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Spending my lunch entertaining another person's child

37 replies

Chickaletta · 12/06/2017 17:29

Dd was at nursery this morning so decided to treat myself to a nice quiet lunch at the local tea rooms. Had (v young baby) DS with me but he was due a nap so I found a quiet corner (it's a bit like a rabbit warren) with a plan to settle him while I waited for my food and enjoy a coffee and a book before collecting DD.

Ordered, got my book out and DS was drifting of when a young girl (about 3) appeared. Very polite and asking me about DS, so I answered with names etc. But then it progressed to squeezing him - and i started to loudly explain why you must be gentle - then she got up on a chair and started playing with various ornaments nearly breaking a teapot - so I of course was then doing the old 'be careful' quite loudly and explaining why we don't do these things as they could break/don't belong to us/you could fall. My food had arrived by now and I was thinking surely her parent/carer is going to show up in a minute. By this point DS was clearly not going to nap so I got him sat on my lap, she came in for a bear hug, he kicked off, I then had to feed him while the little girl poked and prodded him despite me explaining again why she musn't do that. All whilst trying to eat my lunch.

Eventually a lady turned up and I of course was expecting the whole British thing of...
Oh I hope she hasn't been bothering you
Oh no, not at all
Say thank you to the nice lady Jessica

But nope, nothing - no acknowledgement of the fact I (a total stranger) had spent the last 30 minutes entertaining and minding her child while she presumably enjoyed her lunch in relative peace and quiet.

I don't think AIBU about the entertaining the child bit. I'm willing to admit i was probably BU about not doing anything about it at the time but in all honesty I kept thinking someone will turn up to rescue me in a second. Also I'm not really sure what I could have done - there was no indication where this child had appeared from, i didn't much fancy abandoning my belongings (and food) to locate said child's parent particularly once I was feeding DS (and what should i have said - please take your child back they are disturbing my lunch?!), and I worried sending her back however politely could get a bit lost in translation.

AIBU to be annoyed my toddler free lunch was taken over by someone else's toddler, and WIBU to have let it happen

OP posts:
Sirzy · 12/06/2017 17:31

Yanbu to be annoyed but did you not say to her "I think you need to go back to your adult now"? I think sometimes in cases like that you need to be blunt and then stop engaging!

AlternativeTentacle · 12/06/2017 17:31

Yes you are being unreasonable to have entertained her for 30 minutes!

I'd have said 'I think I heard someone calling for you' after 5.

And 'Has someone lost a child?' loudly at 10.

I'd have called the cafe and asked them to put a call out at 15.

Crunchymum · 12/06/2017 17:32

"Baby needs quiet to sleep pet, you need to go back to your mummy"

Ignore / repeat above until she got the message.

Toddlers don't hang around if they aren't big engaged.

Crunchymum · 12/06/2017 17:33

Big = Being

ijustwannadance · 12/06/2017 17:33

Sorry but it's your own fault for being do bloody polite.

I would've told the child to leave DS alone, told her to go back to her mum, then if that didn't work I would've loudly asked for the parent of said child to come and take child away.

converseandjeans · 12/06/2017 17:34

YANBU but I think I would have gone to find her parent after about 5 mins!

Hisnamesblaine · 12/06/2017 17:34

Yeh I would have asked the staff to take her back to her human when they came with my lunch........... what a liberty!

AyeAmarok · 12/06/2017 17:34

30 minutes? Jesus, that may as well be an eternity.

Calyrical · 12/06/2017 17:34

Yes, I agree with Sirzy - this is where a bright 'Where's Mummy?' comes in handy Smile

MacarenaFerreiro · 12/06/2017 17:35

Totally unreasonable to have put up with her for so long.

After two minutes I'd have been telling her to go back to her Mum. If she didn't, I'd be asking a staff member to sort it out.

EezerGoode · 12/06/2017 17:36

Ha ha,more fool you I'm afraid..there's always people like that in my local coffee place,as long as t child stays in the cafe they don't need to be more assertive..much more

Xmasbaby11 · 12/06/2017 17:38

You need to be more assertive. A couple of minutes is long enough to be polite.

pasturesgreen · 12/06/2017 17:38

Yes, you were being unreasonable and a bit of a martyr.

Floralnomad · 12/06/2017 17:39

I agree with pp , you should have said at 2 minutes in , I'm busy go back to your own adult and if she refused , go find a waitress / assistant and tell them to get rid of her .

rollonthesummer · 12/06/2017 17:41

Half an hour-you're mad!

EB123 · 12/06/2017 17:42

Agree with the others YANBU but you should have asked where she was sitting after a couple of minutes and quickly walked her over and said, lovely to meet you X, enjoy your lunch.

HeyRoly · 12/06/2017 17:43

I would have tolerated her for about three minutes before steering her back to whoever she belonged to!

Brittbugs80 · 12/06/2017 17:44

I didn't fancy abandoning my belongings and lunch to track down said parents.

What if she had been lost though? 30 minutes is a very very long time for no one to come looking for their child. I would have been concerned over 5 minutes.

You can't complain about spending your lunch entertaining another person's child when you've already said you didn't want to leave your lunch and when you could have got her back to her parents within 5 minutes when no one appeared to look for her.

Theresnonamesleft · 12/06/2017 17:44

Adult probably thought you didn't mind because you politely didn't tell the child to go away. 5 minutes max of oh I think your adult is looking for you. I'm sure your food will be waiting for you.. before you ask staff to reunite child with adult

CurlyhairedAssassin · 12/06/2017 17:45

Oh yes. OP, sorry but you do need to be much more assertive. "Who are you here with? Run along back to them now, please, I need to eat my lunch and baby needs some peace."

Everyone including staff probably thought she was yours if you spoke to her for that long. If she didn't go when you wanted her to you could have got a member of staff and said that you think the child was lost.

PinkPeppers · 12/06/2017 17:53

Actually I would have let her break said ornaments. Im sure that her mum would have reacted then....

eddielizzard · 12/06/2017 17:54

bloody annoying. and the next time some child wanders over you'll still be so annoyed from this time that you'll tell them to go back to their mum pdq.

so take heart, you'll never let this happen again.

ssd · 12/06/2017 17:55

her carer was being a cheeky cow

Mrsmadevans · 12/06/2017 18:02

You could always make nasty faces at her. I do this quite often, you have to act all innocent when the child tells mamma and they come looking for you though but it's quite successful mwahahaha

TestingTestingWonTooFree · 12/06/2017 18:10

I would have said "it's time to go back to your grown up" after a few minutes.

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