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To get pissed off at children running around in restaurants?

(1000 Posts)
CelticPixie Sun 07-Apr-13 20:29:29

We went out for lunch today and there was a large group sat behind us. It was obviously a family celebration with parents, grandparents, kids etc. A little boy from the group who must have been around two was running around our part of the restaurant screaming and shouting and getting under the feet of waiting staff carrying hot food etc. He also kept approaching people at other tables and kept asking them if they were having their dinner and what they were having. At no point did his parents do anything to stop him and they just kept on smiling at him, but it was obvious that he was getting on everyone else's nerves.

Its a family friendly place and there were lots of other small children in there but he was the only one running about and being a nuisance. I will NOT allow my DDs to run about and disrupt others people's meals and it pisses me off that other people have so little consideration for anyone but themselves. If mine wants to go to the loo one of us takes them, if they are bored we take them out to the play area. It's really not hard is it?

dandelionmoon Sun 07-Apr-13 20:31:59

YANBU but I do think it's a shame he was getting on people's nerves - it should have been the parents.

My parents let us behave in a similar fashion and it's horrible for the child as well; I have a lot of childhood memories that make me blush looking back.

VelvetSpoon Sun 07-Apr-13 20:32:23


If people want their kids to run around everywhere take them to a soft play centre or McDonalds, not to a proper restaurant.

As a child I was always expected to sit quietly in an 'adult' space like a restaurant, and did so. My own DC were terrible at sitting still when they were little, hence we avoided meals out until they were able to behave sensibly.

CelticPixie Sun 07-Apr-13 20:37:27

My own brother was a little shit when he was younger so we never ever went anywhere remotely nice. We did got to a place on holiday once, ordered our food and then he kicked off so we upped and left. My mum was horrified at being "shown up in public", but these days it seems no one cares anymore.

MummytoKatie Sun 07-Apr-13 20:44:02

It drives me nuts. Not least because on walking to the loo with dd (just 3) and explaining to her how she must hold my hand the whole time or someone might crash into her who has hot food it then makes it so much harder. Not least because she is at the "why" stage and I can't really reply "because those children have parents who either have no common sense, no manners or don't care if their child gets third degree burns".

HollyBerryBush Sun 07-Apr-13 20:47:22

I'll be shot but people generally know which restaurants are child friendly and those that cater for adults only.

Give me Charlie Chalks (does that still exist?) or the local carvery with ball pit and that's fine.

However, if I were going out for a proper meal - I wouldn't even set foot in a place that had a highchair on view.

There is a time and a place.

He also kept approaching people at other tables and kept asking them if they were having their dinner and what they were having

I don't however have any problem with another human interacting with another human and instigating conversation. How else do you learn social niceties?

fieldfare Sun 07-Apr-13 20:48:25

Yanbu at all! It's something that really irritates me.

BlackeyedSusan Sun 07-Apr-13 20:49:44

but people do care... you said he was the only one doing it... presumably that means all the rest were tolerably well behaved.

ds would have been like this given the chance. which is why we went to the pub with the soft play and had a booster seat with straps.

ENormaSnob Sun 07-Apr-13 20:51:37


Floggingmolly Sun 07-Apr-13 20:52:50

Are you joking, Holly? I don't want someone else's toddler in my face when I'm out for dinner; it's not my job to teach someone else's children social niceties hmm.
That child doesn't sound like he'll learn much from his parents anyway, why should complete strangers pick up the slack?

olivertheoctopus Sun 07-Apr-13 20:53:29

YANBU. I'd be mortified if my 2yo was doing that. He can be a pain in restaurants running around but we either take turns to take him out to run around or distract him with the iPad or ensure that I have a bagful of cars for him to run up and down the table.

