5 Things I Have No Problem Telling Strangers Not to Do in Front of My Kid

playgroundI'm not one of those moms who believes she can take her kid everywhere. My daughter doesn't belong in bars or a super upscale restaurant. But when we're out at a family-friendly establishment, I expect the people around us to keep things relatively PG.

The question is: what do you do when adults are acting like jerks in front of your kid? Should you get up and move to protect your child ... or is it OK to tell someone that their behavior isn't acceptable in front of my kid?

This may ruffle some feathers, but I'm going to say it's number two.


Notice I'm not talking about bars and fancy restaurants. If my kid doesn't belong there, I don't expect folks to curb the adult activity for her sake. I'm the jerk for bringing her there.

But when you decide to pick a family-friendly place to hang and you can't control yourself, well, I have no problem telling you to clean up your act. What kinds of activities am I talking about? How about the following:

1. Smoking: There is nothing that bugs me more as an asthmatic and a mother than someone who smokes at a playground. Go puff on your cancer stick inside your car if you really need a fix that badly (just make sure there are no kids inside)!

2. Cursing: I don't mean one f-bomb. We're all guilty of saying things we shouldn't once in awhile. But if every second word is the f-bomb, you could at least drop your voice to library level.

3. PDA: A peck on the lips is one thing. Dry humping your partner on a park bench beside the playground is just not cool.

4. Fighting: Taking kids to a concert and having a fight break out on the lawn is scary. What if one of those people falls on your kids?

5. Kid Bashing: There's no reason my child should have to listen to a litany of reasons you think she's stupid, ugly, or a waste of air. If you don't like kids, don't go to the park on a hot summer day and sit by the monkey bars!

Have you ever had to speak up for your kid in public? What was the situation?


Image via crabchick/Flickr

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