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"Your kids are being annoying" AIBU. What is wrong with some people?

(106 Posts)
TacticalWheelbarrow Wed 03-Jul-13 17:23:18

Yesterday DH and I went to a hospital appointment for myself, we got out of there early and decided to go for dinner. It's been a long time since we have had the chance to eat out because we have been skint and had the kids with us, so we were fairly looking forward to it.

We go to the restaurant and were seated in a booth behind a family with 2 kids ages about 3&6.
We soon realised that this wasn't going to be a quiet meal. I was sitting with my back to the family and the 3yo stood up on their booth bench to peer over at us which we found a bit awkward and irritating because we were trying to eat and have a private conversation. The parents didnt say anything and after a while the 3yo got bored and went away.

The restaurant was a buffet type place and the parents of these kids let them have free range of the place meaning that when us and other customers went up to get food the 2 children were frequently bumbling into people and getting under everyone's feet! I mean surely it is common sense that children running riot and hot plates of food don't mix?

The 3yo was handed a bowl of sweets by the chef at the dessert station that she proceeded to drop all over the floor and walk off. The mum definitely saw this, she got up (to what I thought would be to clean up her kid's mess) but instead just walked passed it and got herself more food. hmm. The 6yo also kept coming and standing right next to our table and just stood staring at us, which again was really annoying.

The final straw was when the 3yo stood up in their booth again and peered over at us, and the proceeded to put her messy, sticky hands in my hair and rub them about! The mum saw the child doing this but just ignored it. So I turned round and said this; "Excuse me, I'm glad you seem to be enjoying your meal but unfortunately I am unable to do the same because of your annoying children. Would you please keep them in control so they don't ruin our meal anymore?"

Well I won't bore you with details but it didnt go down very well and the husband became quite aggressive verbally. They definitely thought I was being unreasonable because after all "they are just kids" confused and I am apparently also rude.

So MN jury, was IBU?

NapaCab Thu 04-Jul-13 00:59:25

It's parents like this that give the rest of us a bad name! 3 and 6 year old children are definitely old enough to be under more control and to sit at their table when told. It's not as if they had a toddler who doesn't understand discipline or baby that was crying.

Stories like this really wind me up because it makes it so much harder for considerate people to eat out with their children when idiots like this let their children run riot.

Theyoniwayisnorthwards Thu 04-Jul-13 00:28:28

The parents were irresponsible assholes. I hope you didn't call the children annoying in front of the kids themselves. That would have been mean and hurtful.

I would not have liked the kids staring at me or rubbing their hands in my hair but I would have found it exasperating not revolting. I have an almost 3 year old and am quite used to getting sticky hands in my hair. I don't think it's all that big a deal.

That said I would never let my children do that if I could help it.

Scuttlebutter Thu 04-Jul-13 00:01:05

I'm childless, and this just confirms why I will never set foot in a Pizza Hut, and generally give a wide and cautious berth to any restaurant that is even vaguely "family friendly". I'm shuddering in sympathetic horror at the hands in the hair.

I waitressed a lot as a teenager, and in my early twenties, and I have nothing but sympathy for staff who have to serve hot food and scalding hot drinks while some parents allow small children to run about unsupervised underfoot. It's desperately unfair to the children, to other customers and potentially lethal. It's also very unfair to the many parents who DO make an effort and have children who are taught to behave appropriately, and above all safely.

FeckOffCup Wed 03-Jul-13 22:14:37

YANBU, the standing on the seat thing would have pissed me off even without the touching of hair. Did the restaurant manager get involved, I'm surprised they didn't get chucked out for letting their kids stand on seats and drop food everywhere.

LilacPeony Wed 03-Jul-13 22:12:29

They sound really annoying. Could the parents see that the child was rubbing her hands in your hair if they were seated in their own booth behind you? (Sorry if you've already covered that, not read the whole thread.)

Tamdin Wed 03-Jul-13 22:05:15


BrianButterfield Wed 03-Jul-13 22:00:03

DS is not a naturally quiet, compliant child but we've taken him to eat out at least once a week since he was born. You don't go at 'starving' time or if it's late, give a snack first. You bring little toys like cars and trains. You find any little thing that is quiet and entertaining (DS likes to play with pennies from my purse) and keep chatting away. At one point today I was feeding him teeny spoonfuls of hot chocolate across the table which took up a lot of time and made him laugh! No 2-year-old really wants to sit still and they don't have to sit like statues, just not be annoying.

