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VERY lively small boy.

(63 Posts)
Rosina Wed 07-Jun-17 16:45:28

Yesterday I went into the ladies in Marks and Spencer; exiting the cubicle I almost collided with a small boy who had hurled himself across the floor and started crashing repeatedly against the closed door of the cubicle next to me; he used both hands to thump against the door with his full weight, and then shoulder charged several times. Mother was unconcernedly sorting out her shopping. Washing my hands, I thought perhaps someone known to her was in the cubicle, but a flustered elderly lady came out, and rushed straight out of the cloakroom! Drying my hands I watched him slam the cubicle doors in turn as hard as he could so that they bounced back and hit the wall. Mother then invited him to wash his hands. He ignored her completely as I quickly applied some lipstick, and I left to the sound of her repeatedly asking him to wash his hands and the resounding smash of cubicle door against wall. Is it me? Am I being unreasonable in wanting to slap HER legs or is this calm parenting?

domingo Wed 07-Jun-17 16:59:10

Not you - I would feel exactly the same. When parents ignore their children's bad behaviour because they are on their phones or sorting their shopping etc it annoys me so much. So unfair on everyone else

M0nica Wed 07-Jun-17 17:12:02

Entirely with you Rosina. Even if the child had some learning or other developmental difficulty, his mother could have made some attempt to control his behaviour and/or offered the elderly lady (and you) a brief explanation/apology.

There is a family who come to the church I attend, who have a child of 2 1/2 - 3. They let him run round the church all through the service; up the central aisle, along in front of the seats at the front, down the side aisle along the back, again and again and again. They only retrieve him when he tries the join the priest on the altar. It is distracting. Other parents with children the same age keep them under control. Last weekend the disrupter walked up to one of the other children and tried, several times, to hit her. His parents did nothing.

I expect this is an example of bringing your children up in a peace and love life style, where any negativity is treated as oppressive as advocated by someone on another thread. Or bringing them up without any regard for other people, which is how I would describe it.

f77ms Wed 07-Jun-17 17:15:10

I would have had to say something to the Mother , it`s just not acceptable to behave like that . Would have got my head bitten off but no matter .

rosesarered Wed 07-Jun-17 17:22:21

Hard isn't it? Just the sort of thing our autistic DGS might have done given half a chance because he liked the noise it made.However, we would all have taken him by the arm and left the room. Even children with problems can either be told or removed.

Morgana Wed 07-Jun-17 18:58:59

My son was very lively! And an absolute horror in marks and sparks. Something to do with the lighting or furnishings I think. He is mid thirties now and will not step foot inside a marks and Spencer! It is very hard to understand how difficult a child can be if u have not experienced it.

rosesarered Wed 07-Jun-17 19:03:09

Meltdowns on the floor?

M0nica Wed 07-Jun-17 19:29:22

It is not the disruptive child that causes the irritation. The irritation is with the parent who makes no attempt to either control or ameliorate their disruptive behaviour.

wildswan16 Wed 07-Jun-17 20:17:42

I would also have felt like giving the mother a good ticking off. But I also feel desperately sorry for the little boy - he is not going to have a happy life if he is allowed to get off behaving so badly with no respect for anyone else.

Rosina Wed 07-Jun-17 20:45:55

I did think that perhaps he may have a condition which might make him behave like this, but the irritation was with the mother who completely ignored him while he did in fact alarm an elderly lady - she must have wondered what on earth was going on and if the door might fly in on her - and if those doors remained undamaged after the battering they took it would be a miracle. Perhaps I should have spoken to her; she made no effort at all and you are right, wildswan, he will be the poorer for not being guided the right way.

Penstemmon Wed 07-Jun-17 21:12:55

It is impossible to know why the child was behaving in that way. If he did have ASD, or another disorder, it may have made it worse to have challenged him.

It may have been a 'socialisation' outing and mother using an 'ignore' strategy etc. advised by Ed Psych.

On the other hand mum may be depressed and unable to cope with conflict.

Or his behaviour could be the result of not having any boundaries set for him by his parents/carers.

