So, last night Kate, the Bean and I were trying to relax in our hotel room in Oakville but unfortunately, kids were running and yelling through the halls making relaxation difficult. I mused on my Facebook page about what kind of parent allows their children to disrupt every other paying guests' peace. The answer came about an hour later when the adults decided the hall was the perfect place to drink their beer and have a loud conversation. Kate went out and asked them tersely if they could take the conversation back to their room.
When I was a kid, if I behaved like that I would earn a threat to have my ear cuffed if not actually getting a cuff from one of my parents. I just seem to remember kids of my generation were held to a higher standard of behaviour than kids seem to be today. My childhood was one long lesson in honesty and respect for others.
Permissiveness, though, seems to be a popular parenting model these days. An old high school friend of mine often posts on Facebook about bratty behaviour from kids and more importantly on the lack of concern about that behaviour on behalf of their parents. I wonder about the reasons for this. I have gone so far as to blame Canada's adoption of a Charter of Rights and Freedoms which I find instills in many a sense of entitlement, that they can do whatever they like without concerning themselves how their behaviour may affect others. The notion that their freedom ends where another person's begins is an alien concept.
Certainly many parents seem to be distracted a lot of the time - too busy being plugged in via their "smart" phones or tablets so they may not even be aware of the bratty behaviour. Maybe they are even oblivious to the fact that their kids may be annoying other people.
I'm not saying the Bean is perfect, or that we are perfect parents, but we would certainly have halted similar behaviour and pointed out to her that she needs to consider what impact her actions have on the other people around her. We expect her to be a considerate and polite person. When she strays from our expectations, we use it as a teaching moment and point out how her behaviour may or may not have been appropriate and what she could have done differently.
Even as write this now, I hear the kids again out in the hall being loud. Despite our complaints last night, the parents continue to find this acceptable. My god, talk about the unbearable burden of being.