Jun 242009

I got an e-mail yesterday from a couple who wanted me to help spread the word that a certain RV resort in Florida is discriminating against them. They had CC’d several other RV publications and RV clubs with the same letter.

According to their letter, the RV resort in question refuses to allow them or their two children, ages 8 and 11, to stay on the lot they purchased and paid in full for, because it is an age 55+ resort.

They acknowledge that the husband is 39 years old and his wife is 34, and they go so far as to admit that they stated when they submitted the paperwork for their lot that they said the husband was 55, and that the purchase contract they signed stated that no children could stay on the property for more than 72 hours. But their position is that the resort did not ask for proof of the husband’s age, and now that they own the lot, nobody can tell them they cannot have their children on it at any time, for as long as they want to.

They say that their children are well behaved, home schooled, and a joy to be around. Yeah, maybe. Or they could be total hellions, and Mommy and Daddy are too dense to know it. Judging from their letter, I suspect the latter.

I’m sorry, but they won’t have my support. They sound like the typical “it’s all about me and to hell with you” type of jerks I try to avoid at all costs. They bought the lot under false pretenses, and now they want to impose their children on a community of people who specifically bought into an age restricted resort because they do not want to be around kids on a full time bases.

Don’t get me wrong, I like kids, if they are well behaved and if they are where they belong. Heck, I’m pretty childish myself a lot of the time, just ask Miss Terry! But they do not belong in an age restricted resort. End of story. These people get no sympathy from me.

I’m always amazed at how many adults allow kids to run wild, and seem completely oblivious to their bad behavior. Yesterday we stopped for dinner at a restaurant, and there was a boy of about five years old that was misbehaving, and the two women with him, who looked like they were probably his grandmother and great grandmother, watched him throw things around, run around the restaurant, hold the button down on the self-serve soda dispenser with no cup under it, and generally make a nuisance of himself. Their only response was to say “Please stop that” over and over like an unending loop recording.

Another couple were with two little boys who were even louder and more obnoxious, and they too seemed to be in La La Land because they never said a word to correct their behavior. In both cases, the adults were very well dressed and groomed, and looked like they were probably pretty well off.

In the same restaurant was a family with three children who were obviously not as fortunate financially. But those three kids were perfectly well behaved, exhibited good table manners, and were a joy to be around. After we finished our meal, as we were leaving, I made it a point to stop by their table and compliment the parents on their children’s good behavior.

I made it a point of telling them that I appreciate it, and wished other people had as much control over their kids loudly enough for the people with the brats at the other tables to hear. Of course, some people are too dense to get the message, so I’m sure it fell on deaf ears.

Once, when I told the parents of some exceptionally rude children that I did not appreciate them allowing their kids to ruin my dining experience, my dinner companion was embarrassed, and told me that I was being rude. No, they were being rude. I paid good money for my meal, and I deserve to eat in peace, not to have my meal ruined by out of control rugrats. 

Once a woman told me that her out of control child could not help it, because he had ADD. Give me a break! That’s the new excuse for “I’m too lazy to be a good parent and teach my children manners.” When I was a kid, we didn’t have ADD, because my Dad had a BELT. The next time I get that response, I’m going to replay that “yes, he (or she) does have ADD, because they are Absolutely Devoid of Discipline.”

Thought For The Day – Be eccentric now. Don’t wait for old age to wear purple.

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Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  14 Responses to “Undisciplined Children”

  1. I agree-I deserve to eat any meal I pay for at a restaurant without having to have obnoxious children running around, playing in the salad bar, fingering the desserts, screaming, and whatever else they do, because the parents don’t have the gumption to correct them. When my children were small, they did not behave that way–they knew better. I actually had a couple pay for our dinner at a restaurant in Florida once because my children were so well behaved during our meal. They told me “We just knew when you walked in that our meal was going to be ruined, but we were pleasantly surprised that they are such good children.” They were 3,4, and 6 at the time.

    It doesn’t take much time to take the effort to control your kids. Not every place they go is a playground. And just because I am a grandma, doesn’t mean I think your snotty, rude, loud, children are cute.

  2. I am really confused now Nick. You actually sound conservative in this posting. I thought libs were happy when kids had good self-esteem, regardless how they behaved.

  3. Sounds like these folks are setting up for a lawsuit to press their point. Why would they even want to live in a 55+ community where their children won’t have other kids to play with — makes no sense to me.

  4. GREAT BLOG!!!!

    I too am fed up with the “it’s all about me” generation! I was a public school teacher for over 35 years and learned…..if you follow a jerk home, you’ll find at least one more!


    Have a great day


  5. Just the fact that the under 55 couple is stupid enough to write to you to assist them with their case of fraud tells you just how out of touch they are. I do hope they read your daily log and see how ignorant and self centered they are.

    Oh, wait a minute. I don’t think they can read very well because they missed the clause in their contract about having to be 55 or older.

