Taming the inner parental tiger

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We are on holiday. It’s B’s first ever summer holiday, at 20 months. He had seen a beach before, but it was in Wales and it was freezing so I don’t think it counts.

Of course for our first week (thankfully, I guess, only half a week) we had some pretty bad weather. It’s a total first world problem but was a bit frustrating when we have waited the whole year almost to have a proper holiday! We did go to see my best friend but this is our first one as a family. But the place we are staying is very child friendly – we found it after it was marketed as a child friendly holiday. It could be worse.

One thing I found funny is how I spotted a mixed race couple early on. I suppose we always identify with others. I clocked them early on and they’re the same races we are. Although she is totally skinny and doesn’t look like she could have had a baby, and their baby is younger than our toddler! I also realised this holiday how I need to lose a bit of chub, but half board food isn’t conducive to that!

Anyway I noticed they are always out without the baby! And I just thought that seemed a bit sad. She’s posing by the pool in her bikini and it just struck me as odd because I’ve seen them more times without the baby than with the baby. As it’s a child friendly resort there’s a crèche and lots of kid activities, but their kid isn’t even a toddler yet from what I can see. Each to their own but I can’t imagine why you’d come on holiday with the baby and then not spend time with the baby, but maybe some people just don’t really want or like spending time with their kids.

It got me to thinking also because there is a friend of a friend who lives where we do. Our mutual friends introduced us but I just didn’t get a good feeling about them and I didn’t really try and befriend them or anything. It turns out they spend every night in the pub getting drunk and their kid just has to sit in the pushchair (and he’s old enough to walk, older than B) and they shout at him to shut up if he ever wants to get out. I saw her dragging him along the road the other morning and it just seems like she hates being a parent. She told our mutual friend he wasn’t planned and she’s depressed being a mother and they didn’t want a kid. It makes me sad and it makes me wonder how bad something has to be or appear before someone intervenes.

And then we are on holiday and to make up for the bad weather they put on a kids disco. And it’s just so cute – B was shy the first time but he got into it and then when we went back again he was straight in there, dancing his little heart out.

B is tiny for his age. I’m kind of short so maybe it’s me. For a while he was first percentile and then last time we went to the doctor I asked if he was okay and the doctor said he was absolutely fine, just small overall (though the child has a monster sized head!). He’s 20 months now and wears size 9-12 months a lot of the time.

So during the dancing all the little kids and B are following the dancers at the front, and it’s just really cute. But there’s this one kid who’s been there every time. I am not a good judge of age but I think he’s maybe 7 or 8. The kids dancing are mainly 1-5 or 6 I’d say. He’s like double the size of them and much larger than B.

The little sh*t (as I took to referring to him as) was running around at high speed weaving in and out of the toddlers dancing. It was just so annoying and disrespectful especially as the guides (grown ups who work in the crèche I think) were showing them the moves at the front. He just kept running at high speed in and out of them and right by all the toddlers.

His parents didn’t give a toss. They were too busy fussing over his little sister. And I thought, wow. This event has been put on specifically to entertain kids and this little idiot is running in and out and then ended up recruiting other bigger boys to do the same, so there’s a little disco of toddlers with big boys running in and out of it in a dangerous (in my opinion) way. And the parents do nothing to stop it.

This all makes me realise that there are such different types of parents. Maybe we are overly attentive. (But then he is our one and only after infertility/loss and he’s still a tiny toddler.) Some parents just take it for granted and I guess if you haven’t been through a struggle to have kids maybe you do. Some, like our local mum, seem to hate having kids. And some, like the parents of the little sh*t, don’t care what their kids are doing. Some, like the bikini poser, come on holiday to NOT spend time with their baby.

I don’t really know what I’m trying to say here. Maybe I just think it’s sad that some kids aren’t cherished like I believe all kids should be. I am definitely not perfect and I’m not trying to be judgy but I guess I am. It’s hard when you struggled to have a child to see people who don’t seem to show their child love, who neglect their kids or who raise them to be inconsiderate little sh*ts.

Of course the little sh*t on our third visit to the disco actually ran directly into B and knocked him over. Cue two fierce looking adults bearing down on the boy (who is really just a little boy… I get that, which is why I didn’t push him over myself). T asked him if he realised he had knocked over the baby and that he should apologise. And I said to him to please not run near the babies. He looked scared, and stopped for a bit, and then resumed.

His mother didn’t even look up. (T and I debated whether you can even say something to other parents and we decided you can’t.)

On the plus side, B absolutely loved the kids disco. We got some decent weather this week and we’ve had a busy week of swimming, beach, even mountain biking. It’s been fun. And in infertility and baby loss awareness month, I’m aware of how lucky we are. Just need to work on making sure B always knows how much he is loved, and raise him not to be a little sh*t!

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10 Comments Add yours

  1. Rach says:

    Glad you had a good holiday! Those parents dragging their kids to the pub to get drunk every night sound awful 😦 She clearly is depressed as didn’t want to have a baby. I hope someone finds a way to get her help. Life doesn’t sound awesome for their kid.

    Everyone else in this story I think can be cut a bit of a break though. We just don’t know everyone else’s circumstances. I remember when Saxon was small and there were big boys playing at the park or the indoor play centre and their energy would always drive me mad and it’s annoying when the parents don’t notice. I have said things to other parents and kids before – always very kindly – with mixed results. Now I have two I really do understand more how these things can happen though. I am so tired and have been a bit depressed myself these last few months and it just feels so relentless. It is def more than double the work (or feels like it). I just try to remember that most parents are always trying to do the very best they can at any given time. I know I am even on the days I’m not perfect. You guys are great really involved parents and that is truly wonderful.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Nara says:

      Hey. We are still on holiday.

