Thursday, January 22, 2009

Suitable for children?

An experience I had today made me think of an issue on which I'm interested to hear the opinions of other intelligent women. ;-)

Is there anywhere that it is inappropriate to take your pre-school-aged children?

When I was a hospital nurse, I thought it was highly inappropriate when people brought their small children in to visit. I believe an exception can be made in instances when the child is coming to see a dying (or at least gravely ill) relative--especially a parent, grandparent, or sibling--but nearly all the chlidren I saw were there with parents who were visiting someone who would be returning home from the hospital in, at most, a few days.

Hospitals are full of germs, as well as many other hazards, so bringing small children there risks their health. Small children also harbor lots of germs themselves, putting the (already sick) patients at (further) risk of infections.

As a prosecutor, I often saw people bringing their small children to court for criminal sentencings, and sometimes even for trials. I never thought that seeing "Daddy," "Mommy," or "Uncle So-and-So" in an orange jumpsuit on his/her way to prison was a good thing for those children. . . . not to mention the fact that small children often disrupt these types of proceedings when they attend.

Many is the time that I've watched R-rated movies and other patrons have brought their small children along. Sometimes these were movies that gave *me* nightmares.

I couldn't imagine taking my own small child to any of the above places (or some others), and yet others apparently thought that this behavior was appropriate.

Is it me? Is it because I don't have kids? Is there something I don't "get"?

Don't get me wrong: I *love* kids! I don't even mind them in upscale restaurants or other similar places where I've heard others say they'd rather not see them. I just think that some places are "not suitable for children."

Please weigh in.


Flying Monkeys said...

Of the places you named I would probably not bring my kids to any of them except the hospital and that would be dependent on who and why.

Aside from content, bringing a child with me to an adult movie defeats the purpose. Why spend the money to not see the movie? It even as a parent it bothers me to go to an obviously adult movie and have to listen the other parents wrangle their kids. Do they not know this is my time out? The nerve! ;)

Rona said...

Judge Munger told a Defendant on an ROP the other day to NEVER bring his family to court again. He told him to bring them in an attempt to gain his sympathy was pathetic.
It was awesome.
Munger also ordered him to use the money that he had been buying MJ with and put it into three separate education funds for his 3 daughters.
and if he didnt comply by April, he was going to DOC.

Anonymous said...

I'm with you but then again, I don't have kids either. I just think it is inappropriate for them to see dirty and awful things before they absolutely need to.

Of course, I've never had to try to find child care so there ya go.


Land family said...

I brought Pie to the hospital to see her younger sister after she was born, but haven't taken either since. If we had a close family member with a non-contagious illness, I might. (I just remembered they came to see me when I had my gallbladder removed too because they were freaking out). But all this happened before Lulu, my Mom, and my Dad contracted strep. (and not the throat kind) I also have a niece with resistant strep in AZ. So now I'm all sorts of paranoid.

I would NEVER take them to see non-child friendly movies. Seriously, if you can't find a babysitter, wait until it comes out on DVD. And I can't imagine having to take them with me to court for any reason. Although I know when I had jury duty and they were still small, it wasn't uncommon to hear of mothers of young children bringing them asking to be excused due to childcare issues. My kids would have not behaved well in court. Sitting still they could do. Shutting up for even 1/2 hour? No way.

I don't know how single parents manage court and hospitals. I think it would be very stressful!

M said...

Grown-up parties where there is alcohol and things are running late. The unpredictability of some people's behavior makes for highly inappropriate situations sometimes. Additionally, I find that frequently the parents pay little or no attention to their children, allow the children to interrupt adult conversations,and generally expect others to fall at the children's feet. I have a three-year-old and if I can't get a good sitter, I don't go. To do otherwise is discourteous to everyone else who DID get a sitter and wants to be able to talk with other adults about adult things.

Okay, open the floodgates and tell me how terrible I am.

The H's said...

Hospital, maybe. Court, no (unless you are scaring 'em straight). Which if they are preschool aged, you gotta real problem. Pre-school, no movie above G. I am serious. I had a lot of trauma when I was little from just seeing the news, so I going to be VERY careful about what media Wyatt is exposed to for several years. Adult parties, no. Pretty much anything that is not immediate family oriented (think Christmas, parents' anniversary) that occurs after 8 pm, pre-school kids don't belong. Put your kids to bed people!

Elizabeth said...

a law firm! an attorney i work with is a mediator and he was holding a mediation at our office today. this woman (a guest of one of the parties- not even a party to the mediation) brought her small child, a huge diaper bag of goodies, and a pack-n-play system, and set up shop in our lobby for FOUR HOURS. it looked like a daycare, and the kid cried and screamed for 3.5 hours. my timesheet currently reads 2.0 and it's 1:30 pm. sigh.