Caveat: My family eats fish for dinner every Friday. During Lent, we usually go out for fish. Last night took us to Das Dutch Haus, a family style restaurant about 15 minutes from my house. Last night, we were seated furthest corner of the back room – behind a table of a family with 2 children approx. 4 and 4 yrs. old and next to a lady (who looked to be in her late 40s) and her husband. The younger of the 2 kids was a boy, and was obviously adopted – probably from Latin America. The 2 children were behaving like children – annoying each other, growing restless while waiting for dinner, over sitting in their seats, etc. At one point, the little girl was pulling on a tapestry that was hanging on the wall and teasing her little brother while their mother was trying to get them to sit down.
40 yr old woman (talking loudly): All some people do is bitch at their kids.
[at this point you could hear a pin drop in the back room]
mother of 2 kids: Excuse me?
woman: Why don’t you try loving your kids. All you do is bitch at them.
mother: I love my kids. You have no idea what you’re talking about. You should mind your own business.
woman: I’ve raised my kids and have done a better job than you have. At least I’m grateful for my kids. You’re not grateful for your kids.
[picture me sitting there with my mouth open ready to tackle the obnoxious woman]
mother: You have no idea how grateful I am for my children.
There was a long pause in the restaurant. A woman from another table came over to give the mother a hug and tell her that her kids were beautiful and that she’s doing a great job with them. The obnoxious lady promptly picks up the phone and calls who we are to assume is one of her kids and talks loudly to the person about what she should be doing and how she should be watching her brother, etc. At the end of the conversation, she loudly says, “I love you.” All show, I believe. By now, this woman’s just staying to make people mad. She finished eating and had her check. She started up again – even louder than the first time.
“You know, you can always tell when kids are adopted because they never behave. They’re just brats and should stay in the countries where they belong. We don’t want no one different here.”
“She’s just abusing her kids. You can tell. She’s abusive and doesn’t love her kids.”
“Maybe if that kid wasn’t different he’d behave. She’s abusive.”
On and on it went. Her running commentary and complete ignorance was ruining my dinner. At one point, I said rather loudly, “You know, some people just don’t know love when they see it.” She just glared at me.
The obnoxious woman and her husband finally left. She muttered something to the woman and her family as they passed the table. As soon as she left the room, the mother burst into tears. Her kids rushed to give her big hugs. People from all over the room kept going up to the table to encourage her, show her love, etc.
As we left, my aunt and I both stopped by the table to let her know that her kids were adorable and that she shouldn’t listen to the ignorance of one person. She thanked us through her tears.
I was raging mad when we left the restaurant.
I can’t believe the ignorance of some people. I know that racism still exists where I live. It’s the first time in recent memory that I’ve witnessed someone act that vile. Parents discipline their kids as they see fit. Now, my dad would have dragged me out of the restaurant if I was running around and given me a talking to in the parking lot, but that’s just my dad. All kids deserve love. My kudos to those parents for opening their arms to a child through adoption and loving their kids. They certainly weren’t lacking in love.
And to the ignorant woman: I can’t believe you. Where do you get off thinking that you’re the authority on parenting? Don’t pass judgment on ANYONE. It’s not becoming. Open your eyes and mind to the world. Don’t be racist. I hope you regret what you said to that mother.