So today at lunch, I found myself wandering the clearance aisles of Target, seeking deals that I just couldn't possibly live without. There is nothing like a little red clearance tag that gets my heart pounding with joy. Well, maybe that is an exaggeration... a nice glass of wine seems to have the same affects on me lately. Ok, I lied again. Not just lately. It always has that affect on me...both wine and clearance tags. Anyway, my favorite section of Target is the baby aisles, because let's face it: Target has cute baby clothes that rival those at the baby gap. And they are half the price. What does that mean to me? I can get twice as many clothes at Target, because my logic is this- from what I am saving by not shopping at baby gap, I have excess funds that I would be spending on baby clothes anyway, so I my as well get more for less. Ok, perhaps my logic is totally flawed, but I don't care.
My story actually has nothing to do with anything in the first paragraph, sorry about the tangent.
So as I was looking at baby clothes, a mom around my age (perhaps a bit older) was on the other side of the department looking at the women's clothing section with two small children- probably around the ages of 15 months, and maybe 3ish. It was pretty clear that the mom was visible annoyed with them, I could sense her frustration from across the department, simply by the way she was jamming hangers back on to the racks and breathing heavily. She was also in a fascinating phone call with someone about last night's latest drama with a friend, or husband? Not sure. One of the children, the older one, was sitting in the cart and tugging on her shirt, clearly trying to get her attention, saying "Mommy." She twisted her head around (Poltergeist style) and said to her child "SHUT UP!" She continued to say "If you don't shut up right now, you are getting nothing! I can't believe that you act like such a naughty little selfish brat all the time!" STOP THE PRESSES. Did I seriously just hear her talk to her young child like that, in that tone? I immediately pretended like her child was Ledoux... and how I would never speak to her in that tone, with those harsh words... it just broke my heart.
I get it, us mom's get frustrated. Its over 100 degrees outside (which tends to make everyone a little cranky.) I am no angel. I have had to put Ledoux in her crib, walk away, take a breath and collect myself, and start over. In public, Ledoux has thrown straight up temper tantrums. I didn't yell at her. I didn't call her names or put her down. I don't care what the situation is, no child should ever be spoken to in that way. The way in which we speak to our babies, regardless of age, is shaping how they see the world, how they will develop, the type of little person (and eventually big person) they will become... Speaking to our babies must be intentional. Take for example the picture below:
Take this into account, the next time you want to fly off the handle at your little darling:
If a child lives with criticism, he learns to condemn
If a child lives with hostility, he learns to fight
If a child lives with ridicule, he learns to be shy
If a child lives with shame, he learns to feel guilty
If a child lives with tolerance, he learns to be patient
If a child lives with encouragement, he learns to be confident
If a child lives with praise, he learns to appreciate
If a child lives with fairness, he learns justice
If a child lives with security, he learns to have faith
If a child lives with approval, he learns to like himself
If a child lives with acceptance, and friendship, he learns to love...
At that moment, I wasn't sure what to do... do you confront the mom? Do you try and ease the situation? Or do you just walk away, and pretend that you didn't hear it? What would you do in this situation? Sound off mommies!