Originally Posted by starling&diesel
I believe there is immense value in "being able to sit still without entertainment."
I'm curious how you handle it when your child gets to the end of her ability to do that. My parents handled it by smacking us, sometimes across the face. For me, dropping that belief was part of gentle discipline. Some kids are naturally better at it than others, and yes, learning to enjoying one's own company is a good thing, but when your kid gets to the end of it, what do you do? You never invent a silly game, hand your child a pen from your purse and a paper napkin, etc?
I want my children to engage with me and anyone else at the table and the wait staff and their surroundings and the atmosphere, not some prepackaged program on a screen.
Sometimes yes, sometimes no. Many parents of small children have very few minutes of peace to have a real conversation with each other. Some SAHMs of small children are starved for an adult conversation with another mom. I don't see anything inherently wrong with moms meeting these needs, even if she uses her iPhone to do so. I don't buy into the idea that we must interact with our children every single minute of every single day.
Going to a restaurant, for example, is about greeting the staff, getting seated, exploring the tableware (my dd is 2.5), choosing food, looking out the window, asking the server for what she wants politely, waiting and anticipating, enjoying new food and flavours or old favourites, conversing with us, paying, taking our leave, and talking about the meal. Tonnes of things to do!
People go out to eat for different reasons and people get VERY different kids. It's great that what you are doing is working for your child. I'm not knocking it, I think it's great!
But there's still no reason to judge a mother in a different situation with different kids. After all, you might end up doing things differently when you have two kids instead of one, esp if your second child has a different temperament.
I knew a lot more about how other mothers should do things when I just had one quiet child. DD#2 showed up and I found out that you can do all the same things and your child can act VERY differently.