Dear Mom In Target With The Screaming Child,
Right now I am reminiscing about a time when I too had to hold my screaming child and escort them off the premisses due to an unwillingness to stop screaming. Yes, Every. Single. Mom. Has been in your shoes. We all know exactly how you are feeling. And I want you to know, you are not a horrible mom.
Those are the times that we wish we had just decided to stay home, but instead, we built up the courage to brave target alone with our kids and thought to ourselves, “It’ll be fine! They WILL behave!”
Kids are not stable creatures. Kids are crazy. They have off days just like we do. And as a fellow mom who saw you at Target, I understand. I understand how horrible and embarrassed you may have felt. I understand that maybe in that moment you felt like a failure. I understand how you just wanted to get out of that store as quickly as you could to avoid those “perfect moms” that would surely be coming your way very quickly. You know, the moms or grandmas that come over and say their wonderful, helpful opinions to you while your child is screaming their lungs out- “Oh, she must be REALLY tired”, “Wow, she’s got some lungs on her!”, “She looks hungry!”, or my favorite “Someone needs some discipline.” Because we ALL know, the stranger in Target knows your child better than you do. Right?
I saw a woman today who was obviously having a hard time and a rough day. She did not lose her cool. She took her parenting seriously, and I was really impressed.
Here’s why I am applauding you and writing you a letter-
- You saw your child was acting up and you DID NOT shove an electronic device in front of her face. THANK YOU. Thank you sweet mom for not trying to distract the problem. Instead, you faced it head on. AWESOME JOB!
- You did not bribe her with candy or some toy to get her to shut up. YOU GO GIRL. Our kids are not the bosses! We are! And bribing them is not the answer. Even if you are embarrassed about how they are acting out in public.
- You left the premises without buying whatever it was you were there for, so you could instruct your child at home or wherever else. I am bowing down to you right now. This takes a serious mom to literally leave whatever it was she needed in the store to get her kid out and take care of what needed to be taken care of.
These are the difficult, strenuous days us parents are all faced with at some point or another. It’s inevitable. It will happen. If it hasn’t happened to you yet, be prepared. It WILL happen. And it’s okay. It doesn’t make us bad parents. It makes us human. No parent is perfect. No child is perfect. Don’t expect your child to be a perfect little prince or princess every single day of their lives. It’s unrealistic.
We need to take the time as parents to instruct our children, even when they are screaming like crazy little psychopaths. It is still our job to keep our cool and instruct. No matter what. If they don’t have us to do that, who will?
Here are some great verses about parenting that are perfect resources for us parents!
“Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6
“Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” Ephesians 6:4
“Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him.” Proverbs 13:24