What would you do... - Mothering Forums
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Parenting > What would you do...
Star's Avatar Star 05:48 PM 11-23-2004
... if some kid you didn't know came running up to your child in walmart, and hugged it and kissed it?

We were in walmart yesterday, and some kid, he looked to be about 4 or 5 years old, came running up to my child (who was in her stroller), grabbed her, hugged her, and planted a kiss on her forehead (i think it was her forehead - i was behind her and couldn't see). It happened so fast that I was just in shock and didn't know how to respond, and he went running down the aisle before I had a chance to. :

Then his mother comes walking past with a friend, and when I look at them and frowned, they laugh and say he gives everyone kisses. WTF? How is that funny, and why would you let your child go around kissing stranger?? I'm very anal about germs and DD getting sick and this is bugging me to no extent.

I wish I could have said some smart remark to the mother, just to shut her up and make her think twice about letting her child hug and kiss people without permission. But, the most I did was wipe her face and hands very thoroughly with a wipe.

So, what would you do? How should I have reacted? Any good smart remarks? Am I over-reacting about the germs?

Edited to add: I have a very low immune system and I'm afraid DD might have it too. She is just getting over a cold, and since she hasn't got a flu shot this year, I'm overly paranoid about germs (doesn't help that I have OCD with germ & cleanliness lol).

CollegeMama's Avatar CollegeMama 06:07 PM 11-23-2004
I'm sorry Star, but I agree with CarrieBeary77 and her DH. I think it's perfectly fine for a young child to want to show affection towards other young children.
Moon's Avatar Moon 06:18 PM 11-23-2004
I agree...you are overreacting. I'd be pretty happy if my kid had been on the receiving end of another little kid's happiness. And I'd be happy, too, if my kid was the one spreading the cheer. How loving and generous. Too bad there isn't more of that going on.
2tadpoles's Avatar 2tadpoles 06:18 PM 11-23-2004
I can see both sides.

I am very possessive of my personal space and would not want some stranger running up and kissing me.

But I'm also aware that that's MY hang-up and not necessarily my child's.

I'm not sure about the germs. I'm more concerned with clean hands than other people's kisses. As long as the child didn't kiss your daughter on the mouth, she's not likely to get sick from it.
~Nikki~'s Avatar ~Nikki~ 06:20 PM 11-23-2004
The exact same thing happened to us...in a Walmart, no less. :LOL This grubby little boy came running up, and started kissing dd all over her face. I really wasn't sure WHAT to do, as it was the first time I had encountered it. Had he at least been clean, I don't think it would have phased me. I probably would have thought it was cute. But this kid was the Grub Prince, obviously had a cold due to the goobers running out of his nose, and was wiping himself all over dd (who was only 6 months old at the time). Luckily, his father came up and "rescued" me before I had a chance to really think about saying anything. He was apologetic, but I waved him off like it was no biggie. Honestly, what else could I do? Yell at him and tell him to control his 3 year old? Kids are naturally affectionate towards babies.

Now, had it been a grubby ADULT that had come up and started smearing his boogies all over dd, I would have reacted a bit more harshly.
Kodachrome's Avatar Kodachrome 06:20 PM 11-23-2004
That is the sweetest thing ever .... Although my first reaction (for a split second) would be silently hoping the child offering the kiss and hug wasn't terribly sick with the flu or anything .... Above it all, I would find it so innocent and loving. That says a lot about the child's parents - I would have given them a positive remark on what a loving family and child they have.

But, that is just me
Ravenmoon's Avatar Ravenmoon 06:20 PM 11-23-2004
My dd has cerebral Palsy and mild retardation and does things like that.She does not get it isn't right to love on everyone.As much as i would love to apologize to every person in line and at every store for whatever she may do it is difficult.Somehow i hope that people will pick up on the fact that some people are not normal and do not know or understand the normal boundaries.Most people don't though.A man at the bank yesterday who was so obviously autistic to me and was talking facts about strange things to everyone who would listen was getting very mean looks from people.I wish i could broadcast,Hey this man is just being himself.I hope this helps to open your perspective a bit.
mamaduck's Avatar mamaduck 06:23 PM 11-23-2004
I would not be okay if this happened to us. I think because I know my younger son has *huge* personal space issues, and gets very much freaked out when anyone, much less a stranger, chooses to invade his space. I would be upset because I would be worried about my child and his reaction.

