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AIBU to think that this couple were psycho crazies ???

(73 Posts)
Thruaglassdarkly Tue 28-Jun-11 02:39:39

Ok, we were at a local garden centre yesterday. We went there deliberately because they have a new softplay in with the cafe. The frame takes up to 30 kids (according to the notice) and it is surrounded by perspex, around the edge of which are cafe tables. There are 3 chairs in the entrance of this play area/frame. presumably are which for parents of very young users.
Yesterday, we arrived with our 2 DDs aged 6 and 3. We sat outside of the perspex area next to the door and in full view of the frame. Our kids were the only ones in the play frame for ages. They are good kids and there has never been any complaints about them ever in all the years we've been going to softplays. I have watched them closely over this time and they only ever seem to be the ones getting hit/pushed/chased by others - if at all. When this has occurred, I've had a quiet word with the kid who was hitting/pushing or simply told my kids to stay away from the kid who is hitting/pushing - even at times I've suggested they invite him or her to play with them instead of pushing etc. If my kids are ever out of line whether we are at home or out, then they get warned once and after that we leave. I do NOT tolerate my kids pushing/hitting etc other kids, end of.
So yesterday. my kids had been playing nicely for ages, when another family came into the playplace. I had already told my oldest DD she could not swing on the ropes if another child came in as she's knocked both her sister and a smaller child over in previous weeks by her swinging. Not at all on purpose, but still, accidents can be avoided with a bit of forethought, I always think!

A while later, after this family arrived, this chav guy appears demanding to know if those are my kids in the frame because they are "bullying" his baby. My hackles go right up - my kids are in the shit BIG time if they are doing this and I charge into the perpex area with the express intention of sorting this out with them. But do I get the chance? NO - because Mrs Chav starts laying into me the second I appear through the perspex door. Why am I not watching every move they make? What kind of slack arsed parent am I? My (tiny 13kg) 3 year old who has a dummy to sleep, wears nappies for bed and who regularly poos her pants - in short, she's small and immature for her age - has pushed their 2 year old twice (NOT acceptable at all, I know, and I was so ready to pull DD out of there and tell her what for!). What's more, my sensible 6 year old has asked their 2 year old for a password to go into the ball pit. I roasted her about this later but she said although she asked this question, the password had been whatever the little girl had said and that she'd no way stop her going into the ball pit.

The thing is, they rail at us for 20 minutes or so, telling me NOT to take my kids home, it's my fault for not watching their every move, why should I punish them, when I'm the rubbish mother aren't I etc etc. At this point, we're thinking we have to get our kids and ourselves away from these two crazies, because they were really wigging out. She starts mimicking me - her husband looms in threateningly. I just want to say, stop it you mentalists! I'll sort my kids out and discipline them accordingly for their transgressions, but this is not enough for them. They want to make things personal, to mock, to mimic, to scorn, she's waving her hands about, mimicking my husband and I having a chat over coffee etc in a scary and unhinged manner - in short, the security guard came in the end and I was glad. It was like some crazed nightmare.

End of the day, my kids needed a quiet word and an apology/hug to the little girl in question/ That was all. They have been hit/kicked/pushed a thousand times at these places and I would never dream of launching an unhinged attack on their parents. You just say to the kids, "Oi - be NICE!! End of. You don't even have to involve their parents.
Please note that their 2 yo was non-plussed and not remotely distressed by my renegade DD's behaviour. Still, not the point.

The point was my kids upset another kid. They needed a telling off. I was going to give that. However, rather than allow me to do so, the parents of this other kid, railed at me for 20 minutes. I ended up telling them that if they behaved like that when their kids started school, they'd end up having fights on the playground and that they jolly well needed to calm down alot and behave like adults.

featherbag Tue 28-Jun-11 06:58:57

YADDDNBU, what a pair of psychos, you poor thing!!!

TheOriginalFAB Tue 28-Jun-11 07:03:13

I agree they sounded spirited but a word needs to be had with your older girl about demanding a password. The younger child is not to know she can say anything to get in and that your daughter won't keep her out. It is a type of bullying even if non physical.

EttiKetti Tue 28-Jun-11 07:07:13

Agree with Fab. If very timid 6yo DS was asked for a password in that situation he'd be confused and upset. But what weirdos??!!!!

slovenlydotcom Tue 28-Jun-11 07:08:07

I agree that your 6 year old asking a 2 year old for a password (and presumably blocking her way whilst doing so) is appalling behaviour. As is knocking over people whilst swinging.

