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To be fed up when friends with small babies want to go to the pub when it’s a nightmare for me with a busy toddler?

124 replies

Blossom321 · 28/10/2018 05:59

Anyone else feel the same? DD is 22 months, very busy, doesn’t want to sit long in a high chair when out (sticker books do the trick for a limited time), loves the park/swings/soft play etc.
DH and I often feel like we don’t see our friends enough since having her, but most of them now have babies too so things are getting better.

However, their babies are under a year and still happy to sit on a lap / high chair for hours whilst everyone else has a drink and a catch up.

We try and suggest something which we can enjoy, eg walk, grab coffee and park (so DD can safely burn off steam whilst we catch up); but all anyone wants to do is go to a pub. Not toddler friendly AT ALL. DH and I end up tag teaming whilst she explores the pub, don’t get a chance to properly chat to anyone or finish a drink and always leave feeling a bit miffed and that it was a total waste of time and not the best environment for a happy but active toddler.

AIBU to be pissed off at endless suggestions of Saturday afternoons at the pub with babies? Or do we just wait for their babies to hit toddlerhood so they “get it” too? Yes, their kids are younger (9mos etc) so we should try and fit in with them but a toddler is much more work out and about. I’m also 35 weeks pregnant and chasing her around isn’t easy.

Rant over.

OP posts:
Chosenbyyou · 28/10/2018 06:06

I agree!

You are looking at revenge here thou!!

Your older one will soon be able to sit for longer and eat better and they will have the constantly moving toddler!

My 3 yo is really great to take out for lunch, my 18mo is a nightmare.

Plus you need those mates to hold your newborn when you need to take your toilet training toddler to the loo!! :)

HungryForSnacks · 28/10/2018 06:10

Have you told them this? I have friends with toddlers and to me it looks like they're having a good time so I would have easily missed this if I was your friend.

I'm sure if you say something to them they'd understand and happily oblige 🙂

MrsStrowman · 28/10/2018 06:11

Get a babysitter if you're going to the pub? We eat out in our local fairly frequently with a few drinks after and DN , just 3 is much loved there and is treated like a regular. She's able and always has been to sit with adults she has books and stickers/colouring and will happily chat with adults too, if that's not for your DC that's what childcare is for. It suits everyone else in your group, what would they do at soft play or in the park in October?

Monty27 · 28/10/2018 06:16

It doesn't sound like much fun. I don't know why you bother.

Shockers · 28/10/2018 06:21

Do your own thing for a while. They’ll catch up.

WerewolfNumber1 · 28/10/2018 06:25

Yes, they’re still at the sweet baby stage and have no idea what chasing a toddler while heavily pregnant is like!

Maybe say expressly - we can’t manage that right now, it’s too hard to keep DS entertained there and we won’t enjoy it. We’d love to see you if you can come to park/soft play/x cafe with playspace etc.

They prob just don’t realise.

Shoxfordian · 28/10/2018 06:28

Maybe you can start trying to teach your toddler to sit still and behave themselves rather than run around in a pub making a noise and annoying everyone. Children in pubs really irritate me

balalalala · 28/10/2018 06:31

Have you got any nice cafes near you with toys? We have a couple nearby which have fab coffee/cake etc but also a corner full of toys. The one we went to yesterday has a play kitchen etc and we lasted over 2 hours with our busy 2 year old and friends with no kids!

user1493413286 · 28/10/2018 06:34

Have you told them blatantly you don’t want to do it because it’s not fun for you? We’ve had similar issues and because I put on a good (fake) front of being calm people thought we were fine with long pub lunches where DD walks around etc when the reality is that I’d rather not go. Once I told people that they adjusted things a bit more; also as others have said you will be able to be smug in a year when your oldest settles to play and your baby isn’t yet moving around.

Chosenbyyou · 28/10/2018 06:35

Shox - it’s really easy to teach a toddler to sit still, I’m surprised more people don’t do it .... said no one ever?! Hmm

hidinginthenightgarden · 28/10/2018 06:36

Yes Shoxfordian you are right. The OP has clearly been pandering to her toddler. She just needs "training" not to have her own mind or any free will and all will be well!

OP are there not any pubs with softplay attached near you? We have a brewers fayre one where the food is shit but if you are just going for a drink, it is much more relaxed.

shearwater · 28/10/2018 06:37

Maybe you can start trying to teach your toddler to sit still and behave themselves

Ha ha. Good luck with that.

