Public Tantrums (Murphy’s Law #8)

Spring 2010. Shopper’s Drug Mart. My 2-year-old.  He wants Smarties. I say no. Tantrum hits. Naturally, we are in the lineup and there are about 57 people behind us. Of course it is 5:00, the busiest time of day. We leave.

Last summer. At the park with friends. Our friend’s 4-year-old throws the worst tantrum ever. He sits in the car, about 100 feet away, windows open, screaming for 20 minutes. “He never does this at home,” the mom is quick to remind anyone within earshot.

Last night. A 3-year-old boy sits on the sidewalk near the beach. He is wailing. His mom is waiting by her car. She is exhausted.  She refuses to give in and pick up her miserable boy. He refuses to give in and go to the car. The Italian tourists watching the sunset are gossiping furiously (in Italian) about how terrible Canadian mothers are.

Why are the worst tantrums always in public? Maybe because as parents, we know we are being watched (and judged) so we don’t handle it the way we would at home.  I’d love to hear your best (worst!) tantrum stories.

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