Author Topic: At the grocery with my 2-year old  (Read 10661 times)

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Moray

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #45 on: January 31, 2013, 11:57:53 AM »
"I think it's splitting hairs to wonder who the "watch out!" is being directed towards. I mean, if you yell "watch out!" at the grocery store because your toddler and the cart someone is pushing are about to collide, it will get the attention of both the toddler and the cart-pusher."

As a general safety tip, obviously just shouting "Watch Out" is effective. Here, we are answering the question of whether it's rude to yell "Watch Out" at the grocery store; if "Son's Name" is inserted first, it avoids any other potential cuctomer thinking you are shouting at them and therefore you are avoiding being thought rude.

Well, I guess just "watch out" seems neutral to me, then. "Watch out!" plus a glare at me and "Hey, you need to watch where you're going with that cart!" is rude. "Watch out!" plus "I'm so sorry he darted in front of you like that!" is not rude. Adding the child's name to either warning does not, in my opinion, change anything.

I definitely do not glare at anyone.  I just try to keep an eye on my son, and if I see him wandering into someone's else path, I call out to him.  And then if I forget to use his name, and I see the person with the cart looking at us, I don't apologize, but I do say that I was talking to my kid and not her.

I feel like I'm pretty obvious that I'm telling my kid to watch out, and not that anyone else needs to watch where they are going.  Although, people should watch where they are going.

One time, we were leaving the store, and a lady came barrelling into the store at a fast pace, completely looking in a different direction than where she was going.  She would have run into both of us, if I didn't stop and yank on my son's hair to keep him moving forward anymore.  That when I said "watch out", I was talking to her, but I didn't glare at her or say it nastily.

The bolded is a pretty good reason to insist on hand holding.
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shygirl

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #46 on: January 31, 2013, 12:00:36 PM »
For me, I wouldn't be offended by the "watch out!"

But I have to say if you are letting your kid wander around more then a foot or two away from your side, I also feel I get to speak to him, and I get to say "watch out" or "you need to look where you are going" or "no running" or "this is not an ok place to play" or "don't stand in front of my cart" or "excuse me but you need to move over" or "please don't touch/pull things down" and the like if I see the kid in a situation that warrants comment. Because once you are not actively engaged in parenting your kid, and letting him be out interacting in the world, the world gets to interact back.

He's not really more than 2 feet away from me.  I would be fine if other people told him to "watch out" or "you need to watch where you are going".  I guess it would be weird if you said any of the other things you mentioned since my son isn't doing that specific stuff.  Really, all he is doing is walking.

I don't think you can say I am not actively engaged in parenting my child.

LeveeWoman

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #47 on: January 31, 2013, 12:00:48 PM »
"I think it's splitting hairs to wonder who the "watch out!" is being directed towards. I mean, if you yell "watch out!" at the grocery store because your toddler and the cart someone is pushing are about to collide, it will get the attention of both the toddler and the cart-pusher."

As a general safety tip, obviously just shouting "Watch Out" is effective. Here, we are answering the question of whether it's rude to yell "Watch Out" at the grocery store; if "Son's Name" is inserted first, it avoids any other potential cuctomer thinking you are shouting at them and therefore you are avoiding being thought rude.

Well, I guess just "watch out" seems neutral to me, then. "Watch out!" plus a glare at me and "Hey, you need to watch where you're going with that cart!" is rude. "Watch out!" plus "I'm so sorry he darted in front of you like that!" is not rude. Adding the child's name to either warning does not, in my opinion, change anything.

I definitely do not glare at anyone.  I just try to keep an eye on my son, and if I see him wandering into someone's else path, I call out to him.  And then if I forget to use his name, and I see the person with the cart looking at us, I don't apologize, but I do say that I was talking to my kid and not her.

I feel like I'm pretty obvious that I'm telling my kid to watch out, and not that anyone else needs to watch where they are going.  Although, people should watch where they are going.

One time, we were leaving the store, and a lady came barrelling into the store at a fast pace, completely looking in a different direction than where she was going.  She would have run into both of us, if I didn't stop and yank on my son's hair to keep him moving forward anymore.   That when I said "watch out", I was talking to her, but I didn't glare at her or say it nastily.

Please don't equate me or others who are moving with their carts while shopping with this woman.

suzieQ

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #48 on: January 31, 2013, 12:01:14 PM »
Mine likes to help me push the cart.  She started at about 1.5 years old. She walks between me and the cart and pushes on the lower shelf.  I steer, and tell her when to stop.  her other option is to ride in the cart.

