1. THANK YOU. I needed this today. ?

  2. I am a not-perfect mother of 2 grown children . I don’t agree with the phrase of “she’s going to kill me” BUT, I’m sure I’ve said it myself , worse I’m also sure. I also DO NOT agree with the entitled lady getting between you and your child. This made your child doubt you ! However, this is a cruel world that’s only getting worse as the Bible predicts , so this won’t be the last time somebody speaks out of line to your children or to you about your children. Therefore, what concerned me was that this woman was able to not only mentally but physically get between you and your children and control the situation. Yes I know that feeling of being caught off guard and not expecting such rudeness but, I would like to think this prepares you for the next “outside” encounter. I believe our children should know that NOBODY, no matter who or what authority , will come between them and their parent! A teacher is to be respected and obeyed UNLESS there is a reason not to and when in question, Mom is ALWAYS right. They will KNOW that if someone is allowed to speak to them or command them that it’s because you approve.. And they will feel safe talking to you if they have a concern about another adult . Of course it’s not good for children to see us speak unkind or argue but I do believe it is quite healthy for our children to know we have their back , let them see us protect them when neccecary. I believe it encourages a strong bond , self esteem and helps them to realize a sad reality that not all grown ups are nice. i am NOT a confrontational person but ask my kids and they think I’m the toughest , strongest Jesus-lovin mom on the block ! Then they would laugh .. Because I’m small and not at all scary but they KNOW I’m not afraid to stand up to anybody for them . Next time tell “her”, you do not accept opinions from strangers concerning your children or please do not address my children . …
    Pray for strength, courage and wisdom and to NEVER grow into a rude ole lady like the one at target! And as long as you are doing the best you can then NEVER let anybody make you doubt yourself as a mother! God bless you !

  3. Brittany Pollock says:

    I am a fellow mother of littles. And my heart just dropped as I read your story. I can only imagine your insult/belittlement/offense/frustration. But what a wonderful example you set by responding calmly and with enough grace not to kill her. Since that was the topic she felt keen on discussion with your daughter. Thank you for posting. Keep up the good work.

  4. So so true! (the part about the normal parents missing!) This is why I could not do a local co-op preschool when my son was young. All the parents seemed to be either way too uptight or way too nonchalant!! What happened to reason and understanding? Sheesh!

  5. You should’ve pushed her aside and yelled, help! Kidnapper! Maybe she’d learn to keep her trap shut and not get that close to someone else’s children! Haha! 😉 Perfectly legal, protecting your kids from a stranger!

  6. Stephanie says:

    I have also had memorable shopping moments that I will never forget and this is years after the fact. I still think of that person and just wonder.. The world is obsessed with policing other people. How sad that we have lost the art of friendship. It is a “me” mentality that permeates our society. Mothers are waging battles on so any fronts. We are criticized for being working parents, stay at home moms, single moms, etc, etc, what is worse is that it comes from the very ones that should be supporting and encouraging each of us to carry on so I say to you… “Carry on”..

  7. Emily Harris says:

    Hi Kayse, I am a new reader to your blog and your writing really resonates with me. I know we would hit if off in person. I’m sorry you had this experience, but I’m glad you have a safe place to vent here. This reminds me of the saying, Hurting people hurt people. Who knows what this lady is going through, but she was definitely the one in the wrong. You need grace, she needs grace, we all need grace. Maybe it’s best you didn’t say anything. I would have been in shock, too. If saying “kill” in front of your child is the worst thing you did that day, I’d say that’s pretty good!! Blessings,

  8. It breaks my hear that you had to be subjected to that in front of your children. 🙁 I agree with your thought process, when you see a parent struggling with their child, in any way, it is always better to encourage and not tear down. It makes me feel better always for someone–even a stranger–to tell me “been there done that, and it does get better”. Being a parent is hard enough, we don’t need other parents bringing us down too.

  9. Kayse,
    You are a better person than I am! I commend you on not letting her get the best of you. She never should have even addresses your children period. As you said if she left it at “wrong choice of words, mom” it would have been completely different. Also by the situation you are describing in noway were you wrong (I used that saying all the time, including to my children and after a one time explanation they knew I didnt literally mean “kill” as would your daughter I am sure) even if you had been wrong though people need to learn how to act. If it was her in your shoes, she wouldnt have liked it had you did that to her. I can tell just by the way you descibe how she acted that she would have gone crazy on you.
    Noone is perfect and as a Mother of 2 there isnt a day that goes by I dont doubt myself as a good mother…but it seems to me your doing a good job and are teaching your kids the right way. I never read your blog before but I will from now on. I am sorry that this happened to you and although she took one teachable moment from you, she gave you another one, how NOT to act towards other people.
    I would have lost it, has anyone ever stepped in between me and my children or even insinuated that they werent safe. I think you did a great job with the situation you were put into!
    I hope this somehow gets to that woman so she can know that she was the wrong one in the situation.

