Thursday, December 9, 2010

No Kids Allowed


I went to a local flower grower this morning, with my little crew in tow.
I've been taking my little ones to the growers & into flower coolers ever since I had a little one.
4 years ago I did just have a little tiny babe, who snuggled in the baby carrier.
The crew has grown in number & has been aging.
Over the years, I've gone to numerous different places 
& they have always been very welcoming of us all.
Until this morning.

We walked into the rose warehouse.  
I was holding Moira & Gillian & Peyton were close to my side.
It was lunch hour for most of the work crew.  
There was very little activity in & around the coolers.
The sales manager walks by & sharply asks, "can I help you with something?!"
I told him we were there to pick up the red roses on hold for Erin.
He went to get them & came back & said,
"This is not a safe environment for children."
He printed out my invoice.  
I paid him & said, "I guess I shouldn't shop here anymore."
He rolled his eyes & said, "that's not what I said..
This is an industrial area & it is not safe for children."
So, I took my change & said,
"Well, I work with my children.  So, I won't be back.  
I'll just go back to buying roses from __________ 
(the other guy, the local competition)."
"I didn't say your children can't come!" (Him)
"Thanks" (me, leaving for the last time.)

I had been using this rose grower for awhile.  Every time I go, I bring my kids.
They have a great quality rose, a great selection of varieties & a great price.
But, if I get rude customer service & my kids aren't welcome, then I won't go back.

To describe the "industrial" environment, I think comparing it to Costco is fair.
That is, there is an occasional, singular, slow moving fork lift in the warehouse.
I would say, being there is less dangerous than going for a walk down the street.

I understand that a business has the right to ask anyone to leave.  
But on what grounds are you asking us to leave?
My kids were not being unruly.
I am not going to get a babysitter, 
so I can stop in at your business without you feeling uncomfortable.

9 comments:

Stef said...

ugh. so sad.

I like the way you handled this.

Nicola S. said...

Way to go Erin, I think you handled it respectful and tackful. I just hate when people get their shorts in a wad just because you bring children with you. You would think in our economy people would bend over backwards to keep your business?!

Love the pictures of the kiddos. Gillian is so cute in the first shot.

Brittany Martin said...

Great way to handle that, Erin, I don't think I would go back either! It irks me to no end when other people get picky about my kids, and it most often happens when they're being obedient! I want them to learn to respect adults, but what do you do when other adults are constantly busy-body nit-pickers about kids in public?

Charlotte said...

Very sad. Our society in so many ways is anti-children and for those of us with more than 1 we can get funny looks or rude comments.

For the most part, I take my kids shopping, on errands and to appointments. Yes, I could probably do the errand faster without them, but then how would they ever learn how to behave in public?

Once I had a hair appointment and my babysitter got sick so I had to take my 4 kids with me. Because I had taken them places and trained them, they sat quietly, reading and coloring. They weren't perfect, but did not disturb anyone.

You handled this great, Erin; even though I am sad to see this happening more.

Stephanie said...

So sorry about your experience, Erin. It makes me sad to be in environments where kids are unwelcome.

I often go out of my way to shop at businesses, shops, & restaurants that are friendly toward families...and to avoid those that are not. ;)

stephanie@metropolitanmama.net

Hummingbirder said...

It's sad that children are so unwelcome at many places (even well behaved ones!) Maybe this guy will get the message...

Anonymous said...

Interesting situation...and a common one to those of us who bring our children with us most everywhere. I must admit that I am seeing this from another angle. Just thought I would share my "older woman" thoughts on the situation with you. I am totally supportive of full time mothering and including children into the daily activities of the mom, if at all possible. And in this situation for you it was possible. Instead of getting defensive and refusing business to someone (especially to someone you have worked with in the past and have liked doing business with) when they make a comment about the appropriateness of children being there, say something like, "thank you for your concern for my children, but most places have safety issues for children and I am raising them and training them and taking them with me where I go and I will take the responsibility to watch over them. That is why they are neatly tucked beside me and I am watching over them appropriately. Now, how much do I owe you for these beautiful roses?"
I have found that by showering grace and a sweet soft, yet strong answer toward others who are very ignorant of parents raising their children along side them, that I can educate them a little perhaps, and also stand steadfast in my convictions of bringing my children alongside in otherwise places that children would not be.
This is just a suggestion, as I have found it to work so much better for me in the long run in the many situations that I have been in with my homeschooled children out and about with me as I raised them.
Keep up the good work in raising your children!

Erin said...

Thank you for your comment & perspective, Anonymous. I do appreciate it!
Although I was feeling "irked", I wasn't rude to the gentleman. I was trying to feel him out, for whether he really didn't like my kids being there. Since he doesn't like it, then I will visit the businesses who are welcoming to me & my children. They are the ones I would like to support.

Anonymous said...

Interesting situation...and a common one to those of us who bring our children with us most everywhere. I must admit that I am seeing this from another angle. Just thought I would share my "older woman" thoughts on the situation with you. I am totally supportive of full time mothering and including children into the daily activities of the mom, if at all possible. And in this situation for you it was possible. Instead of getting defensive and refusing business to someone (especially to someone you have worked with in the past and have liked doing business with) when they make a comment about the appropriateness of children being there, say something like, "thank you for your concern for my children, but most places have safety issues for children and I am raising them and training them and taking them with me where I go and I will take the responsibility to watch over them. That is why they are neatly tucked beside me and I am watching over them appropriately. Now, how much do I owe you for these beautiful roses?"
I have found that by showering grace and a sweet soft, yet strong answer toward others who are very ignorant of parents raising their children along side them, that I can educate them a little perhaps, and also stand steadfast in my convictions of bringing my children alongside in otherwise places that children would not be.
This is just a suggestion, as I have found it to work so much better for me in the long run in the many situations that I have been in with my homeschooled children out and about with me as I raised them.
Keep up the good work in raising your children!