So, was I wrong to tell this mum off?

Okay, so at times I admit, I can get a little feisty. But tell me, what would you have done?

The weather this last week in Sydney has been, well kinda shitty. For  a mum at home with two kids, you start running out of indoor activities pretty damn quick.

For $11.50 that better be an impressive sandwich.

So, on Monday, I caved and took my kids to one of those indoor play-centres. You know, the hideously expensive ones that won't let you take your own food in because we all love to spend $40 on a ham and cheese sandwich.

While we were there, I observed another young boy, about three-years-old I guess, who was acting pretty aggressively towards the other children. Now, I get it, kids are kids and they are all learning social skills. My son is no angel either. In fact, he can be a down right ratbag. However, this kid was on a mission.

I watched him for some time with other kids, so when he turned his attention to my three-year-old son, I kept a close watch on the situation.

At first, it was just pushing. Three-year-old boys do a lot of that. Then the shoving became a bit harder. I was so proud of my son at that point, because he looked at me, and walked away. (This is a big thing for us, his impulse control is not much better than mine.) Every single time this child came near him, yelled in his face and got physical with him, my son did nothing. To be honest, I didn't expect this reaction from him. I actually expected him to whack him one. Nothing.

When this boy started following mine and deliberately pushing him into things, hitting him in the back of the head and flicking him in the face with toys, I started looking for the mother.

I figured this was enough, and I guess while I enjoy having some time out from all the full-on stuff, I don't see the play centre as a free for all where you don't need to watch your own children.

She kinda looked like this.

There she sat, with her head buried in her phone, totally oblivious to what was going on.

I walked over to the boy and asked that he please not push other children as it wasn't a nice thing to do. (Well chosen words mum, well done. Not a swear word in sight.)


I told my son to play elsewhere in the centre. Well, this kid completely ignored me. He turned and saw my 15-month-old standing nearby. On his way past, he shoved him so hard that his face collided with the plastic jigsaw puzzle mounted onto the side of the play centre. For good measure, he also smacked him on the arm. It was then that my eldest son retaliated. He pushed the boy backwards and hit him square in the face yelling, "You don't touch my brother!!!" (Kinda proud mum moment I think!?)

What happened next? Well this kid went screaming and crying to his mother. I saw him dissolve into a puddle of tears and point over to my son to indicate the trouble maker.

The next thing I knew this woman comes marching over to where we were standing and starts pointing her finger right in my son's face, accusing him of being a "nasty little boy" and telling him that he should learn to play nicely with other children or go home. Pardon?

I'd like to think it was sort of like this.

Well mumma bear instincts kicked in and it was on. (Like I said my impulse control could do with some work.)

The next thing I knew, I was heavily involved in a tirade against this woman about how she was so invested in her phone that she didn't see what her little angel was up to. I detailed how he was chasing around other children to deliberately push them over, and the words "he deserved exactly what he got" may or may not have escaped my lips.

As she sheepishly gathered up her belongings and escorted her boy to the door I felt a little guilty. I didn't know what she was invested in at the time. Working? Personal issues? Arranging a bloody funeral from the iPhone for all I knew but at the same time, I don't expect my child to put up with being pushed around and not be allowed to stand up for himself.

Was I wrong in telling this mum off?

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