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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:

SushiMonster · 28/10/2018 11:46

Can you take the front foot organising the day with a couple of your closer friends, then open it out to the wider group “sally Jane and I have arranged to meet in the park as it’s a nightmare for me with the toddler in a pub at the moment. Is anyone else free to join us IN THE PARK?”


MiriAmmerman · 28/10/2018 11:58

My DS is 7mo. He definitely would not sit in a pub highchair all afternoon! Where do people get these babies?! We can and do eat out with him but not long, lingering, catching up with old friends meals. Between our laps and the highchair we can keep him quiet and content for about 90 mins. That would be it. He's trying to crawl atm and all he wants to do is get on the floor and practice. Watching grown ups chat is boring for him, and he's too little to look at books/colour.
Don't feel bad OP. Their children won't be like that for long.


gamerwidow · 28/10/2018 12:01

Unfortunately blanket statements and broad generalisations could be the subheading for AIBU Grin


AiryFairyUnicornRainbow · 28/10/2018 12:06

Wacky warehouse, type place?


BlaaBlaaBlaa · 28/10/2018 12:12

@gamer 😂😂😂indeed!


Zucker · 28/10/2018 12:27

Problem is you're out of sync with the rest of the group. Prepare yourself for a group mind shift when their children are at toddler stage and suddenly the pub isn't appealing anymore. Suddenly they'll be into more appropriate activities! Hard not to resent, but if you want to keep them as friends you may just have to swallow it.


BertieBotts · 28/10/2018 12:33

I mean to be fair, Shox illustrates the point rather well. I expect they don't have any kids or have a young baby.

Your friends probably don't realise how much energy a toddler has and that they can't be contained to one place and entertained there as easily as a younger baby. Being pissed off is a bit unfair as they don't know what it's like yet.

I would definitely take the suggestion of what other people have said "Oh sorry, the pub isn't really working for us with DD at this age, we'd love to meet you at soft play/cafe/why don't you come here/we could come to you if it works?"


ToddlerTamerMumma · 28/10/2018 12:43

Oh man I totally feel you on this and could have written it myself!!

Most of the time I just spend chasing DS (24mo) round the cafe/pub/coffee shop and never get to chat at all. Inside I'm usually seething too!


KarmaStar · 28/10/2018 13:55

Am I right in reading here,that the majority of posters think running around a pub is fine ,screaming,tripping up staff with glasses and hot food,people getting drunk and(occasionally)disorderly,is all fine because "it's bad for a toddler to sit still"?
Or have I misread it?
And anybody wanting a respite from work/home/kids have no right to peace and quiet because it will stint a stranger's child, stop them having' free will'?
No,I have got it wrong.nobody is that entitled and selfish.


blueskiesandforests · 28/10/2018 14:01

Karma I'm pretty sure you are not right in reading that, no. A lot of people have said pub lunches are fine with kids in high chairs and a lit if family pubs rely on selling foid to families. A minority have said hanging out in a pub without having a meal, with kids, works for them. A few have referred to chasing kids around - are you reading that as games if chase! I think it means people trying and struggling to keep their toddlers still or walking them around the common areas.
I don't think anyone admits to being that parents whose children scream and trip up staff while they get mildly or not mildly pissed with their friends and family in the daytime... Though they certainly exist!


blueskiesandforests · 28/10/2018 14:03

A lot of letter "i" s in that post should have been "o" s. Fat fingers.


blueskiesandforests · 28/10/2018 14:04

Pretty sure nobody refered to free will, or "free will" ...


HauntedPencil · 28/10/2018 14:06

It really is only a small window where you can go to coffee shops pubs etc with babies and it's enjoyable though give it a few months and they'll be in the same zone as you!


HauntedPencil · 28/10/2018 14:09

There are some lovely pubs around here you could go for a meal, some have playgrounds at the back.

Karma I'm afraid I do go out for pub meals with my children what a selfish bad person I must be..


53rdWay · 28/10/2018 14:17

No,I have got it wrong.nobody is that entitled and selfish.

Good news! You have got it wrong, you’ve entirely misread the conversation and nobody is saying that at all. I bet you’ll feel much happier for knowing that now Smile


RPC28 · 28/10/2018 14:36

I have never liked the idea of a toddler in a pub anyway.
A pub is where people drink alcohol. Yes I don't mind going to a pub/restaurant where the majority of people would be sat eating food but not for a catch up. My mum once took my daughter to a pub when she was younger and now everytime we walk past she points and says that's the drink shop 🤔.
If I see my friends it'll either be take kids to the park, soft play (we have a cafe in our soft play) or somewhere we can all join in. Play dates etc.


livefornaps · 28/10/2018 15:18

Lol the drink shop!!!

Yeah I think a whole generation of infants is going to grow up to get absolutely smashed


BertieBotts · 28/10/2018 15:23

No - nobody is saying it's fine for toddlers to run around in pubs.

They're saying they can't take their toddler to the pub, specifically because they would either run around, or scream.



Stillwishihadabs · 28/10/2018 15:30

I think the time of year isn't helping either, picnics in the park and playgrounds or pub gardens are much less appealing now than they were a few weeks ago. As others have said you may have to suck it up this winter. I agree with running them ragged in the morning before trying to socialise and I would definitely at least feed the toddler even if you are not eating. But unless she naps in the buggy about 45 minutes to an hour is pretty much the maximum you can expect a 22m old to be content in such an adult environment.


londonrach · 28/10/2018 15:33

My dd heading towards 2 years and a half and believe me she starting to get better in pubs. She was bad from 18 months to just now. Still bad if tried or having a bad day. Laughing at someone who stupidly said teach a toddler to sit still. My dd is good and we use toys, colouring etc but shes still a toddler and everything is new so wants to see the lady with the funny hat, the table that randomly three tables away which has different feet (to her) than your table. Yanbu by the way but it get easier sooner than you think. This is a short time. I did miss the baby easy stage of pubs but toddlers are so much more fun.


shearwater · 28/10/2018 15:39

Yeah I think a whole generation of infants is going to grow up to get absolutely smashed

Younger people (those brought up in the era of most pubs being family friendly places) have far less interest in alcohol than gen X or Y.


kaytee87 · 28/10/2018 16:12

@KarmaStar no, the majority of people are saying that a pub generally isn't a suitable place for a toddler.


GrabEmByThePatriarchy · 28/10/2018 19:58

Don't go letting facts get in the way of the stereotyping shearwater!


Ozziewozzie · 28/10/2018 20:12

Are you me? It’s as though my I wrote the thread myself. People just don’t get it. But even worse, once their children are older, they seem to magically forget. On our wedding day, small affair and meal in lovely pub, dh and I spent the whole meal chasing our 23mt old around the venue. Not one person offered to help so we could actually eat something. I knows he’s our child and we certainly didn’t expect anyone to be fully responsible for him, but to have at least offered for 5 mins.
Have you thought about buying a pub yourself and then it would be home from home. Your toddler won’t find it as exciting after a while. 👼🏻😆

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