Really lady?

We took our son out on “adventures” today. I have a 90’s themed birthday party this weekend and needed to find the perfect outfit. Thrift shopping went pretty well.

Afterwords we went to lunch. Because we were slightly behind schedule Little Man was alittle cranky at Red Robin. His screaming helped us collect a lot of unhelpful glares. Once he got some food in him it was smooth sailing again. One of the mom’s who glared started having her own child act up. As much as I do not wish tantrums on any parent, I feel like Karma was trying to teach her something.

After lunch we had to hit up walmart for diapers and milk. My husband decided to encourage a game that including Little Man punching him in the stomach.

Was this game a good idea? Of course not. To clarify, our son is 4. He wasn’t being violent or aggressive. Anyone watching would see that both child and father are laughing.

When my husband got tired of being punched in the gut, he tried to end the game to no avail. “Never do something with a kid once you don’t wanna do for the rest of your life.” This manta rings way too true for my family.

When we get to the dairy section we are knee deep in the “ignore it and it might go away” style of dealing with difficult behavior. It has an official name, I just don’t remember it. It is something we are “trained in” by the therapists. Avoidance technique maybe? Anyway….

This “nice lady” watches our son punch his dad and proceeds to tell Little Man to stop hitting his daddy. Little Man doesn’t notice. My husband and I give a polite “resting bitch face” nod and move along. Hopefully she is joking.

After a couple minutes I completely forget about “nice lady” until she walks up to our cart, put her hand on our son’s arm and tells him, again, to stop hitting his daddy.

I politely said, “he is autistic. He does not understand you.”

She did the normal, she had no idea and you can never tell, blah blah blah. I just ignored her until she got the hint that I was not interested in a conversation.

Looking back, I wish I would have just told her to mind her own business. My son’s neurodiversity is not the issue. This, “nice lady’s”, desire to properly discipline every child on the earth is. Hopefully, she learned to think before assuming a child is just being bad.

Welcome to the new world, people. Take your ignorance somewhere else.


13 thoughts on “Really lady?

  1. First of all, I haven’t been to a Red Robin in years. I miss that place.
    Secondly, and more importantly, I think you handled the “nice lady” with a grace and calmness I’m not sure I could have. I’m not a parent, but knowing how easily people who bud in annoy me I think I would have reacted differently.


    • My husband lives their fries, so I indulge him on occasion. Plus it’s family friendly, and the waitstaff have always been patient and kind with out son.

      I wish I would have told that lady where to shove it.


      • Good fries are a must. Next time I’m in Canada, I’m totally going to a Red Robin’s.


  2. I’m really surprised she reached out and touched your son. Ahhh, invisible illnesses have taught me SO much, too bad the rest of the world isn’t learning along with us. 😉 P.S. You did handle her in a much calmer manner than I would have – or I would have just been fuming underneath and thought of all the “right” words later. Usually what happens.


    • Yea. I’m not sure why she thought that was a good idea. Parents of neuro-diverse kids, and the children themselves, become educators to the world around them. I don’t always enjoy the job, but maybe we helped her open her mind alittle.


  3. Planned ignoring is what you were doing, and it is highly effective with all children, but especially autistic ones. My friends often comment on how patient I am with my daughter. What they don’t know (can’t even fathom) is that it isn’t patience as much as desperation. Trying to get her to stop obsessing over something is about effective as putting out a fire with lighter fluid. Sure, it looks like you are doing something, but the situation is only getting worse. Patience is actually the easier way out, many times. As your son gets older you will, hopefully, be able to talk about the behavior or issue once he is out of the situation, but only well, well, well after.

    On another note, the idea that someone would put their hands on your child is unthinkable. “Nice lady” is lucky she didn’t get punched in the stomach.


    • Yes! Thank you! I can’t believe I forgot the name for that. And yes, it is usually pretty effective for us. I get a lot of compliments about how patience I am, we are, too.

      Yea, “Nice Lady” is really lucky we are so patient 😉


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