View Full Version : Noisey 6yr Old in Barnes&Noble


Stevuke79
04-11-14, 01:23 PM
I was in Barnes & Noble because there was a book that I was so excited to buy for my kindergartner and I brought her along so she could look at the whole genre and see what she likes in general. I decide to do this after school AND after her after-school dance class... so she's tired and hungry. We spend an hour and a half in the store because I can't find the book and I'm obsessing... And also my daughter wants to stop and look at every single cool looking thing she passes.. and I do too... so this is taking a long time and by the time we're on the checkout line she's exhausted and starving. (bad judgement, I know; stick with me here). This is also why I do 99% of all shopping on line :doh::rolleyes:.

So when she starts getting really off the hook, which is mostly unlike her, my MO is to help her get out some energy in a non destructive way... (and if she's like her dad, this is not very different from what she might have to do as an adult.) So I wrap my arms around her which totally makes her upset but I do it to restrain her from grabbing a toy that she was demanding and also so that she will struggle a little and get a bit tired.

(By the way, she knows about stealing. We don't even buy her stuff outside of hanuka and birthdays.. too confusing for her. She knows she has to save her allowance and because of that she knows when she can expect to "get stuff". We buy her books (cause ya know, if she had to buy her own books and toys, it would be all toys :D ) but I usually wont take her with me to the book store unless she's spending her own allowance.. so this was actually a big treat.. but just yesterday she was having trouble getting her feelings under control).

Anyway!! 45 seconds later when she tires a bit and gives up struggling so I can hold her with one arm I go to stage 2 which is usually:
"OK, what was that you were trying to tell me?"
**and as soon as she starts to talk I tap my palm on her mouth so that everything she says comes out like "ba, ba, ba, ba, ba.. "**
"Wait, what was that, .. come on I really want to hear what you have to say.."
"ba,ba,ba,ba,ba.." "Wha? Come again?" "ba, ba, ba, ba"

After a few rounds we're both cracking up,.. and she had let out a few yells during the "ba,ba ,ba ,ba, ba".. "thing" (because that's the game.. she's kind of competing with me for control ..like "you can't make everything sound like ba ba ba becauseif I scream that wont sound like ba ba ba.. Ha Ha Ha!!! Got ya daddy!!") and I know she's gonna do that.. We're laughing and having a great time.

I get a lot of dirty looks as a parent but yesterday it was unanimous; it's usually not unanimous. My daughter wasn't being that loud.. she was maybe as loud as the very loudest adult employee voice you might hear in the mall.. but she's 6 so it stands out and it was a "yell" not a "word" so it sounds more distressing. My philosophy is: As long as my daughter and I are acting within the "rules" and not disorderly and not interfering with anyone, then if you have a problem then it is in fact you who has a problem so it is you who must deal with it. (sarah has a fantastic and more succinct way of articulating this.. can't recall at the moment..something like "eat duck yourself" or "hit the puck yourself".. maybe that's only hockey?)

Even when the glare is unanimous I don't care. I will interact with my child in the way that is best for her with no regard for my own image or your opinion. And funny - I used to have to swallow my pride for that image bit. Now, I'm proud of the image. And this is not the reason, but every once in a while (not I'll see a parent look at me in a way who says, "wow, he calmed that kid down like a master!" .. and I know that's the 1 in 10 parents who knows what they're talking about.

But here's my whole pont and my question:
Am I wrong? Suggestions and comments from all are appreciated.. And especially you're one of the people who wouldn't have appreciated seeing me and my daughter like that, I would sincerely like to know your perspective. I'm wrong all the time - I may well be wrong here too. :D And I could well have handled this in a way that would have been less noisy... but do I have to do that if it's the second best way in regards to my daughter?

Fuzzy12
04-11-14, 01:33 PM
What makes you think you are wrong? It sounds to me like you've found a good way to deal with this situation and more importantly, a way that works for both you and your daughter. As long as your daughter (or you:D) aren't damaging anything or anyone I don't see a big problem.

Screaming kids can be annoying but that doesn't mean that she must never scream or be loud. It's just one of those things that we have to put up with. I mean, it's like like those silly little yappy dogs who can be pretty annoying but it's not the dogs' fault and I'd rather deal with my annoyance than have someone force the dog to shut up somehow in a way that hurts him.

