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AIBU to be upset over mum’s comment at softplay?

(166 Posts)
Denise3011 Fri 12-Jul-19 14:54:00

This is more WWUD as I’m hurt by comments, but really didn’t know how to react or what to say - other than sorry!

Son is 2. We go weekly and although i had baby 3 weeks ago, I’ve kept to it because I don’t want to change even more of his routine - new baby has been a big enough change and I’ve had to temporarily stop some of his other classes etc.

Anyway, I had stitches after labour So I didn’t go inside the playarea as I’m still quite uncomfortable and stayed with pram in the viewing area to feed baby.

Son is very big for his age, wearing age 4/5 etc. For that reason He doesn’t stay in the under 5 area but is happy to go into the main section (upto age 8), often on his own.

Admittedly he’s very boisterous but ridiculously friendly - he will talk and play with anyone.

he made friends in the main area with a boy, similar aged, maybe 2-3, and they were happily racing down the slides together. Then I heard the other boy cry because my son went down a slide after him and he hadn’t moved from bottom.

Other mum went in and comforted her son and told my son to be more careful.

They carry on playing but a little while later, other boy is crying again and his mum goes in and brings her son out.

She comes over to me and says ‘that’s the second time your son has pushed him over. He really should know better at his age. I’m taking him home.”

I apologised but added he was only 2 and I’m sure he hadn’t pushed him over on purpose.

The mum replied, well he looks older and is too boisterous, you should be in there with him.

I explained I was feeding my newborn, apologised again and they left.

My son tried to say goodbye and other mum pulled her kid away and said ‘I don’t want you playing with him’

My son sadly asked where his friend had gone and I said it was time we went too.

Then I cried in my car.

Less than a month since baby so I’m a hormonal mess so maybe I am BU to be so hurt by her comments, after all her son was upset.

How would you react if your child was unintentionally hurt by another kid?
WWUD if your child accidentally hurt someone?

Feeling upset, judged and failing!

GoBrookeYourself Sat 13-Jul-19 08:28:23

@yourestandingonmyneck* snidey? What exactly did I say that was snidey? My point was that you put a blanket statement out that parents following their toddlers round a softplay area are ridiculous, which is exactly the kind of attitude I don’t like. You can’t put a blanket statement out because every child is different and, being the mum that does watch my toddler in the play area and intervene if I feel necessary, don’t appreciate the insinuation that people are watching and thinking I’m ridiculous for basic parenting.

Your comments were wholly unnecessary, when I explained that I was directing none of my post at the OP, who was in a completely different situation because her toddler was in the older area.

I actually think it’s your kind of comments that make mumsnet a vipersnest, calling the way the majority of parents of toddlers actually parent at softplay, ridiculous.

Pinktinker Fri 12-Jul-19 23:36:44

My brother was always huge for his age (6ft3 rugby player now so it never ended!), he also looked 4/5 at 2. This exact same thing happened when he was 2 in a softplay, I remember it vividly. The Mother actually screamed in his face though and my Mum went absolutely ballistic. My poor brother was devastated, it wasn’t his fault he looked so much older!

YANBU anyway, just wanted to say it’s happened before and likely will happen again. Your DS is tiny, he didn’t mean any harm and she shouldn’t have assumed he was older.

MilenaMay Fri 12-Jul-19 23:33:19

I would return to this soft play if I were you. Only 2 children sounds ideal.

MilenaMay Fri 12-Jul-19 23:28:37

I think the other mum over reacted.

Really doesn't sound too bad and neither saw the second incident and the first was an accident!

The fact the these were the only issues shows they were really playing well together as 2 un(der)supervised young children!

BigRedLondonBus Fri 12-Jul-19 22:55:12


Catinthetwat Fri 12-Jul-19 22:53:24

It isn't ok to spoil someone else's time because of your own difficult situation I'm afraid. The other family went home because of your child's behaviour. That's not on.

You'll figure out things that work and things that don't, so don't worry. But don't do softplay again until you can manage it. And congratulations on your new baby.

