Talk

Advanced search

To wonder why it's such a big deal to take children for dinner in the UK

(257 Posts)
tinypop4 Sat 30-Sep-17 09:19:14

Not originally from the UK- where I'm from it is totally normal to take children out in the eve.
Last night we had guests staying so we went for dinner at the local curry place. We took our dd who is almost 5 and our friends Dd who is almost 4. We went at 7pm, they behaved well- stayed at the table other than to go to the toilet, chatter, coloured, ate off the ordinary menu. They didn't shout, run around or cause any drama and we left at 9.15.
In the course of this 2 hours I had 4 different people telling me that it was 'very late for young children' 'they should be in bed' and one whispered loudly and in ear shot that it's 'cruel to have children out as late as 9pm'.

Now if they were over tired toddlers ,
Screaming, tantrumming etc I could understand if people might feel annoyed by their presence but in this case I didn't get it.

We were stared at a lot and were the only people out with children and despite having a nice calm evening, felt quite annoyed by the end. Why are children so unwelcome out in the evening here? Maybe I'm being unreasonable and children shouldn't come out in the evening but I think ta a shame

Gorgosparta Sat 30-Sep-17 09:21:43

I dont think it is unusual.

We owned a restaurant for a while and often had families in on an evening.

tinypop4 Sat 30-Sep-17 09:22:23

Maybe it's just this place then!

Yvetteballs Sat 30-Sep-17 09:25:22

I'm surprised you had those comments, because even though little kids aren't often out late in the UK, people wouldnt tend to pass comment if they saw them.

It's fine, as long as they're getting the sleep they need.

Witchend Sat 30-Sep-17 09:27:18

We go out for dinner regularly and never have had a single negative comment. Lots of positive ones though.

honeylulu Sat 30-Sep-17 09:27:23

It's not unknown but tends not to be the norm in the UK. Most children we know are given dinner at 5 and in bed at 7. Mine aren't! We're English but lead rather "Spanish hours" in our house.
I'm not cruel - we all happen to be "owls" and our kids enjoy it and cope fine.
I've had similar comments though!

Lucked Sat 30-Sep-17 09:27:38

Well it is normal to see children out late in countries who have a siesta. Most 4 and 5 year olds in the UK are in bed by 7.30 ish routinely and are in the habit of eating earlier. We do take them to restaurants but to an early sitting as my 3 year old would get cranky and last year my 5 year old fell asleep at the table and that was only 8 o'clock.

strawberrygate Sat 30-Sep-17 09:27:45

I'm very surprised you got those comments. Everybody I know takes small children to restaurants and 99% of the time they behave themselves. We always leave about 9'ish so the little ones aren't too tired.
Worst behaviour of children I've seen is in Spain where they are out till about 11 and basically left to roam all over the restaurant

slightlyglittermaned Sat 30-Sep-17 09:27:51

How weird - never had that, and have been out with DS later than 9pm quite often.

Think they are the weirdos - imagine approaching a group peacefully eating their dinner to harangue them on their parenting!

AuntLydia Sat 30-Sep-17 09:28:19

That sounds really unusual. I have eaten out with my kids at those sorts of time and never had even one comment! I think you were just unlucky.

Lucked Sat 30-Sep-17 09:29:49

However I often see children out late and do not think it is unusual, it is also very unbritish to pass a remark.

Madbum Sat 30-Sep-17 09:30:36

Did you really get all those comments and whispers in the same evening? That’s a bit unbelievable sorry.

tinypop4 Sat 30-Sep-17 09:31:38

Mad bum yeah I did. That's why I'm posting about it. Because it felt unusual.

strawberrygate Sat 30-Sep-17 09:32:40

I think tinypop may be exaggerating slightly so she can slag off how rubbish British restaurants are with children and how wonderful our continental cousins are as opposed to the uptight Brits who all hate children.

YellowFlower201 Sat 30-Sep-17 09:32:57

I'm not surprised. This has happened to me too. Ridiculous. I hope you told them to mind their own business.

UnicornRainbowColours Sat 30-Sep-17 09:33:30

I think if they behave like yours did then it’s a wonderful treat and a great thing to do. Unfortunately not all children behave like that and then it’s inappropriate to bring children out and ruin other diner’s evenings.

tinypop4 Sat 30-Sep-17 09:33:38

Tinypop isn't exaggerating.
I like the UK or I wouldn't live here would I. Just had a negative experience last night taking children out to eat.

tinypop4 Sat 30-Sep-17 09:35:43

Also the restaurant were not rubbish at all. Some of the guests were rude though

chewiecat Sat 30-Sep-17 09:35:50

This happened to a friend of mine! Some random woman came up to her and told her she was cruel for bringing her daughter out for dinner. It made her cry angry

I don't know why people feel the need to pass judgement about other people's parenting

BertrandRussell Sat 30-Sep-17 09:36:49

You know what? I've been alive a very long time and I've been a parent for nearly 22 years, and I have never heard tuts, or negative comments or got dirty looks.

Yet other mumsnetters seem to get thin all the time, despite their perfectly behaved children.

I can only assume that either I am an insensitive cloth eared clod orthese children are not as well behaved as their parents think they are or there is a bit of embellishement going on for effect.

tinypop4 Sat 30-Sep-17 09:38:27

But this is a forum where people discuss things that have happened to them. So you won't hear from the people who it hasn't happened to will you.
Mumsnet is clearly quite a small section of soviet

tinypop4 Sat 30-Sep-17 09:38:44

Society** grin

DemonBaby Sat 30-Sep-17 09:40:20

I think tinypop may be exaggerating slightly so she can slag off how rubbish British restaurants are with children and how wonderful our continental cousins are as opposed to the uptight Brits who all hate children.

Yup.

tinypop4 Sat 30-Sep-17 09:41:11

Okaaaay regrettable thread!
I'm making the whole thing up because I hate Brits. You are all completely right

DailyMailReadersAreThick Sat 30-Sep-17 09:41:23

I can only assume that either I am an insensitive cloth eared clod orthese children are not as well behaved as their parents think they are or there is a bit of embellishement going on for effect.

Quite.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now