Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Once Upon A Time, There was a Very Angry Mother


Ashley and I went Krogering on Sunday. We were out of potatoes, and Ashley’s day is not complete without a serving of mashed potatoes. She was having a great time walking around the grocery store, her arm linked in mine as I acted as her sighted guide. As we toured the ice cream section, I heard something behind us that made my heart stop for a moment – a young middle school aged boy, standing with two of his friends, said “Once upon a time…” The other two boys started snickering and laughing, all the while glancing at Ashley.

Little did these boys know that I was quite aware that they were referring to the line from the movie, Tropic Thunder – “Once upon a time there was a retard”. Little did they know that they were soon to witness my barely contained anger.

I turned to them and said “I know what you are talking about, and I want you to stop immediately.” They kept snickering, walked away but kept looking back at Ashley, and continued to say in a sing song voice “Once upon a time…Once upon a time….once upon a time…”

I followed them down the aisle, and said in my outside voice, “My daughter is beautiful and I love her very much. How do you think your mothers would feel about you at this moment?” The boys were getting angry, but one was level headed enough to insist the other two leave the store with him.

I don’t feel like I handled the situation very well, but I also don’t know what I should have done differently. Do you have any suggestions for me?

14 comments:

Sheri said...

Tossed a half gallon of Moosetracks at one of their heads? Just a thought. . .

I would've handled it about the same way. A few weeks ago I was at a park near our house and these children who may have been 11 or 12 started hollering profanities to impress one another. I told them to watch their mouths and that I had children with me. One called me a cow, I said, "Say that to my face you little punk" and started toward them. They ran and I started after them, then I remembered I was 38 and stopped. LOL

They did run really fast though.

rickismom said...

Well, when Tropic Thunder came out, we knew it was coming, didn't we...?
Not much else you can do unless you know who the parents are....

Attila The Mom said...

I don't, but grrrrrr. I'm so sorry. :-(

Amazing_Grace said...

I would of said, "Once upon a time there were these three boys who were very mean and said really stupid stuff . . ."

mommy~dearest said...

I was going to say beat their asses, but Amazing Grace had a better idea.

I'm so sorry- that's so heartbreaking. I'm not good at defending Jaysen in a civilized manner, and I wish I had some advice on how to handle situations like these!

happycfam said...

So it's begun. I'm so sorry you had to deal with this. And I'm sorry for your precious Ashley.

I have zero advice because ever since I had Myah I feel I should check into anger management class. I have had so many run-ins (ususally at a store); I always leave feeling bad, but I don't know how to handle it either. I need to stand up for my angel.

A woman who commented on my site (something about this kind of thing) said she wished she could calmly talk to the person about her sweet daughter, I don't know if teenage boys would listen though. I always react first, think later. Maybe those boys will think before they do something like that again!?

Sorry,
((hugs))

Terri said...

I am so sorry this happened. I have ordered some of the cards that Dave Hingsburger had on his site (http://chewingthefat@blogspot.com) I hope those give me some focus in that situation...

Penny L. Richards said...

Orrrrrr.....if the timing and the kids are just right.....

You might say, "hey guys, since you're not busy, can you help us reach this/carry that/find the other thing?" Put them to work. Invite them get involved with you and your family. And keep inviting them, just like they keep inviting you to see what nonsense they've learned. They'll either go away or become your assistants for the duration of the shopping trip--and either way, you win, right?

little.birdy said...

My guess is they were all trying to act "cool" for each other, and they enjoyed getting a rise out of you. Perhaps you could've told the manager and ask that the boys be escorted out of the store? I am racking my brain but I cannot think of a really good, effective response. I don't think there is one.

Stephanie said...

I've taken names before! I'm not creative enough to figure out a way to be kind and winsome. Good for you anyway.

Frogs' mom said...

I'm so sorry this happened. I know we've all been there before - but that darn movie is truly going to add insult to insult if not injury to insult.

I liked you comeback. My inner Angry Mama is always thinking

"You’re only a closed head injury away from understanding what it’s like (to be on the other side of such hurtful comments) - that injury might be closer than you think."

Don’t know if it helps me or not, but it gives some definition to my fuming.

therextras said...

I like Penny's idea.
Barbara

kristen@nosmallthing said...

Words are hurtful. Very hurtful. But they are also powerful. I think your words were appropriate--I don't know if I could have come up with something intelligent and restrained that quickly! Hopefully at least one of those boys will remember your words and they will change him.

Something like "I hope that when you are a parent, you never have to experience the hurt you are inflicting on me right now." It might not give you the satisfaction you want at the moment, but it might make them think.

Or you could tell them to "grow a set" too. :)

Stacey,momof 2 said...

After reading this my first response was to carry duct tape and use often--
but that doesn't really stop the hurt
I really don't think this bad behavior started with Tropic Thunder...too bad teens today don't have a remote editing button!