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Dealing with other parents, parenting badly

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  • Dealing with other parents, parenting badly

    Wow this is tricky.

    What's the opinion out there for being around what I call bad parenting in public places.

    Do you step in?
    Do you offer advise?
    Do you ignore it?

    I'm new to parenting and I know this is just going to keep coming up for me. In my heart I want to offer advise - to say something that will lead to positive change. But I don't know what and think I'll just be blasted at by the parent in anger and ignored, so I end up just ignoring it. I think I'm a bit of a wuss (meaning:scared person).

    So two situations:-

    At a playground in a park, mum was constantly on 3yo child's case, at every exercise on play ground Her loudness and talking/yelling constantly did spoil my enjoyment that day. She also often made empty threats of putting the child in the car while they waited for their other family member's sport to finish. I was hoping she would just to get some peace.

    In a Mall, Dad yelling No at 1yo child when child joyfully moved towards a public coin-operated play car. Then father berated the boy and strapped him firmly in pushchair. The boy was having a tantrum by then.

    When I think about what I'd most like to say to the parent is "Calm down, if you deal with your child calmly they'll be calmer too"

    Opinions/Experiences anyone?

  • #2
    This is always very hard to witness, because in our hearts we deeply believe that our way is the "right" way, and, so, parents who aren't doing it this way are wrong. We, of course, can't control anyone else, but we can control ourselves and interact with both the distressed parent and child in a gentle, respectful way if our interaction with them is called for.

    Jan Hunt talks about this on her Website:


    • #3
      The book 'Playful Parenting' has a GREAT section on this. by Cohen
      It is written by a play therapist. Get this book!