choose" who uses their establishments.
That went out with the abolishing of apartheid.'

This isn't quite Godwin's Law but it's getting there, isn't it?

EliotNess Tue 25-Jun-13 06:58:25

I hate kids in restaurants. If I go I hiss at the waiter "DON'T SIT ME NEAR THE KIDS"

I hate kids in cafes. Especially when the mum is so proud and expects you to adore them. No thanks. I like my own kids not yours.

Emilythornesbff Tue 25-Jun-13 06:58:33

Discrimination is discrimination.
There's a difference between being child friendly (offering crayons and bottle warmers or whatever) and making everyone feel welcome.(or making particular ppl feel unwelcome)

The belief that ppl should limit the number of children in an establishment is no different (ie, the same) than expecting to limit the number of elderly ppl, ppl in suits, ppl from a different class.

It is possible to compare principles without extrapolating all further details from one example.

EliotNess Tue 25-Jun-13 06:58:55

Mind you. Complaining about the menu once you are seated..

Lazyjaney Tue 25-Jun-13 06:59:42

"I can't get my head round three different people leaving and saying they were not coming back just because some quiet, well behaved toddlers had come in"

How about getting your head around "NOT quiet, well behaved toddlers"

See? Easy now.....

McGeeDiNozzo Tue 25-Jun-13 07:02:29

'I hate kids in restaurants. If I go I hiss at the waiter "DON'T SIT ME NEAR THE KIDS"

I hate kids in cafes. Especially when the mum is so proud and expects you to adore them. No thanks. I like my own kids not yours.'


EliotNess Tue 25-Jun-13 07:03:08

Lol. You just grow out of toddlers. I've done ma time ;)

EliotNess Tue 25-Jun-13 07:03:35

This is why adult only hotels exist. People don't all find children endearing.

froubylou Tue 25-Jun-13 07:10:23

I think any business can choose which customers it decides it wants to encourage, and those that it doesn't.

But those that discourage children and families are missing a valuable part of the economy.

We eat out at various places around our town. With DD who is almost 9 and have done since she was a baby. We have been made welcome in most places apart from one 'high end' pub/reasturaunt that refused to serve us food inside as we had D/D with us, then aged 6 I think. The meal came to over £70, they took our order then said they would 'set us up' outside as we had D/D. I said we would prefer to eat inside, they said no can do. We left. D/D at this point was sat colouring in, hadn't made a fuss or offended anyone and was higly unlikely to.

Never been back, even though the food is raved about and we have times when we are child free.

If you look to the continent you see huge family groups sat outside or inside, with well behaved children. The grown ups don't get pissed up to the point they end up passing out after throwing up in the street, the children don't run riot and annoy other diners, the staff are happy to serve them and used to having large family groups out eating late at night.

I think most pubs in the UK insist that kids have gone by 8/9pm? And are only welcome if eating etc etc.

Soft play centres and 'family' themed pubs with a soft play area are my idea of hell to be honest. Avoid them like the plague because they are full of badly behaved children who have no idea how to eat or act in public places. Unless we teach our children the right way to behave in different places then children and families will be made less than welcome in some places.

In our local pub the landlady encourages and welcomes families. There is a large outdoor play area, a small indoor area where colouring books etc are available and a pretty decent kids menu. But even she pulls her hair out sometimes at how some families behave. Mum/dad getting pissed in the corner whilst 2 or 3 kids aged from 2 to 9 run riot around the pub. And its these sorts of families that makes it difficult for the rest of us with well behaved kids to be able to go out and enjoy ourselves in different places without people pulling up their judgey pants.

So although we can blame cafe owners or business owners for not being 'child friendly' we maybe need to look at other parents for not having 'public friendly' kids? Socialising with your children from a young age should be as educational to your kids as learning to count or speak or identify colour. It's part of giving your children the tools to 'fit in' with the rest of society.

Do I think it is appropriate to have 7 toddlers singing in a cafe? I don't to be honest. Think it would be very annoying for both customers and staff. If they had spent the visit sat colouring in quietly or looking at books or playing with quiet toys then fair do's. But not singing.

Its a chicken and egg thing. We need to teach our kids to behave in public but first we need to take them there to do it. And for me 'child friendly/soft play centre's' are the worst place in the world to teach our children manners and respect and consideration. Fine for letting off steam but not for learning 'how to be' in public.

EliotNess Tue 25-Jun-13 07:11:51

They weren't all singing. She's said that three times.

