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got yelled at by a stranger

post #1 of 62
Thread Starter 
I have to say I've been lucky. My dd is 16 mos and today was the first time a stranger told me how to parent. I live on the third floor of a walk up in a quiet residential neighborhood. The biggest challenge about living in an apartment with a baby is going grocery shopping. Usually I go shopping when dh is home so he can help me carry them up the three flights of stairs, but now that my dd is a good walker I can carry the groceries while she climbs the stairs. It takes a long time but it works. The only problem is shepherding dd through the front door of our apartment building while I carry the groceries. It doesn't seem safe to let her walk to the front door unless I have both hands free, SO what I do is park right out front, lock the car and run the groceries into the main door to the apartment building and then run out and get dd. Mind you that this takes roughly 10 seconds. There isn't a lot of space(25 feet or less) between the street and the building. So today I do this and as I turn around to get my dd this man stops and sees her alone in the car. I'm right behind him and say "don't worry I'm her mom" as I open the car and pick her up. Then he starts yelling at me for leaving her in the car. I said that I didn't leave her, I was running my groceries into my apartment foyer. Then he yells that I should take her in first (oh yeah cause it's sooo safe to leave a toddler alone at the bottom of three flights of stairs). He walks off cursing me. What I wish I had said was "if you're so concerned why don't you carry my groceries in!" UGH. The funny thing is that I am a really paranoid mom. I mean I won't even put her in a crib at night because I wont let her out of my sight LOL. Any other good mind your own business stories?
post #2 of 62
So, you just went to the first floor of the apartment? Not up three flights with the groceries, then back out to get her?

I don't see the harm in that either.

I can't think of a safer solution either. Well, I guess I can, just not a super reasonable solution.

I lived in St Louis, and we had those three floor walk ups too. So, that is what I am picturing when you say that you dropped them in the main foyer. I'm guessing that the man thought you just left her out there while you ran upstairs. I've seen worse, so I wouldn't be surprised. The other day, a man parked out in front of Super wal mart... (just in front, not in a space) and ran inside to get money out of the bank, while his preschool aged son climbed from front to back locking and unlocking all the doors wearing nothing but a blue cape. (the cape part was funny)
post #3 of 62
Thread Starter 
Yep just dropping them off inside the front door to the building. I would never run upstairs with her in the car. Not in a million years!
post #4 of 62

I am pretty sure

it is OK to leave them in the car if you are in eye sight. Sounds like an old guy having a really bad day. I would have been pi@#ed too. You were doing fine. As long as dd was buckled in. I have left my dd in car and she has unbuckled herself. All that I thought about was what if she released brake or put it into gear?

Back in the 70's, my dad left us in the station wagon forgetting to put the e-brake on. We went rolling out of the parking lot of longs, luckily onto a quiet side street.
post #5 of 62
No joke......

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23594474/

People are nuts!
post #6 of 62
Ah, That's great that you've made it thus far without unsolicited and oft ridiculous advice from a stranger. I have an elderly gentlemen (late 70s-early 80s) who when DS was 7 months, standing, and enjoying walking while I held his hand tell me that I was an awful mother for making my baby bow-legged. I laughed, and then told him that the American Academy of Pediatrics and my pediatrician would not only disagree with him but actually encourage such types of activities.

I ran into him again last month when DS was 11 months. DS was walking around, and I could see the man shaking his head in disdain that he was so young a walking. He stopped me yet again and asked how old my son was. Anticipating why he was asking in order to berate me, I replied, "I don't see how that's relevant." Of course, he was shocked with my reply, and the men to whom he had been sharing his disgust of my parenting burst out in laughter. I then continued to ignore him, and he sat in utter shock with his mouth agape at my refusal to answer him. LOL.
post #7 of 62
Thread Starter 
really, I can see his point of view. Imagine seeing an unattended baby in a car (buckled in a car seat mind you). I feel like time would stand still. He couldn't see me because I was right behind him. But still I don't think he should have yelled at me!
post #8 of 62
I don't know where you live, but I have seen a couple of news stories already this year about kids dying in cars because the parents forgot about them. The temps got so high in the car that they died of hyperthermia.

There are stories like this every year and it could be that the man has read a story recently or in the past or knows someone this has happened to. I totally get your problem, so I'm not saying there was anything wrong with what you did. He just probably had a knee-jerk reaction and didn't really think of the logistics of the situation before he unleashed on you.
post #9 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by ICU2 View Post
I don't know where you live, but I have seen a couple of news stories already this year about kids dying in cars because the parents forgot about them. The temps got so high in the car that they died of hyperthermia.

There are stories like this every year and it could be that the man has read a story recently or in the past or knows someone this has happened to. I totally get your problem, so I'm not saying there was anything wrong with what you did. He just probably had a knee-jerk reaction and didn't really think of the logistics of the situation before he unleashed on you.
Yeah... he was wrong to yell, but I completely understand why it seemed off to him.

Those stories (kids forgotten in cars) are some of the worst things I've ever read, bar none.
post #10 of 62
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ICU2 View Post
I don't know where you live, but I have seen a couple of news stories already this year about kids dying in cars because the parents forgot about them. The temps got so high in the car that they died of hyperthermia.

