Author Topic: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?  (Read 24442 times)

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wolfie

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #90 on: February 22, 2013, 11:45:45 AM »
Nope, it is not "OK" for a mother to take her child's food away without asking permission first. This isn't a matter of parental authority - it is general politeness.

Let's say you were eating with a married couple. The wife orders an appetizer, and when it arrives, as she starts to take a mouthful, her husband grabs the plate and asks, "Does anyone want some of my wife's appetizers?" Would you not think, at a minimum, he is being rude to her, in not at least asking, "Hey, can we share those?"

If the family tradition is to share appetizers, it does not spare the mother from the minimal common courtesy to her child to ask, "Hey, can we have some?" Basic politeness requires you to ask such a question, even if the expected answer is "yes, of course".

We have an "appetizers are to be shared family", so your scenario above would be fine with me. No, more than fine; it would be expected. My kids are always welcome to order an appetizer if they want one, but they know it's for the whole table. There would not need to be a discussion because that's the way we've always done it.

I don't think that we can know, without knowing if child in question comes from an "apps are to be shared" family, if the mom was rude or not. Nor do I think we should try to read anything into her facial expression.

In that situation I would expect the wife to pick up her plate and ask if anyone wants some of her appetizer. If her husband did it I would be making some uncharitable assumptions about him.

You will think what you will, but he would not be rude. Not in my family, and not in many others.  If this were my husband and I, I would be the rude one for forgetting to offer the app to the others at the table.

If that is your rule then I would expect him to gently nudge you with a "hey can I have that" or something similar to remind you of the rule. but to just take a plate from in front of someone and offer it to others strikes me as boorish and controlling and I would be watching the relationship more closely to see if I should be offering any extra help. This would also go if the wife offered the husband's food.

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #91 on: February 22, 2013, 11:48:26 AM »
And again, I think this boils down to a families way of doing things.  In my family, no one would ever  presume to pick up another's plate and start offering it around.  If you want an appetizer order your own, or discuss before hand if anyone wants to spit (which we do with the bigger appetizers).  And I have encountered people in my life who I had to quit going out with because in either the separate checks/split checks, would never order their own appetizer but assumed that anyone else's was up for grabs and help themselves when it has not been offered. 
WillyNilly, my DD's know their restaurant manners, but we still discuss ahead of time (usually on the way to the meal) who we are dining with, if it is someone treating us, the limits so not to look greedy or if it is a new eating experience, what kind of foods will be available.  My older DD is 17 so we usually don't have these discussions any more as she knows the usual dining experiences, but she will still ask questions, and because my younger DD is a horribly picky eater, we have discussions about what she is expected to eat to get to the dessert part (her favorite).  I have learned that assuming because we had this conversation 50 times before, doesn't mean they forget the 51st  ::) 

Judah

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #92 on: February 22, 2013, 11:53:23 AM »
Nope, it is not "OK" for a mother to take her child's food away without asking permission first. This isn't a matter of parental authority - it is general politeness.

Let's say you were eating with a married couple. The wife orders an appetizer, and when it arrives, as she starts to take a mouthful, her husband grabs the plate and asks, "Does anyone want some of my wife's appetizers?" Would you not think, at a minimum, he is being rude to her, in not at least asking, "Hey, can we share those?"

If the family tradition is to share appetizers, it does not spare the mother from the minimal common courtesy to her child to ask, "Hey, can we have some?" Basic politeness requires you to ask such a question, even if the expected answer is "yes, of course".

We have an "appetizers are to be shared family", so your scenario above would be fine with me. No, more than fine; it would be expected. My kids are always welcome to order an appetizer if they want one, but they know it's for the whole table. There would not need to be a discussion because that's the way we've always done it.

I don't think that we can know, without knowing if child in question comes from an "apps are to be shared" family, if the mom was rude or not. Nor do I think we should try to read anything into her facial expression.

In that situation I would expect the wife to pick up her plate and ask if anyone wants some of her appetizer. If her husband did it I would be making some uncharitable assumptions about him.

You will think what you will, but he would not be rude. Not in my family, and not in many others.  If this were my husband and I, I would be the rude one for forgetting to offer the app to the others at the table.

