Notice to Op Shop Volunteers, I'm not a bad parent.....

If you're an op shopping loving mumma like me I'm sure what I'm about to talk about, you'll have either experienced and or have been witness to when out and about thrifting. If you're a parent and you like to op shop, you might be much like me and often have your children with you when you visit stores. I have three children who are currently six years old and under, so it's rare to have child free days to visit op shops. For the main part when op shopping with the kids we have a great time together. The kids get to play with toys whilst I rummage around, I'll often sit on shop floors and read books to them, occasionally I will buy a small toy and we often visit parks afterwards, before or in between shops and so much more.

Don't get me wrong I'm not lugging them around on op shopping adventures with me every other day of the week for my selfish desires, far, far, far from it. But yes just as a trip to the supermarket for groceries or to the post office they are with me, it's life, and that's how it is. 

But I have bee under my bonnet at the moment with op shop volunteers who feel that it's their entitled position to tell my children how inappropriate their behaviour is when I'm there dealing with situations, and who continue on to tell them they are naughty and a handful. Not only that they then discuss audibly with other staff and other shoppers my child's behaviour, because my child is having a bad moment. Now before you think I'm being precious about this, I take exception to this type of occurrence because I'm a very hands on parent. So when these situations arise I'm on it straight away dealing with the situation, and I'm in dialogue with my child about what is happening and how they are feeling. In all the time my children have been op shopping with me they have never broken an item in a store, they have always been expected to pack away toys and books they have pulled off shelves (which I assist them with). Then on the rare occasion my child may have caused a disruption they have always been expected to try make an apology in some way.

But this here is a note to those shop volunteers who feel it's necessary to belittle my child and imply to others I have poor parenting skills. STOP........seriously can't you stop for a second and see the difference between a mum who trying to address a situation and engaging with her child to resolve their issues.  I frequently see and hear about parents who let their children run wild in stores, break things, make no attempts to resolve damages with staff, make a mess and don't clean up, make a scene and make no effort to deal with the situation. I realise these other mums who don't address these challenges with their kids may have struggles up against them with their children, and I'm not stupid I realise that as we live with it ourselves. 

But seriously dear op shop volunteer you are often from an older generation, you possibly have several children of your own (albeit all grown up now) and many grand and great-grand children as I hear from many of you. How about you give a mum a break from your criticism of her and her child. You may be part of the older generation and you've done the hard yards with your children, but it doesn't mean because you've gone before me you know better than me on how to deal with my child. 

Surely you remember what it's like to have those moments with your child, where they don't display their best behaviour and you're left dealing with a difficult situation. Didn't you just wish at those times, that someone had said something kind to you, told you to take your time, offered you a hand or a cup of tea.

I'm not a bad parent, my child is just having a moment, and your interjection is making it worse because they don't know you and you're being horrible in front of them to the person that loves them the most, their mum. 

Back off and give me some space to deal with the situation, we will be out of your way just as soon as you do so. Please don't forget you're the face of a charity and it's just as easy for me to stop shopping at your store and not donate and take my business, charity and goodwill elsewhere.

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My Vintage Childhood: Notice to Op Shop Volunteers, I'm not a bad parent.....

Monday, February 4, 2013

Notice to Op Shop Volunteers, I'm not a bad parent.....

If you're an op shopping loving mumma like me I'm sure what I'm about to talk about, you'll have either experienced and or have been witness to when out and about thrifting. If you're a parent and you like to op shop, you might be much like me and often have your children with you when you visit stores. I have three children who are currently six years old and under, so it's rare to have child free days to visit op shops. For the main part when op shopping with the kids we have a great time together. The kids get to play with toys whilst I rummage around, I'll often sit on shop floors and read books to them, occasionally I will buy a small toy and we often visit parks afterwards, before or in between shops and so much more.

Don't get me wrong I'm not lugging them around on op shopping adventures with me every other day of the week for my selfish desires, far, far, far from it. But yes just as a trip to the supermarket for groceries or to the post office they are with me, it's life, and that's how it is. 

But I have bee under my bonnet at the moment with op shop volunteers who feel that it's their entitled position to tell my children how inappropriate their behaviour is when I'm there dealing with situations, and who continue on to tell them they are naughty and a handful. Not only that they then discuss audibly with other staff and other shoppers my child's behaviour, because my child is having a bad moment. Now before you think I'm being precious about this, I take exception to this type of occurrence because I'm a very hands on parent. So when these situations arise I'm on it straight away dealing with the situation, and I'm in dialogue with my child about what is happening and how they are feeling. In all the time my children have been op shopping with me they have never broken an item in a store, they have always been expected to pack away toys and books they have pulled off shelves (which I assist them with). Then on the rare occasion my child may have caused a disruption they have always been expected to try make an apology in some way.

But this here is a note to those shop volunteers who feel it's necessary to belittle my child and imply to others I have poor parenting skills. STOP........seriously can't you stop for a second and see the difference between a mum who trying to address a situation and engaging with her child to resolve their issues.  I frequently see and hear about parents who let their children run wild in stores, break things, make no attempts to resolve damages with staff, make a mess and don't clean up, make a scene and make no effort to deal with the situation. I realise these other mums who don't address these challenges with their kids may have struggles up against them with their children, and I'm not stupid I realise that as we live with it ourselves. 

