We’ve all been there. You’re standing in line at an amusement park, the kids in front of you are by themselves, no parents to be seen, and they’re being total buttheads. They’re being rude to people around them, they’re not following rules, and they’re just being little jerks. Those are definitely the kids that shouldn’t be left without parental supervision, because they’re obviously not ready, or haven’t been taught how to behave like a decent human being.
When I encounter children like that in the wild, I have zero issues parenting them if there’s no other adult present to do so. I will not let them treat my child or my family rudely, and I’ll keep them in line if need be. However, as a rule, I will not seek their parent out (unless they’re genuinely hurting themselves or someone else) and tattle. I’m not gonna find their Mama and tell her that she’s raising some awful children. I’m not gonna find her and tell her that her children are behaving like absolute hooligans and that they most certainly should not be out of her sight. While I may think those things, I’m not gonna find her and tell her.
However, there is a flip side to this. I’ve been in places before and seen a kid being awesome. I witnessed a young man who was being super rude at the park to my six year old. He told all the kids to stop playing her game, and to ignore her, and wouldn’t listen to anything she had to say. Another young man ignored that rude little jerk, and chose instead to listen to my daughter and to play with her. That kid made my day! My Mama heart was so happy. When we left the park, I found that Mama and I told her how AWESOME her son was, and that she should be proud. I praised her mothering, and I praised her son for his exemplary behavior. Her demeanor instantly changed, and she couldn’t wipe the smile off her face. If I see your kid being awesome, I will rat your kid out!
I have never found a reason to rat a kid out for being a jerk, but if your kid is awesome I will rat your kid out every single time! You know why I will rat your kid out if they’re being awesome? Because we all need to be encouraged as humans, and as Mamas. You never know what Mama you encounter that’s having a bad Mom day, week, or month and by taking a minute to find them and tell them how amazing their kid is being, you can give them just the bit of encouragement they need to make it through the day. So here’s a life challenge: make a vow to rat kids out to their parents when their kids are being awesome. You never know what a huge difference you can make in that mom or that kid by doing that!
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