Hey Woman Who Told Mom to “Quiet” Her Tantruming Kid,
By now you’re an Internet sensation. But unlike David who went to the dentist or Charlie who bit his sibling’s finger, your time in the lime light is not for being a one-hit comical wonder. You won’t be marveled upon for years to come for your cutesy, intoxicated ways. We won’t repeatedly say, “Is this real life?” in your honor long after the phrase has lost its brilliance. Nope. You’ll be remembered for very different reasons. Here’s why:
As Mom struggled to make it through the checkout line while containing a child in full meltdown mode, you had the audacity to mouth the words,”Can you quiet your kid? It’s hurting my ears!” Rather than extending your hand to help… Rather than making bunny ears above your head to get the kid to laugh… Rather than moving to another check out line to avoid the situation… You dared to cast passive aggressive judgement. You may not have said the words, but we all know what you were thinking. Mom should do a better job keeping her kid under control. Well, shame on you.
Aside from the obvious, did it ever occur to you that maybe Mom was having a rough day? Maybe she just lost her job that morning. Maybe she’s a single mom in desperate need of help. Maybe her child is autistic. Or maybe, just maybe, she is like any other mom. Tired. Busy. Overworked. And underpaid. Maybe she just needed to get through that line and back home.
Emily Post would’ve had a field day with you. Were you not taught manners as a child? It’s never polite to call someone out in public! Which brings up the fact that you were indeed in a public place. You were waiting in line at a department store–a place for use by anyone, from anywhere, with all sorts of stuff going on. Unless a patron is openly breaking the law or violating some sort of guideline, all is fair when shopping at Nordstrom. You cannot make such requests, nor can you exhibit such ignorance. Unless the tantruming child was gnawing your arm off, zip it. You have no grounds to speak.
I’m not sure if you are a parent or have ever dealt with a public tantrum. They are the worst. Horrible. The equivalent of trying to squeeze into a pair of size 4 jeans when you damn well know you’re a size 8. The anxiety and embarrassment are nearly suffocating. I have five kids and every public tantrum that I’ve experienced felt like I was inside a spinning dryer on high heat. Anything outside of the circle of emotional fire is just a blur.
They say it takes a village to raise a child. That same village will also be there to protect and defend their own. I’m sure you’ve heard it all this week and you’ll likely hear more. You might wonder how you turned out to be the bad guy in this situation. While I do not condone violence and believe that Mom should come forward and face the consequences, I do believe you are at fault for an unfortunate series of events that could have been avoided. It’s called minding your own business. Exercise this next time and don’t hesitate to go above the call of duty. Ask Mom if there is something you can do to help. The worst you’ll end up with is hurt feelings from a mom rolling her eyes.
One of the Village People