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How to deal with odd public comments?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Just wondering how you other mamas deal with odd and or rude comments that are told about you or your toddler when out in public? This is a new thing for me and I'm finding I have no idea what to do and or say. So far I've just said nothing and move on, but I'm finding that they are still bothering me later. 

 

Some examples of what I'm talking about:

I was at the park playing with my 16 month old when a older women (grandmother of another toddler) very seriously said my toddler was going to grow up to be the playground bully because he took his ball back from her grandson and walked away with it. 

 

And the other night when we were out at a local town event some of the kids and toddlers were playing with some sign cards that were sitting on "reserved" seats. When a women sitting nearby said my toddler was going to grow up to be a hoarder because he was moving the cards around and not wanting to put them back on the seats. (By the way the seats had their reserved people already there.) 

 

My 16 month old does look big for his age and many people think he is older than he is, maybe this has something to do with it? Anyway I try to just let it go, but they are still bothering me that someone felt so strongly that they had to say something to me.

What do you all do in this situation?

Any advice? 

post #2 of 10

Personally I usually try for a comment to completely disarm them.  In these situations I would say something along the lines of, "Oh, what school did you attend to achieve you degree in Psychology?"  Be sure to give them a very innocent look.

post #3 of 10
Insensitive people are everywhere. eyesroll.gif
I'd try to say something like "you must have raised a lot of bullies/hoarders to make that judgement call about a 16 month old" and walk away. I'm so sorry you have to deal with that. I haven't had DD commented about at all but she's done her share of taking things, etc. it amazes me how strangers think their negative opinions are needed or welcome. I comment on babies/toddlers/kids ALL the time but it's things like "he/she is so cute/sweet/funny" or "wow someone is an expert walker!". I figure no parent is ever tired of hearing how wonderful their child is wink1.gif
post #4 of 10

I hear you about the "my kid looks older than he is" problem, and people having weird expectations about the things a child should/shouldn't be doing.  I have had to deal with that quite a lot. 

 

Still though, people have weird ideas/expectations about what kids should be like, I guess.  I personally marvel that they feel so very comfortable with sharing the rude things that pop into their heads, though.  And it's always the weirdest stuff...

 

I usually just look at people like they have a third head when they say this kinda stuff to me...because words usually fail me.

post #5 of 10

I hate when strangers say rude things, especially when I am with my kid!! I don't get rude comments about my kid thank goodness- but the other week some mean lady held the door of the grocery store open for me when I had my kid in the shopping cart- and I think he was overtired and I was totally focusing on him- and I didn't thank her- oh my goodness- adn she snarled some rude comment to me about how rude it was that I didn't thank her for the door- when in fact I was just focusing on my kid-- and could have easily gotten the door myself- and so I made a snarly comment back to her and she made another back to me!!! And it hurt my feelings all day!

and I realized that I had already been in a grumpy mood before that happened. you know how when you are happy and smiling people smile at you and when you are in a bad mood people seem especially rude? It was like that.

but what I came away with is that if people are gonna make rude comments to me it is best for me to think of it as totally their problem, not mine, and just walk away. Walk away and call someone who loves you and your kid to say something nice to you and make you feel better. or if you feel like it just say something in defense of your kid like- My kid is a great perfect kid and I love him, and then walk away. Saying something snarly back just makes everyone feel bad! I hate mean people so I just do my best to try to avoid them.

sorry you had to encouter that.

post #6 of 10
I think no comment in those situation is how I would handle it too, sorry you had to deal with such rude comments. Making a comment back I can just see starting an argument that I really wouldn't want to deal with, though with an older child I might make a comment to stand up for my child or at least talk to them about it immediately out of earshot of the commenter so they don't think they are being "bad" or whatever.
post #7 of 10

I would try to connect with the stranger and validate her concern as genuinely as I can, and say something like, "Bullying is a huge problem--what did you do when your kids were young?" Or, "Are you concerned the children will mess up the cards and people won't be able to find their seats?" And then you could gently explain that the people had already gotten to their seats, but thank the person so much for her concern. When I say/do things like that, my heart is always pounding (because I'm afraid of confrontation), but it's great because it gives the other person an out and lets them save face without in any way agreeing with them or their behavior. People are expecting a confrontation and it's very disarming to have someone connecting with them--and it saves me from feeling like I have to defend my actions. All that said, it is SO obnoxious wen people make rude comments like that.

post #8 of 10
My toddler is a little smaller than average, but I have gotten plenty of awkward comments from people over various things in my 12 years as a parent. Mostly they are nosy comments about one of my children appearing to be a different race than the other, and I have had people touch my children inappropriately in social situations, one time when my daughter was very young at a buffet, she reached to grab a piece of bread instead of using tongs and a woman grabbed her arm and yelled at her. I almost flipped out, I can't believe what makes some people think they can do and say the things they do.
post #9 of 10

Just laugh like you think they're joking and move along.

post #10 of 10
As long as it's to you and not your kid, ignoring it is what I would do, too. It's all about them and their issues.
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