MrButtercat Wed 03-Jul-13 21:58:27

If I could make 3 under 15 months behave themselves in restaurants then anybody can.

In short if you haven't trained them you leave,other diners shouldn't suffer.

Boxes of raisins,high chairs,aqua draw and tiny handbag toys alongside taking walks outside whilst holding hands did the trick.

wherearemysocka Wed 03-Jul-13 21:57:14

And yet there are still those who wonder why some people prefer to host child free weddings.

Hassled Wed 03-Jul-13 21:56:57

Kat - your answer is just that you don't go to restaurants until you're reasonably confident your child will behave for at least the majority of the time you're there. And yes, that's shit - but far less shit than inflicting a "roamer" on people who have saved up for their rare meal out/are celebrating an important life event. I'm not without sympathy - my youngest was monstrous in restaurants, so we just stopped trying until he was more reliable. And yours will get there.

frogwatcher42 Wed 03-Jul-13 21:54:22

YANBU. I am so impressed with you. Well done. Kids peering over seats at me when I am out is one of my real bug bears.

Kat - don't take them out if you cant control them. Why should others suffer because you cant control your child? If a 2 year old cant sit still then one of you takes it for a walk around the car park until the food is ready and then it sits and eats and then off to the car park again!! Thats what we did anyway. No way would I allow my dc to annoy others in the restaurant.

idiuntno57 Wed 03-Jul-13 21:51:46

meeting not meaning

idiuntno57 Wed 03-Jul-13 21:51:24

YANBU but why go and attempt a child free meaning in a child friendly venue? I run like the wind from such places when I am on a rare child free night out.

helenthemadex Wed 03-Jul-13 21:51:09

Tactical and Silveroldie I want to go out for a meal with both of you grin visions of eating peacefully while tactical tells parents off and silveroldie rubs food in toddlers hair

OP you were great and I want to know the boring details after your verbal hand grenade exploded grin

Pimpf Wed 03-Jul-13 21:48:18

If you can't get them to sit still, don't go, it's that simple. Try again in another couple of years. It's part of being a parent.

Seriously, why. Would anyone think its ok for a child (no matter how. Old) to wander around a place where hot drinks and food are being served. Not only. Could they get hurt, but there actions can cause accidents where others get hurt. It's not rocket science

Kat101 Wed 03-Jul-13 21:45:25

Oh dear, my 2 yo is a roamed around restaurants like Frankie and Bennys. We don't go now, I think we annoyed the waitress when he kept playing with the toilet door blush

Any tips on how to get a 2 yo to sit nicely in a restaurant, pass them on. Mine would scream and struggle within a minute if I tried to pin him in a booth with crayons and paper. Would love to know how to get one of these kids who sits nicely. Maybe the parents find similar (admittedly the hair crossed the line).

Lweji Wed 03-Jul-13 20:59:27

Whatever the venue, even Pizza Hut, you were not being unreasonable.
And I am very tolerant of children.

drmelons Wed 03-Jul-13 20:54:33

I shit you not tactical - it was at the cheaply Saturday morning show (not that that should make any difference) I was almost impressed at their audacity!

Cherriesarelovely Wed 03-Jul-13 20:28:26

You were not rude in the slightest! There is no excuse for letting children roam around a restaurant annoying others like that, no excuse at all. Selfish gits!

TacticalWheelbarrow Wed 03-Jul-13 20:25:08

Silveroldie shock grin

SilverOldie Wed 03-Jul-13 20:23:31


In fact I think you were remarkably restrained - I would have dipped my hand in my food and mixed it thoroughly in the child's hair in return. Then the parents would really have something to be upset about.

giveitago Wed 03-Jul-13 20:13:55

YANBU for saying something but I would have probably not said what you said.

KirjavaTheCat Wed 03-Jul-13 20:09:58

that speech sounds like the sort of thing people make up in the car afterwards and wish they'd said

I'm so glad it's not just me who thought that grin

youarewinning Wed 03-Jul-13 20:02:42


I for one love and have memorised for future use your speech. grin

TattyDevine Wed 03-Jul-13 20:01:30

Unless she meant "because we had been skint and had the kids with us" as a reason for wanting to go out. Sorry maybe not clear.

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