||Subject: shopping with toddler
I need to make some comments regarding this
article [Ten Tips for Shopping with Children]. I have a very high need
daughter. We follow the Natural Child philosophy and Dr. Sears has seen
us in his office on occasion. I just came back from another attempted
shopping trip with my daughter who is 16 months old. It, again, was such
a disaster that I came to this site to see the tips listed. I was
discouraged when it read "remember, all children behave as well as
they are treated" I think I got that right. Anyway, I am here to
tell you that this is not the case. And I need some help. So, if
possible, help would be appreciated.
Kim & Ryan Amber
Hi Kim and Ryan,
Thank you for having enough faith in me to write
even though my slogan didn't seem accurate to you. I appreciate that.
Children do "behave as well as they're
treated" but it can be really difficult for even the most
loving and capable parent to accomplish this during a shopping trip! And
age 16 months is a particularly difficult time for the parents because
the child has skills (like wandering off) without having the experience
and judgment to be left alone even for a moment. This can be exhausting
and frustrating even in the simplest situations, like a quiet afternoon
at home. While shopping in a busy and noisy store, it can be absolutely
crazy. The good news is that "this too shall pass" and your
child will become more and more able to tolerate the inattention that is
inevitable during shopping and other stressful and busy situations.
Here is an "extension" to my motto that
might help clarify things. "All children behave as well as they are
treated by everyone and everything around them." I think we as
parents, especially with a very young child, sometimes forget that we
aren't the only factor in the child's life. Everyone else who comes into
contact with the child, and the environment, both internal - the
unrecognized beginning of a cold, teething, etc., and external - such as
a busy, noisy, artificially-lighted grocery store, all this has an
effect on the child's ability to cope.
What this means in terms of improving things is
that (a) we shouldn't blame the child (b) we shouldn't blame ourselves
and (c) we should keep stressful trips to a bare minimum. When they are
necessary, we should plan ahead, but not expect things to go perfectly
I've had to generalize here, but if you'll send me
more details, I'll reply to that as well.
Thank you for visiting the site and please feel
free to write again.