Oh, no… not another “Open Letter”


This time to the mom at the playground who sat there reading a nice book in the warm last-day-of-September sun while her 4-or-so-year-old daughter asked every adult there to “push me”… “help me”… “get me up there”… “watch me”… and yes, “take me to the bathroom.”

Dear Mom who just sat there,

Yes, you.  I never got close enough to read the title of the nice book that so enthralled you because I was watching my 4 and 5-year old grandsons playing on the playground.  You know the one.  With the super-high monkey bars and super-duper-high jungle gym.   The one that kids love, but can be dangerous.  You know.  Well, I guess you don’t know… that kids need supervision.

You could ask your daughter about the supervision thing.  She seems to know.  She didn’t have any problem asking each adult at the playground to help her get on top of the jungle gym.  Push her on the swings.  Watch her slide down the mulitple slides… even the very tall, winding ones meant for much older kids.  She seemed to know… ok, demand that she needed help crossing the monkey bars.  Maybe you were at a really, really good part of your book when the adults winced each time she crawled to the top of those same monkey bars and attemped to cross over the top by herself.   Oh, you didn’t notice.  OK.

But when she asked me to take her to the bathroom… you know the one… the outhouse sort-of-thing with the crusty toilet and no toilet paper?  That just got my panties in a bundle.  I found myself saying, “No, honey.  Ask your mom, please.”

You know what she anwered?

“My mom’s reading.”

“No *#it, Sherlock,” is what I wanted to say.  Instead, I smiled a nice grandma smile and said, “I’m sorry, but I’m leaving now, honey.”

And I did.  Leave, that is.  I couldn’t take it anymore.

But let me emphasize one thing before I go.  I love kids.  I love helping kids.  I enjoy watching kids have fun.  But I’m not a lazy-ass kind of person who allows my grandkids to be supervised by other adults.  Nor were any of the other adults at the playground.  Lazy-asses, that is.  So this is my demand.  Watch your daughter.  Help your daughter. Push your daughter.  And for God’s sake, take your daughter to the crusty bathroom with no toilet paper.

Read your nice book in the warm afternoon sun on your own time.


Panties in a Bundle

Oh, no… not another “Open Letter” was last modified: February 9th, 2010 by Sharon Couto
SHOWHIDE Comments (0)
  1. This makes me so angry. The dependence on other adults notwithstanding, that little girl is only going to be four at the park once… whereas that book will always be there. Put the book down and ENJOY YOUR CHILD.
    Now just letting other adults watch your kids, that bugs me, too. We live in a neighborhood where the other parents seem to think that Shane and I are willing babysitters for their kids since we are always outside with Luke. It’s not fair because it takes away from our time to just spend with him when we find ourselves having to discipline children that are not ours.
    I’ve felt guilty at the park lately because I always have Tommy in the sling, so when Luke wants to cross the monkey bars, I can’t help him. Inevitably another mom within ear shot offers to help him across, and I accept, but I hope that I’m not being one of those parents. I’d do the same for a mom with a little one and a toddler, so I think it’s okay because I’m definitely not just sitting there reading a book!;)

  2. To say nothing of how dangerous it is for this little girl to be asking strangers for help taking her to the bathroom!

    How self-absorbed can a woman be?

  3. AMEN Sharon! This really spiked up my blood pressure reading this. I so agree with you on this one. It only takes a blink of an eye and someone could have taken that child too. What is she thinking, or not thinking? So sad!

  4. WOW is all I can say. That is just crazy; I can’t believe a mom would do that-the bathroom question made me wince-what if she asks the wrong person? She could be kidnapped! Or hurt!! My goodness, shame on that mother. I hope you said something to her, she needs a wake up call before something bad happens to her child.

Oh, no… not another “Open Letter” was last modified: February 9th, 2010 by Sharon Couto