      Re the local parents, they’re just awful. My friend is always in bits trying to figure out how to help the poor kid who isn’t outright abused but definitely treated like an inconvenience. And it is kind of weird that you would go out drinking every night with a toddler. Apparently the local place is considering banning them as they’ve had complaints from locals who feel uneasy about some poor crying child strapped in his buggy whilst the parents get drunk.

      As for the others, yeah you’re right, we don’t know their circumstances. Which is why I don’t actually say anything! It’s hard not to get upset when your baby gets knocked over and you can see it coming. The mum was definitely a bit neglectful, but I’m sure it is much more difficult to keep track of one than two. I kind of got the idea she was more of a “girl mom” as she completely ignored the boy and spent the time fussing over the girl. I’m sure his energy was tiring though and she probably just wanted a break!

      We definitely aren’t perfect parents and I’d never suggest we are. I guess it started more as a musing on how you manage not to go off at other kids who hurt your kid! I really had to sit on my hands for that. It was just waiting to happen.

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      1. Rach says:

        I know the feeling! Once I said something to an older kid who hurt my kid (really nicely though – like “Hey buddy, maybe don’t do X as you can hurt someone” and his mum came over after he cried to her and screamed in my face!!!! I was kind to him. I think he’d known how she was going to behave through past experiences and did it for attention from her. I mean, who does that??? I hope the pub does ban that family although they will prob just go elsewhere. What does your mutual friend think?

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  2. Hufflestitch says:

    I am one of those parents that need a break. Not because I don’t absolutely adore my son or hate parenting or anything like that. Just, my mental health requires time to myself, a breather. Maybe it is because my husband works a rotating shift so every 2 weeks I go straight from high stress work to solo parenting and then back to the work week, husband’s shifts are 12 hours. So I leave my son in daycare every second Friday but have the day off work. It makes me a better parent for the next fortnight for sure and my depression slump is in recovery (I have a blog post explaining my return to work). So I guess the couple with the baby might just need that, plus, their baby may be like my son, who loves spending time with other children. Although on holidays I would probably spend more time with my son and use the creche sparingly when I wanted a lunch date with hubby. However, the parents at the pub, I will never understand that that once they realise they hate being parents, why they don’t seek out an alternative arrangement or ask for some sort of help from social services or a psychologist etc. I hate seeing kids yelled at for being kids because they are at the pub instead of the park 😔 and they often get dumped in front of screens.

    I am also the parent who upon seeing the older boys running around would have said loudly “hey boys, I don’t want to see anyone get knocked over, if you want to run, do it over here so the babies don’t get hurt” but that’s because I grew up in the country where everyone could discipline you 😂

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Nara says:

      Yeah don’t get me wrong. I have plenty of breaks from my kid and I’m not with him 24/7. I work full time so I spend a lot of time away from him. I guess I just find it funny (strange) as I always think of holidays as family things so I’d expect to spend time with a baby. For sure kids clubs are great (we always did it as kids) but their kid is a baby, younger than B, so probably too young for playing… It was more that I clocked them because they’re a mixed race couple like us so I was surprised to see them multiple times without the baby. If I hadn’t seen them once or twice at breakfast I wouldn’t have known they didn’t have a baby! Totally up to them though.

      The friends of friends – my friend is one of the ones who was told she couldn’t have kids because of having to have all her reproductive organs removed due to cancer. So it’s tough for her that this woman has befriended her and then just spends the whole time complaining about motherhood and treating the kid horribly. My friend has taken to avoiding her as she feels bad enabling it and they always want to go out drinking. They suggested nursery but she said no, but equally says she has PND and hates being a parent. I just find that heartbreaking for the child. They aren’t abusing him as such (depending on what you consider abuse) but it just feels wrong as a bystander. But you can’t really interfere unless active abuse is going on.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Maternally Optimistic says:

    We were on holiday last month to one of these family resorts and both me and hubby had a discussion like this about kids clubs/creche.

    I think when children are older and can chose to go to these kids clubs then it is absolutely fine, obviously they will want to play with other children and make friends.

    But a baby/toddler going to a creche on holiday is just a definite no for us. We both work full time so holidays are for us to spend as a family. Yes I understand you need some alone time as well but we managed to squeeze that in during naps, or one of us would take said toddler to the pool/a walk alone to let the other have an hour or so to chill.

    I dont understand the taking your screaming child to the pub at all!! We did go out for a few drinks some nights we were there but our toddler would be sat at the table with us playing with some toys or watching a quick episode of In The Night Garden.

    Going on holiday with a toddler/baby is all about finding new ways for you all to enjoy a holiday together.

    Glad you are having a lovely time away
    x

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    1. Maternally Optimistic says:

      Deleted a bit there by accident. That should have said on the nights we went out for a drink, the time in the bar was always finished when toddler was tired and ready for bed so we would head back to our room to let him sleep and we would chill for a while on the balcony. I don’t understand why you would force your child to stay out in a pub when they are so unhappy!!
      x

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  4. gsmwc02 says:

    I like kids but there are a lot of parents I dislike. Sure kids will be kids but there is a point where parents need to know their kids and recognize what is and isn’t appropriate behavior given the circumstances. I know it’s easier said than done especially not being a parent. But kids need to learn the world doesn’t revolve around them and that’s on the parents to teach them that.

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  5. It may be the daycare provider in me but I don’t hesitate to tell kids I don’t know to knock it off if I see behavior that may effect the girls. Drives me nuts when parents won’t parent.

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    1. Nara says:

      I was just amazed tbh. It was an accident waiting to happen.

      Liked by 1 person

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