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to think these women were rude and patronising...

(37 Posts)
tvfriend Wed 17-Jun-09 20:20:29

(Not a huge deal in the grand scheme of things but have been raging since it happened and just need to vent angry grin.

Took DD (almost 2) to Gymboree this afternoon. Usually have a quick coffee afterwards with a couple of the Mums there from my NCT group. The girls run around like lunatics in the class and then quite enjoy sitting in the high chairs in the coffee shop with a drink and a snack. As soon as they start to get restless we tend to take them home.

So there we all are, sitting nicely round a table. I was feeding DS (5 months), my friend holding her 6 week old baby and my other friend's Mum (who was there today while friend worked)and the 3 little girls sitting happily, giggling at each other, sharing snacks etc and generally enjoying themselves. We were in fact commenting that it was nice how they are all starting to interract with each other and that they were all being remarkably well behaved...

One of the girls then lets out a bit of a shriek (happy shriek) and 2 women who have been sitting a few tables away pointedly pick up their coffees and march past us pausing only to say VERY loudly, "children need to be stimulated, not just left and ignored". (or something like that). We all just sat there trying to think of a good reply but were too shocked.

What's just as annoying is I felt like I was about 12 (despite being almost 40) and being told off by the headmistress for doing something stupid (in fact they had that real teacher look about them).

I can't work out if they were annoyed at being disturbed (in which case a coffee shop in a bookshop in a shopping centre with every conceivable children's shop and gymboree and about 100,000 bugaboo and phil and ted's pushing parents was probably not the best place to go) or that they thought it was boarding on neglectful to allow our DDs, after an hour of running around, to sit in a high chair and have fun with each other whilst we also talked to them and, shock, horror to each other and looked after the babies, rather than be teaching them the finer points of mandarin or opera.

Sorry- rather a long post! As I said, not big in the grand scheme of things but felt so angry! (Feel better now though).

poppy34 Wed 17-Jun-09 20:27:02

No can see why you felt that way but to be fair if you have not got small kids your tolerance isn't the same as if you are used to it. Also sometimes it's very difficult to escape kids and babies if you want a coffee or snack so while it was ott I can sort of see why they might react .

smallorange Wed 17-Jun-09 20:31:42

Ha ha this reminds me of when I and a friend were desperately trying to read about the expenses scandal in a cafe while, unnoticed, her two youngest and my youngest spread the table with jam.

Yours were being angelic.

Goblinchild Wed 17-Jun-09 20:37:48

'In fact they had that real teacher look about them'

grin grin grin grin

See, I've always been in favour of more independence and less helicopter parenting myself.
They obviously couldn't tell the difference between happy noise and distress either, so next time they may well pop out to a nice little coffee shop on a first floor somewhere and leave the buggy brigade to the very few places they have to meet.

tvfriend Wed 17-Jun-09 20:38:19

poppy34- I agree that sometimes it can be a pain if you want a quiet coffee etc and if they had just maoned and said' bloody children' or something I (sort of) wouldn't have minded). It was more the case that they were seemed to be professing to be childcare experts and saying that we were ignoring our children which we certainly weren't doing. All the DDs can be very 'challenging' at times but this afternoon they were all actually being very OK. (and there were other children making lots of noise)

Firawla Wed 17-Jun-09 20:38:43

Yanbu. those people were pretty rude and should mind their own business. didnt sound like you did anything wrong at all

tvfriend Wed 17-Jun-09 20:39:42

Yes- apologies to any teachers out there! (My teacher friends don't look like teachers IYSWIM- there had a Latin teacher look about them...)

tvfriend Wed 17-Jun-09 20:41:57

Also-apologies about shocking spelling and punctuation in that last post- I can spell, honestly, and will be teaching DD to spell properly as soon we go for a coffee again.

