Disturbing trend #3


Maybe it’s just me - because I’ve been known to start a little trouble now & again. But does there some to be some kind of backlash at parents of toddlers (between 2 - 4 years of age). I was on another Disney fan website and I noticed all these posts about screaming, “bad”, out of control kids and it really disturbed me because

  1. okay these are KIDS - did I say KIDS.
  2. all the blame was put on “bad” parenting.

Help me out DisneyCentral…let me know your take on this. As a parent of a 3 year old who is no stranger to “meltdowns” I don’t like my parenting skills called into question based on the 2 minutes you see me in WDW-hello. :angry:


Toddlers are going to be toddlers, but I think that some parents are inclined to push their toddlers to the limit at WDW becuase they want their kids to have a memorable time and becasue it is so expensive to visit WDW. Sometimes, they stay past the time that they should at the parks and/or do not try to stick with their toddlers normal eating/sleeping schedule which of course turns into meltdown time.

I think the point people are trying to make that if your toddler is tired/cranky/overstimulated/hungry or otherwise disengaged from enjoyng WDW, then you need to make some down time for the child and return to your hotel or some other quiet place. The rest of the park does not want to hear a child screaming or crying constantly for 20 minutes.

I do not think the parents are bad parents, just probably really excited and want their child to have the maximum enjoyment. Even though my daughter is 8 now, we still go back to the resort for a few hours after lunch to nap/relax/hang out at the pool before returning to WDW in the evening. No one has a meltdown and we enjoy WDW much more than when we tried to stay at the parks all day long.


Meltdowns happen, period. And WDW is a place one should expect kids. We’ve been lucky simply because we have a darling little girl who is usually very well behaved. However, with the heat of Florida and the over-stimulation, things can happen.

What I think people get tired of is when the toddlers are really out of control, and the parents do NOTHING! This goes beyond a hissy-fit…it’s more when the kids are climbing on other guests, etc. and they say/do nothing. Then, it is a case of bad parenting, but I have no qualms about telling a child to back off. When my own kids mimic (as they are known to do), it’s a question of asking or telling nicely that that behaviour is not acceptable, and if the question of the other child comes up, then the reply is “Because we care about you more than his/her mommy and daddy care about them.” Two-fold reaction - our child settles down, and the other parents get a wake-up call.

Finally, if your child is acting as best as they can, then who really cares about what other people think. I’ve only once had to threaten to leave the park with my DD in tow.


It isn’t the tired, cranky child I am talking about. It is the child that is climbing all over me trying to get at something and mom and dad are so self-absorbed that they don’t stopy the child. I am not talking about toddlers, but 4yo and up. By 4 years of age, a child can understand some basic rules of etiquette (?). I should be able to dinner without ‘Little Johnny’ screaming & running around the table because he doesn’t want to sit down. Take 'Little Johnny outside or to the restroom until he will mind. Or take him back to the hotel. Get your meal to go and go. Don’t make others suffer just because you can’t be bothered.

And by ‘you’, I am talking in general, not about anyone here.


This issue can go round and round in circles forever - over-tired hot toddler with devoted parents vs. the out-of-control toddler with irresponsible parents. We should all be intelligent enough to know the difference. If you are parenting to the best of your ability and your child is acting like a normal toddler (note: I said NORMAL, not perfect, not a holigan, NORMAL) then don’t worry about what others are thinking. You are doing your job. No one at WDW is likely to have their day “ruined” by a toddler who cries in the middle of the Muppet Theatre. If this is the case, then perhaps they should consider vacationing on a desert island. As Forrest Gump said: **** happens. It’s a simple matter of respect, a little tolerance and common sense. By both parents and non-parents alike.


I’m hoping that we’re handling this topic better than other sites. :wink:

Ultimately, this isn’t a thread about bad parenting or kids being kids. For those of us who feel like we might not be the best parents all the time, this type of thread can feel threatening. I don’t think that’s what it’s intended to be.

We’re simply venting frustration at those parent who have set ZERO boundaries for proper behavior and are too detached or self-absorbed to recognize that a little parenting can go a long way.

BTW, we NEVER yell at our kids in public. A quiet whisper, a strong grasp of the shoulder and a reminder that I could always end the vacation early is all it’s ever taken. Bring a kid back to reality and see how quickly they respond. My kids know I’m serious, because if pushed, I will follow through with a threat.


I don’t think there is any limit to the amount of punishment this dead horse can take.


Wanna test that theory? :laugh:


I think it will be tested, whether I want to or not…lol.


Watever gave you that idea? Are you suggesting that we’re not capable of simply dropping it?

Which reminds me of a story… :laugh:


Amen…and I think that “Disturbing Trend” is a perfect title.

I’m afraid this is a disturbing trend - and not just a WDW. I have 3 kids and sometimes I feel I’m in the minority when I am the only one watching them, what they do, what they watch on TV, blah, blah, blah.