Oh! This reminds me of what I let J do when he was younger, to keep him "in the cart". I let him ride underneath the cart - where you normally put cases of bottle water and stuff. Do your carts have those things? J would lie down under the cart and pretend like he was flying. I did get some nasty looks occasionally, but ignored them. Those people had no idea of what our lives are like (J is special needs and when he was young, life was HELL).
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Elisabunny

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #49 on: January 31, 2013, 12:03:22 PM »
Mine likes to help me push the cart.  She started at about 1.5 years old. She walks between me and the cart and pushes on the lower shelf.  I steer, and tell her when to stop.  her other option is to ride in the cart.

This is what I was going to suggest.  Tell him if he wants to get out, he has to "help" you push the cart, with at least one hand on it at all times.  If he insists on wandering off, he goes back in the cart.
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bah12

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #50 on: January 31, 2013, 12:05:32 PM »
I'm curious how people expect kids to learn.  I have a 3 year old, she's actually pretty good about "walking" on her own (we ask her to put her hand on the cart, which she accepts more than holding hands...plus it allows us to use both hands to steer the cart). 

That being said, she wasn't born knowing how to behave like a perfect adult.  Heck, I'm in my mid-30's and I don't avoid collisions 100 percent of the time.  Kids need to learn and they aren't going to learn by observation and osmosis alone.  They need to practice...which means that they need to be let out of the cart and allowed to walk.

Sure, if the grocery store is crowded and busy, if the shopping trip is long, etc. those arent' the best times to let them practice.  But, I really don't see a problem with letting a child out of the cart (and away from the hand) in certain situations (much the same as letting someone just learning to drive, take the steering wheel in an empty or near empty parking lot). 

And even then, there is a chance (the same with adults) that a near collision could happen...and like I said, there is no issue with yelling "watch out"...even if one of the people is a child. 

Also, what's worse?  If my DD doesn't listen to me and her walking becomes a problem, yes, I force her to sit strapped into the cart.  This is punishment for her.  But it doesn't come without crying. We can calm her down relatively fast (she's already learned that if we leave a store, it's no fun for her even after she's calmed down), but are we rude to "make" her cry even for a minute?

TootsNYC

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #51 on: January 31, 2013, 12:06:41 PM »
I taught my kids a game called "Stop Your Feet!"
And "Now you can go."

And we used it for fun, on the sidewalk & playground, in totally safe places.

And then I used it in the grocery store, the mall, etc.

The penalty for not "stopping their feet" immediately was that they had to walk WITH me, and I held onto their forearm instead of their hand (which is a negative--it's almost as if they're a package instead of a companion). Or they'd have to go in the cart, or hold onto the side bar of it, etc. Their freedom of movement would be GREATLY curtailed

It worked! I could stop them instantly, anywhere.

I also think that "watch out" doesn't mean anything, especially not to a 2yo brain. But "stop your feet" is clear, understandable, and specific. And it bought me time to explain things to them, and to think of other words, etc.

Other short phrases might work as well--if your child is simply wandering too far, maybe you teach him a game called "On Me!" and you teach him that when you say that, he has to come and slap hands with you. That'll get him over by you, and then you can quietly explain to him what you want from him. Or you can simply use it every time he gets a little bit too far.

And there is "inside feet!"

Pick some "crowd-control" phrases, and teach them when you are not at the grocery store. Make them a game.

I did this w/ my son who liked to hide inside the carels at the department store. And then i couldn't see him, so I'd call, but he'd stay hidden. So I explained that he didn't have to come out, he could still have fun, but I needed to know that he was safe. So I'd call out, "Where's my Billy!" in a sing-song way, and he'd say, "here I am!" and that was all I needed. It worked really, really well. I could allow him some freedom and yet still have "control" of him using these pre-decided, pre-practiced phrases.

WillyNilly

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #52 on: January 31, 2013, 12:07:54 PM »
For me, I wouldn't be offended by the "watch out!"

But I have to say if you are letting your kid wander around more then a foot or two away from your side, I also feel I get to speak to him, and I get to say "watch out" or "you need to look where you are going" or "no running" or "this is not an ok place to play" or "don't stand in front of my cart" or "excuse me but you need to move over" or "please don't touch/pull things down" and the like if I see the kid in a situation that warrants comment. Because once you are not actively engaged in parenting your kid, and letting him be out interacting in the world, the world gets to interact back.