Not that I'm comparing your daughter to a silly little yappy dog. You know what I mean. :lol:

I just meant that not annoying people isn't as important as dealing with your daughter in the right way and I think if the annoyed people would think about that, they'd agree.

salleh
04-11-14, 01:34 PM
....I never raised a child ..but I was a grade school sub, and have some knowledge of child psychology......and using that knowledge, I'd say you did just the right thing ....may not be the best thing for every parent, but it works for you ....


....and speaking as an observer of children and their parents ....I gotta say YAYAYAYAYA ...you did GREAT ! ......what I get upset about is when I see parents of young children at a store, or some other public place, and the kid is in or near meltdown ....and the parent is ignoring them .....other than every few seconds a stern ....shut up or words to that effect.....and that parent goes on talking on the phone or talking to someone else in line ....

....With young kids ...you have to be in the moment with them .....you simply cannot ignore them and expect them to co-operate ....it won't happen ....and to me it smacks of a very ignorant parent who will ignore their kid so that they ( the parent ) can continue to do something they want to .....

...Let me make this clear ..if you're talking to a check out clerk, no, you really just have to get through that as soon as you can ....I am speaking of the waiting in line part, when the parent is perfectly capable of dealing with the child and chooses to ignore them .....


.....So both parts of me say ....you did it just right, and well done you .....

there's a bonus too, your little girl will grow up secure that Daddy will pay attention in a non-threatening way .....you're laying the ground work for great communication with her ....

....a kid who only gets ignored or yelled at in a public place is not gonna place much trust in their parents.....and that bodes no good for them down the line when you're not around so much .....that kid learns never to let their folks know what they're doing ....

Stevuke79
04-11-14, 01:47 PM
Thanks Fuzzy! The way you wrote that, I had to think for a minute why I was even asking the question, lol.. (A professor of mine said the mark of a good answer is making the original question seem curious. :) ) The yappy dog was a sharp and fantastic example.

So let me see if I can recall why my original question made sense to me when I asked it, lol. I'm always afraid of my arrogance closing my own mind. Some parents cringed that I seemed so immature myself.. maybe I am a bad example? And that I was wrestling with a 6 year old.. you could tell two women cringed.. even winced a little like they felt it was abuse... and that made me question myself.. but I never think it is because she is never afraid of mommy and daddy. Never nervous or anxious. She speaks up and negotiates, reasons with us, and even disagrees with us (which I think is a good sign - unafraid of not making us happy). But even if it's not abuse, I've needed to be taught things before.. and about parenting as well. So maybe if EVERYONE else disagrees, I'm the one who is wrong?

namazu
04-11-14, 01:58 PM
In general, it sounds to me like you know what's effective with your daughter, and that's great.


I guess the questions really are:

- Does a bookstore count among places where even a modest amount of loud vocalization is considered rude (e.g. in the middle of a classical music concert, in the reading room of a library, in a fancy restaurant, etc.)?

- Would there have been any way of handling this that would have been effective, with less noise (e.g., leaving everything, going outside, doing the "ba ba ba" "tell me more" thing, and returning)?

If the answer to the second question is "not really", then there probably wasn't anything else you could have done, other than not take her to the bookstore in the first place.

I think a lot of people consider bookstores to be a bit like libraries, so maybe there would be more of an expectation of quiet there than you had realized. I think I'm personally more tolerant of kids' squealing than a lot of people, so I'm not sure I'd have batted an eye. But people who are there to browse the shelves in peace and quiet might view it differently.


Errr...was the issue the noise, or do you think people who didn't know what was going on were just worried that there was a little girl screaming and a man apparently trying to silence her? Because without knowing the context you've given above, that could be quite worrisome!

Stevuke79
04-11-14, 02:06 PM
:goodpost::thankyou:First of all Salleh, thank you.. and thank you so much for such a well thought out post. As a parent, we don't get to think about adult-child interaction quiet as much,.. or perhaps not in the same way as a teacher. There was a lot in your post I hadn't thought about and it makes a lot of sense.


..what I get upset about is when I see parents of young children at a store, or some other public place, and the kid is in or near meltdown ....and the parent is ignoring them .....other than every few seconds a stern ....shut up or words to that effect.....and that parent goes on talking on the phone or talking to someone else in line ....

As a parent, I found that to be a very very valuable third-person perspective and a really great "break-down" of what happens. I know you cite that as a contrast to what I did, but of course as you know every single parent does a little of that here and there. While it may be inevitable to a certain extent, having such a clear picture of the problem is really helpful!!