BlackeyedSusan Sun 07-Apr-13 20:53:39

to add... h wanted to go to a posh restaurant where food costed £30 a meal and took 3 hours with a 2 year old who it turns out has asd.... and thought I was unreasonable for insisting on said pub with soft play!

mumofweeboys Sun 07-Apr-13 20:54:02

Mine arnt allowed to get out of seats, we take crayons, jigsaws ect to keep them amused. Iv been in restuarants where waiting staff have told parents they have to keep their kids in their seats as its dangerous for them to run about

BlackMaryJanes Sun 07-Apr-13 20:54:46

YANBU I always ensure I give passive-aggressive evils to the parents.

chandellina Sun 07-Apr-13 20:54:46

Yanbu, I try to be so vigilant but dh is very relaxed, hence our 16 month old running around staff and ducking behind the counter at the cafe where we had lunch today, while I dealt with our other child.

Someone must pay attention but I'd probably give the benefit of the doubt that there was a seething parent who was letting her/his partner take the flack!

CloudsAndTrees Sun 07-Apr-13 20:55:09


It is incredibly annoying to be disturbed by other people's children in areas of restaurants that they simply shouldn't be in.

It makes no difference if its a family friendly chain restaurant or if it's somewhere that would never provide a high chair. Manners apply everywhere,

ColdWinterNights Sun 07-Apr-13 20:55:21


I was in a cafe once and was walking to a table with a tray of hot food and drinks when a small child bumped into me as she was running around. Of course thing fell off the tray and nearly hit the girl. Her parents then started shouting at me that I should have been looking where I was going, and I was lucky she was ok or I'd have gotten my block knocked off.

SophiaTheFirst Sun 07-Apr-13 20:57:58

I hate it when other parents let their DC run around in restaurants, it makes mine want to do it too and makes my life harder explaining that they have to stay sat at the table nicely.

Even if we are at a soft play place or somewhere 'kiddie' I still expect them to sit on their bottoms properly, facing the right way, sat up properly. Only if the table is really high will I let them be on their knees so they can reach their food (mean mummy, I know).

You can't let them run about in one cafe and then expect them to understand that in another restaurant they have to sit nicely, they won't understand the difference.

The worst is when you are out with another family, all on the same table, and they let their DC run about, my DC think I am so mean and the parents think I am strict/weird/judging them when I'm saying 'yes, I know XXX's mummy is letting her run about, but that doesn't mean you can, mummy said no'. It seems so unfair to them and it makes me a bit mad!

Earlybird Sun 07-Apr-13 20:59:39

I wonder why the restaurant manager didn't intervene, unless:
- he/she thought no one minded
- it is a family restaurant where that sort of behaviour is tolerated

Ponyo73 Sun 07-Apr-13 20:59:52

Yanbu. It's so bloody annoying and everyone with a bit of sense will agree.The sad thing is there are a lot of ignorant people out there and you just have to ignore them and use them as an example to you re DC. I don' t mean to sound judgemental but don't let them even come into your life and existence.

WhenSheWasBadSheWasHopeful Sun 07-Apr-13 21:02:42

It can be hard to keep a toddler quiet and polite. Last time we took dd out to a restaurant (she's 2) she pointed at every customer in the place and asked shouted "what's that lady called" "what's that man called"

Bit embarrassing and I'm not sure how to stop it happening again. She is not allowed to run round though, I used to be a waitress small children and hot drinks are a bad combination

shock at what happened to coldwinter

CelticPixie Sun 07-Apr-13 21:02:45

ColdWinterNights, that's just it isn't it? The people who let their kids run riot would probably be the first to go apeshit if a waitress spilled scalding hot soup all over their precious little darling.

ChaoticTranquility Sun 07-Apr-13 21:03:06


holidaysarenice Sun 07-Apr-13 21:04:32

Ask the restaurant to ask his parents to sit him down/keep him near.

they will be too afraid of offending you not to.
they can also use the idea that it is dangerous with hot food.

as a waitress years ago at a wedding we asked a child to sit down, hot trays of food. mother kicked off, 'im paying/my child is special' type stuff. Child ran into waitress, (not harmed) tray of soup goes over THE BRIDE! = MASSIVE KICK UP by bride and childs mother.

Waitress = laughing hard.

cupcake78 Sun 07-Apr-13 21:05:18

Yanbu! If children get bored and need to run around then an adult should take them outside to blow off steam otherwise the child sits on a seat and plays/joins in.

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