There are stories like this every year and it could be that the man has read a story recently or in the past or knows someone this has happened to. I totally get your problem, so I'm not saying there was anything wrong with what you did. He just probably had a knee-jerk reaction and didn't really think of the logistics of the situation before he unleashed on you.
Yeah I totally think it was a knee jerk reaction. There are a lot of stories about kids dying of hyperthermia in cars. BUT, I hear a lot of stories about toddlers getting hit by cars while their mothers load or unload groceries....I think it is way more dangerous to let my dd walk to the apartment while my hands are full and I can't grab her. We live right on an alleyway. I've almost been hit like a hundred times walking on my own sidewalk.
post #11 of 62
I don't live in an apt or anything, but often times I put DD in the car, have her buckled in -- and realize I forgot my phone inside or my wallet. I leave her in the car, lock the doors, run in, run out, and she's fine. You're not alone. I think that the system you have is the safest for your LO so don't worry about that old guy. He must have been having a bad day and took it out on you.
post #12 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by scottishmommy View Post
Yeah I totally think it was a knee jerk reaction. There are a lot of stories about kids dying of hyperthermia in cars. BUT, I hear a lot of stories about toddlers getting hit by cars while their mothers load or unload groceries....I think it is way more dangerous to let my dd walk to the apartment while my hands are full and I can't grab her. We live right on an alleyway. I've almost been hit like a hundred times walking on my own sidewalk.
Oh yeah, I really understand it. I have kids of my own and have taken care of kids since I was 14 and my sister had her first. I just think he saw Kid - Car - No parent and reacted without thinking through the whys of the situation. If I left my youngest in a lobby alone she'd be half-way to California by the time I got back. She's a speedy one!
post #13 of 62
I agree that leaving kids in car stories are terrifying and awful. But the fact that a mom can't step away from a car for 1 minute to drop the groceries in the front door, etc. is insane. People have to put things in perspective - those kids who die in cars are left for longer periods of time, completely unattended, often because a parent forgot they were in the car. I've never heard of a child dying because a parent ran in the front of their apartment building for a few seconds. Kids choke on hot dogs, too...does that mean parents feeding their two year old a hot dog at a picnic should be arrested for child endangerment?

I had a UPS driver yell at me for leaving my two sleeping kids in the car to pick up a package from their delivery center. The doors were glass and the pick-up counter was right in front of the glass doors and my car was parked in front of the doors and I was watching the car the whole time. My car was locked, the weather was a cool 50 degrees and I was in there for no more than 3 minutes. I knew I was breaking the rules, but I knew my kids were not in danger so I did it anyway. He threatened to call the police.

There is no common sense in these laws.
post #14 of 62
Holy crap, I don't know how I'd handle getting yelled at for that! I can only physically carry one of my babies out to the car at one time!! Same goes for getting them back in the house. And *gasp* when we go for walks, it's a huge affair - bring stroller out front, load one baby. Go in for second baby, load him. Go back in for dog, and *THEN* walk.

Granted, no three flights of stairs here in our suburban neighborhood, but geez.
post #15 of 62
Thread Starter 
What really gets to me is how people judge but don't help. This guy was young, maybe 20 or so. He could have said "do you need help with your groceries?" instead he curses me and tells me I should have taken dd inside first. How is that safer?
post #16 of 62
After DD1 was born me and DH started walking a few miles in the afternoon. It was very hot-90+ degrees. We would put DD in a stroller and take her. EVERY DAY at least 2-3 people would yell at us for not having her in hat/blanket/long pants ect. My mother would go as far as putting her in footed sleepers and covering her with a heavy afghan. It drove me crazy trying to explain that at 9 pounds she does not need to be dressed like an eskimo.
post #17 of 62
Thread Starter 
The whole "that baby looks cold" thing.
post #18 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raine822 View Post
After DD1 was born me and DH started walking a few miles in the afternoon. It was very hot-90+ degrees. We would put DD in a stroller and take her. EVERY DAY at least 2-3 people would yell at us for not having her in hat/blanket/long pants ect. My mother would go as far as putting her in footed sleepers and covering her with a heavy afghan. It drove me crazy trying to explain that at 9 pounds she does not need to be dressed like an eskimo.
Ugh-I get that too. My 2mo DS is very hot natured and it's in the upper 80s here now. He goes out in just a onesie and will sweat. So, my neighbors gove me the stinky-eye and say how cold he must be with no socks/etc on. Umm...he's sweating and so am I.

Anyway, OP-sorry you were yelled at over that. Some people don't think before reacting. I get the "unattended child" fear, but even if I thought you had gone upstairs, I wouldn't have yelled.
post #19 of 62
It is stories like these and the one in the link that make me really nervous about having my own kids someday. i swear, one of these days we're going to have to glue our children to us or risk arrest!
post #20 of 62
Hugs, mama! We've all been there to some degree. I solved my problem by wearing my toddler on my back in a mei tai or a soft structured carrier while I carried my groceries in. Sometimes it took a second trip, but I knew that DD was safe and I wasn't leaving her alone for any amount of time so no one (read nosy busybody neighbor) could complain about my parenting (other than "That looks dangerous to toss her on your back like that...."
~maddymama
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