Dear Parents of Toddlers

Posted: August 2, 2010 in Uncategorized

Dear Parents of Toddlers,

I know how hard it is to be a parent to a toddler.  Their life is all about seeing how many ways they can make you look stupid, especially in public.  Their favorite trick seems to be throwing themselves to the floor and screaming like you just pulled their kidney out through their nose.  Add to that, you’re bombarded on all sides with conflicting advice on how to be the best parent you can be, plus are met with criticism regardless of what you do.

It stinks; I get that.

But what I don’t get is why the fact that being  a parent is hard excuses you from being a parent.

Case in point:  I was shopping recently at a large store.  It has a lot of stuff; it has great deals.  There are people everywhere, with their little ones running around them, mostly controlled, mostly contained.

While I was waiting my turn to fill my fountain drink, I notice a child who is holding open the frozen slush drink spout so that it pours out into the overflow drain, and spills out onto the floor.  This child is about 7, so basically old enough to know better, if properly taught.

Even if the child had forgotten that behavior was a poor choice, a mom can correct the behavior when noticing it and have a learning experience.

But when mom does notice, she doesn’t say anything.  She turns away, pretending not to notice.  Her other child, the toddler mentioned above, does notice, however.  She starts screaming at the top of her lungs because she wants to do exactly what big brother is doing.

Instead of being the parent she purportedly is, she comes over to her son, moves him out of the way, and holds up the little girl so she can waste some slush drink, too.

She hasn’t bought anything from the store.  She’s not contributing anything to their bottom line, other than essentially stealing a drink (or 5) and causing labor costs to clean up the flood on the floor.

And this, parents of toddlers, is why, even though I know it sucks, it’s hard, and so forth, you need to grow up and be a parent.  The people around you don’t want to do it for you, and we don’t want to pay more for our stuff to pay for the stuff your kid ruins.

This is why you get grouchy old people glaring at you and your perfect angel.  Because people pull stunts like that.

Anyway, keep in mind that your child needs a parent, not a friend or babysitter.

Thanks for helping raise the future leaders,

The Person Who Eventually Told You to Knock It Off

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