If You Won't Correct Your Kid's Behavior on the Playground, This Mom Will

kid in ball pit
Mum on the Run/Facebook

Playgrounds and indoor play spaces are parenting lifesavers. Whether you've run out of things to do with them or your kids are simply getting on your last nerve, heading to the play place is a win for everyone. They get to run around and burn through some energy, and you get to catch your breath. But one mom has some pretty strong words for any folks who don't watch over their kids closely while at the playground.

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In a recent Facebook post, blogger Laura Mazza of Mum on the Run explained why she's had it with moms who treat play spaces like a makeshift baby sitter. "Today I found myself saying the words 'hey, that's not nice' ... 'please stop' to two little kids. Kids that weren't mine. Why? Because no one else was gonna do it," she writes.

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mum on the run blogger
Mum on the Run/Facebook

She took her 4-year-old daughter and toddler son to a 4-and-under play space for a day of fun. But she found herself spending much of the time having to parent other people's kids. "I watched two 5-year-olds ram one of those mini driveable cars into my daughter and laugh while she fell over," she writes (though she doesn't say how she knew they were 5 and not just tall for their age). "I watched a little boy climb on top of a jungle gym where his mum had no idea that he was about to come falling down, and I caught him. She came over when she saw a stranger carrying her kid and gave me a dirty look while she snatched him off me," she said.

Though she says she's not normally one for public confrontation, she draws the line when it comes to her kids. "I've never liked to tell a strangers kid off, but if you're gonna pretend you can't see it because you wanna sit and chat, then I'm gonna tell your child off."

Mazza's plan to be a self-appointed playground security guard makes sense as a momma bear. But what about moms who are doing the free-range parenting thing, and trying to let their kids work out social interactions on their own without having a parent hovering over them? Or even just moms who are watching their kids, but are taking a second to breathe or talk with a friend? Is it for Mazza, a stranger, to step in and say something to their child? 

She argues yes. "I've been up all night too, I am desperate for social time too, I'm lonely, I'm tired, my neck hurts and everything else ... but I also don't believe that my kid is entitled to pull your kid's hair because I want a hot coffee." 

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To be fair, Mazza knows her own kids aren't perfect. "And if you see my kid be a jerk, you tell him off too, or tell me and I'll correct him asap," she writes. Her point is that we all know parenting is hard, but that's no excuse for treating a play space like a nanny. If you're not aware of what your child is doing, her point is that you can't get mad if another adult steps up to do your job for you. 

"Mothers, if we don't have each other's backs like this, then how can it be a smooth experience for all?" she writes. "This is a village and it only works if we all do our part, that way we can all have a good time."

Or, to sum it up, "Watch ya damn kid," she says. 

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