If that is your rule then I would expect him to gently nudge you with a "hey can I have that" or something similar to remind you of the rule. but to just take a plate from in front of someone and offer it to others strikes me as boorish and controlling and I would be watching the relationship more closely to see if I should be offering any extra help. This would also go if the wife offered the husband's food.

He wouldn't have to ask if he could have some, he would already know that he could. 
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MariaE

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #93 on: February 22, 2013, 12:03:50 PM »
Nope, it is not "OK" for a mother to take her child's food away without asking permission first. This isn't a matter of parental authority - it is general politeness.

Let's say you were eating with a married couple. The wife orders an appetizer, and when it arrives, as she starts to take a mouthful, her husband grabs the plate and asks, "Does anyone want some of my wife's appetizers?" Would you not think, at a minimum, he is being rude to her, in not at least asking, "Hey, can we share those?"

If the family tradition is to share appetizers, it does not spare the mother from the minimal common courtesy to her child to ask, "Hey, can we have some?" Basic politeness requires you to ask such a question, even if the expected answer is "yes, of course".

We have an "appetizers are to be shared family", so your scenario above would be fine with me. No, more than fine; it would be expected. My kids are always welcome to order an appetizer if they want one, but they know it's for the whole table. There would not need to be a discussion because that's the way we've always done it.

I don't think that we can know, without knowing if child in question comes from an "apps are to be shared" family, if the mom was rude or not. Nor do I think we should try to read anything into her facial expression.

In that situation I would expect the wife to pick up her plate and ask if anyone wants some of her appetizer. If her husband did it I would be making some uncharitable assumptions about him.

You will think what you will, but he would not be rude. Not in my family, and not in many others.  If this were my husband and I, I would be the rude one for forgetting to offer the app to the others at the table.

If that is your rule then I would expect him to gently nudge you with a "hey can I have that" or something similar to remind you of the rule. but to just take a plate from in front of someone and offer it to others strikes me as boorish and controlling and I would be watching the relationship more closely to see if I should be offering any extra help. This would also go if the wife offered the husband's food.

He wouldn't have to ask if he could have some, he would already know that he could.

If he just took some for himself, I wouldn't think twice about it - nor if he offered to others and you smiled and replied, "Oh yes! Please help youself." If you looked surprised and kept quiet, I, too, would be on the lookout for red flags.
 
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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #94 on: February 22, 2013, 12:12:09 PM »
But if your families rules is that appetizer = share, and my families rule is appetizer is yours to eat or share and we have a meal together and and my DD is the only one to get an appetizer, are we rude because she doesn't share because of your families rule?  This may be what happened at OP's meal.  There are basic rules of etiquette that all should follow, then there are family rules of acceptable behavior. 

Venus193

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #95 on: February 22, 2013, 12:25:18 PM »
I read the entire thread first and with your update I say the mother was disrespectful of her daughter.  I would think that was very Mommie Dearest of her.  If it set off your hinky meter, I'm sure it set off others'.

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #96 on: February 22, 2013, 12:30:18 PM »
There are basic rules of etiquette that all should follow, then there are family rules of acceptable behavior.

That's one of the problems for me. There may or may not (I lean toward may, personally) be a communication problem between mother and daughter, but there's also a communication problem between the mother (and/or child) and the group if, instead of thinking of it as a fun night out, the OP is left wondering whether people were complicit in taking away a kid's food.
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wolfie

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #97 on: February 22, 2013, 12:35:28 PM »
He wouldn't have to ask if he could have some, he would already know that he could.

If the point is to remind you of the sharing rule I would much rather that he ask a question he already knew the answer to to prompt you to share, rather then act like your parent and just hand it out to other people. I feel that just taking someone's plate and passing it around without even discussing it with the person who ordered it is much much ruder and would consider it a red flag. Even if I knew that your rule was to share apps. I would be taken aback at that type of behavior.

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #98 on: February 22, 2013, 12:37:43 PM »
Agreed. Even if this was a long-standing family tradition, it's clear that not everyone follows it. Mother would, even in the best interpretation, have been much more gracious to have said, "Dear, may the rest of us share your cheesesticks?" That would have clarified that the child was in agreement as to the disposition of said refreshments. Even better, it would have encouraged the child to remember to offer for herself next time.

