toddlers at steakhouses - venting

Old Aug 7th, 2001, 10:07 AM
  #1  
Eric
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toddlers at steakhouses - venting

My wife and I have noticed that more and more parents feel it's ok to bring a toddler out to eat - even to an expensive restaurant - even later in the evening. Indeed, we had a screaming child behind us on Saturday. It was not the child's fault - she obviously was tired and had no interest in the conversation at 9 o'clock over an after dinner drink. It is the stupid parents' fault who actually think their child is the exception or don't want to spring for a sitter. Moreover, if a child drops food all over the floor, it is horrible to leave it for the waiter to pick up. People are amazing.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 10:11 AM
  #2  
uh oh
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oh boy--stand by Eric--this has been discussed before and it can get ugly.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 10:14 AM
  #3  
Suzie
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You know what else is amazing, the loud table of adults right next to us that carried on for the entire meal. The wait staff can say nothing. We advised a couple being seated next to us to ask for another table or expect to have their evening domionated by the loud group. It takes all ages to ruin a good time.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 10:17 AM
  #4  
JJJ
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Eric, if you're not a troll you must be 'new' here.
This topic comes up often.
It elicits strong reactions from young mothers defensive of their kids' 'rights', and strong reactions from others who feel their right to a nice meal is violated by these kids/parents.

I'm not sure what your point is.

People will argue about this to the death, and no one will budge from their initial opinion.

A topic best left alone.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 10:26 AM
  #5  
curious
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Yes, inconsiderate parents will bring young children to restaurants at the expense of other diners and yes it's wrong. As a parent I wouldn't put by self, my kids or innocent bystanders through the nightmare of dining with children until they are old enough and well-behaved enough to handle it. How do you know? Try it and the minute they get out of hand one of the parents should be prepared to take the child outside and possibly miss their meal in the process.
It's not always the kids though. Our family was out last Saturday and there was a woman 2 tables away who was so loud and obnoxious that you wouldn't believe it! Even the waiters were giving her dirty looks. She was more annoying and disruptive then any child in the whole place. By the way, on their way out the couple at the table next to ours stopped at our table to compliment us on how well behaved our two children were. They said it was refreshing to see that some children could be such gentlemen. This is not the first time people have done this. It's nice to hear that people appreciate the better behaved children rather than just commenting negatively on the ill-behaved ones.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 11:38 AM
  #6  
S
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Eric, anyone rude enough to disturb the diners around them is very annoying.

Granted, the only way to teach your children to behave in circumstances is to put them there. But we wanted to enjoy our dinner as well. We discovered when our girls were tiny that they were ready to eat at 5 or 6 PM, we didn't have to wait for a table at that hour, their patience (and ours) was much greater early, service was faster, and on top of everything else, they weren't tired yet. We ate dinner out last night early and realized that many other families have discovered the same thing. Too bad everyone hasn't, huh?

Even eating early doesnt'always prevent misbehavior. Can't tell you how many times over the years my husband has carried them outside in a horizontal position with them howling "Daddy, don't take me outside! I'll be goooooooodddd!!!!!" They always walk back into the restaurant tearful, but well-behaved! Now, just the question "Do you want to go outside?" works just as well!
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 11:43 AM
  #7  
x
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The problem is that most parents today are so self-centered, arrogant and self-righteous they think they can take their darlings wherever they want even if it is inappropriate! I am sick to death of parents dragging their kids to nice restaurants and ruining my dinner! Whatever happened to getting a babysitter???
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 11:51 AM
  #8  
Suzie
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Hey curious, it sounds like you had the same experience I did. Is there one woman and her group of cackling buddies traveling about ruining meals? By the way, I've had way more meals ruined by adults than children. I believe we, as adults, excuse one another's bad behaviors more often than we do for children. It's a hostile world out there. Just so you don't think I'm defending the inconsiderate parents, I strongly support the concept of a babysitter. Not because it assures a quieter dinner, but because parents need time to themselves and some of them just don't get that mostly by choice!!!
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 11:54 AM
  #9  
jim
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Well Suzie and curious, you don't like eating in a public restaurant with all the different variables--stay the hell home!!! People like you two should not be allowed out in public!!!
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 12:05 PM
  #10  
Suzie
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Say Jim, why the wrath for me and curious and none for the variables mentioned by Eric? Did I hit a sore note with you? Are you a loud adult diner? Parent who takes out ill-behaved children? What exactly is the problem here Jim?
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 12:12 PM
  #11  
Bill
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Dear X:

Talk about self centered, you want to have your perfect little world only for you. Well, sorry to disilusion you, but whenever you come in contact with anybody of any age, there is no perfection, only compromise, that includes parents with kids also. They need to compromise in understanding when not to bring their kids someplace & when to remove them gracefully, if it can be done, from a situation when they are disturbing other people. Other people, once in awhile, need to understand that there may be the possiblility of being disturbed by children of others, & understand that there may be circumstances out of their control for both the parents & the other people. That doesn't mean they have to like it, just maybe understand it. Similar to being cut-off by another car in traffic. You don't know what is going on, maybe there is an emergency & they need to get somewhere or they may just be an idiot, you never know.

x, you must have been the perfect kid, if you were ever a kid. And your parents must have been perfect in knowing every situation to which they would never bring you. Or maybe it is just that your parents never took you anywhere or spent time with you, so you can't understand why parents these days would want to spend time with their kids, even in what seems to be inappropriate situations. Both sides need to have understanding & compromise, even though that may never really happen.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 01:04 PM
  #12  
buttercup
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We also try to take our kids out at non-peak times. On vacation, this usually means a late lunch or early dinner, between 2 and 4.

We've always taken our kids out, but the type of restaurant has changed as they get older. However, we insist they behave everywhere, not just nice places. I think some kids are so used to the relaxed behavior at fast food places that they have no idea how to behave at a sitdown dinner.

We also used to practice the "be ready to leave if they get loud" rule. I've found sometimes the hardest time for kids is when everyone is done and waiting for the check. One of us was always ready to leave and walk around outside while the other paid.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 01:14 PM
  #13  
Dea
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Just talking about this issue on the phone with a friend of mine, bratty kids, inappropriate times for kids to be out, small kids should be home and in bed at 11:00 at night, men who wear baseball caps everywhere and don't realize or haven't been told that is bad manners not to remove a hat when entering a room, and people who talk on cell phones anywhere in the world they feel like it. What an amazing selfish society we have.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 01:15 PM
  #14  
hector
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Eric, avoid Sizzler!
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 01:19 PM
  #15  
Suzie
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I think most of us would expect to see kids at places like Sizzler but at Chez White Table Cloth we expect to be in the company of other adults who respect the environment (repectful volume for conversations, and, as Dea says, no baseball caps) or children who behave accordingly.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 01:19 PM
  #16  
Rita
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I too have seen some examples of uncontrolled child behavior in restaurants. I've seen parents allow their children to run wild around the tables in a busy restaurant while waiters were rushing about with heavy tureens of soup or sizzling platters. Not only were the children screaming and running uncontrolled, but I saw one practically trip a waiter bringing the family's soup order to the table. Of course, if the waiter were to have spilled something on the child, i'm sure the mother or father would have been the first to blame the management rather than themselves for failing to attend to their children. On the other hand, i've had wonderful meals where the children eating at the next table were incredibly well behaved and mannered. It's all a matter of parenting and consideration for others. Sounds like most of the people here are very conscious of their children and others. Wish more people would have the same attitude.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 01:23 PM
  #17  
Pat
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Rita:
AMEN.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 01:28 PM
  #18  
Leone
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My, my, we are revisiting an old one, aren't we ... who could forget the screaming tyke who spoiled some fab couple's plans for showcasing themselves at a wedding. But this time, mercifully, a solution is at hand. Venting toddler in a steakhouse? Of course, get them to a Toddle House. So easy. Ciao
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 02:19 PM
  #19  
Sal
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Eric,

If you think your restaurant experience was bad, look up the monkey thread and see what trouble those little rascals can cause.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2001, 03:08 PM
  #20  
Rev.Bob
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Restaurants need to have a cry room like they have in churches. For those of you who don't know what a cry room is, it's a soundproof room that has a plexiglass front. The parents and kids can hear the service but the rest of the congregation can't hear the little darlings...
 

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