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Am I Just A Grumpy Not-So-Old Grandma?

(24 Posts)
GrandmaFr0g Thu 04-Aug-16 17:17:22

Let me make it clear I am not criticising ALL parents. I am getting increasingly irked by the lack of discipline by some parents whilst out shopping with their young (under 10) children. Two examples I've encountered over the last 2 days are: in a Sports store a lad of about 8 took a ball from a basketful and proceeded to bounce it around the shop until a male assistant told him to stop. The lad pulled a face, the mother completely ignored it - the ball wasn't purchased hence a slightly dirty ball is now on sale. The other instance was in a busy supermarket where a mother was shopping with two under 5s. She continually blocked the aisles with her trolley while being totally oblivious to the youngsters darting about picking up items willy-nilly. When loading her trolley the little darlings (they did look cute ☺) wandered around the car park - thankfully no accident occurred. I am fully aware of how stressful it can be shopping with young children but back in the day when my girls were young (17 months between them) they knew they had to stay with me and not touch things we weren't buying, if they did they were told off. My daughter has the same values and has brought her children up the same way - though she did have to remove my GD from a shop once or twice when she threw herself on the floor in a tantrum after being told she couldn't have something, ignoring disapproving looks from other shoppers - you can't give in just to save embarrassment.blush Am I just a grumpy not so old Grandma? grin or do others feel the same way?

Tresco Thu 04-Aug-16 17:39:21

I have read Victorian books bemoaning the behaviour of young children and the lack of parental discipline. I think it happens in every generation. Even in Ancient Greece it was the same:
"I see no hope for the future of our people if they are dependent on frivolous youth of today, for certainly all youth are reckless beyond words... When I was young, we were taught to be discreet and respectful of elders, but the present youth are exceedingly wise [disrespectful] and impatient of restraint".
(Hesiod, 8th century BC). smile

WilmaKnickersfit Thu 04-Aug-16 17:57:55

I don't think you are a grumpy old Grandma. I do think what you describe is more common than ever, but I don't think comparing what you describe with when you were a young Mum works. The world is a different place, but in every generation there's a huge range of parenting skills. Personally I think supermarket shopping with a child in tow is mad unless it's unavoidable.

NonnaW Thu 04-Aug-16 18:26:52

I don't see the difference in supermarket shopping with children today to doing it when ours were young - everyone in the shop is entitled do do their shopping without other people's children running riot around them! GrandmaFr0g I agree with you, if we could control our children, so should today's parents be able to control theirs. It smacks of lack of consideration for other people.

SueDonim Thu 04-Aug-16 18:51:34

I'm mostly just happy it's not me having to tote small children around nowadays! grin

I do get a bit Victor Meldrew over children riding scooters and those heelie trainers in shops, though. A girl wearing those almost knocked me over not once but twice in a busy supermarket last week.

Luckygirl Thu 04-Aug-16 18:57:20

I used to put DD in the seat on the trolley and told her that if she was good all the way round she could have a ride on the 10p in the slot horse at the back door. Worked like a charm!

dramatictessa Thu 04-Aug-16 19:01:44

The trouble is we only notice the badly behaved ones, and so it seems like there are loads of them. When we were parents we were too busy making sure our children behaved well to notice the ones that didn't. If behaviour really did get worse with each generation, the human race would have exterminated itself centuries ago!

Pollengran Thu 04-Aug-16 19:15:29

Your description of letting small children wander around a car park filled me with horror! My little GD knows she MUST hold my hand in a car park. If anything had happened to them, the driver would have been blamed instead of the neglectful parent no doubt.

Inconsiderate parents are a nuisance, but nothing compared to putting children at risk like that.

Maggiemaybe Thu 04-Aug-16 19:33:06

The trouble is, Luckygirl, those slots at the back door now cost £1. We usually tell our DGS that they're broken, again, what a shame!

I had three DC under 4 years old and distinctly remember an old git gentleman making a godawful fuss and complaining to the manager in our local Coop because my girls were making a tower out of the packs of toilet rolls at the end of an aisle as I was doing the essential shopping at lightning speed with a grizzling baby strapped to me. They weren't doing any harm, weren't getting in anyone's way, and no toilet rolls were harmed in the course of that trip, as the manager was kind enough to point out to him. I always think back to that day when I feel myself getting grumpy about children's antics.

Getting underfoot and particularly running about in the carpark are completely different matters. Little ones have to be taught about safety around traffic just as soon as they can walk.

NanaandGrampy Thu 04-Aug-16 19:42:16

We have a hand print sticker on our car, when we're shopping with the grandchildren and we get to the car , they know that they must place their hand on the sticker and stand there no matter what.

Doing so gets them a jelly baby from Grampys stash!!

Even works with Grampy! smile

Anya Thu 04-Aug-16 22:05:38

Re scooters...they are now banned at a local theme park since some out of control little b child ran into a woman in her 60s, causing her a shattered knee cap and pulled tendons.

I'm sick of having to leap out of the way of these things.

Deedaa Thu 04-Aug-16 22:23:04

Even my bolshie 3 year old GS2 knows he holds my hand anywhere near cars.