He's not really more than 2 feet away from me.  I would be fine if other people told him to "watch out" or "you need to watch where you are going".  I guess it would be weird if you said any of the other things you mentioned since my son isn't doing that specific stuff.  Really, all he is doing is walking.

I don't think you can say I am not actively engaged in parenting my child.

Actually that's exactly what you are saying you are doing.  You are not actively parenting, you are passively parenting.  Which is fine, and as he gets older more and more appropriate.  But if you are not actively holding his hand, or actively keeping him the cart or otherwise actively keeping him engaged, but rather passively just keeping an eye on him from a few feet away and only stepping in to stop him when needed, you are not actively parenting you are passively parenting.

I don't mind speaking to a kid directly, nor am I nasty about it - I use a friendly tone and child appropriate words and comments).  But if the kid is not under the direct control and direct vision of his parent, it is in my opinion fair game for me to direct my comments to the kid.  I don't have any interest in trying to figure out which random adult is the one connected to the kid for a 3 second interaction.

bah12

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #53 on: January 31, 2013, 12:11:32 PM »
Mine likes to help me push the cart.  She started at about 1.5 years old. She walks between me and the cart and pushes on the lower shelf.  I steer, and tell her when to stop.  her other option is to ride in the cart.

Oh! This reminds me of what I let J do when he was younger, to keep him "in the cart". I let him ride underneath the cart - where you normally put cases of bottle water and stuff. Do your carts have those things? J would lie down under the cart and pretend like he was flying. I did get some nasty looks occasionally, but ignored them. Those people had no idea of what our lives are like (J is special needs and when he was young, life was HELL).

I personally don't see too much of a problem with this, but there are those that will think that you are rude and putting your kid in danger (and the store liability up).  At the end of the day, it's impossible to make everyone satisfied with how you parent and teach your child.  I've learned that people will judge me regardless of what I do.  So, I do the best I can for my kid and teach her the lessons she needs so that she can function, effectively, morally, and  politely, without me someday. 

Also, like Toots, I also play a "stop/go" game with my DD...we started this when we're walking in our neighborhood...to help her not dart out into the street, etc.  It's a very fun game for her and makes me feel safer when she doesn't want to hold my hand.  I've applied it to other situations as well.

shygirl

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #54 on: January 31, 2013, 12:12:44 PM »
He might not be ready for this yet, but one thing I did when my kids were toddlers was give a little "list" of their own --with drawings instead of words. Once they were starting to recognize letters, I'd write a couple simple words. No, they weren't really reading, but knew that "eggs" started with "e" and "milk" started with "m" and their job was to look for those things. It was another way to keep them occupied in addition to or instead of snacks.

Actually, this is a GREAT idea!  He can recognize all the letters, and he definitely loves to point them out to me.  "H" is his current favorite letter.

I definitely do not glare at anyone.  I just try to keep an eye on my son, and if I see him wandering into someone's else path, I call out to him.  And then if I forget to use his name, and I see the person with the cart looking at us, I don't apologize, but I do say that I was talking to my kid and not her.

I feel like I'm pretty obvious that I'm telling my kid to watch out, and not that anyone else needs to watch where they are going.  Although, people should watch where they are going.

One time, we were leaving the store, and a lady came barrelling into the store at a fast pace, completely looking in a different direction than where she was going.  She would have run into both of us, if I didn't stop and yank on my son's hair to keep him moving forward anymore.  That when I said "watch out", I was talking to her, but I didn't glare at her or say it nastily.

The bolded is a pretty good reason to insist on hand holding.

Even if we were holding hands, I would have yanking on his hand to keep from moving forward.  So I don't see how holding hands would have made any difference. 

Mine likes to help me push the cart.  She started at about 1.5 years old. She walks between me and the cart and pushes on the lower shelf.  I steer, and tell her when to stop.  her other option is to ride in the cart.

This is what I was going to suggest.  Tell him if he wants to get out, he has to "help" you push the cart, with at least one hand on it at all times.  If he insists on wandering off, he goes back in the cart.

Tried this too!  He does like to push the cart, but he doesn't want me to "help".  He just wants to push it.  If I kept my hands on the cart, it ended in another screaming fit. 