  10. Wow! Just wow. First of all people use phrases all the time that have “kill” in it. Reasonable peopl understand that is just a saying. Common sense should tell you not to be literal. However, common sense isn’t all that common! I may have physically moved the woman if she had gotten between my child and myself. I’m in no way perfect, but I’m the best mom I can be. More importantly, I will “protect” my child. Getting between me and my child could be detrimental to your health!

  11. First of all, my parents used all kinds of phrases and words that would not be politically correct today. Should every word be taken literally? Absoutey not! My siblings and I learned to think for ourselves. We are not cookie cutter kids. Unfortunately, I too, have had experiences with strangers making comments in front of our kids. My family has had several foster/adopted kids. Complete strangers “ASSUME” so much. In the case of older kids, that my sister has fostered/adopted, people ASSUME she contributed to their poor choices/behavior. Actually, she needs encouragement to get through each day! Kayse, it doesn’t take a village to raise a child when she has a loving Mom like you!

  12. Wow! I’m so sorry that this happened to you. I had a similar experience at Target a few months ago. I was there with my three children, ages 3, 2, and 4 months. My 4 month old was in his carseat in the main part of the cart and he wasn’t happy. I’m pretty sure the whole store heard him screaming. A lady came up to me and started asking questions like, “is he hungry?”, “does he need to be changed?”, and she just lingered around the cart while I was trying to calm him down. I knew he just wanted to be held but I was so overwhelmed to even answer the lady. She was increasing my stress levels by trying to figure out what was wrong with MY child. Thankfully my in-laws were there so they took my older ones and I carried my little guy around the store. I will never forget this day though and how shocked I was by this woman’s actions. I wish that people would react with encouragement instead of thinking that we are messing up as parents. None of us are perfect and we will always have situations like these. What we need most is a pat on the back, a smile, or a simple, “hang in there”.

    1. Kayse, I believe it takes a loving parent to raise a child NOT a village. We have foster/adopted kids in our family. People ASSUME so much when they overhear conversations or witness a child who makes a bad choice in public. A stranger cannot be aware of our experiences. We cannot know what the stranger has experienced.

      My child does best when she receives direction from ONE adult. Kayse, I too, get it. You are on the right track and know what is best for YOUR children.

  13. People should mind their own business, let and let live! Use common sense, do this people need my advise? Yes? No? In most cases the answer is NO, thank you.

  14. You are amazing and seriously graceful! My mama bear would come out especially if a stranger literally stood in between me and my son. I can’t even imagine….. Thank you so much for sharing. We women are so judgemental of each other and it’s a constant reminding to take a step back and be an encouragement rather than be rude and ungracious.

  15. Veronica cummings says:

    I am sorry that you had someone do that to you. She is lucky it was you and not me. No one comes between me and my children, period. She would have found herself in a whole different situation then what she was in with you. There are too many crazy kidnappers out there for me to take that lightly.

    And really is the word kill so bad that we must make a scene over it, like she did? No, it is not! I speak the truth to my children always and use words that make others uncomfortable, but that is life.

    I also have been known to drop the f bomb on occasion in front of my children and well this probably would have been one of those times.

  16. Kayse,

    My heart goes out to you. What an unsettling experience to go through. I’m a grandmother now and I jokingly tell my grandson his parents would kill me if I bought him xyz all the time! I suppose I’m pretty confident in my parenting/grandparenting skills these days but was not when my kids were little. What I’ve learned is that what truly matters is our reaction to strange situations so our children learn not to be fearful and to conduct themselves accordingly depending on the situation. Someone like this woman was probably not worth chatting to as she seemed over aggressive but if she had been more polite, I would have probably welcomed a polite conversation. ☺ Keep doing what you are doing, mama. Don’t let Ms. Crazy make you second guess yourself. Hugs!

  17. Kayse, you are awesome! I would rather hear a parent use an “expression” than an explicitive! It was a great teaching opportunity about social skills or lack of skills. Keep moving forward, loving Jesus and teaching your kiddos to be fully devoted followers of Christ!