But seriously dear op shop volunteer you are often from an older generation, you possibly have several children of your own (albeit all grown up now) and many grand and great-grand children as I hear from many of you. How about you give a mum a break from your criticism of her and her child. You may be part of the older generation and you've done the hard yards with your children, but it doesn't mean because you've gone before me you know better than me on how to deal with my child. 

Surely you remember what it's like to have those moments with your child, where they don't display their best behaviour and you're left dealing with a difficult situation. Didn't you just wish at those times, that someone had said something kind to you, told you to take your time, offered you a hand or a cup of tea.

I'm not a bad parent, my child is just having a moment, and your interjection is making it worse because they don't know you and you're being horrible in front of them to the person that loves them the most, their mum. 

Back off and give me some space to deal with the situation, we will be out of your way just as soon as you do so. Please don't forget you're the face of a charity and it's just as easy for me to stop shopping at your store and not donate and take my business, charity and goodwill elsewhere.

Labels: ,

10 Comments:

At February 4, 2013 at 1:15 PM , Blogger Sunae Reilly said...

Trudie, I see this all the time when I'm out shopping and it puts a bee under my bonnet too, and I'm not even a parent! Just the other day I was at an op shop and a child was hiding in the clothes racks. His mum called out his name and told him to go look at the toys, stop mucking up the clothes. He cheekily took one more turn through the racks and poor mum (and little boy) copped an earful off the volunteers! I was totally taken aback because I had a chuckle at the boys cheek and watched as he went on to the toy section and here is this older lady making a huge scene about it! I totally understand why it would irk you as a parent - you are doing your best and being a mum is far from easy. It irked me as a fellow customer and I was half tempted to comment to the lady about her overreaction! Hopefully there are a few volunteers out there who read this and take it in their stride :)

 
At February 4, 2013 at 1:54 PM , Blogger Becci Sundberg said...

We have one lady at a kids clothing co-op run by one of the local churches.
They have toys set up for the kids to play with while the parents shop. It's fabulous really heaps of toys. But the lady that takes it upon herself to supervise them is a real cow.
She is always telling the children what not to do. Don't do this, don't do that.
The kids love to grab one of the kid prams or trolleys and run from one end to the other. Which we always tell them not to do. Walk don't run.
One day she told my 4yo not to run as he might flal and hurt himself. I hadn't even had the chance to tell he to stop in the first place before she jumped in, but I kindly said that if he slipped and hurt himself then he'd learn. She said but then she would have to patch him up. My response - No you won't I am his mother and I will do it, that's what mothers do.
She got the message and was much nicer the next time we were in :)

 
At February 4, 2013 at 2:07 PM , Blogger Me said...

WOW - I didn't realise that that sort of thing happened. I know that older people - sometimes - try to help but they really don't have any idea about some things.
I hope that they stop giving you grief and you can continue to do what you do so well - parenting your children and op shopping !!!
Have a great week !
Me

 
At February 4, 2013 at 2:24 PM , Blogger Trudie said...

I'd never cop any of this at my fav little oppy. But this morning I ducked in elsewhere after popping into a post office near by. The staff kept commenting about my son being a handful as well as other implications and mutterings of course.

 
At February 4, 2013 at 2:30 PM , Blogger Trudie said...

Hi Becci, I don't mind my child being politely told be careful that could do x,y,z if you do x, y,z to it. But it's certainly another matter to speak about my child in front him/her and say they are a handful, naughty etc. Really at the day if the child is having an issue with me store stock hasn't been involved, it's even more so none of their business.

 
At February 4, 2013 at 3:15 PM , Blogger Becci Sundberg said...

Yes that is terrible behaviour especially of an adult that should know better.
It was more the scolding way that she would say it. Was on kids (not just ours) case as soon as they walked in the door too.
Was very close to saying something if she didn't back off soon. Mind you we haven't been back there for months, haven't needed to.

 
At February 4, 2013 at 5:16 PM , Blogger Anne @ Domesblissity said...

Goodness gracious Trudie. I wish these people would keep their opinions to themselves. I'm always giving people the 'sympathetic eye' to let them know that I go through what they are every day. Not ridicule them into thinking their doing a bad job. I'm always reminded of my childhood and the fact that in those days, these women never went anywhere. Their children were always at home until they went to school. Now we have more freedom and are able to get around, a lot more people are seeing what children are really like. My Mum could never understood why my kids didn't behave cooped up in a shopping trolley for 3 hours. Go figure!

Don't worry about it. You, more than anyone, is doing a fabulous job!

Anne xx

 
At February 4, 2013 at 9:07 PM , Blogger Erica Louise said...

I've seen some Mums (or guardians) that have left their children unsupervised in op shops, and who've completely wrecked the toy section. This is obviously not the case for you, so its a real shame you've experienced this with op shop volunteers. I must admit, I've received the odd glance of disapproval in some op shops, but mostly, its been OK. Good on you for putting your story out there!

 
At February 5, 2013 at 12:43 PM , Blogger WolvesAtTheDoor said...

Thanks for your comments on my blog Trudie, love how you run two great blogs and also find the time to drop by and read mine!! Love the new look blogs, hope you are super duper!!!!!:)

 
At February 6, 2013 at 12:45 PM , Blogger Sunae Reilly said...

That is just so disappointing!

 

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