Monday, August 28, 2006

RestauRANT: Ban The Brat!

I found my way to Charlotte's Web-log and was just cruising along until I stumbled over her entry, "Little Devils, Little Darling and their Somewhat Silly Parents" At first I was afraid this would be another of those cloying How-can-you-be-so-cruel? tirades...and then I got to the line that read, "... if they cry at the restaurant, comfort them, feed them or better still, take them outside." Better still, take them outside. Yes! Accept and assume responsibility. Yes!

I would like to respond briefly to the concept that is put forth earlier in the article, "I would rather my kids were true to themselves than “good”, which means that they sometimes fall apart." I have great difficulty with this. Children should be allowed to "fall apart" to be sure. I am not sure that I have to pay restaurant prices for an interrupted meal because little Johnny or Janey needs to 'fall apart'. Appropriate restaurant behavior is part of the overall experience. If your children are not prepared to act accordingly then they should not be allowed in - this is a decision of the parents, proactively. I know because from the earliest ages this was the arrangement that I put before my children. And they knew full well that they would be escorted out promptly at the first sign of crumbling.

I am particularly fortunate that my children were always able to maintain. I don't believe they were or are any the worse for ware enduring such rigors.

. . .