SudowoodoVoodoo Fri 12-Jul-19 22:37:49

Having a toddler and a new baby is a steep learning curve.

My own experience was when DS2 was 6 weeks and I was on one of my first outings at the park in goodness knows how many months after an unusually long, cold winter, SPD, then the damage to my pelvic floor aggravating the SPD to the point that I did not leave the house for anything non-essential that wasn't medical for the first 5 weeks. Hindsight is a wonderful thing however DS2 needed feeding and DS1 (2) seemed to be happy playing on a piece of equipment. I was on a nearby bench within a few metres that had a restricted view; I could see that DS was on there, but not the finer details. After a while a mum exclaimed that a child had been bitten. Unfortunately DS had form and was going through a phase of it because his life had been turned upside-down and I'd been incapacitated for months so he hadn't been getting out much. I staggered over with my burning pelvis looking like I'd lost a horse from between my legs with a baby clamped to my breast and dragged DS1 off. Hopefully if DS had bitten someone, the sight of me should have been self explanitory about why I wasn't physically capable of helicoptering around.
Over a good six months or so of late pregnancy, post-birth recovery and the chicken pox month, DS spent far more time than should be healthy, sitting inside watching Thomas and Fireman Sam DVDs on loop because it was just too difficult to get out. Fortunately time goes by, and we got long past that phase.

Unsupervised children running amok is obviously far from ideal, but someone who is clearly having difficulties should be treated with more kindness than someone who clearly doesn't care. A quiet soft play with no school age children should be a relatively safe place to let a young child burn off energy.

You can only do your best, learn from experience and move on.

Some MNer's ideal practice isn't very practical... if mums of siblings waited until all DCs were the same age group for the same playframe to be supervised simultaneously, a lot of soft plays would go bankrupt as the younger sibling would never go between birth and the older sibling going to school wink

likeafishneedsabike Fri 12-Jul-19 22:24:55

OP you’re doing a great job getting the three of you out and about. But the soft play set up isn’t going to work in the newborn stage because your toddler needs supervision. Your choices are:
1) go with some friends do you can all muck in with supervising toddlers/holding babies
2) search high and low for toddler groups with open plan set ups (to allow eyes on toddler at all times). For this very reason I HATED toddler group at the library (couldn’t manage to see through bookshelves) but loved the church hall ones with a completely open space.

Stone me, it was hard work with a 2 year old and a newborn full time. We spent hours walking around with baby in the pram and toddler on the buggy board.

Denise3011 Fri 12-Jul-19 22:11:23

Yes other kid was about 2 as well.
They were the only two kids in the building - both in the main area
His mother wasn’t in the soft play area either, she was having a coffee with her mate.
Neither of us saw what happened but I apologised to her, told my son to be more careful. asked if her son was ok. My son also asked if he was ok.

SweetNorthernRose Fri 12-Jul-19 22:02:20

Forgive me I've misread but wasn't the other kid involved only 2 as well? If we're all saying OP was unreasonable for letting her kid in the 'bigger kid' area then surely other mum was as well? Lesson learned for both mums I think but I can see why you were upset by her comments.

Lweji Fri 12-Jul-19 22:01:48

His mother is lucky it wasn’t an 8 year old that cane down next

8 year olds are better at waiting for other children to get off the slide. That's why younger children aren't supposed to be there.

Shazafied Fri 12-Jul-19 21:51:08

I have a 19 mo and a 10 week old and there’s no way I’d set foot in soft play with both of them right now. You cannot properly supervise /look after them both in at environment.

KimchiLaLa Fri 12-Jul-19 21:38:23

I don't know OP, I feel for you. But I wouldn't leave a two year old alone at softplay. I know you don't want to disrupt his routine but maybe take him somewhere else?

ittakes2 Fri 12-Jul-19 21:37:36

YABU sorry - at 2 he is too young to know how to pace himself on a slide so it can't be a huge surprise he is not waiting for others to get off first. I get you are not capable of shadowing him at the moment so the solution is he doesn't go on the slide.