The problem is that your hands are tied. Most of these non-parenting parents don’t care and if you say something to them you either make them mad or…they don’t care. Best you can do is make sure they don’t break your stuff or hurt your kids!

I’m with you Matt - I don’t yell in public, but I get my point across. (And I’m pretty proud of my kids. They actually have manners and (try) to behave.)


and BTW…I just wanted to get my 2 cents worth in because I missed a couple of days and just now caught this!


Sorry… too late. You now fall into the category of those unable to let it go. :wink:


I’m kidding of course.


Thank goodness my point is finally becoming clear! That I was never upset about tired toddlers or natural childlike behavior but parents who refuse to parent their children. I should have been more specific from the beginning.


I don’t lump my kids or myself into those type threads. My kids have meltdowns, heck I get tired and cranky sometimes if we have been going all day, non-stop. BUT, I do my best to take care of the situation. My kids don’t throw stuff at dinner or hit other kids when they have a toy they would like to have…but they do have issues sometimes. On our last trip, DS#2 was 3 and he was very cranky on a lot of our park days. I used the Alien Encounter alcove more than once to pull him out of sight so he could try to nap and get his temper tantrum over with. I am sorry, but when 3 year olds are in the height of a severe tantrum, having a chat w/ them is not going to help matters. He just needed to have his fit and then he was over it. To passers I may have looked like I was ignoring DS but I was doing what WORKS for our family. The people passing(btw probably no one even saw me b/c I would pull off to the side away from the crowds)by have no idea that I tried to feed him, rock him, calm him for over half and hour before I got frustrated and gave up…they just see me sitting there doing nothing while he has a cow over they toy he didn’t get to keep in the store.

I know this thread, and the original one wasn’t meant to say “all kids at Disney get on my nerves when they have normal temper tantrums”…it is the extenuating circumstances where parents let their kids HIT, RUN WILD(to the point they are running into people or cutting lines, etc)and THROW food across the dining room like it is normal, 3 year old behavior. That kind of behavior and lack of parenting bugs me too but I try to give people the benefit of the doubt. When you see a child and their parents, you have only gotten a glimpse into their day…maybe the parent is oblivious to the kids throwing food on the floor. When we sit down I like to try to enjoy my meal…and YES there are occasions where I may zone everything out(You learn this as a parent I swear! lol I can tune out a whiney kid quicker than anything and sometimes I don’t even realize I am doing it…I am not a bad parent b/c I don’t watch EVERY single move my kid makes, every second of the day. I will apologize if need be or clean up a mess that was created by my not paying attention every second…sometimes parenting is HARD work and we all do the best we can.


I had to laugh at this!

I used to drive a school bus. I could shut out EVERYTHING being said until the wrong words were spoken…then it was like an alarm going off in my head. I think that is kind of like the extra set of eyes we grow in the back of our head when we become a parent! :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:


WDWAddict - thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for your clear, concise, honest account of the reality of parenting and kids. EVERYTHING you have said is right on the mark. Yes, we would all like to live up to the “Dr. Phil” philosophy of gentle persuasion, unwaivering firmness and reasonable discussion. Hah! I defy anyone to try to reason with a 2 year old bent on his own agenda. It’s not called “Terrible Twos” for nothing. I wish we could bring this discussion to an end. I was a decent, dedicated parent the day my 3 year old threw her sister’s fries across the room at McDonald’s. Decent parents do their best. The end.


Thank you Illama that was my point. I’m not talking about the kid who is beating up on a complete stranger I’m talking about the one or two times your kid has had enough and you start to get those “looks” and then you feel threatened. At first that used to bother me but now I just reprimand my son in a way that works best for us. But I just needed to vent and needed to hear from other parents who may feel the same that I do.


Well, as the father of probably the two most impeccably behaved children on the planet, I could be smug and take the moral high ground. However, the plain fact is that children don’t come with an instruction booklet and all parents are simply the product of their own parents’ parenting skills. We all make it up as we go along. Some people are better at it than others and some kids are easier to deal with than others. To my mind there are four combinations.

Good parents + good kids = heaven
Good parents + difficult kids = controllable
Poor parents + good kids = tolerable
Poor parents + difficult kids = NIGHTMARE! :eek:

I hate it when kids or parents cross the line of what is acceptable, but I am old enough to know that not everything is black or white. There are a million ways to get to any one of the above combinations and I certainly wouldn’t consider myself clever enough to know why a certain person was behaving in a certain way. Could be anything from health problems to pure anti-social behaviour. In my experience, tackling the situation head on usually makes it worse. A chill pill usually helps. If it gets too bad I generally move on.:smile:


I’ve met T’s kids and he is right,they are 2 of the most impeccably behaved kids on the planet.(Hey,T,tell your son he still has nothing to fear from Buzz Lightyear with me-I still score horribly!!)