Thursday, January 19, 2012

Hush-A-Bye, Baby...

I was on The Stir the other day and read an article called the “The 7 People Who Hate Your Kid” by Sascha Brown-Worscham. Let me state for the record that anytime I read a blog on here, I can tell when she wrote it. I can tell because we never, ever agree. Ever. It’s amazing to see the words of someone whose ideals run exactly counter to your own.  But that is a different blog for a different day.
Anyways, she wrote about the seven people who “hate” your kid. Among them are:
  • The Childless Facebook Friend
  • The Stroller Eye Roller
  • Old Ladies in Public

And my favorite: The “Adults Only” Bridezilla.

I find that last one particularly hilarious because I guess that’s me. I was 28 when Lettuce and I tied the knot, and the kids were 9, 7, 4 and 2. Had I not birthed them, they would not have been invited.

Honestly, they still barely made the guest list.  My MIL was instructed to take my kids out immediately if they became disruptive.  

We paid for our own wedding, no money from the families and it cost us a pretty penny (I still wish we’d eloped!).  But honestly, I don’t care how much it cost. Weddings are not kid friendly events. They are serious, one-time formal events. That being said, there were exactly 7 kids at our wedding, my four and my niece (she was 11) and nephews (ages 9 and 8). That’s it. And they all had a job to justify their attendance. The girls were my flower girls, the boys ring bearers, and my niece and nephews handed out programs. I let people know in advance and I was not offended if people couldn’t make it. 

 The Princess and the Squirrel
And the Astronaut.
Notice how Side Salad isn't in the pics? Yeah, he went to sleep. Because he was two.

>There were more kids at the reception, which was far less formal  and I was fine with that, though it meant I had to feed the little urchins.< 

I’m getting away from my point a bit. There are places kids belong, and places kids don’t belong. I avoid taking my kids, especially the littles, to doctor appointments and parent-teacher conferences unless they are the subject of the appointment. I don’t take my kids to funerals at all. I wouldn’t unless it was immediate family. I don’t mind taking them shopping, but if I am seriously shopping to restock the house, I don’t take them. I also don’t take them to classes, conferences, or meetings. I don’t take them to speeches.  If I do take them, I try to bring things to keep them amused and sit near an exit, JIC. I also feed them and take them to the bathroom beforehand. I do these things so that I can enjoy/participate and so that my children do not disturb others.  

The Precipitating Event (PE):  Earlier this week, I attended a workshop for pregnant women. I go monthly and, while I don’t take my children, I understand why others might bring theirs.  At this particular workshop, the topic was domestic violence. The speaker was a survivor of DV who is also the sister of a local woman killed by her boyfriend (he also shot their child prior to killing himself) 6 months ago.  All the while, there was a child shrieking at the top of its lungs. The woman was moved to tears, of course, but I could barely hear her because of the shrieking minion. And I was about 5 or 6 feet away from her.  I thought it was very disrespectful to the speaker and the memory of her sister and her 2 year old niece that she is now raising.

{So of course I make a little Facebook status about it and one of my friends starts saying how she didn’t care if her baby cried uncontrollably-she didn’t feel obligated to remove him.  Mind you, this is the same friend that said she is offended when people NIP.  Iiiiiiirrrrrooonnnnnnyyyyyyyy!  You can look away and not see a mother breastfeed.  You can’t ignore someone’s crying child. But that’s not the point.}

My stance on children is this: your child is your responsibility. Take care of them.  Yes, kids cry. It is their form of communication. But parental responsibility is more than just making sure you meet your child(ren)’s needs and comforting them. You also prepare them to function in society, with other people.  And while they are the center of your world, that is only true for you and no one else.  Part of good citizenship is respect for others. Allowing your kiddo(s) to inconvenience others is not a part of that. It is not what is best for your kid.   If your baby is crying or your kid is fussing, just take them out. 

What’s your stance on kid-free weddings?  What about crying babies?


  1. I'm so glad you've touched on the child-free wedding. I have always worked with children from ages 0-18, and I'm having an adult only wedding...and get this (nobody is complaining). My reasons for having an adults only wedding are many, but I really want to give my guests (especially the ones who DO have children) an evening to let their hair down and have a relaxing evening without having to worry about restless children. I don't know if she realizes how much it costs to have children at a reception or how inconvenient it is to have screaming children at a sacred ceremony...but that's just me.

  2. Thanks for commenting, Brittney. I think she is just that self centered.