But I wouldn't be concerned about germs. And I think I would just be amused if my son were not the way he is.
Gemini's Avatar Gemini 06:23 PM 11-23-2004
I'm with the OP one this one. There is no way I'd be okay with my dd running up to other kids and kissing them. I don't know what that kid has and who knows what my kid has! My dd has diabetes and gets very very sick when she catches something, so I don't want anyone I don't know doing this to my dd. I think it's really strange to let your kids run up to anyone to give affection. Only with people I know, not in a store with strangers!
UnschoolnMa's Avatar UnschoolnMa 06:26 PM 11-23-2004
I think you are overeacting. Kids are just so sweet and expressive, and I am sure that they didnt mean harm. Washing the face should be fine, but I have never been one to fret over germs too much. Dirt happens, germs happen ya know?
because's Avatar because 06:37 PM 11-23-2004
Eeew! I'm with you, OP!

Now, if it were a cousin or a playgroup buddy or something it's just different. But a total stranger? I'm sorry, but the parents are doing that child a huge disservice by not teaching him the norms of our society. Not to mention germs.

The fear of icky strangers was one reason I kept DD in a sling most of our time in public until she was just too heavy.
DesireeH's Avatar DesireeH 06:38 PM 11-23-2004
I think the child was just being sweet too.

My child hates when kids do that to him though and he screams so I probably would have said "oh thats very nice of you to give him a hug, but he doesnt want a hug right now." If it happened in a split second though, I dont think Jevin would have screamed. LOL He only screams when the kids linger. LOL

I guess I dont worry too much about germs. He is exposed to lots of kids on a regular basis via playgroups, parks, our friends have kids....and they all share toys, etc so I figure a little smooch and hug wont hurt.
stafl's Avatar stafl 06:41 PM 11-23-2004
awwwww, that is so sweet!
no, I wouldn't be upset. If my kid is going to catch somebody's germs, being in Walmart in and of itself is bad enough. Now cooties, well, that's totally different. But DD isn't old enough to know about cooties yet :LOL
amyandelle's Avatar amyandelle 06:41 PM 11-23-2004
Wow!

I am shocked at the lack of support here. Star, I am right there with ya!! I would have been very angry, annoyed and disgusted.

I think that it is apalling that this child of 4 or 5 years is running rampant in the Walmart : If the mother could not control her child then she should have left him at home. It is not safe for a child of any age to be running around a store. And as for the mother laughing and saying he kisses everyone I don't think that type of behavior would be tolerated in a school classroom if he were running up to all of the kids and kissing them. IMO it is a good idea to teach your children early to respect others and that includes their personal space no matter what age they are.
Amy
lotusdebi's Avatar lotusdebi 06:42 PM 11-23-2004
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UnschoolnMa's Avatar UnschoolnMa 06:50 PM 11-23-2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by amyandelle
Wow!
I am shocked at the lack of support here. Star, I am right there with ya!! I would have been very angry, annoyed and disgusted.
Well, the original poster did ask us what we would do, and if we thought she was overreacting. We answered.
Justice2's Avatar Justice2 06:57 PM 11-23-2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by because
I'm sorry, but the parents are doing that child a huge disservice by not teaching him the norms of our society.
I agree with Carriebeary's hubby. This is the extremely sad part of our society. I hope that my children will be loving and affectionate, even if it means that they catch a cold. I think being nice begins in childhood, even toddlerhood and (imo) a large part of what our society is missing.
shishkeberry's Avatar shishkeberry 06:58 PM 11-23-2004
I'm sorry, but I thought it was cute. I wouldn't have been mad if another kid did that to my ds. Whenever I visit my mom at her work (daycare) the toddlers are always kissing ds. As long as they're not poking him or sticking their fingers in his mouth I don't mind. U I can see how it can be upsetting, but I'm not a germ-phobic kind of person. I guess I would rather kids kissing him instead of hitting or biting him.
yeah yeah yeah's Avatar yeah yeah yeah 07:01 PM 11-23-2004
I'd giggle and blow it off. How likely is it to happen again? I mean, if you lived in a freakish town of pre-schoolers that ALL randomly kissed, then you'd have some reason to to be upset.

