...been asked to leave the library because your children were too loud? I have! Yep. Let me paint the picture for you. We had been on the run for about 4 hours. It's monsoon season here in Minnesota and the rains were unreal. Our last stop of the afternoon was the library. This is our favorite library with a humongous children's section loaded with puzzles, learning activities, computers, and of course books. Save the best for last, right?! It's not your typical "you can only talk in whispers" type of library, but it is filled with children and liveliness. We walked in the door and the big 4 kids all scatter to their favorite location to look for books. That leaves me with the 4 year old, 2 year old (who we had just woken up because she dozed in the car), and the hungry 3 month old. We settle in and I get out my handy-dandy nursing cover to feed Peter. Eleanor and Esther wander about 8 feet away from me and proceed to choose the same toy and argue loudly. I get up (while nursing the baby) and walk over to them to break up the argument. They settle down. I sit close by to keep the peace. Problem solved, right?! No, not exactly.
The man in the dark blue uniform with the word "SECURITY" where a name badge belong approaches me and the children. He opens with, "Hello. How are you doing today?" and then moves into, "We've had some complaints about your children. If you can't keep it down, I'm going to have to ask you to leave." I smiled and said, "OK." He walked away and continued to survey the situation from a safe distance.
My mind was racing. Really? REALLY?! The security guard was sent to warn the mom with the kids about her arguing preschooler and toddler? Don't get me wrong. They were loud and clearly not demonstrating proper library etiquette. But, I had remedied the situation. Why send in the "big guns" when a librarian clearly could have taken this "teachable moment" to chat with the kids about how to behave in a library.
Why didn't the security guard head out the doors and inform the woman who parked in the no-parking zone to "just run in quick" that she was actually breaking the law? Why didn't the security guard suggest to the teenagers watching inappropriate you-tube videos that they could find something better to do with their time?
Or, more importantly, why didn't I stand up for myself? Why didn't I ask who had complained and could I talk to them? Why didn't I point out that these were children in the children's section of the library playing with the toys that the library provided for them? Are there seriously people out there who hunker down near the children's section to do some intense studying that requires complete silence?
The other piece that really gets me is why did the person/people who complained complain to the security guard and not come talk to me? I was sitting there, nursing a baby while trying to break up an argument between two little girls. I clearly could have used some help. Gone are the times when we help each other out with parenting, I guess.
Alright, I'll end my rant. This whole situation was so weird. What do you think? I'm interested to hear other moms thoughts about this.
St. Junipero Serra
9 hours ago