If I was the mother of the 2 year old I would have been livid too.

Morloth Tue 28-Jun-11 07:15:04

Could you not see them?

I do think it would be quite intimidating for a 2 year old to be challenged by a much bigger child like that.

From what you have posted it does sound like they have overreacted but it also sounds like you can't really say that because you were not keeping a very close eye on them, and you probably need to do that for the 3yo at least.

TooManyBrownies Tue 28-Jun-11 07:19:38

Really? Asking for a password is APPALLING behaviour? I think biting/pinching/ relentless teasing and nastiness is appalling but not asking for a password which is maybe a little thoughtless but hardly a hanging offence!
Sound like a pair of psychos to me.

Notinmykitchen Tue 28-Jun-11 07:29:45

Yep, definitely a pair of psycho's, sounds like your kids were a little out of order, as all kids are at times, and you would have dealt with it appropriately. I feel sorry for that couples kids if they behave like that on a regular basis!

Ohforfoxsake Tue 28-Jun-11 07:29:53

They are insane. I wouldn't worry about it. I expect your 6 yo was simply playing as she normally would, but in this instance with a much younger child who didn't understand. Now yours knows that.

But asking for a password isn't appalling. Not unless Peppa pig has become a delinquent now.

Thruaglassdarkly Tue 28-Jun-11 07:33:06

Slovenly, my 6 yo was told off for that, but she really meant no harm and is a gentle child. My 3 yo has been playing the password game with her for ages, so I don't think she quite understood how inappropriate it was to play it with a slightly younger child. But livid? Really??? As for knocking people over, she did it once to my youngest and another time to another child and trust me, she was in BIG trouble both times. I have banned her from swinging now and she doesn't do it. She would be devastated if I said she'd been bullying the child because to her, she was playing and she'd never knowingly bully someone as she has a soft heart.

Morloth - they were in plain sight apart from a tiny bit at the back (it was only a small area, but there's a kind of den there. I was literally a few feet away at all time, but wasn't hovering watching their every move, no. Most bigger playplaces this is impossible to do anyway because of the design of the play frames. They were safe in there and as there has never before been issues with other kids (and there were only 4 of them in there), I never dreamed there would be one that day either. We could have been watching closer and I apologised. My point is, they were scary and very intimidating to the point that a security guard came over. I thought the dad was going to land me one. Surely they could have made their point, accepted our apology without behaving that way. My 6 yo later said she thought they had behaved like children. They scared both my kids. There have been so many times when kids have pushed my kids and stuff, I'd never behave like that. At most, I've told another kid to play nicely - but to go and row on parents like that??? No way. If it was really bad and repeated I might go and politely ask parents to have a quiet word, but to conduct myself like that? What example does it set to their own children if they behave like this every time some minor incident occurs?

We removed our kids immediately from there anyway and made it clear to them that they do not evepush other kids or play password games.

Thruaglassdarkly Tue 28-Jun-11 07:34:24

ohfo fox - my kids are obsessed with Peppapig - that's where they get the password game from.

gapants Tue 28-Jun-11 07:40:37

The other couple sound mad and dangerous, soft plays are well known to be a hot bed of datedly children's behaviour, and it sounds like your children were fine. Nothing out of the ordinary with their behaviour. You say your 3-yo is small so maybe your older child thought the 2 yo would be able to play the password game. She is 6, she made a mistake. You will talk to her about it. I cannot see any reason to be "livid" here. Children get excited and act out all the time, it all sounds well within the range of normal behaviour.

I wonder who has these perfect kids who never put a foot wrong?

VivaLeBeaver Tue 28-Jun-11 07:41:12

Parents sound like psychos. Your kids dont sound like they were been any worse than loads of other kids. All kids will at times have squabbles, etc which need sorting out but not in this manner. What sort of example are the parents setting!

I had very similar on holiday last year when my 9yo accidently caught a young boy in the face with a water pistol. They'd all been playing happily spraying each other with water, no malice involved.

DD owned up that it was her straight away which I was proud of her for. Boy's parents went psycho. Accused me of not keeping an eye on her - I was 6ft away on a sun lounger. They were in the pool bar the other side of the pool! DD said sorry as I did. They then started calling DD a nasty little slut and slag - she was 9yo!