Whatever the reason he does not seem to have been a happy child. sad

M0nica Wed 07-Jun-17 22:06:00

The child's behaviour and its causes is to a certain extent irrelevant. It is the mother's behaviour that is the problem. Whatever she was doing she could have explained, quietly, briefly and if his behaviour worried and possibly scared a completely innocent member of the public that is unacceptable.

Mental illness, mental incapacity are not acceptable excuses for inaction when, potentially, the safety and well being of a member of the public is involved.

Penstemmon Wed 07-Jun-17 22:16:15

and I thought generally people were becoming more understanding re mental health!

No idea if the mum was just being a negligent, healthy parent or not. But depression can be crippling!

Jalima1108 Wed 07-Jun-17 22:17:44

That's right M0nica

What happens when he is older, stronger and still behaving like that and mother is still turning a blind eye?

Ignore is fine if the child is having a tantrum but not causing distress or harm to anyone else.

Jalima1108 Wed 07-Jun-17 22:20:27

Whilst we're discussing behaviour in M&S - I was in a large M&S store today and saw a woman (not young) in a corner stripping off her trousers and trying on trousers from the rack. It was impossible not to glance as she stripped off to her rather large beige knickers shock
The changing rooms were not that far away!

Ranworth1 Thu 08-Jun-17 09:51:26

Perhaps the child had severe autism - you should not judge unless you know the family.

Jalima1108 Thu 08-Jun-17 09:56:47

I wasn't sure if the lady stripping off to her knickers in M&S had a problem (it seemed very strange behaviour in public) but as she seemed quite purposeful I left her to it.

I have just thought that she could, of course, have walked out with a new pair of trousers on and left her old ones behind hmm

Smithy Thu 08-Jun-17 10:14:12

Sounds like autistic behaviour. My friend's grandson behaved really badly when she took him to a shopping mall and she had to explain to a very disapproving stranger. It gets worse as they get bigger as it appears they are very very incontrollable to other people. If you read The Curious Incident of the Dog in the night its a real insight into the autistic mind.

Ph1lomena Thu 08-Jun-17 10:19:52

As some others have said, the child may well have had some form of autism and it is only too easy to judge this as bad behaviour. Quite often intervening can make this type of behaviour worse. Yes, the Mum should have apologised to the lady coming out the cubicle but (and I have been in this situation myself) sometimes you get so stressed and are totally mortified and just want to be swallowed up into the ground.... please don't judge.

IngeJones Thu 08-Jun-17 10:25:47

If she has to cope with his behavioural condition, whatever it is, day in day out, I kind of can't blame her for feeling she has the right to at least use the toilet and wash her hands properly before yet again dealing with a meltdown. And she can't leave him at home (much as she may have preferred to) if she doesn't have enough offers of help. When a child appears to be too much for a mother to handle we all have to ask ourselves whether we do enough to help in a constructive way. But to the OP I don't blame you for feeling annoyed, it's a very natural response to a behavioural challenge!

radicalnan Thu 08-Jun-17 10:30:18

Most kids hate shopping. Why bother to drag them to the shops if they have a condition that makes them act up because it is due to them being stressed out. You can by everything online now and I think if a child is so distressed by being in retail environments, all the lighting, muzak and stuff everywhere, why not spare them the distress?

IngeJones Thu 08-Jun-17 10:54:00

Because, radicalnan, not everyone is fortunate enough to have a team of helpers. Especially people with children who are challenging to look after. Or those helpers might have already helped look after him while she did other important things.

NfkDumpling Thu 08-Jun-17 11:03:49

So, are we to assume that all badly behaved children have autism or ADHD or some other set of initials and accept it as normal behaviour?

Perhaps if it happens again (and I shall store it away for possible use in the future) it would be best to ask the cubical victim if they are ok, and commiserate with them. After all it must have been really quite scary for her.

annie1948 Thu 08-Jun-17 11:08:56

This happens a lot in M&S particularly with shoes.

annie1948 Thu 08-Jun-17 11:10:17

I mean the swapping of old shoes for new in M&S.!