Also wanted to mention in response to someone who said that I'm bribing my kid so I don't have to listen to him scream:  that's not really what is happening.  I'm actually fine with him screaming, I listen to him do it ALL THE TIME.  It was the violent thrashing that I'm trying to stop, and the need to actually buy some groceries.  If he just sat there and cried, so I could at least keep pushing the cart and pay for whatever groceries I had already picked out, I would do that.  But it wasn't physically possible to keep him contained in the cart, and keep doing what I needed to do for groceries.

cicero

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #55 on: January 31, 2013, 12:16:55 PM »
i think that you not doing your son any favors. believe me - i do understand how difficult it is. but there may be mroe efficient ways (for your son) and politer ways (for fellow shoppers) to go about this.

you said in one of your earlier posts - that when you *have to* (or when you feel that you have to) you *do* restrain him even if he screams and cries (e.g., in the parking lot). *that* should be your mindset when you take him shopping. that it doesn't matter if he screams, mom makes the decision. if you give in when he screams, he will be calling the shots from this point on.

two ideas that worked for DS when he was that age:
1. put him in the cart part of the cart, not the seat. this works if you don't have a lot of shopping. and my DS used to "help" by putting things in an orderly way.
2. he can walk but he has to hold your hand OR the cart. there is no *other* option. if he balks - pick him up and put him in the seat/cart.

and as others said - do a few dry runs when the store is not crowded and when you don't need to shop.

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acicularis

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #56 on: January 31, 2013, 12:18:30 PM »
I'm curious how people expect kids to learn.  I have a 3 year old, she's actually pretty good about "walking" on her own (we ask her to put her hand on the cart, which she accepts more than holding hands...plus it allows us to use both hands to steer the cart). 

That being said, she wasn't born knowing how to behave like a perfect adult.  Heck, I'm in my mid-30's and I don't avoid collisions 100 percent of the time.  Kids need to learn and they aren't going to learn by observation and osmosis alone.  They need to practice...which means that they need to be let out of the cart and allowed to walk.

Sure, if the grocery store is crowded and busy, if the shopping trip is long, etc. those arent' the best times to let them practice.  But, I really don't see a problem with letting a child out of the cart (and away from the hand) in certain situations (much the same as letting someone just learning to drive, take the steering wheel in an empty or near empty parking lot). 

And even then, there is a chance (the same with adults) that a near collision could happen...and like I said, there is no issue with yelling "watch out"...even if one of the people is a child. 

Also, what's worse?  If my DD doesn't listen to me and her walking becomes a problem, yes, I force her to sit strapped into the cart.  This is punishment for her.  But it doesn't come without crying. We can calm her down relatively fast (she's already learned that if we leave a store, it's no fun for her even after she's calmed down), but are we rude to "make" her cry even for a minute?

I agree. There's also a big difference between a toddler racing around unsupervised and a toddler walking a couple feet away from his mom.

When I'm shopping, I assume that I'm going to have to watch out for other people --children and adults. Today while shopping, lots of people got in my way --mostly adults. Should I have scolded the woman whose oblivious husband didn't see me and wandered into my path, blocking my cart?

Moray

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #57 on: January 31, 2013, 12:20:51 PM »
He might not be ready for this yet, but one thing I did when my kids were toddlers was give a little "list" of their own --with drawings instead of words. Once they were starting to recognize letters, I'd write a couple simple words. No, they weren't really reading, but knew that "eggs" started with "e" and "milk" started with "m" and their job was to look for those things. It was another way to keep them occupied in addition to or instead of snacks.

Actually, this is a GREAT idea!  He can recognize all the letters, and he definitely loves to point them out to me.  "H" is his current favorite letter.

This works if the kid is aware enough to pay attention to their surroundings and not go barreling off towards the dairy case. Is your son up to that?

I definitely do not glare at anyone.  I just try to keep an eye on my son, and if I see him wandering into someone's else path, I call out to him.  And then if I forget to use his name, and I see the person with the cart looking at us, I don't apologize, but I do say that I was talking to my kid and not her.

I feel like I'm pretty obvious that I'm telling my kid to watch out, and not that anyone else needs to watch where they are going.  Although, people should watch where they are going.

One time, we were leaving the store, and a lady came barrelling into the store at a fast pace, completely looking in a different direction than where she was going.  She would have run into both of us, if I didn't stop and yank on my son's hair to keep him moving forward anymore.  That when I said "watch out", I was talking to her, but I didn't glare at her or say it nastily.

The bolded is a pretty good reason to insist on hand holding.

Even if we were holding hands, I would have yanking on his hand to keep from moving forward.  So I don't see how holding hands would have made any difference. 

