Children in restaurants

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willful Posts: 6822
My family and I went out for a meal over the weekend; we were at a nice hotel and went for the early bird, so it was about 7ish. there was 14 of us including a 12yr old, an 11 yr old, a 3yr old and a 1 yr old. The 2 older kids were very good and quiet (except for once when my lil sis shouted because she was listening to an iPod and didn't realise how loud she was :o0 ). The littlest fella was in his high chair the whole time and was generally very good/quiet as babies go. However the 3 yr old is at that stage where God love her, she can't sit still for 2 seconds. During the course of the meal she let out a few loud but short screeches and she also let the table to do some 'princess dancing' when the pianist can in!! Now she wasn't really disturbing anyone, infact a few people were quite entertained by her 'beautiful' dancing-Peter Clohessy included :-8 :o0 She also at one stage went over to look at the christmas tree that was in the room. But............my self and Mr.W noticed some auld wagon calling over one of the staff and very clearly complaining about us (the Xmas tree was beside her table....how she didn't wither it is beyond me). Anyway, what are your thoughts about bringing kids out to restaurants? Mr.W is firmly of the belief that children should be seen and not heard and that the wagon, while excessive, was justified. I however think that is lovely to see a full family out together and think that the auld wagon should have kept her trap shut and that maybe she just needs a good auld ride from the hubby or something...... >:o) What do you think?
Anonymous Posts: 24542
[quote="willful":3uxylhjr] Anyway, what are your thoughts about bringing kids out to restaurants? Mr.W is firmly of the belief that children should be seen and not heard and that the wagon, while excessive, was justified.[/quote:3uxylhjr] I think that it's great to bring kids out to restaurants and an important part of learning social skills. HOWEVER, you are used to kids and their volume, other people are not. I'd have to agree with your OH. That would drive me absolutely bonkers. If the children were continually noisy then I would be annoyed and would consider it very rude of the family to continue to disrupt people. [quote="willful":3uxylhjr]and think that the auld wagon should have kept her trap shut and that maybe she just needs a good auld ride from the hubby or something...... >:o) [/quote:3uxylhjr] I think that this is a terrible comment to make about an older woman. It's very derogatory and in this comment you show no respect or regard for her feelings. You don't know anything about her circumstances. She could be unwell and feeling bad and looking forward to a quiet dinner out with her husband. You don't seem to have any empathy for her situation at all. [quote="willful":3uxylhjr]maybe she just needs a good auld ride from the hubby or something [/quote:3uxylhjr] In particular I think that this is quite nasty.
TokenMale Posts: 6845
Warning: you may not like this! I think children are more than welcome in restaurants, but as soon as they start acting up, they should be removed. Basically, children are rarely the problem, it's parents. On balance, I'd probably side with Mr. W on this one, but it's hard to say. Honestly, one person's "Oh look at the cute dancing" is another person's "Why is that child wandering around unaccompanied in a restaurant where hot plates are being served", etc. Truly, I don't think a 3 year-old should EVER be allowed to wander around a restaurant on their own, and if they're of the age where they can't sit still for the length of a meal, they shouldn't be there. I'm sorry if that offends, but that's what I feel about it. Now, "restaurants" come in all shapes and sizes, so if it's a family style restaurant (and I don't mean McDonald's) some of this doesn't apply. However, I stand over my view that the phenomenon of "wandering 3 year-olds" is unacceptable pretty much everywhere, because that can very quickly become a dangerous situation. PS We got a temporary reprieve from the no web access situation. We'll see how long it lasts.
Senorita Posts: 3413
Hi there We don't have children, and being an only child, I have never had any younger siblings. As I child, I was brought out with my parents for the odd meal, on special occassions. My parents were strict, and I sat quietly, and only left the table to visit the toilets (this was a thing of mine, if the toilets werent 100% we had to leave :-8 :o0 ). I have no problem with children in restaurants, once they are well behaved. I cannot however, abide screaming, and the banging of cutlery >:o) This type of incident has only happened us once or twice, when getting pub-grub, rather than in restaurants. Some parents do not have consideration for others, when they allow their children behave like that. In your instance, the woman does sound like she was being ott. Yes, it's lovely to see a happy family out enjoying a meal. Once the kids are well behaved, I doubt most people would see any problem at all.
Gonetopasturesgreener Posts: 3556
She sounds like an 'oul witch! In fairness, 7 in the evening is early, and I would see no problem with having children in a restarant at that time. If it was 11 o'clock at night I'd say no way - at that stage it's not fair on the kids, they'd be tired. When we go out for dinner with family there's usually a few nieces/nephews there, and like that you might have the odd 'Mammieeee!!!! I need to go toillllleeeeettttt!", but that's as crazy as it gets! One thing I can't abide though is when parents don't seem to be taking any responsibility for what their child is doing...I'm not a parent, so I don't know how difficult it can be first hand, but letting a child run around a restaurant screaming is quite another thing...that's not fair on anyone...Of course it happens at the best of times, but IMO take the child out for a breather and they'll usually calm down. We get alot of holiday makers where I live and it drives me crazy >:o( to see some families going to the pub for some pub grub and then letting the children run around for the afternoon, up and down the street, around the pub, into local shops (young kids too) while Mammy downs another g&t and Daddy has another Heineken...and they talk about how lovely and safe it is for the kids down here in the country! >:o( But that's more of a question of parental responsibility. I'm rambling now!...but yes, why should there be a problem with children in a restaurant at 7pm? What's the big deal? Besides...how will a child ever learn how to conduct themselves in a restaurant - they have to start somewhere!