It ended up with me been punched. Some people are nutters. Try not to let it upset you.

effingwotnots Tue 28-Jun-11 07:45:03

FGS, it's hardly appalling behaviour, it's just kids playing, going a bit ott maybe. Yes to a 2 year old it might have been a bit intimidating and overbearing and I'd have had words with her, like the op was going to, but YADNBU and I would have been riled to hell and back

Thruaglassdarkly Tue 28-Jun-11 07:46:40

Thanks for all your supportive comments ladiessmile Viva - really??? shock Punched??? For goodness sake! That's awful!!!! Far worse than my story. And they called your 9 yo old a slag/slut??? Unbelievable! What dreadful people!!! So sorry you went through that.

TheOriginalFAB Tue 28-Jun-11 07:46:53

"*my 6 yo was told off for that, but she really meant no harm and is a gentle child"*

The other child isn't to know that!

HSMM Tue 28-Jun-11 07:54:36

I can see why the little one was upset about not being allowed in without a password, but you were going to deal with that and make sure it didn't happen again. The children would have probably been quite happy playing with each other after that.

The other parents sound like they have some anger management issues and are NOT setting a good example to their children. Did they frighten your children? Are they OK? My DD saw me threatened once and had nightmares about it for ages.

Thruaglassdarkly Tue 28-Jun-11 08:04:03

They did frighten them, but we talked about it afterwards, which is when 6 yo said she thought they had behaved like children.
Fab - good point. At the end of the day, the other child didn't look remotely bothered and certainly wasn't distressed in any way.

millie30 Tue 28-Jun-11 08:12:28

The password thing is a bugbear of mine, as I have an almost 3 year old with significant speech delay. A few times older kids have blocked him from doing things and asked for passwords. He is of course unable to say anything coherent to them and gets upset, so to me it does seem like a form of bullying.

That said, it could all have been dealt with by you having a word with your children and the parents should not have behaved the way they did.

tazmin Tue 28-Jun-11 08:21:50

didnt someone complain on here the other day about a mother sitting in the cafe area chatting and drinking coffee while kids ran riothmm

to be frank, you couldnt have been watching them else you would have seen what was going on

and i dont think they could have been chavs, chavs generally cant care less about their kids and these two obviously did, at least they were watching theirs

smile

tulipgrower Tue 28-Jun-11 08:31:28

The other parents sound unhinged, but if you could see your kids, why did you wait until the father spoke to you, instead of dealing with the kids before the situation escalated? (just wondering)

AnnieLobeseder Tue 28-Jun-11 08:36:56

I can't believe other people are defending the psychos! You have acknowledged your children's behaviour wasn't perfect, but you were taking steps to appropriately discipline them. Can't fault you there.

That couple sound completely unhinged. I think I would have gone to the manager after 5 minutes of their abuse.

tulipgrower Tue 28-Jun-11 08:58:14

I'm not defending the 'psychos', but my average sized DS1 (3yrs) has been on the receiving end of some shocking treatment by some of the most adorable, pint sized darlings, while their parents chatted away merrily within sight. (And had my average DS1 retaliated by clobbering a tiny, wee, dummy sucking babe, then there would have been hell to pay.) I guess it's just a timing issue, some parents like to jump in early, some like to let the kids sort it out for themselves and some like to drink coffee. wink

BootyMum Tue 28-Jun-11 09:00:34

I also can't believe others here are defending the other parents?

I mean FGS, OPs child [of 6 yrs old] asked for a password. Sounds fairly playful to me, not threatening or intimidating. And presumably the other parents were with their 2 yr old the entire time. If my 2 yr old had been asked for a password he wouldn't have understood what was being asked and would have probably just barged past. If I had heard i would have made a game of it trying to guess the password. Not a biggie.

The only issue imo would have been if your DD had physically blocked the 2 yrs old path or been physically intimidating them. But it doesn't sound as if that is what happened? Even if I had struck that as a parent I would have had a quiet firm word with the child concerned asking them not to do that. If they had continued I would have then spoken to the parent but would have done so in a pleasant way assuming the parent does not condone their child's behaviour.

These parents do sound as if they had anger management issues and made quite a scary situation for you, your DDs and presumably their own poor child.

YANBU - what did the security guard say/do?

tallulahxhunny Tue 28-Jun-11 09:01:56

wonders why you felt the need to call them chavs??

what is a chav? what makes them a chav? do they know they are chavs? have they got some kind of password that makes them chavs?

what were you sayign or doing while these "chavs" were shouting at you? you make your husband sound like mr bean btw lol, did he not d=say or do anything either?

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