Penstemmon Thu 04-Aug-16 22:30:05

Why is it different today in supermarkets? I took my DDs to Tesco in a double pushchair (no car!). The little one sat in a trolley & the older one collected the items we needed (if she could reach!) and then had to walk home as I needed to load her side of the buggy with the shopping.

I take my DGCs to the supermarket and there was a similar arrangement when they were small enough to fit in the trolley! Now the youngest is 4 they are all old enough to behave appropriately in public places and be aware of other people
and their needs. If they do get lively they have to hold my hand which is soooo humiliating as they might see a friend so they (usually) behave!

GrandmaFr0g Fri 05-Aug-16 11:01:57

What a good idea NanaandGrampy. My GC are now 17 and 12 so thankfully we are past that stage - they're more likely to be telling me to be careful of the cars grin.

sunseeker Fri 05-Aug-16 11:16:24

As I have mentioned before I tend not to post on this type of thread as I never had children myself (not been there don't know the problems). However I do have to agree with the comments regarding allowing young children to wander around the car parks. Some time ago I was about to reverse out of a space when a woman standing next to my car suddenly banged the top of the car and shouted stop. There was a small child standing behind my car, she was so little I couldn't see her in my rear view mirror or my side mirrors. Both parents were loading their shopping into their car opposite, the parents seemed totally unfazed by the incident - I had to sit in my car for several minutes before I was able to drive off

Lupatria Fri 05-Aug-16 11:32:20

my second grandaughter has learned the hard way to behave herself in a supermarket.
the second time she played up in a supermarket i had to drag her screaming and trying to kick me out of tesco. she was very embarrassed as we had to cross the entire width of the store and heard all the comments which were made to me by other shoppers.
her sister who was with us was totally embarrassed too and refused to walk anywhere near us.
the bad part of it was that my second grandaughter was 9 at the time!
however she learned from this that gran wasn't going to have behaviour like this and she's now one of the most helpful children when going shopping.

JackyB Fri 05-Aug-16 12:52:25

Mine were integrated into the shopping "experience" at a very early age. By the age of three, my second child could be relied on to remember how many packets of cornflakes were still in the cupboard at home, in case I happened to forget. I always involved them in making decisions about which brand/flavour/size to buy. There was no time for tantrums or looking round for things they might like themselves.

One improvement on "the old days" - at least I hope the problem has now been addressed - was that once my younger one was in the child seat at the front of the trolley and the bigger one was in the trolley. He got a bit close to the edge and the whole trolley tipped over. If ever I see a mother with children in the trolley like this nowadays, I hope nothing happens. Sometimes I even point out the danger to them, but you know what people are like when an old lady comes up and tries to give advice....

yearofthetiger Fri 05-Aug-16 13:01:30

Completely agree with you!

harrigran Fri 05-Aug-16 13:21:30

When mine were little we didn't have a supermarket, the nearest was 5 miles away. We had no car and shops were open 9-5, I used to load my two into the pram and walk a mile to a corner shop, steep hill to climb going home plus the heavy pram and shop. When they opened the supermarket, 2 years later, the DC were in awe of the range of goods and kept close to me in case they got lost.

GrandmaFr0g Fri 05-Aug-16 13:23:30

Thanks everyone for your comments, I dont feel such a Grumpy Granďma now. My children were no Angels but were taught to behave and respect others around them. Lupatria, when my grandaughter was about 2 she used to throw dreadful tantrums over nothing, they never achieved anything. One particular cold winters day she didn't want to be in her buggy, she created merry hell so we (D and I) stood outside waiting for her to calm down. To our amazement she managed to wriggle out of the straps and then proceeded to remove all her clothes! We had no end of disgusted looks in our direction but one very nice lady congratulated us on not giving in. GD soon stopped her tantrum when she realised how cold it was. Reassuring cuddles from mum and clothes back bon she voluntarily climbed back in the buggy. This episode is frequently brought up at family gatherings much to her embarrassment at the grand old age of 12 grin

SueDonim Fri 05-Aug-16 13:30:38

Anya that ban sounds good to me!

I, too, am very wary of small children in car parks. I don't understand why parents don't do what I used to do when mine were small, which is load the children into the car before putting the shopping in. Likewise, get the buggy out and open it before you get the child out of the car.

Chilledlady Fri 05-Aug-16 21:32:03

I agree with the sentiments here, and I too would prime my children before a shopping trip (indeed other outings too) as to what would be happening, and what was expected of them. At the checkout while waiting in the queue next to all those chocolates and sweeties, I would say "Do not ask, and I will buy you some!" The result was that I had two very quiet kids whose eyes would roll back and forth from me to all those goodies. Result - happy mum and happy kids!
It's not easy being a parent but ignoring your child is not an option. I just want mums to get organised, get in control, and have fun with your youngsters!

BillieW Sat 06-Aug-16 14:23:31

I equally see adults behaving without consideration for others in shops, car parks, pavements........

GrandmaMoira Sat 06-Aug-16 20:35:27

I agree with the comments about scooters, they can be quite dangerous and not suitable for shops. They should be left at home when going shopping. There's also a motorised rider (I don't know what it's called) which is even more dangerous and older kids use those. The other thing which I remember from when my kids were young and still see and hate, is Mums who shout and swear at kids who are crying and threaten them with a smack.