And it's "sitting" not "sat "

pinkballetflats Tue 25-Jun-13 09:41:36

Just dont bother going back. Word of month is a powerful marketing tool: if they're that crap people will notice. No point wasting your time on anything else....food was crap anyway, why bother wasting your money on going back?

SugarMouse1 Tue 25-Jun-13 12:30:02

I cannot believe Emilythorne's

So it's discrimination for a nightclub to refuse entry to shabbily dressed people in tracksuits and trainers?

Or large groups of young men?

Or establishments to refuse to serve football fans?

Homeless people with offensive body odour?

A group of Neo-Nazi's?

Pagwatch Tue 25-Jun-13 12:35:28

grin @ hissing 'don't sit me near the kids'

I moved once when a woman sat near me with a toddler. She had a go a me. I had moved to be nearer the light because I was trying to read my paper but had forgotten my glasses. It was quite funny.

SpecialAgentTattooedQueen Tue 25-Jun-13 13:03:46

Okay kinda off topic but seriously: Does anyone truly believe three toddlers are capable of singing quietly in a cafe while being well behaved with the four other toddlers?

>Looks at children, realised I have failed as a mother<

sameoldIggi Tue 25-Jun-13 13:07:11

Sugarmouse, none of your examples seem to involve protected characteristics under the equality act though.

mignonette Tue 25-Jun-13 13:14:30

Might be a good idea to check the menu before you enter? A lot of it was not necessarily your fault but complaining about lack of vegetarian options/kids foods when you didn't check the menu is not theirs. It costs a lot of money to have a wide menu because all that food has to be held in stock. Not saying I approve but that is the situation.

Parents can underestimate just how annoying our children can be to others. We become inured to it to a certain extent. Parents do not teach their children appropriate behaviour whilst eating out in so many cases. Many people find the every day noisy chaos of piles of children and parents pretty annoying. Just the amount of shuffling about, organising and re-organising of tables, chairs and food orders does create a bit of a kerfuffle that may not be evident to you because you are busy dealing with it.

Mintyy Tue 25-Jun-13 13:22:03

"Parents can underestimate just how annoying our children can be to others." Never a truer word spoken.

Am properly laughing at EmilyT and her children who have all these rights!

SpecialAgentTattooedQueen Tue 25-Jun-13 13:25:04

Careful how you word that Mintyy, remember her children are suffering for equality just like Apartheid all over again. Not something to joke about. sad

CuChullain Tue 25-Jun-13 14:06:41

A bit late to this thread, have only read the OP.

"but got a little high spirited in each other's company, started singing."

Sorry but your idea of a little high spirited behaviour could well be another persons idea of hell.

Kids are not impeccably behaved all the time, they can be illogical and very demanding and a little bit of consideration on the part of others can go a long way in helping parents to deal with difficult situations. I also think some parents need to realise that perhaps not every environment is suitable for their children, I like to think that adults are entitled to a bit of peace and quiet in places that are supposed to be ‘relaxing’ areas for adults to go to. Additionally, just because there is a kids menu it does not mean that any children being a 'little high spirited' would be tolerated by patrons or staff alike. Whether you like it not children, especially in large groups (and yours was a large group) are often noisy and on occasion very annoying if not properly supervised. I have lost count of the times I have seen the militant ‘we have just as much right to be here’ parents barrel into a previously calm restaurant or cafe like a wrecking ball destroying any ambience as ‘Archie’, ‘Lulu’ , ‘Oscar’ and friends fight, run, scream and squabble over toys rendering any notion of a chilled out lunch/coffee impossible. I also think some parents seem to think that the staff in some cafes are stand in baby sitters while the parents have a good catch up over a coffee and a sticky bun. It’s a tough one. I think there needs to be a bit of compromise on both sides of the fence on this issue but on this occasion I think you are being unreasonable in your expectations and talk of 'revenge' makes you look a bit silly to be honest.

LucySnoweShouldRelax Tue 25-Jun-13 14:32:06

More of a response to the thread as a whole: Some people NEVER learn to behave in cafés/bars, end-of-story. The closest I have ever come to leaving a cafe was when two drama students were practicing two lines of dialogue over and over and over and over again, at full voice. I'm too cheap/greedy to leave my food though.