And about taking peoples time - yes, check!! I'm good there :)


.....So both parts of me say ....you did it just right, and well done you ..... there's a bonus too, your little girl will grow up secure that Daddy will pay attention in a non-threatening way ... you're laying the ground work for great communication with her ..... a kid who only gets ignored or yelled at in a public place is not gonna place much trust in their parents ..... and that bodes no good for them down the line when you're not around so much ... that kid learns never to let their folks know what they're doing ..

Thank you, Thank you :thankyou:Thank you :thankyou: and also Thank You!!!!!

Stevuke79
04-11-14, 02:37 PM
In general, it sounds to me like you know what's effective with your daughter, and that's great.

Thank you!! :thankyou:


I guess the questions really are:
- Does a bookstore count among places where .. loud vocalization is ..rude
- Would there have been any way of handling this that would have been effective, with less noise (e.g., leaving everything, going outside, doing the "ba ba ba" "tell me more" thing, and returning)?

If the answer to the second question is "not really", then there probably wasn't anything else you could have done, other than not take her to the bookstore in the first place.

The answer to the first place was definitely not. It's a pretty loud joint.

The answer to the second question is definitely. I absolutely could have handled this is a way that would be less favorable to me, slightly less favorable to my daughter and more favorable to everyone else. They all would take a form similar to your suggestion: go outside.

So I guess you just made my question much clearer than I did:
- Is it ok for me to subject people to reasonably loud 6-yr old screams in order to not have to waste more of my own time than necessary and so that I can get her home to food and sleep as quickly as possible. (bc that's why she's acting up.)

Even taking out the child's need for food and sleep and considering only my own needs. It's on the one hand "my ten minutes" versus "several people hearing a few loud noises". If it were my 10 minutes versus another persons 10 minutes - I would be gracious and offer my 10 minutes to preserve theirs. I'm a nice guy like that. But I think anyone's ten minutes is worth more than 100 people's hearing an unpleasing loud sound for about 2 minutes (I'm not actually wasting those 2 minutes).

I think a lot of people consider bookstores to be a bit like libraries, so maybe there would be more of an expectation of quiet there than you had realized. I think I'm personally more tolerant of kids' squealing than a lot of people, so I'm not sure I'd have batted an eye. But people who are there to browse the shelves in peace and quiet might view it differently.

Could be. But I felt there were clear reading areas and there was a semi quiet tone near the book shelves.. but where we were wasn't quiet at all. But you are probably, or definitely 100% right that the idea the B&N is overall a quieter place helped them rationalize their response, but it didn't cause their response.

I'm not saying their response wasn't valid, that's the question of my thread. And I guess what you're saying is it mostly wasn't. But whether or not it's valid, (and perhaps it is.. the 10 minute thing..) .. I think the notion of a book store fed into their reaction.

Errr...was the issue the noise, or do you think people who didn't know what was going on were just worried that there was a little girl screaming and a man apparently trying to silence her? Because without knowing the context you've given above, that could be quite worrisome!

I probably get more dirty looks than most people ;) ..(just kidding, I have no idea how many looks any one else gets)... And in my experience as a dirty-look authority, it's a progression. It starts as a visceral reaction to a stimulus .. then becomes a more generalized disapproval.. and then becomes more specific again as a look of judgement.

In stage three most people seemed to feel: That's no way to behave in a store.. immature dad.. misbehaved girl
For these two women stage three was more about the roughness.. they didn't think as you said: were just worried that there was a little girl screaming and a man apparently trying to silence her?.

It was 100% clear she wasn't "sincerely protesting" as if she was screaming.. she was more "laugh-yelling".. or I need another word for " laugh-scream".. but clearly laughing... it was more like:
"Dad is being too rough.. he shouldn't teach her to play like that.. she'd be quieter if he wasn't so rough" And that last bit was 100% true - if I wasn't so rough she'd have been quieter. She'd have also been sadder.

Ms. Mango
04-11-14, 08:29 PM
To be a parent is to be judged. The thing is, you're out in public and you're in a place where kids are allowed and that kind of behavior happens. It certainly isn't unexpected. Kids don't like waiting in line. Kids get bored and hungry. You aren't foisting your kid on everyone by exercising your right to pay retail (except to the extent that you, like everyone else, are trapped in line waiting to check out), we all know that is part and parcel of the brick and mortar shopping experience. Anyone who can't deal with something that normally occurs when out and about can stay home and order off the web.