willful Posts: 6822
dp
willful Posts: 6822
[quote="wonderyear":pfij32wt][quote="willful":pfij32wt] Anyway, what are your thoughts about bringing kids out to restaurants? Mr.W is firmly of the belief that children should be seen and not heard and that the wagon, while excessive, was justified.[/quote:pfij32wt] I think that it's great to bring kids out to restaurants and an important part of learning social skills. HOWEVER, you are used to kids and their volume, other people are not. I'd have to agree with your OH. That would drive me absolutely bonkers. If the children were continually noisy then I would be annoyed and would consider it very rude of the family to continue to disrupt people. [quote="willful":pfij32wt]and think that the auld wagon should have kept her trap shut and that maybe she just needs a good auld ride from the hubby or something...... >:o) [/quote:pfij32wt] [b:pfij32wt]I think that this is a terrible comment to make about an older woman. It's very derogatory and in this comment you show no respect or regard for her feelings. You don't know anything about her circumstances. She could be unwell and feeling bad and looking forward to a quiet dinner out with her husband. You don't seem to have any empathy for her situation at all.[/b:pfij32wt] [quote="willful":pfij32wt]maybe she just needs a good auld ride from the hubby or something [/quote:pfij32wt] [b:pfij32wt]In particular I think that this is quite nasty[/b:pfij32wt].[/quote:pfij32wt] Sweet Jesus WY :eek Did you get out of the wrong side of bed or something??? My remarks were clearly tongue in cheek, hence the devil emoticon. I think you're totally overeacting there. If you knew me or knew of me by my posts you would know that I would never wish harm or bad of anyone and that from time to time I do make joke/take the piss. Think you need to chill out a bit there ;o( Also if you had read my initial post properly you would see that they weren't particularly noisy, but the 3 yr old was moving about-that was the problem, not noise
newkid30 Posts: 2233
Not a huge fan of children in restaurants, obviously if they are well behaved it's not a problem, but I think parents have a duty to make sure they are not annoying other diners. Childrens behaviour while invariably cute to family members may be troublesome to other guests. A cute 3 year old looking at a Christmas tree unsupervised, might very well make an elderely person anxious. They may well fear the child will pull it down on themselves or pull something off and hurt themselves. I'm not saying your niece would ever have done these things, but you don't know why the lady was so put out? Personally if I'm going out for a meal in the evening, I would rather not have children around, but for this reason I would frequent places where it is unlikely to have children present. this I'm sure will change when I have my own shildren, but no doubt the places I frequent will change accordingly.
The PDQ Posts: 954
[quote="wonderyear":e8qdh8yl][quote="willful":e8qdh8yl] Anyway, what are your thoughts about bringing kids out to restaurants? Mr.W is firmly of the belief that children should be seen and not heard and that the wagon, while excessive, was justified.[/quote:e8qdh8yl] I think that it's great to bring kids out to restaurants and an important part of learning social skills. HOWEVER, you are used to kids and their volume, other people are not. I'd have to agree with your OH. That would drive me absolutely bonkers. If the children were continually noisy then I would be annoyed and would consider it very rude of the family to continue to disrupt people. [quote="willful":e8qdh8yl]and think that the auld wagon should have kept her trap shut and that maybe she just needs a good auld ride from the hubby or something...... >:o) [/quote:e8qdh8yl] I think that this is a terrible comment to make about an older woman. It's very derogatory and in this comment you show no respect or regard for her feelings. You don't know anything about her circumstances. She could be unwell and feeling bad and looking forward to a quiet dinner out with her husband. You don't seem to have any empathy for her situation at all. [quote="willful":e8qdh8yl]maybe she just needs a good auld ride from the hubby or something [/quote:e8qdh8yl] In particular I think that this is quite nasty.[/quote:e8qdh8yl] Eh, complete over reaction there I think!
willful Posts: 6822
I thought this might divide people alright! While I do see people's points about wanting to enjoy themselves in peace while they are out, I do think that it's acceptable to bring children out to eat in the vast majority of establishments if it is early in the evening and I think this was the case on our part. Also it was the first time in years that my parents and their children and grandchildren were together in the same place, let alone the same country in about 2 years. Also to clarify at each time that a child was noisy, they were corrected. The older children were perfectly well behaved and mannerly, the baby was also well behaved and the 3 yr old was corrected on numerous times. She was not freely roaming around, she was quietly dancing right beside our table and only left the immediate area once to look at the christmas tree. At no time did the staff indicate that there was a problem and in fact they went to great lengths to chat to the children and include the, which we were all particularily impressed with. Also even AFTER the lady complained, none of the staff approached us or asked us to modify the childrens' behaviour.