Vulpine Fri 12-Jul-19 21:36:47

The other woman was a self righteous old bag

MsTSwift Fri 12-Jul-19 21:36:37

She doesn’t care about you your situation or the fact you have a newborn you are a grown adult she just cares about her own son. Which is understandable tbh.

herculepoirot2 Fri 12-Jul-19 21:33:02

During school hours, the whole place is for under 5s as far as I'm concerned.

Except that it isn’t. The soft play folks won’t take responsibility for your kid’s broken leg.

Aquilla Fri 12-Jul-19 21:31:09

I sympathise, op! As the mother of three 'giants'.

Hugtheduggee Fri 12-Jul-19 21:22:16

Our local soft play (the only one) has a tiny under 5s area that my daughter was bored of well before the age of 18m. She's been in the 'big' area (albeit with me following her) since she was 8m old, because its got the space for her to crawl, cruise at that age etc.

Now, at just turned 2, she'll only go briefly into the under 5s area, because it's just not big enough or exciting. Sometimes I follow her, sometimes I keep an eye on her from below, but she's certainly not under constant supervision.

Like the OP though, this is only when it's quiet and there are no bigger kids around. During school hours, the whole place is for under 5s as far as I'm concerned.

Funnily enough, I've seen other posts on MN where people have been ridiculed for following round after their toddler.

voddiekeepsmesane Fri 12-Jul-19 21:19:06

As admirable as it is that you are out and about with a new born and a 2 year old. The 2 year old will not be harmed by staying in or going to places that are easier to manage for a month or 2 while you recuperate OP

voddiekeepsmesane Fri 12-Jul-19 21:16:16

Let's flip it OP and those who think that the other woman was being unreasonable. If a child that looked about 5/6 and had managed to make your child cry twice. Would you say anything? And if you did and the parent said but they are only 3 would that make a difference to how you or your child felt?

shesgrownhorns Fri 12-Jul-19 21:15:42

No don't be sad! You're doing a great job and there was no lasting damage. Next time drag someone along to help you out - it's too difficult alone - mine are 13 months apart and when they were little and I was on the verge of a nervous breakdown pretty much all the time. You need more help!

cadburyegg Fri 12-Jul-19 21:12:37

It depends on the 2 year old because a 2yr 1 month old can be very different to a nearly 3 year old. It also depends on the child’s nature, size of the soft play, other kids there etc etc. I actually let DS1 start running around on the “big area” of our local soft play probably from the age of 2yr 9m. It’s a fairly small soft play centre though and you can see everything from the ground (you actually have a better view). He was very physically capable but also very shy, which meant he never came close to pushing anyone and he certainly wasn’t boisterous.

Once you let a toddler run around an area meant for bigger kids you need to accept that sometimes they might get pushed over by accident simply because the other kids have the advantage of size. So I think this woman overreacted and was a little mean, she should have cut you some slack after it was obvious you had a little baby too.

However, I also think you made a mistake going to soft play knowing your child is a little “boisterous” (be careful you don’t use that word to explain away bad behaviour) and knowing you may not have been able to supervise adequately. We all make mistakes and you’re only human. I actually left DS1 in the soft play area when he was 3 to go to the toilet… he was running around with a friend, I’d just had DS2 so I wasn’t really thinking straight, and I didn’t think he’d notice. Well he did notice and was inconsolable when I returned. I definitely deserved the judgemental looks that day.

It’s hard with 2. I actually still find it hard taking my 2 to soft play still and they are 4 and 16 months. DS1 is jealous that he is not allowed in the baby areas when DS2 is, also that I have to constantly supervise DS2. Sigh!


herculepoirot2 Fri 12-Jul-19 21:09:03

The more I justify this incident, the more I know she was overreacting - as others have said, if she was so concerned she should have stayed in there with him.

You weren’t there. You can’t really comment.

Denise3011 Fri 12-Jul-19 21:08:59

@BarbariansMum has no business?!
Haha ok.....grin
And please don’t for Fucks sake me over the ‘etiquette’ of a slide when the other two year old didn’t understand to move his arse when he got to the bottom!
His mother is lucky it wasn’t an 8 year old that cane down next

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