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To think that you should not bring a lunch box into a cafe

(369 Posts)
Chocolateandcrisps Sat 15-Feb-14 14:53:44

There is a lovely cafe in a church which we visit often. There is a little play area which my ds loves and reasonably priced lunches, cakes and a sandwich lunch deal for the kids.

Last week two people walked in with their kids, who were about 3 years old, ordered coffees for themselves and brought out a lunch box for the kids. They did not order cake, lunch etc for themselves - just coffee.

I have given my ds rice cakes, water from cup, snacks in cafes before but never taken out a lunch box.

Am I being unreasonable / judgy to think that you should not bring a lunch box into a cafe for your kids?

Edenviolet Sat 15-Feb-14 14:54:56

I do for ds1 and dd2 due to medical problems.

Nerfmother Sat 15-Feb-14 14:56:14

This is what will happen:
People with children with allergies will take offensive and post
People with little income and small eaters will take offensive and post
People with children with dietary needs will take offensive and post

Nerfmother Sat 15-Feb-14 14:56:39

Hedgehog is excepted because she is very sweet

Edenviolet Sat 15-Feb-14 14:58:02


Bonkerz Sat 15-Feb-14 14:59:19

It could have been a childminder whose minded children's parents provide lunch or it could have been for a child who has allergies. I carry a lunchbox with me everywhere as ds is dairy free and I can never guarantee being able to purchase food for him.

janey68 Sat 15-Feb-14 14:59:42

Unless there are medical issues, I think that's bloody cheeky.

drivenfromdistraction Sat 15-Feb-14 14:59:47

Nerfmother is right.

I have two children with coeliac disease. Some places can cater for them, most can't, and therefore we are likely to break out their lunchboxes in cafes.

Nomama Sat 15-Feb-14 15:00:16

Do you do 'bingo' here?

Floggingmolly Sat 15-Feb-14 15:01:02

Fine for allergic kids when the adults are ordering for themselves.
Adults not partaking of food should just feed the kids at home when they're having their own.

sadbodyblue Sat 15-Feb-14 15:01:07

I think if they purchased something that's ok.

Waggamamma Sat 15-Feb-14 15:02:36

Yanbu. I think it's rude to take your own food. Unless serious allergies and then you should explain to the waiter/waitress.

The cafe is a business not a picnic spot. They're losing money from people bringing packed lunches.

MinesAPintOfTea Sat 15-Feb-14 15:02:40

I think its cheeky as no-one in the group ordered lunch. If the adults in the group had ordered a meal each then its fair enough.

YoureBeingASillyBilly Sat 15-Feb-14 15:02:44

OP why is it your concern? confused

Did the cafe manager object to it? Was there a sign up saying only food bought there may be consumed there?

And why is it ok to bring your own food (as you did) as ling as it isnt in a box? Do you dislike lunchboxes?

BearPear Sat 15-Feb-14 15:02:50

My DD is coeliac and I used to bring food out with us. However me, DH & DS would order something for us, so YANBU, what you describe is very cheeky.

TheIncredibleBookEatingManchot Sat 15-Feb-14 15:03:05

I did that when the dcs were little. I used to ask the staff if it was OK. If they said no I would leave without buying anything. Most places didn't mind, they realised there wasn't much on the menu suitable for young children and didn't want to turn away a paying customer.

Morgause Sat 15-Feb-14 15:03:35

YANBU unless the parents take time to explain to the staff why they have brought their own food.

HarrietSchulenberg Sat 15-Feb-14 15:05:23

Don't see why not as they'd ordered coffees. Unless they spent all afternoon hogging the table and only bought those two coffees.

May09Bump Sat 15-Feb-14 15:06:52

My son couldn't eat anything in a normal café food wise (multiple allergies). Should he not ever eat anywhere other than home - not very good for his social development etc.

They ordered something too - probably took the kid the same time to eat their lunch as for the adults to drink their coffee. Also, double standards here as you have stated you took in a snack - why didn't you buy them in the café?

Wish people would just mind their own business sometimes - difficult enough dealing with medical issues without someone being nosey / judgy. Maybe too much time on your hands?

drivenfromdistraction Sat 15-Feb-14 15:06:56

Well, young children often need feeding when adults don't, so sometimes my kids might eat their sandwiches while DH and I just have a drink. We always buy something, and I have usually spoken to the cafe manager in advance.

Spare a thought for people whose kids cannot eat food bought out - imagine days out during the winter when it's freezing cold or pouring rain, and you really cannot make small children sit outdoors to eat their lunch. If the cafe owner doesn't object, it's not anyone else's business.

StickEmUpBigStyle Sat 15-Feb-14 15:10:23

So you've done the same thing, just not from a box [confusd]

Worriedthistimearound Sat 15-Feb-14 15:14:22

I do for ds3 due to allergies but only when I'm ordering for myself or myself and the older 2. I've never had anyone query and I assume it just seems obv that he has a medical condition as I'm ordering for myself and/or my other kids. Maybe if I just sat down and opened it up without ordering anything else they'd say something. I'd then explain and assume that would be enough.

YABU to be judgy though! In the sense of actually caring unless it's your cafe!

HollyMiamiFLA Sat 15-Feb-14 15:14:41

Can I play the allergies card?

Getting gluten free food for a fussy DS is hard. But I always buy food and coffee for myself.

mrscog Sat 15-Feb-14 15:18:34

The answer to this is clearly simply - if you need to take particular foods for your children you should, but I do think by 3, unless there are mitigating dietary needs you should at least buy something for them, even if you supplement with other things. For example, DS is 2, I always take a beaker of squash with me, partly because I don't want him drinking more sugary drinks and partly because drinks can be extortionate. I might then buy him a piece of toast/bag of crisps/cake etc, which may or may not be supplemented with say a few cheese cubes I'd brought along. I would feel cheeky taking a whole lunchbox though.

Bumply Sat 15-Feb-14 15:19:14

Another one with a coeliac child.

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