Friday, June 28, 2013

New York City is Not Child Friendly

I was born and raised in New York City. As a child, I remember being taken to various restaurants, museums, and other typically "adult-centric establishments."

Now I have my own children. And guess what? No one wants children around in public places in New York City.

I cannot tell you how many restaurants I've been to where I've gotten dirty looks because my daughter is two years old and wants to run up and down the aisle of the place. I try to tell her to sit down, but she doesn't listen to me. I try to threaten her "we're going to leave if you don't behave." Then she listens for a minute and promptly proceeds to do whatever I told her not to do because she's two.

I try to discipline my kids. But you know what, even when they're behaving "normally" I still get dirty looks from people in public places.

I know I'm a good parent and I do the best that I can. But I think there may be a geographic problem here. New York is not a child-friendly city.

My friend Bonnie lived in Portland, Oregon for some time. She told me that she was able to take her children (Ages five and two) to white table cloth restaurants with absolutely no problem. The waitstaff and patrons were nice to her and there were no dirty looks.

The other day, my friend Adriana and I went to get our haircuts. Not even thinking twice she brought her 10 month old baby to the salon. The salon did not advertise that there was a "no kids" policy.

"Oh...there's a baby," said the Salon director "I'm sorry, but we can't have a BABY here." She looked at Adriana's daughter like five headed dragon entered the salon.

It's a baby! What the fuck? Are you fucking serious?

Adriana's baby sat quietly for two hours waiting while I got my haircut. The salon told us that the only way they would cut Adriana's hair was if we took turns sitting with the baby. The baby sat patiently the whole time. Two hours passed. The manager approached Adriana and said:

"I'm sorry, there just isn't time to do your hair."

I was furious. I asked to speak to the manager and I wrote an angry letter to the owner of the salon.

In other cities and (for that matter) other countries this would not happen.

Why are New Yorkers such assholes to parents?


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