Then you hold his hand tighter, or keep him in the cart. If you were in the parking lot, would you let him just yank away and hope you could yank his hair in time?

Mine likes to help me push the cart.  She started at about 1.5 years old. She walks between me and the cart and pushes on the lower shelf.  I steer, and tell her when to stop.  her other option is to ride in the cart.

This is what I was going to suggest.  Tell him if he wants to get out, he has to "help" you push the cart, with at least one hand on it at all times.  If he insists on wandering off, he goes back in the cart.

Tried this too!  He does like to push the cart, but he doesn't want me to "help".  He just wants to push it.  If I kept my hands on the cart, it ended in another screaming fit. 

Also wanted to mention in response to someone who said that I'm bribing my kid so I don't have to listen to him scream:  that's not really what is happening.  I'm actually fine with him screaming, I listen to him do it ALL THE TIME.  It was the violent thrashing that I'm trying to stop, and the need to actually buy some groceries.  If he just sat there and cried, so I could at least keep pushing the cart and pay for whatever groceries I had already picked out, I would do that.  But it wasn't physically possible to keep him contained in the cart, and keep doing what I needed to do for groceries.

The end result is still that you're rewarding him, either with fries or by getting down and running amok, for inappropriate behavior. He's not going to magically decide one day to stop running about or throwing tantrums. You have to actively reinforce positive behavior. Yes, it's hard, but who said parenting was easy?

Edit: Oops, those weren't meant to be bold, too!
« Last Edit: January 31, 2013, 12:22:24 PM by Moray »
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CluelessBride

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #58 on: January 31, 2013, 12:30:27 PM »
"I think it's splitting hairs to wonder who the "watch out!" is being directed towards. I mean, if you yell "watch out!" at the grocery store because your toddler and the cart someone is pushing are about to collide, it will get the attention of both the toddler and the cart-pusher."

As a general safety tip, obviously just shouting "Watch Out" is effective. Here, we are answering the question of whether it's rude to yell "Watch Out" at the grocery store; if "Son's Name" is inserted first, it avoids any other potential cuctomer thinking you are shouting at them and therefore you are avoiding being thought rude.

Well, I guess just "watch out" seems neutral to me, then. "Watch out!" plus a glare at me and "Hey, you need to watch where you're going with that cart!" is rude. "Watch out!" plus "I'm so sorry he darted in front of you like that!" is not rude. Adding the child's name to either warning does not, in my opinion, change anything.

I definitely do not glare at anyone.  I just try to keep an eye on my son, and if I see him wandering into someone's else path, I call out to him.  And then if I forget to use his name, and I see the person with the cart looking at us, I don't apologize, but I do say that I was talking to my kid and not her.

I feel like I'm pretty obvious that I'm telling my kid to watch out, and not that anyone else needs to watch where they are going.  Although, people should watch where they are going.

One time, we were leaving the store, and a lady came barrelling into the store at a fast pace, completely looking in a different direction than where she was going.  She would have run into both of us, if I didn't stop and yank on my son's hair to keep him moving forward anymore.  That when I said "watch out", I was talking to her, but I didn't glare at her or say it nastily.

To me, this makes the interaction rude. You don't need to apologize for asking your son to watch out. But you *do* need to apologize for your son getting in another shoppers way. Or make him apologize.

I'm an adult. Sometimes I accidentally get in someones way - it happens. But I apologize. Sometimes other people get in my way accidentally. And (most of the time) they apologize. It's true the apology doesn't change anything, and its likely you won't ever see/recognize these people again, but its just part of being in a polite society. You are responsible for your child's actions. So if he does something that would normally require you to apologize (wandering into someone's path aimlessly, bumping into them, obliviously obstructing them getting to a shelf, basically inconveniencing someone else by not being aware of his surroundings etc) then you should apologize for him.

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Re: At the grocery with my 2-year old
« Reply #59 on: January 31, 2013, 12:31:03 PM »
Shygirl, it sounds like you are pretty committed to your course of action of letting him walk independently without holding hands. So to your question of how other react to hearing "Watch Out" yelled, I would say your best course of action is 1)use his name to assure others know to whom you are addressing 2)not yell since you say he is within 2 feet of you, yelling shouldn't be required. A normal volume "Johnny watch where you are going would suffice" or if quicker action is require just a sterner "Johnny!" should get his attention.

And if you can, a "Sorry" to the other shopper for his getting into their way would be appreciated.