Author Topic: The amusement park....unruly kids  (Read 3289 times)

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GrammarNerd

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The amusement park....unruly kids
« on: August 18, 2013, 11:51:41 PM »
Went to an amusement park (one of the Six Flags line) with the kid that likes the BIG rides (11 year old, if that matters).  We both like the BIG coasters.  Had a great time. 

However, I ran into a minor etiquette violation and was wondering what other eHellions would think about the situation.

We decided to do one coaster that is 'tame' compared to some of the others.  It's termed a 'family ride'.  Nothing wrong with that. 

But what do you do when the people behind you in line can't/won't control their children?  They had two boys, maybe 6-ish and 4-ish.  We were waiting patiently, and about 5 minutes into the wait, I literally felt it when this kid behind me royally banged into my ankle/foot.  It didn't necessarily hurt to the point of limping, but I felt it for several minutes.  The dad gave the kid a stern reprimand, but the kid was back to roughhousing within a few minutes. 

There are bars that delineate the lines that you weave through as you wait, KWIM?  These kids were under the bars, over the bars.  You would have thought they were monkey bars for all of the climbing that those kids did.  Constantly jumping around.  They were into 'no-mans-land', the area that you're not supposed to go into (saw a grown man kicked out of a different ride for going outside of the boundaries).  Dad was on his phone or was doing something else, b/c he never told the kid(s) no.  At once point, the older boy was coming back from being under the bar and knocked my son in the legs.  Then he (the kid) looked at my son like MY SON was the one in the wrong, like 'MOVE, dude!' when the kid couldn't get through!  You know the huffy irritated look that little kids can give you when they think they've been wronged but they're really just being entitled?  Yeah, that was it.  My son just looked at me like 'what the heck?' (He'd just been standing there waiting in line, very politely.)  I just told him in a very low voice to move a bit so the kid could get through.  I didn't want to get into it, and I think he understood.  Once again, Dad did nothing.

Another time, the kid was jumping around and making noises and it seemed like he was trying to get me to notice him, like he wanted an audience.  Nope, not playing.

Then we get to the stairs and we were almost on the ride.  The oldest kid is playing around and bumps into me AGAIN because he was jumping around and wasn't paying attention; was climbing on the railing AGAIN and jumps off, right into me.  Dad, once again, was oblivious.  Mom, it turned out, was further back in line and was no help either.

Now, nothing actually HURT me except the initial encounter where the dad reprimanded him.  So I didn't say anything.  But my question is....would I have been justified?  Should I have said something?

I get that they had a right to be in line, and that they're kids, and that the lines are long, but shouldn't that still entail some common courtesy?  If they're old enough to go to the park, shouldn't they be old enough to stand in line without causing a disruption for others?  (If it matters, the wait was approx. 20 minutes, give or take 5.)

I leaned forward to my son when we were almost on the coaster, and I whispered to him, "Thank you for never behaving like this."  He knew exactly what I was talking about.

I can say that I was NEVER so happy to 'escape' to the rides that had a height requirement!

(Edited for wording clarification.)
« Last Edit: August 19, 2013, 09:49:02 AM by GrammarNerd »

delabela

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #1 on: August 19, 2013, 12:01:31 AM »
I do think you could have said "please don't bump into me" or something like that.  I mean, I expect a little rambunctiousness at a theme park, because kids are excited and all that.  But kids should never be allowed to actually knock into people - that's far beyond ok. 

Cami

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #2 on: August 19, 2013, 09:47:38 AM »
If someone touches you, if someone hurts you by touching you, that is a safety issue. Safety trumps etiquette.

So yes. Say something.

Outdoor Girl

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2013, 10:18:25 AM »
If the parents are attentive, I let them deal with it.  If the parents aren't attentive, I will say something.

A kid bumping into me due to carelessness and rambunctiousness is going to get a very stern, 'That hurt!  Do not bump into me.'  Whether or not it hurts much at the time, it will definitely hurt later, for me.

A kid bumping into me from more like unattentiveness, like a kid walking into the back of me because they didn't realize I'd stopped with get a more even reply, 'Oops!  You'll have to watch where you are going, kiddo.'  With a smile.

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pierrotlunaire0

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #4 on: August 19, 2013, 11:18:38 AM »
Scream in pain even if it doesn't hurt.  Bravely smile, saying weakly, "No, I'll be all right."  Make the parents feel guilty. 
I have enough lithium in my medicine cabinet to power three cars across a sizeable desert.  Which makes me officially...Three Cars Crazy

Piratelvr1121

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #5 on: August 19, 2013, 11:49:13 AM »
That kind of behavior seems to run rampant at theme parks, which is one reason I don't enjoy them as much as I did when I was a kid.  I'm sure the behavior was just as present then but I just wasn't as aware of it at the time. 
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

menley

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #6 on: August 19, 2013, 12:04:26 PM »
I wouldn't say anything about crossing the bars or jumping on them unless it becomes a safety issue (such as a kid wandering into an area where the roller coaster could hit him). It's annoying, yes, but ultimately not really your concern.


