advice from a non-mom

My husband and I are constantly tackling Lil J's ever changing toddlerhood mannerisms and phases.  One day he'll be super polite and other days he takes on the persona of a tyrant.

I was mentioning to one of my girlfriends {who, for the record, does not have any kids} that Lil J just started a phase where he will purposely nudge or brush against another kid as they walk by.  Sometimes he does it to adults too but they just brush it off and laugh because....well when a two year-old does it, it's kind of cute.  Each time this happens, I let Lil J know in a very stern voice that it is wrong and not okay.  He apologizes and then it happens again.  Obviously this always happens in public so I'm not going to create a huge scene but by the time we get home, he's not going to remember what he did.

My girlfriend asked if I put him in "time out".  I told her no because we're out in public...and how would that really work anyways?  She said to put him in a corner or on the stairs and just make him sit there for two minutes.  Really?  Make a toddler sit in one place for two minutes while we're out in a non-familiar surrounding?  Not gonna happen.  I wonder if maybe she was talking about doing it at home but that would kind of defeat the purpose since the incident would be long forgotten by Lil J and he truly wouldn't understand why he was being punished if it was hours after the fact.

Did my girlfriend overstep her boundaries in saying this?  What does she really know about having a little kid around?  I know she babysits her nieces and nephews but let's get real.  It's different when they're not your own kids. 

I wonder why I feel so offended.  I know my girlfriend was probably just trying to help out but it sort of came out the wrong way.  How do you deal with disciplining your kids in a public setting?


  1. OMG! Did you mention to her that you were offended? I also have a friend who's a teacher and she's mentioned certain things that I thought were a little off base. Can't remember deets right now. But, I remember saying to her that it's different when you have your own kids. Oh, here's one. Just the other day she came over for dinner and said that I shouldn't give her tacos. It was a little piece of the taco and Princess wanted it. I didn't see it as a big deal. I know she was trying to help, but it is a little off putting. I didn't say anything at the time because I didn't want to cause an uncomfortable situation. Even though I said nothing at the time, I do mention things like "I hate when people try to tell me how to raise my child." I say it generally speaking hoping she gets the point.

  2. I would not be offended at all. Especially as you were talking to her about the situation. Sometimes people that aren't in the exact same situation as you can see things differently and can give a different type of insight. Sure, having children gives you a certain type of knowledge but it still doesn't mean you know everything about parenting and children.

    We do do time outs in public with our 3 year old. We've only had to do a handful and now the threat of it works like a charm. I knew I wanted to have something in my back pocket that I could use when we were out with the baby and time outs have worked well for us so far!