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Rant Alert. Grrrr! School mothers.

(14 Posts)
Issymum Tue 05-Jul-05 22:27:17

It was DD1's second induction afternoon at her new school today. I went to the first induction and so being groovy sharing parents, sent DH to the second. DD1's class is small, just 19 children, and about 14 of those are either in the attached nursery or have siblings in the school. So most of the mothers know each other pretty well.

DH dropped DD1 off in her reception class and went to join the other parents (all mothers and a few accompanying fathers) in the hall. DH is a nice looking, slim, 40-something guy in a sporty,low-slung wheelchair. Not one of the mothers (or fathers) offered to help him get his chair down the few steps into the hall, they just watched him struggle. And then in the remaining 40 minutes he was there, nobody approached him to talk to him. And before Cod jumps in and tells me he should have gone up and introduced himself, it's tough when you are the only lone man trying to break into a tight group of women, particularly when your head is stuck at crotch height.

From hairy-arsed builders in B&Q to plummy matrons at society weddings, in every other social situation people have rushed to help, to engage and to treat DH with friendly courtesy. So what is it with school mothers? Do they dump their social skills along with the book bags at the classroom door?

Rant Over.

Sorry - just realised that I should probably have posted this on the all new disabled parents thread!

WideWebWitch Tue 05-Jul-05 22:29:57

Poor dh Issymum, it must have been horrible. Cliquey school mothers can be particularly excluding, I know. I don't know what else to say though except that he probably is going to have to make the firs tmove and say 'hi, I'm x's father, who's your child?' - crap, I know.

QueenOfQuotes Tue 05-Jul-05 22:30:28

" particularly when your head is stuck at crotch height. "

I'm sorry - I know this isn't a 'funny' thread - but that sentence did make me

What silly mothers - they sound like a lot of the ones that I've had to endure at DS1's induction days - all either Yummy Mummy's, 4x4 drivers and in their own little groups - arghh!

unicorn Tue 05-Jul-05 22:31:05

Great rant Issymum, and very well written!

Feel very sorry for your dh, what rude people, hope their kids aren't the same.

aloha Tue 05-Jul-05 22:32:40

They do sound absolutely awful. My only thought in their defence is that your dh is so clearly competent and together they might have felt that they would somehow be insulting him by helping - particularly as he is decidedly male and they are female. And perhaps they were a bit concerned that if they went up and talked to him it might be perceived as flirting and thus be awkward. I do think there is a strong (very 50s, really) sexual apartheid at school/childcare events that doesn't seem to exist in other interactions.
Or maybe they just aren't nice people.
I do hope it is the former.

spidermama Tue 05-Jul-05 22:33:08

Rude and unfriendly, I agree. It's important for all parents to be make an effort with each other at these things. I hope their kids behave better than them.

frogs Tue 05-Jul-05 22:34:01

Bloody hell, you'd think those Surrey mums would have better manners, wouldn't you?

FWIW here in Hackney dh complains of just the same treatment when he does the school run. Alternatively he gets ambushed by some scary mother he's never met before barracking him about a complicated playdate arrangement he knows nothing about.

A father's place at the school gate is in the wrong. As long as he accepts that he'll be okay.

ks Tue 05-Jul-05 22:45:38

Message withdrawn

Issymum Tue 05-Jul-05 23:08:16

Now I've got the rant off my chest, I think Aloha is right. It's probably shyness, a wariness of saying or doing something out of place, rather than rudeness. On the first induction day, I encountered exactly the same reaction, but buzzed around like Prince Charles on speed, introducing myself. Once I'd made the first move, everybody I met was very warm and welcoming.

DH has just read this thread, laughed and admitted that one mother came up and chatted to him. And the class reps who gave him the list of summer playdates were friendly. Frankly that's a pretty good strike rate for the playground!

saadia Tue 05-Jul-05 23:09:11

Issymum that's horrible. I went to ds1's nursery (he'll be starting in Sep) for a parent/teachers get to know each other meeting and, while the nursery/staff are lovely there was definitely a strange uncomfortable atmosphere, everyone was so aloof and careful. I just wonder what people are so afraid of.

saadia Tue 05-Jul-05 23:10:07

posts crossed methinks

moondog Tue 05-Jul-05 23:16:37

I'd definitely say embarassment and worry about doing the wrong thing (offering to help and thereby insulting a bloke who is obviously very capable)compounded by him being a bloke.

A couple of fathers go to the mother&baby group I've just started going to and they are completely ignored,even sitting at the opposite end of the hall to everyone else!!!

Come next week they will have to contend with a full on Moondog,prising every intimate detail out of them. (My, how the village will talk, as my dh is almost never home!!! )

trefusis Tue 05-Jul-05 23:21:08

Message withdrawn

angelkiss Wed 06-Jul-05 19:22:11

issymum, it's not an independent school is it...we call the big group of our mums who act like those you described the 'playground mafia'!!
they are rude to both staff and other parents (who I guess aren't *insert your own word* enough to join the gang!)
sorry, having a bit of rant myself (as you may have guessed i'm a teacher!) well...they think they run the place.

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