I don't know what it is about restaurants that cause my kids to lose it entirely. They can be fully delightful children all day, but get them into a restaurant context and BOOM, cray-cray ensues.
I think a lot of things make this so tough…the judgy eyes of other diners, the fact you're not in control of how fast the food comes out, how it looks or what temperature it will be (which can trigger a meltdown in picky eaters), and the fact that an experience which used to be fun and relaxing has become a massive stress point. Thank heavens we have never crossed paths with Randall, he of the "honey badger" treatment. In this latest episode of Moms in The Wild, he follows several moms and their kids to restaurants.
We have friends who we love dearly, and whose kids play beautifully with ours, but when we all go out to eat together it is a horror show. Once my daughter and theirs knocked over a Christmas tree, another time we were told by a (very nasty) old lady that our kids were the worst ever. She should have seen the girl in this video!
Here's what I think…while some behavior is just not OK, a lot of it is just kids being kids, and life would be a lot easier if other people would chill out and accept that sometimes they have to see children acting like children in public. Wandering around and staring at other people? Not cool. Looking around from their own seat? Cute. Throwing or playing with food? Not cool. Using less than awesome table manners? Sometimes it happens. Like so many other things about parenting, restaurant dining would be easier if people would just lighten up.
Have your kids ever embarrassed you terribly in a restaurant?
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