Author Topic: I don't think I handled this well. Awful baby/toddler group etiquette!!!  (Read 2950 times)

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alis

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I've joined a local baby group. This was my 3rd visit.

One of the women (a very positive yet outspoken lady) started talking about how she hoped one of the other mothers would show up because she had horrible postpartum depression and needed to get out  ??? Then, that particular woman DID show up. And the first thing this lady says is "Oh, I hope you're doing great today with your depression, I have bulimia, it's okay to admit when something's wrong!!!"  :o 

I was really dumbfounded. I admit, since I'm so new, I don't know if this girl was open about it. But she was obviously uncomfortable with it!!!

I didn't know what to say or do so I said "Oh, I had it for 18 months wtih my first [which is true], if you ever need someone to talk to without judgement, I'm here" and yeah............

Wow. I'm so shocked. If it were me, and I was suffering with that (her baby is only 3 months), I think I would never show up again. How on earth do I approach this?? I'm so new to the group (there was only 4 of us) that I don't know anyone well. I don't want to stop going, its' the only baby group within distance. My kids love it.

Mal

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I'm not quite sure this lady is actually "positive" because what she really seems to need is a self-help group, and she confuses your baby group with one.

I think you may want to discuss this in private with other women in the group you trust and then maybe have a polite sit-down with this woman, telling her that while you respect her need to talk about her issues, this particular group is not comfortable with being her outlet.

As for your reaction, I might have done the same. Which isn't to say it was the right thing to do! But it's a common affliction of the flabbergasted ;)
However, since you offered her an open ear, you may have to do some uncomfortable backpedaling, as in "I know I said you could always talk to me but you might be better off with a different group" or something to that effect...

-EDIT- wait... was the lady you offered an open ear to the outspoken one or the one suffering from depression?
« Last Edit: April 19, 2013, 07:28:48 AM by Melle »

Piratelvr1121

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Wow...I think I'd be uncomfortable too if someone addressed me like the other woman did.  Now is this playgroup led by anyone?  First playgroup I ever went to with my oldest was organized by a department on base for families and it was held in a meeting center near an exchange.  A visiting nurse had told me about it, as she's the one who would lead the group and was there to answer any questions the mothers had about their child's development or other issues.

I hope the other mom does come back, but I wonder if there's anyone there who can take this other lady aside to give a few wise words of better ways to discuss the issue...or to not at all? 

And I agree with Melle, the woman who spoke out seems to think it is a self-help group.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

alis

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Thanks, she is actually the keyholder /organizer

*inviteseller

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Ohhh...you have a "Look at MEEEEEEEEEE!!!".  This species shows such concern for people because SHE has it and has it 10x worse and they are over shareres of your information so they can show how much they care!  Never give her info you don't want spread around, and see if you can talk to the other mom privately to offer real support.

Piratelvr1121

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Ohhh...you have a "Look at MEEEEEEEEEE!!!".  This species shows such concern for people because SHE has it and has it 10x worse and they are over shareres of your information so they can show how much they care!  Never give her info you don't want spread around, and see if you can talk to the other mom privately to offer real support.

She said what I was thinking about this woman. 
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

alis

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I have a private play date with the other girl (the 'victim' of this story) today at 10, I will have a chat with her about what happened and see how she feels.

EllenS

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I think you handled / are handling this just right.
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Coley

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Yeesh ... POD to the PPs who say you handled this well. You offered a listening ear to the other mom, which gives her the opportunity to talk with you when she is ready. This is much more empathic than what the outspoken woman did.

Lynn2000

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I think you did fine so far, and it's too early to tell otherwise, because as you say you're new to the group, and don't know all the dynamics and personalities yet. I admit I would be a bit put off by the Outspoken Mom's behavior myself, and would make a note to myself not to tell her any sensitive information as it sounds like she might spread it around. I think what I would do is just keep my mouth shut and observe the individuals for a while longer, and their interactions, until I had a better handle on what was going on.
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alis

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Thanks everyone

I did see this girl today, and she said she didn't mind and that it was fine. I didn't know this because I am knew to the group, so I needed to ask her first to make sure. Apparently it was bad enough she was hospitalized for a month so it was something that she ended up having to explain to people since her disappearance would have been very noticeable (they are both long-term group members).

Phew.

I'm still very cautious about sharing anything with this woman though, I think I will just keep to myself lol.

gramma dishes

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I'm glad that it turned out to be okay with the other mother.  I know though that it wouldn't have been for me!  I'd have been mortified and would probably have turned and made a run for the door after having been greeted like that.

Yes, I think I'd be very careful about "sharing" with this group, especially the woman who's 'in charge'.