I work in a fairly well-heeled pub, yet I have told fully grown adults to stop playing tinny music on their laptop and to stop blowing full-blast and out of tune, into a recorder, and that's without even starting on the general rudeness/drunkenness. We have no children's menu (except on Sundays), no changing facilities, two high chairs, but still get quite a few babies in the afternoon shifts. Occasionally they're squally, but I think because our place doesn't appear child-friendly, parents are more aware of their children's behaviour? Long story short, the under-tens are often our most well-behaved customers...

ICantRememberWhatSheSaid Tue 25-Jun-13 14:46:33

My worst ever cafe encounter was having to listen to a very loud man telling his friend ALL his medical problems. Waaaaaay to much information. shock. I would have left but we had just started eating. sad

SugarMouse1 Tue 25-Jun-13 17:23:21


Which characteristics are protected under the equality act then?

Surely gender must be? (Think young men being refused entry to clubs a lot more often than women).

Or political orientation? (Think a group of BNP members being refused entry somewhere).

Owllady Tue 25-Jun-13 17:28:01

I like hearing children singing smile

cantspel Tue 25-Jun-13 17:38:41

Why is anyone going on about refused entry?

The cafe let them in and served them. The op just didn't like being pulled up about the behavior of the kids and how it affected this mans business that day.

thebody Tue 25-Jun-13 17:48:49

The trouble is when you have small kids you are in the 'kid zone' so you get used to a certain noise level and mess.

As your kids get older you get less tolerant of it all and when they are teens and older you would rather rip your own arm off than see 7 toddlers descend on you to eat at the table next to you.

sameoldIggi Tue 25-Jun-13 18:59:35

Sugarmouse- protected characteristics are: age; disability; gender reassignment; marriage and civil partnership; pregnancy and maternity; race; religion or belief; sex; sexual orientation.
It's only discrimination if it happens because of the characteristics, so if nightclub turns away a man for being male, that's not ok, but for wearing trainers it could be.
I don't think (licensing laws aside) a cafe could refuse to serve children: but they would be entirely justified to not serve ones who were disrupting others (assuming NT).

expatinscotland Tue 25-Jun-13 19:15:06

Trip Advisor.

Pigsmummy Tue 25-Jun-13 19:27:32

Not everywhere is child friendly, the lack of food choices and sole high chair in the bathroom was a sure sign to go elsewhere surely? Just chalk it up to experience and next time seek a better family friendly place.

Don't put your midees through the misery of going there again please!

rainrainandmorerain Tue 25-Jun-13 19:42:21

froubylou, I enjoyed your sensible post.

SugarMouse1 Tue 25-Jun-13 20:01:47

But clubs regularly refuse to let males in just for being male!

And what about BNP/Neo-Nazi's being refused to be served places? Doesn't that come under 'belief'?

Emilythornesbff Tue 25-Jun-13 20:32:44

No intention of being "snidey"
But I quite obviously wasn't suggesting that it being "child friendly" is synonymous with apartheid; Rather, I just pointed out that proprietors are not allowed to discriminate against certain groups.

I don't expect everyone to to find my children (or any others) endearing but I think that the popular view that children should only be able to go to specific "child oriented" venues or only in small numbers is unfair. Because it is.

Emilythornesbff Tue 25-Jun-13 20:40:32

And rain

Why are parents to be labelled "entitled" just for expecting to eat out with their kids?

sameoldIggi Tue 25-Jun-13 23:08:30

What are these clubs that only want women in them? I have not experienced this.
As to the neo-nazis - do you not think the landlord etc is entitled to not serve someone who could be seen as inciting racial hatred by their presence? (Assuming they are dressed in such a way/have tattoos etc which make their beliefs clear, otherwise how would it be known).

Viviennemary Wed 26-Jun-13 11:59:09

Family friendly shouldn't mean noisy behaviour from children. I have in the last couple of months been out and small children under four and much younger have been perfectly well behaved and no disturbance to anyone. If I go in a cafe and there are noisy children I leave.

vintageclock Wed 26-Jun-13 12:39:13

A proprieter of a restaurant can decide that she or he doesn't want children under a certain age to be there. It mightn't always be good business sense but they're not breaking any law. In the same way that shops often bar large groups of schoolchildren and only allow in two at a time because they don't want gangs of noisy kids annoying other customers.

And Emily, instead of blaming people who get a bit antsy when parents with several toddlers arrive into a restaurant, why not blame the people who have created this negative perception?
Yes, the self entitled type of parents who allow their kids to scream, run around , trip up staff and annoy other customers in restaurants while sitting there beaming happily or completely ignoring the chaos and then wondering why some people seem to 'hate' children and not want to sit near them in cafes.

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