To the Lady That Told Me to Keep My Kids at Home

Blogger and mother Lauren Plotkin of My Plot of Sunshine shares with us her reply to a recent comment on a blog post.


A few weeks ago, I wrote a blog post titled Mom Etiquette: Please Stop Doing This Sh**, a kind of tongue-in-cheek, sarcastic post where I'm venting about mom/parenting things I find annoying. The post wound up being featured on POPSUGAR Moms and shared on social media. And like any blogger/writer whose work is featured, I made the mistake of reading some of the Facebook comments. I expected that not everyone would agree with the article, but some of the comments were surprising. It seems that every time something funny/lighthearted/satirical is posted on Facebook, along come Facebook commenters (aka trolls) to remind everyone that there is always something to be up in arms about. One of the "rules of etiquette" I mentioned was this:

Don't stare during meltdowns. If you find yourself staring at another mom and her child while the child has a massive meltdown in the middle of Target or on an airplane, please find the nearest fork and stab yourself in the eyes. First of all, I can assure you that the mom is embarrassed enough for herself without you adding to the moment. Second of all, that mom has just as much of a right to be at that store or on that plane as you do, regardless of the screaming child.

For some reason this one seemed to have struck a nerve with a few people on Facebook. All I said was don't stare, I definitely didn't say that I hope my child melts down and throws up on your face. That would have been offensive. But one mom commented and said this:

So this lady that wrote the article thinks it's ok to have her kids screaming and causing a scene and we're not supposed to look at them? Get out of the store if your kids cannot control themselves. I don't want to listen to them. And yes I have 2 kids and dealt with them but never let them scream and annoy other people. Stay home if your kids are not ready to go out in public. And she says she has every right to be at that store regardless of the screaming child. This lady is sadly mistaken and has no courtesy or respect for others.

Now, I don't want to make a habit out of responding to ignorant people, but as a mother, I feel like her comment needs addressing. This woman really thinks that I should stay home? She really thinks that kids should just be able to control themselves?

Oh no, boo boo. (insert finger wag and neck roll here)

I do not think it's okay if my kids are screaming and causing a scene, in fact, I'm likely the flustered mom that's trying to hush my child so as not to annoy others. But do you really think my 12-month-old can control herself? Or that I should wait until "she's ready" to go out in public? Well I guess I'll see you guys in about 5 years! I'll just stay home and not get groceries, who needs food anyway? Ha. And I'M the one that has no courtesy or respect for others.

I am so sorry that you don't want to listen to my kid having a meltdown, but trust me, neither do I. And if anyone should stay home, it's you. As a mother yourself, you should have more compassion and understanding for the mom that barely has time to shower, much less make it to the store to buy food for her family. Did it ever occur to you that all children are different and just because some moms don't have robots for kids doesn't mean that they're not good parents or that they're not trying? Because I really hope my child screams and cries in a public place so that I can receive disdainful stares from strangers said no mom EVER.

But overall, I must say that most of the comments I received were kind/nice/funny/supportive. And I'll end this post with the very best one; this helpful mama, in response to Mean Mama, said:

There are a LOT of perfect parents on this thread. Wow… never see them out in public though only on the internet. So strange.

So to all the mamas out there handling meltdowns in aisle 6 like a boss, I salute you.

My Plot of Sunshine

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