However, once you and your children are impacted physically, I would absolutely say something. "Ouch, you kicked me, please be careful." "Watch out, you just bumped into me." If the child doesn't respond to that and continues to kick or bump into you, then I would let the parent know. "Hey, would you mind helping me out here? Your son keeps bumping me and it's getting rather painful."

DottyG

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #7 on: August 19, 2013, 12:10:22 PM »
I wouldn't say anything about crossing the bars or jumping on them unless it becomes a safety issue (such as a kid wandering into an area where the roller coaster could hit him). It's annoying, yes, but ultimately not really your concern.


However, once you and your children are impacted physically, I would absolutely say something. "Ouch, you kicked me, please be careful." "Watch out, you just bumped into me." If the child doesn't respond to that and continues to kick or bump into you, then I would let the parent know. "Hey, would you mind helping me out here? Your son keeps bumping me and it's getting rather painful."

^ That


Audrey Quest

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #8 on: August 19, 2013, 02:42:16 PM »
"Sir, control your children!  One has already caused me harm!"

Repeat we necessary.

And btw the way, their "right" to be there assumes that they are not posing a safety risk to others.

It doesn't matter that you were not seriously injured.  The child should not have touched you and would not have touched you had he been under control.  It wasn't an accident, it was negligence.

RegionMom

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #9 on: August 19, 2013, 02:52:23 PM »
Does not matter that you are strong and the kicks and such did not cause lasting pain. 
You could be like a friend of mine, just out of a cast, then a walking boot, and trying out this walking thing again.

The boys could be like that in a grocery store. 

 call them on it, politely, and if the dad fusses at you, call staff over. 

They were unruly and hurt you. 

I bet the dad was thinking, "oh, they are not cutting in line, boys will be boys."
Fear is temporary...Regret is forever.

*inviteseller

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #10 on: August 19, 2013, 02:59:42 PM »
I admit to some slightly (maybe not so slightly) PA behavior in these cases (because I seem to draw these types to me).  I will look at DD's and say (slightly louder than conversational tone but not shouting) "I am so happy you stood there in this long line so patiently.  Thanks for remembering your manners."  I have gotten some evil looks from the parents, but it usually causes them to rein in their kids, and one time it got me some laughter from the people around us who were being run into and generally bothered by 3 little boys who were practicing for their WWF debut in a very crowded line.

JeanFromBNA

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #11 on: August 19, 2013, 03:13:21 PM »
DH and I are big Walt Disney World fans (see new thread).  As mature adults, we realize that we have to pack an extra helping of patience.  Almost all kids are excited about going to an amusement park, and anticipating the rides and attractions.  Most kids fidget in line, to a greater or lesser degree. 

Like the poster above, I would ignore the bar crawling and climbing, as long as it doesn't affect you.  If you get hurt, bumped, or jostled, it's fair to say loudly and pointedly, "Ouch!" and wait for an apology.  You have just put them and their family on notice that their behavior affects you.  I find that the behavior settles considerably after that.  If their behavior continues to be harmful or is dangerous, you should contact a staff member. 

DH and I often engage fidgets in line with conversation to take their mind off of the wait. "Have you been on this ride before?" is all that is needed to get the ball rolling about all of their experiences in the park, and the time flies by for all of you. 

snowdragon

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #12 on: August 19, 2013, 06:37:52 PM »
I would have called staff over when they jumped on me. They may have the right to be there but I have the right not to be harmed. Jumping on people can cause a good deal of harm even if the jumper is much smaller than the jumpee.

Bijou

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #13 on: August 19, 2013, 07:02:25 PM »
I would have called staff over when they jumped on me. They may have the right to be there but I have the right not to be harmed. Jumping on people can cause a good deal of harm even if the jumper is much smaller than the jumpee.
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kherbert05

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Re: The amusement park....unruly kids
« Reply #14 on: August 19, 2013, 07:50:53 PM »
Upfront - because of the nature of snacks in Amusement parks this type of behavior can land me in the ER. I take the precaution of wearing long pants, closed toed shoes, but I expect people to make an effort to not touch other people. Also I fault the parents - they should be interacting with their kids not playing/talking/texting on their phone.

I turn to the kid and tell them " OUCH! You will NOT touch me again, and you need to keep (show them about 1 - 2 foot space) between us. If you touch me again, I will have the attendant deal with you. " said in my Teacher Voice (TM). That is usually enough.

If it happens again I get a staff member's attention explain the kid is slamming into me and show any damage (Texas heat - slammed into backs of my knees will be fissured)
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