It turns out everybody gets yelled at

by doodaddy on January 26, 2009

Remember when I got "spoken to" for having sidewalk chalk out on the playground? I told that story a few times and it turns out that everyone has been "spoken to" at the playground for one thing or another.

Getting “spoken to” is evidently one of the few universal parenting experience.

Someone’s quick to point out that my daughter needs a sweater. (To which my response: you try to put it on her, I dare you.) Or look askance when we’re in Target at 8 p.m. (We’re night owls.) Or thinks I’m going to yank Boo’s arms out of her sockets. (She has strong arms.)

My incredulity about getting this kind of crap from people, of course, grows directly from this question that I’ve been asking myself since I was old enough to realize it:

"Why are people so clueless?"

Sure, there’s an aspect of family life that verges on the tribal: we all take a little interest in the safety and well-being of other people’s kids. I get that. But the jumping to conclusions – that’s got to go.

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in oddparents,sanctimommies,strangers ·

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

mom, again January 26, 2009 at 6:36 am

sweater = item of clothing a children wear when their mother is cold.

Or when a total stranger is cold evidently.

seriously, have these people not noticed that if a child is uncomfortable for any reason, they will not fail to make that discomfort known? Exceptions for newborns, but even then, cold will probably = crying.


Annie January 26, 2009 at 8:22 am

The only thing that makes me wince in your examples above is the pulling the arms thing. Only because my husband swinging our strong as an ox daughter ended up pulling something out of place in her elbow and sent us to the ER with a diagnosis of nursemaid’s elbow – very quickly fixed, but painful.

It made me wince, and would make me wince at a playground – but I’d never say anything – some things people have to learn the hard way 😉


Anita B January 27, 2009 at 1:33 am

I come from a parenting style where I let my child make mistakes from time to time, and even let him pick out his clothes every once in a while (which is usually footie pajamas). It’s my guess that it’s probably worse if you’re a dad, but I can empathize. I get stares, questioning glances and the occasional ‘advice’ and I used to just hate it. Now my attitude is to just let it go. I just tweeted the other day with a story and followed it with ‘you can suck it’. She didn’t hear me say it, but it made me feel better. Sort of like yelling at other drivers!


Georgia May 5, 2009 at 4:42 am

I’ve always wanted to print up little business cards for the really-judgemental- usually-off-base reprimanders that say “please look for your comment in my blog this week” or whatever…. I’m inspired again by your post!


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