"Why I agree that kids shouldn't be in restaurants."

Fellow parents. Kids and nice restaurants don’t mix.

Parents, I’m just going to say it.

Please don’t bring your children out to restaurants.

I’m not talking about a blanket rule for all restaurants, but if I’m paying over $30 for a dish, I don’t want it served with a side of Peppa Pig playing loudly on mum’s phone while she scoffs her Chicken Kiev.

Now there are heaps of places where family dining is welcome. Many choices of eatery that wouldn’t bat an eyelid if your child did non-stop happy laps around the tables.

Not a question asked if your child decorates the floor with their margarita pizza and spends the entirety of the night squealing incessantly.

But please, stick to these places. Or at least choose an early sitting, say, before 7:30pm.

If there are wine glasses and white table clothes, it is a no-kid invite.

It seems I'm not alone in my feelings on the matter. A pub in the UK has recently got itself into hot water over a sign placed out the front. The Mirror reports, the sign read

"To avoid accidents or injury to your child whilst the little darling is running around this establishment...why not hand the little poppet to a member of staff who will be happy to nail it to the table for you."

While I think this is perhaps a bit extreme, the pub in question has responded to claims it's promoting child abuse by stating that the sign was meant as "a bit of fun" and meant as a reminder to parents to look after unruly children.

Pubs, I think children should be allowed in. Depending on the kind of place we're talking about, pubs are pretty family friendly.

I guess the general rule is perhaps kids menu = kids welcome. If there's no option for nuggets or kid-size spag bowl, go elsewhere.

My frustration comes from a rare night out with my husband. Without a lot of babysitting, dinner out for us is a rare treat. And it was his birthday.

Add to that a current hardcore savings schedule and you can imagine that going out to a restaurant doesn't happen often.


I chose a nice restaurant that I knew he would love and booked in a child free night. Except it wasn't.

Seated directly next to us was a family of five, two parents and three kids. Three kids who were clearly overtired, extremely bored and not really thrilled with sitting quietly while mum and dad finished their vino.

The kids in question, didn't behave like this.

Throughout the whole meal the youngest did laps of all the dining tables (parents said nothing and were clearly oblivious to the fed up stares of other diners).

The other two turned the volume up on their iPhones, so everyone else got the pleasure of listening to Dora and Boots. And the kids whinged like there was no tomorrow. There were meltdowns left, right and centre. How could any parent feel this was a good night out? For anyone?

Going out for a nice meal may not mean much to some parents. And I know that some parents, don't realise that the couple seated across from them haven't saved for weeks to be at that restaurant. And your child, who clearly doesnt want to be there has ruined the whole experience.

No relaxation.

No adult conversation.

No break from children.

Going out to dinner with a spouse, potential spouse, family member or friend is so much more than just consuming food. Reconnecting, catching up on life events, debriefing and consoling. And often, just relaxing.

Spending the entire night not being able to hear your dinner companion over the crying child next to you does not allow any of these things to happen.

What do you think? Would you take your child out to a nice restaurant?

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