Thursday, August 16, 2007

What is the deal?

I don't understand this behavior at all. Maybe someone can shed some light on it for me? Why in the world do other mother's discipline your children or otherwise take over the situation when you are right there? This has happened to me in the past. I pretty much tried to shake it off as a weird one time thing, but in different situations, it keeps happening. Is this common or am I seen as some kind of laissez-faire mama who can't be trusted to mother her own children?

Today we were at Iris's preschool picking her up. We were waiting for the director to get us all of our forms so we can officially register for the fall (yay!) and Iris, Eloise and the director's one year old were literally at my feet. I could have reached down and touched any of them. They were all trying to get at some toys and I was watching them. On a low shelf were some sea shells of all sizes. I saw them. I knew they were there. I knew the two younger ones were eyeing them up and were going towards them. Out of no where another mama, who was at school as the helper today, swoops in and gathers up all of the sea shells and starts saying to the children that those were too small for them and not to touch them, blah blah blah. I smiled at her and said "oh don't worry about, I'm watching them!" but really what I was saying was "what the hell is your problem?" Not five minutes later she was directing Iris away from something else, again, I was right there and was watching every move she made.

I don't understand this at all. Please, someone, anyone, shed some light on this.

I do know that some of my friends will be more freaked out about what my girls are doing than I am. My dear friend Melissa practically has a coronary every time Eloise shoves a rock in her mouth while I just sigh and leisurely fish it out (after Melissa points it out, of course). But see, Melissa and I have a thing. We are close. Our kids are close. We know each other very well. We don't discipline each other's kids, but we watch out for them.

I'm the first to admit I'm more on the laid back side about alot of parenting things, but I really, really do not appreciate other people swooping in and taking over. It makes me defensive and mad. And then my mama claws want to come out. Grrr.


  1. I think I do this a lot with my friends, only with the best intentions, though. I always appreciate when someone else is looking out for one of my kids, if they do it in a kind, NOT SNOTTY, way.

    I hope I didn't do this to you! :)

  2. Oh no, not at all! I think it's different when your friends with someone and you're not stepping on the parents toes to help out. I guess it all depends on the situation. You and I are also so scarily alike in our parenting styles that I don't think this would be an issue for us :)

  3. I have had the same issues MANY times!!! I absolutely hate it as well. I feel like I discipline and correct my children all of the time, and I don't need other people's help in this dept. When other people do that when you are right there, it makes you feel like you are a bad mom or not watching your own kids or something.

    The fact is that everyone parents differently and what my kids know as boundaries may be different from other families. Who are these moms to step in and give my kids HER boundaries? My rule of thumb is to not tell other kids what to do unless they are hurting someone or doing something dangerous. If I feel wierd about a situation, I ask the mom if she wants them to be doing that. This helps if the other mom is a little bit unaware fro whatever reason and I'm not stepping on their toes.

    I had a big ordeal with a church friend about this very thing. She would totally yell at my kids while I was right there. Later I found out that the other moms were happy that I said something b/c it annoyed them too! LOL! LEt's just say that she and I have not been good friends since, b/c of the tension.

    Your situation seems kinda weird, b/c she was working there. Maybe she thought she was doing her job and that it would impress you or make herself look good. I dunno. But I agree I hate it!!!


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