But, one incident in wal-mart? Don't sweat the small stuff.
Star's Avatar Star 07:01 PM 11-23-2004
Alrighty then. I see I'm overreacting. Thanks. If it does happen again, I'm going to try to smile at the boy and say something sweet.

Btw, I do think kisses and hugs between kids are sweet, but not in this sitaiton. If he had actually asked if he could hug/kiss her then I might think differently. But the part that really irks me is how rough he was with her (he RAN towards her and she was pushed back into her seat). No matter what, though, I still feel I should have said something about how rough he was with a baby.
jeca's Avatar jeca 07:07 PM 11-23-2004
hmm, I don't know. hugs maybe kisses, I don't know. I think I would be okay if it happened to an older child but I have a thing against strange hugs and kisses on my baby baby.
mama ganoush's Avatar mama ganoush 07:14 PM 11-23-2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by amyandelle
Wow!


I think that it is apalling that this child of 4 or 5 years is running rampant in the Walmart : If the mother could not control her child then she should have left him at home. .
Amy
can anyone else just not WAIT until this mama has a 4 or 5 year old child????

shelley4's Avatar shelley4 07:22 PM 11-23-2004
my dd often gets kissed/hugged by random kids, she loves it, they love it, she usually kisses back, it's all good. now, if it were an adult stranger, it would be different!
sunnmama's Avatar sunnmama 07:26 PM 11-23-2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by Star
But the part that really irks me is how rough he was with her (he RAN towards her and she was pushed back into her seat). No matter what, though, I still feel I should have said something about how rough he was with a baby.
I agree with you here. Hugs and kisses between children are super-sweet. But, even at this young age, they should not be forced. My dd also has space issues, and would have been *screaming* if this had happened to her at any age older than 5 mo. She is 3.5 now, and would be screaming. No one has the right to hug or kiss my dd against her will--adult or child.
Greensleeves's Avatar Greensleeves 07:27 PM 11-23-2004
Sounds like yet another reason to stay out of Walmart. : :
Ms. Frizzle's Avatar Ms. Frizzle 07:28 PM 11-23-2004
Yep, overreacting for sure!
If another child was loving towards my child I would think it was cute and I would smile and laugh along with the other mother, not frown.
amyandelle's Avatar amyandelle 07:29 PM 11-23-2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by mama ganoush
can anyone else just not WAIT until this mama has a 4 or 5 year old child????
Oh boy....

I wish you would have quoted the whole point that I was making. My point was that it is not safe for children to be running around stores. If that little boy ran so quickly down an isle how could his mama see him? He could get kidnappped, lost, or fall down and hurt himself or someone else. Obviously my dd is only 8 months old but my mom had my brother when I was 14 so I know what it is like to take a 4-5 year old shopping. It was challenging at times but I can assure you my brother was NEVER allowed to run through any store we ever took him to. If he started to get out of control we left the store.
Amy
Ms. Frizzle's Avatar Ms. Frizzle 07:30 PM 11-23-2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by mama ganoush
can anyone else just not WAIT until this mama has a 4 or 5 year old child????
Yep! Sounds like the type who gives other parents dirty looks dureing mall tantrums.
amyandelle's Avatar amyandelle 07:33 PM 11-23-2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ms. Frizzle
Yep! Sounds like the type who gives other parents dirty looks dureing mall tantrums.
Yep that's me : You hit the nail on the head I AM that "type" Have they invented a name for it yet?
Amy
wemoon's Avatar wemoon 07:36 PM 11-23-2004
My DD is the one hugging and kissing everyone. I do nothing about it. It has nothing to do with me and is all about her. If she starts to feel uncomfortable then she can stop. She runs up to little kids and says *Friend! Friend!*. I would never want her to stop really. Her little heart just bursts with love for all these people.
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