  6. Oh wow! Nick, you hit the nail on the head (or maybe you should have hit the kids on the head). There is nothing that bothers me more when eating out than kids out of control. My son, has a great idea for restaurants. They had to make smoking/non-smoking areas available. Now that a lot of states have banned smoking in restaurants, turn the prior non-smoking area into a kid free zone! Now they can have a family area and a adult only area! Sounds good to me.

  7. Dear Nick,
    Right on about the couple buying into the age 55 park and the noisy kids in restaurants. I do hope the park where these people are trying to get into gets a copy of that letter. It proves that the couple KNOWINGLY signed a contract where they gave FALSE information. If this issue does go to court, it would help the park to have proof that this couple lied. And why would they want to live there anyway? No noisy kids, old folks being quiet and respectful to others, neat clean neighborhood. Oops, guess I answered my own question.
    About restaurants. There is NOTHING more awful than to go to a nice restaurant, pay good money to listen to a screaming baby or brats making noise, being rude and bouncing all over. Love your ADD remark. Yes, it is the fault of the adults. And yes, it is not rude for other patrons to request from either the restaurant personnel or the parents for the children to behave. I, too, learned about the BELT. It only took a couple of times for me to understand there were limits to my actions. I didn’t like the belt so I was careful after that to behave.
    Say Hi to Terry, Hugs from steamy hot Illinois, Connie B.

  8. Nice Post Nick… By the way, isn’t that what happens when you pull the wool over someone’s eyes and then you get caught!!?..lol.

  9. Nick, you and I will never win any “politically correct” awards! I couldn’t have written about the type of behavior you encountered any better. I see this type of “non parenting” in almost every restaurant we enter.
    It would seem to me that unless the FL development company is in such a “squeeze” as to need EVERY sale, then the couple’s sales contract could easily be voided due to their admittedly deceptive behavior when signing.

    Write on Nick! Write on!

  10. I agree with the no kids {brats} section. We have been in resturants many times and people have screaming kids and don’t do anything about it. I always want to go over and say something bu my wife won’t let me. Afraid somebody will pull a gun on me. If you knew where we lived it’s not suprising.

  11. HERE, HERE…on ALL counts!!!!!!!!!!

  12. Oh Nick, Nick, Nick. ADD and ADHD does really exist. But like many other fashionable diseases/conditions it gets misused. Many children just need proper diet, attention and discipline. My son was diagnosed borderline ADD. I thought it was a bunch of crap too. The child that was on meds for 8 hours a day was not the same child I spent my evenings with after work. He’s 21 now and refuses to take meds. He’s a bright kid but will struggle for every little bit he gets in life. He just cannot focus on one thing for very long. It makes my heart hurt.
    I agree totally that we live in our world where people have no respect for anyone else. I agree most children just need discipline. I agree that people who lie (shame on you people for lying on your application) deserve what they get.
    You know what bothers me the most, Nick? People my age (52) or older who are just as bad as these younger people. Most people our age were taught proper manners and respect for others. It shocks me to find people older than me behaving rudely and improperly in public.
    Thanks for letting me have a little input, Nick. Take care of Ms Terry. She’s one of a kind.

  13. Nick,
    I have 4 kids ranging in age from 24 to 44. None have ever been allowed to “run wild” and 2 have ADD ADHD diagnosis. The point is that parents are not taught the basics by their parents… that consistency is the basis for predictablility. No consistency… no predictability in behavior and response.

    I am not saying to program children like computers but that is exactly what socially acceptable behavior is… a narrow set of behaviors that are generally tolerated by those around you. Children learn the most consistent lessons the best and they usually learn them well before the parents even have a clue that they can understand them. The Boundaries of socially accepted behavior must be managed consistently and sometimes, forcefully, if that is what it takes to teach a child a clear grasp of acceptable and unacceptable behavior.

    From birth, a parent must stay ahead of the child. If it is a first child for the parent, then this can be an overwhelming task. As more come along, we learn new things from each but the expectation of “fixing” behaviorial problems after they have been allowed to “Setup” is like expecting to still be able to go out tomorrow and finish off concrete you poured yesterday….. not going to be a quality job no matter how hard you work at it.

    But from the comments, it sounds like I am likely preaching to the over-the-child-rearing-hill crowd.

  14. When a child doesn’t understand something in school they can get very frusterated and have a hard time focusing..They just have a tougher time learning, and many kids have that. Not everyone learns the same, and some things are difficult. I don’t understand why the so called experts have to label everything. I got a spanking if I didn’t sit down and be quiet in a restraunt. I knew not to cross that line because I didn’t want one of those. So now attention deficeit disorder is an excuse why the child is being rude in a restraunt? I have learning disabilities and it does get frusterating..I always ended up day dreaming when i had the frustration and headache. Acting out and annoying someone else isn’t part of any disability! A simple spanking would teach any child no matter what their disability is!

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