You might be able to plug them into Peppa Pig for a short time, but of course then people like the previous poster will judge you for using devices.

I think realistically, as your kids get older, you can't socialise and see your friends in the same way or as often as when you were all child free. People just have so much going on with their own families and the children end up having a better social life!

Probably best if you meet up with your friends less often but without the kids there. Though you'll end up talking about them anyway!

Shoxfordian · 28/10/2018 06:38

I never used to run around in pubs or restaurants when I was a kid. My mum must have squashed my free will very effectively Grin
There's a time and a place for letting your kids run around, like your garden or a park, not a pub.

RicStar · 28/10/2018 06:39

I think you just haven't reached the same stage yet - life is like this for a while with young children. They don't want to go to the park / soft play as they are not baby activities and are enjoying the novelty of being able to sit baby in a high chair. I think one of you should go to the pub - one take toddler toys a nearby park for a run around - then they can join you in the pub later. You can swap roles - this is going to be a short term issue.

superking · 28/10/2018 06:41

I feel your pain but it is just a phase - in a year's time you will hopefully have hit a (relatively) sweet spot of having a nearly 3 year old who can sit still and colour/ do stickers, and a baby who will stay on a lap, whilst your friends will be running around after their toddlers! Although they will probably then all want to meet at soft play...

I know it's frustrating and it sounds like you're a bit unlucky to be slightly out of sync with the rest of your friendship group when it comes to baby/ toddler stages. But, really, it doesn't last that long. Your friends probably just don't realize how stressful it is for you. I would either skip the pub meet ups for the next 6 months, or be honest and explain that pub trips are stressful so could you mix it up with say every third meet up being a walk/ park trip.

Other option would be to meet, feed DD with a kids meal at the pub (which will hopefully keep her occupied for a bit), and then either you or DH take her home whilst the other one stays a bit longer to catch up in peace (you could alternate this).

Shoxfordian · 28/10/2018 06:41

No judgement for using ipads from me, if it keeps your kids quiet whilst I'm having a pint then all good

GinIsIn · 28/10/2018 06:42

I think it’s equally unfair of you to expect all your friends, whose children are too young to enjoy it, to hang around the park for your DD, TBH. And I say that as someone who has a child the same age as yours.

kaytee87 · 28/10/2018 06:43

@Shoxfordian can you remember before you were 2 really clearly then? That's impressive. What age did you manage to teach your toddler to sit still for hours at?

Toddlers aren't actually meant to sit still for any length of time, it's not good for their health according to the nhs.

I find it weird taking babies and toddlers to pubs tbh, not a normal place to catch up with small children imo. That's what the park and soft play is for. Save the pub for when you have a babysitter.

MaruMaru · 28/10/2018 06:45

Why would anyone take their child- baby or toddler- to regularly spend Saturday afternoon in a pub? People really do this?
If they want to go out, why doesn't one parent go to the pub and the other parent look after their child at home or do something child-friendly with them?

speakout · 28/10/2018 06:46

Becoming a parent leads to a change in lifestyle and which social activities we engage with.

Going to the pub with a toddler is perhaps something you need to re evaluate.

speakout · 28/10/2018 06:48

Why would anyone take their child- baby or toddler- to regularly spend Saturday afternoon in a pub? People really do this?

I totally agree.

Toddlers don't belong in pubs.

shearwater · 28/10/2018 06:49

I agree with not letting them run around, but often the consequences of stopping them are they scream and shout and are generally quite loud for other customers! It's not easy.

I tried not to eat out too much actually when DDs were at that very wriggly and difficult to distract age. But when we did, we tried to pick somewhere with an outdoor space as being able to run around while the food was being prepared was usually enough that they were then able to sit still to eat something afterwards. Definitely no sitting in the pub chatting for hours though, we couldn't linger when they were at that age - except in the unlikely event they fell asleep.


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penisbeakers · 28/10/2018 06:51

I'm not a fan of kids in pubs, unless the pub is a part of a family restaurant. I don't see the upside. Folks go to pubs to unwind and let their hair down. Why take a child to a place where there could be drunk sweary people having a laugh in a manner they're allowed to in said pub? They're for adults, not kids.

Mummyoflittledragon · 28/10/2018 06:52

Inviting them to yours would be the obvious solution.

Vivaldi1678 · 28/10/2018 06:55

Why don't you just invite people round to each other's houses, bring a bottle if required, much easier. I can't imagine why anyone would see a pub as a baby/toddler venue, also annoying for other punters.

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