There have been times I've removed my kid from a store and just gave up--but it was closer to the beginning of an outing than the very end. Once you're in line there's no going back, just try to make the best of it--which is exactly what you did.

Next time smile sweetly at the judgers, they hate that....

willow129
04-11-14, 11:13 PM
Oooh...I think the ba ba ba thing sounds so cute. My siblings used to do that kind of thing to me too when I was cranky and I remember it made me laugh SO hard. I liked it.

You sound like fun :) Will you give parenting lessons?

Stevuke79
04-11-14, 11:21 PM
Willow, that was so nice! and thank you for sharing that story with your siblings! Lessons any time!

stef
04-12-14, 02:33 AM
i think that's great!!
people can be really judgemental
i remember my friend saying her son had this total meltdown in target, they tried to calm him down, finally her husband just carried him screaming to the car while she paid for groceries. when she got to the car someone had called the police! (suspecting child abuse...)

sarahsweets
04-12-14, 06:37 AM
Its all about location and time, I have been in bar/ restaurants not really geared to kids around 9pm and have seen tired and hungry kids with exasperated parents. I get annoyed that my grown up time with hubby gets piercedwith a loud wail. Inside I am p*ssed. Who are they to ruin MY time because THEY had to bring their bratty kids to eat at 9pm? Then, empathy kicks in and I remember that I may not know if they were on the road for hours and had to eat dinner late, or that maybe they have a family situation to attend to and no babysitter or maybe this is the only god dam*ed time they have to spend any sort of time with their kids. Unless I do an interview, I can only guess and if you are p*ssed when you guess, you will always overlook the sane possibilities and jump onto the "rotten selfish parent" train. In situations like these I politely and calmly ask the server if there is a quieter table to sit at. I dont yell and sarcastically rant about this loud child with no good parents because that would be mean, and I do not want to be mean. If I am in anyplace with a kids section,a kids menu, or evening hours that arent late then I expect there to be kids-tired ones, wild ones,happy ones,loud ones. Kids are anything but predictable. F**k those judgemental people Steve.

Fuzzy12
04-12-14, 07:57 AM
Thanks Fuzzy! The way you wrote that, I had to think for a minute why I was even asking the question, lol.. (A professor of mine said the mark of a good answer is making the original question seem curious. :) ) The yappy dog was a sharp and fantastic example.

So let me see if I can recall why my original question made sense to me when I asked it, lol. I'm always afraid of my arrogance closing my own mind. Some parents cringed that I seemed so immature myself.. maybe I am a bad example? And that I was wrestling with a 6 year old.. you could tell two women cringed.. even winced a little like they felt it was abuse... and that made me question myself.. but I never think it is because she is never afraid of mommy and daddy. Never nervous or anxious. She speaks up and negotiates, reasons with us, and even disagrees with us (which I think is a good sign - unafraid of not making us happy). But even if it's not abuse, I've needed to be taught things before.. and about parenting as well. So maybe if EVERYONE else disagrees, I'm the one who is wrong?

I think that's a good sign too. I think kids should respect their parents (because everyone should respect everyone) but they shouldn't have to be afraid. I was never afraid of my parents but I was still fairly well behaved because I knew why my parents wanted me to be well behaved.

Of course from the outside, for a stranger it's a hugely difficult decision to make as they can't know the entire story but when in doubt I guess it's better to err on the side of caution. .ie on the side of the child And the child's safety. But then you said that there was no doubt that your wrestling was in good fun and that your daughter enjoyed it so I don't see the motivation for those women to raise their eye brows and give you disapproving looks. Besides even if the situation was different what help would raised eyebrows and looks be anyway?

If the decision uhh s between saving anyone b10 minutes and subjecting people to 2min of loudness I think 10 of anyone's time wins unless those 2mins can have a long time effect on their well being which seems unlikely in this case.

I don't know it's a difficult question but I think it's really cool that you think about it and try to do the right thing. Too many people never try to see a situation from other s point g of view.

salleh
04-12-14, 10:01 AM
Sarah ....dear girl, you have opened my eyes to some of the causes of why kids behave that way at restaurants at all hours ....and yah, I think we all could do with a lot more .....I don't know what the situation is, so I'll not be judgementalness .....

..the tricky part is to be able to tell when it's serious, and perhaps authorites need to be called and when it's just part of life


...and leave us face it....some people are just not very good at being parents .....I certainly saw enough of the results of that being a teacher ...even though I was mostly only at any one classroom for 1 or 2 days ......but being a bad parent is not a criminal action ....