Even (especially?) in a family, basic courtesies, such as asking permission to take anything that can be referred to as "yours", should be followed.
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Judah

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #99 on: February 22, 2013, 12:42:33 PM »
He wouldn't have to ask if he could have some, he would already know that he could.

If the point is to remind you of the sharing rule I would much rather that he ask a question he already knew the answer to to prompt you to share, rather then act like your parent and just hand it out to other people. I feel that just taking someone's plate and passing it around without even discussing it with the person who ordered it is much much ruder and would consider it a red flag. Even if I knew that your rule was to share apps. I would be taken aback at that type of behavior.

I think the bolded is the sticking point. It's not my plate just because I was the one that ordered it.  It belongs to the table. I ordered it for the table.  I expect anyone at the table who wants some to take some.  I've honestly never eaten at a restaurant with a group where anyone ordered an appetizer just for themselves.  It's always been my experience that appetizers are for sharing and don't belong to any one person.
Ask for what you want. Let's be clear on this one:
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Aeris

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #100 on: February 22, 2013, 12:44:34 PM »
He wouldn't have to ask if he could have some, he would already know that he could.

If the point is to remind you of the sharing rule I would much rather that he ask a question he already knew the answer to to prompt you to share, rather then act like your parent and just hand it out to other people. I feel that just taking someone's plate and passing it around without even discussing it with the person who ordered it is much much ruder and would consider it a red flag. Even if I knew that your rule was to share apps. I would be taken aback at that type of behavior.

I think the bolded is the sticking point. It's not my plate just because I was the one that ordered it.  It belongs to the table. I ordered it for the table.  I expect anyone at the table who wants some to take some.  I've honestly never eaten at a restaurant with a group where anyone ordered an appetizer just for themselves.  It's always been my experience that appetizers are for sharing and don't belong to any one person.

Though, interestingly, the mother referred to the app as "Daughter's app", rather than saying "does anyone want some of the cheese sticks". That would indicate a nominal ownership understanding.


rose red

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #101 on: February 22, 2013, 12:48:33 PM »
Although I don't agree with the action, I don't see it as a red flag.  Just something that happens in life, especially with family.

wolfie

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #102 on: February 22, 2013, 12:49:34 PM »
He wouldn't have to ask if he could have some, he would already know that he could.

If the point is to remind you of the sharing rule I would much rather that he ask a question he already knew the answer to to prompt you to share, rather then act like your parent and just hand it out to other people. I feel that just taking someone's plate and passing it around without even discussing it with the person who ordered it is much much ruder and would consider it a red flag. Even if I knew that your rule was to share apps. I would be taken aback at that type of behavior.

I think the bolded is the sticking point. It's not my plate just because I was the one that ordered it.  It belongs to the table. I ordered it for the table.  I expect anyone at the table who wants some to take some.  I've honestly never eaten at a restaurant with a group where anyone ordered an appetizer just for themselves.  It's always been my experience that appetizers are for sharing and don't belong to any one person.

Did you discuss it with the table beforehand? In my experience if the apps are for sharing we discuss it beforehand. Otherwise the apps are for the person who ordered it, unless that person asked if anyone wanted any. So it looks like we would have two very different culture clashes if the two of us ever ate dinner together!

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #103 on: February 22, 2013, 12:50:15 PM »
instead of thinking of it as a fun night out, the OP is left wondering whether people were complicit in taking away a kid's food.

I really think this is exaggeration. The child was not going to go hungry. She presumably had a meal coming in addition to the appetizer. Whatever the opinion about the mom's offer, she was not taking food from her starving child's mouth.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2013, 12:51:56 PM by citadelle »

wolfie

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #104 on: February 22, 2013, 12:52:01 PM »
Although I don't agree with the action, I don't see it as a red flag.  Just something that happens in life, especially with family.

As the person who said red flag it is only one in the case of a couple - I would then wonder what other control issues are in that relationship. But I wouldn't say/do anything - just pay closer attention. It could be that this is just one of those couple things that they are okay with and I wouldn't be. I would only say something if I noticed other signs.