Mom’s Open Letter to the Target Customer Who Insulted Her You’ve Obviously Never Raised a Toddler

In a candid Reddit post, a mom’s open letter to the Target customer who insulted her, describing how she was protecting her 2-year-old daughter in the store’s parking lot when the stranger approached her and accused her of smacking her child.

Every new mom knows that running errands with a newborn is challenging. Are you venturing out with a newborn and an infant? Extremely, extremely difficult. Occasionally, however, you must leave the house and dash to Target.

This is all Reddit user u/bubblybotany wanted to do when she encountered an unsolicited, unwarranted evaluation of her parenting. The enraged mother then posted a message on the Parenting forum of the social media website, headlined “To the woman who mom-shamed me at Target: You obviously have never had a child.”

She added, “Yesterday, I was feeling adventurous and mistakenly chose to take my 2-year-old and 1-month-old to Target.” “My kid is in the throes of the terrible twos; she is extremely defiant and independent. As anticipated, things have only worsened after my younger brother’s birth.” She added that because her daughter does not want to hold her hand, “I have to keep a close eye on her whenever we are on the street or anywhere else where cars may be present.”

The mother recounted carrying her toddler and infant in a carrier as she walked from the car to the store. u/bubblybotany explained, “First, she says she doesn’t want her jacket, but she won’t let me take it off for her.” “She desires to do it herself but is having difficulty. I just let her try until she realizes she can’t do it and requires assistance, but she cries and whines during the process, so she is already in a foul attitude.”

“After removing her jacket, she decides to cross the street in the center of the road, but a car is approaching. I request that she move closer to me and the parked cars. She does not pay attention, only giggles, and moves closer to the roadway. Since a car is approaching, I take her arm and draw her close. I did not harm or abuse her, but she clearly did not appreciate it. She begins throwing a tantrum. At that time, I surfboard-style grabbed her and carried her to the store. I was not willing to allow her to run amok in the street.”

This is when “Someone who witnessed the entire exchange yells at me, “I just saw you hit your kid!” You’re being watched, you know.”

The mother stated she “never struck her once. I may have appeared a bit harsh when I tugged her arm, but the alternative was to allow her to be struck by a car. Second, I am carrying my infant in a carrier. It’s not as though I can pick her up like I typically would. And finally, if she was screaming, it was not because I had hurt her; rather, she was throwing a tantrum because she did not get her way.”

“I am already battling to maintain my sanity with a rambunctious two-year-old and a newborn infant; I don’t need a stranger to critique my parenting.” She then addressed the subreddit community with the following message: “Please reassure me that you have all experienced similar meltdowns and handled them similarly. I do not believe that I abused my child. If I have to be a little strict to prevent her from attempting suicide, I believe that is OK.”

By publishing the specifics of the incident on the subreddit, this mother immediately discovered that she was not the only one to experience unwarranted scrutiny during a difficult outing with her L.O.S.

One participant wrote, “When my 18-month-old daughter had a tantrum in Walmart, my husband finished checking out while I took her outside. I was required to grasp her arm and bring her up because she attempted to flee. I held her while she laid straight as a board and screamed her lungs out, all the while being six months pregnant and attempting to waddle her outdoors. Numerous individuals and a security guard followed me without, however, approaching me. People are just harsh and judgemental [sic]. Ignore them; I would sooner grab my child by the arm than risk a car nearly hitting her. You committed no errors.”

Others stated, “My child used to be horrible in retail! How else will I educate her on how to behave in stores (and parking lots!!) if I don’t continually take her out to practice following rules and proper behavior? (At age 2.5, she’s vastly improved. 2 stinks for retailers – I empathize!) “

u/Bubblybotany updated her original post and thanked individuals who have reacted for their support. She commented, “I consider myself fortunate to have gone two years without being called a bad mother, so I am counting my blessings.” “Plus, with two children, I’m certain it will occur again. Next time, I shall do a better job of making them feel impolite for interfering in matters that are none of their business.”

With optimism, Reddit users reassured this mother that she had done nothing wrong and was simply doing her best, which is all any parent can do, especially while navigating a Target parking lot with a stubborn toddler.

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