Goblinchild Wed 17-Jun-09 20:44:15

Keep digging honeybun, I run an after school Latin club. wink

We have a fairly child-intolerant society with a lot of sour faces always prepared to disapprove. It will happen over and over again. Wait until they are teens in the park with people looking at them as if they are a satanic coven bent on child sacrifice.

tvfriend Wed 17-Jun-09 20:45:54

Goblinchild- to be fair, my Latin teacher was quite funky and good fun. Now the Maths teacher- another matter entirely

Heated Wed 17-Jun-09 20:46:23

Hmm, your response (if there is a next time)?

Maybe, loud conversation about how censorious women, who have no grasp of feminist solidarity, have become? Or just mighty guffaws of laughter, like naughty schoolgirls caught in the act?

McDreamy Wed 17-Jun-09 20:47:47

Goblinchild I agree the UK does have quite an intolerance for children out in public. I didn't realise this until I lived in Cyprus for 3 years where they welcome children every where they go, restaurants, shops etc.

IMO they were very rude and either have no children or have forgotten what it was like to enjoy the company of small children. angry for you.

agingoth Wed 17-Jun-09 20:48:26

I would go with an 'am I bovvered' type stare at censorious sods like that. And train the dcs to do the same thing.

tvfriend Wed 17-Jun-09 20:50:58

To add insult to injury one of the women passed me on the way home in the pouring rain as my pram was blocking the entire pavement and I was trying to expain to DD that she really was too tired to walk any further (it had taken 20 miutes to go about 200 yards) and that it would be much better if she got in the pram. She was none too happy. DS was also wailing. If only we'd been singing songs together or pointing out the different types of tress we were passing!

McDreamy Wed 17-Jun-09 20:52:20

Grumpy old women spring to mind tvfriend

squeaver Wed 17-Jun-09 20:52:26

Are you in N London by any chance tvfriend?

tvfriend Wed 17-Jun-09 20:53:23

Actually, where we live (S W London) most people seem to be incredibly tolerant to small children. (They have to be- there are millions!) Most people we come acrss are lovely smile

Morloth Wed 17-Jun-09 21:01:56

tvfriend were you at the Exchange by any chance? I thought your description sounded familiar.

tvfriend Wed 17-Jun-09 21:04:52

Morloth- If I say yes, please don't tell me you were there this afternoon and noticed 3 noisy, naughty toddlers ruining everyone's afternoon at Costa Coffee! (or worse, your Mum's a teacher and was spitting with rage at 3 naughty toddlers and their neglectful mothers!)

CurryMaid Wed 17-Jun-09 21:05:28

Hehe, I was sitting in a coffee shop in a book shop today where I often go and ignore my DD because she is so interested in all the people around her I can get away with reading a magazine.

Always wondered if I was being judged for leaving her to it, obviously yes!


McDreamy Wed 17-Jun-09 21:07:44

lol is that a loaded question morloth?

Morloth Wed 17-Jun-09 21:11:00

LOL, I was there this afternoon but I didn't get around to judging anyone today. grin

I wouldn't worry about it, some people are just miseries and need to keep the opinions to themselves more.

Given the coffee shop you were in and the fact that you usually can't move because of all the buggies and how we all carry our coffees, very carefully because of the free range toddlers then a couple of shrieks are nothing at all.

littlelamb Wed 17-Jun-09 21:14:18

We took ds to wagamamas last week. A woman was sat next to us with her seen-and-not-heard children and when ds started eating they looked disgusted and asked the waitress to move them shock It made me mad, but she had every right to move I suppose if my child enjoying his noodles offended her so much hmm

Morloth Wed 17-Jun-09 21:16:13

You can get bibs at Wagamama you know and sometimes they have kid sized t-shirts for free. Boy likes to drop all that soy straight down the front of his school shirt when we go there.

tvfriend Wed 17-Jun-09 21:19:34

I can't eat Wagamamas without it going all over my clothes and face, let alone DD. At the one here (location to be known only to myself and Morloth wink all the babies/children are put in one area so as not to cause offence

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