  18. Kayse,
    As a mom of 4 I get YOU. I do the best I can with the children that God gave me charge over and I don’t need or appreciate someone coming up to me and telling my children anything!! That lady was wrong and anyone on here who says you should have known better or better safe than sorry is wrong. I am quick with the quips so if there happens to be a next time, here are some quick retorts:
    1.Do we know each other?
    2. Why are you talking to my child? And yell stranger danger loudly.
    3. I don’t recall asking you for your opinion so please move before I call the police as you have your phone in hand.
    4. Start yelling for security

    I’m a woman of color and quite a few times I have to let women who are not of color, to get out of my business because I don’t need there advice and I do know how to parent despite what they may have seen on the news it TV shows. They walk away in a huff and embarrassed and ok with it because perhaps for a second they feel what I felt when they tried to interject where no help was solicited.
    Rock on momma!

    1. My thoughts were very close to Shawn´s, elsewhere in these responses.

      First I would have called my child to my side by saying ¨Please come here away from that STRANGER¨. I would have then asked the woman if she knew what stranger danger was and how she just made herself a perpetrator of such. If she did not immediately withdraw, or if if she attempted to otherwise re-engage, I would have told her that further contact constitutes harassment and that if she spoke another word to or came anywhere near my children or me, except to apologize, I would immediately call the police as well as notify store management.

      While we are to be meek regarding insults/affronts to ourselves, we are to rebuke, reprove, warn and correct those who are in error; this goes for brothers and sisters in Christ that are obviously sinning as well as the worldly person who insinuated themselves into our midst and attempts to make their mark there. Further we should, ¨Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own eyes¨. (Prov26:5).

      In saying all of this I will add that this response has developed overtime; were I a young mother I probably would be stunned into silence, but with experience, knowledge and wisdom this is what I would do if such a situation arose today. I will close by saying the following: 1) sometimes silence is the better option especially when we really do not know what to say, 2) being aware that this is harassment and using the threat of authority/police to quell the situation is important.

      May God bless and keep you and yours.

  19. You remember how the king David has suffered of persecution and how much Jesus Christ has suffer too for us. I know sometimes situations happen and we feel so bad inside, we think all night long about what we should have say or we should have done.

    I tell you, you did the right thing for your children. You showed them humility. No one’s perfect, only God! If you had shown violence or something else againt this woman, you could have lost all your credibility in front of your children. I speak with all my my experience, I have been a coleric woman for so long.

    Without judging her, yeah, I know it’s hard, she judged you so much…

    But, try to see her as a woman who just wanted to protect your children. Of course, she did it without any wisdom, but you don’t know her past and you’ll never know if maybe she had lived something very unfair in her life. Some people had crazy lives and then after they just become people chasing all the unfair situations that they see.

    I don’t want to make feel like you are wrong about feeling frustrated and humiliated, because I really understand you.

    This situation would have made me feel the same way as you, and maybe even worst because I have never been the kind of woman who has left people humiliating me…my parents just did it so much, I grew up with a big personnality.

    I’m a little crazy when I feel humiliate and frustrate..That’s why I can tell you right now that God is the only source of calm in this kind of situation. Chase for him! Let your suffering right to the cross, give him your pain and let him give you compassion for this woman.

    With all my heart and my faith in Jesus Christ

  20. Wow. That was crazy out of line. The funny thing is, someday when she has her own kids, she’ll probably look back and be like “what was I thinking???” lol. (hopefully)

  21. I am a grandma now, but I remember how the feeling of inadequacy was with me ALL THE TIME. I took every little comment to heart and used them as a microscope to examine my parenting. I see a more relaxed and confident mothering in my daughter…I think she is more laid-back anyway. I also work in retail. When I see a parent doing their best to calm a raging child or even refusing them a toy or candy (which means no-sale for me) I give them a thumbs up and tell them “way to go , Mom”…be the Mom (or Dad) parents need as much encouragement as they can get!

  22. Wow. I am stunned. As a mom to four completely individual kids that all had/have their moments in public, I have been there. My youngest has autism, but is verbal, so I have experienced the worst with situations where ignorant busy bodies try to correct him. I completely agree with you — people need to mind their own children, not mine. It does not take a village. I pay for my child, I parent my child. I will say though, I don’t know if grace is the answer. Too many people see themselves as superior to others and I think people just need to mind their own business. I am sorry to hear what happened to you. I, like you, am not as witty as I need to be and missed several moments to tell those kind of people to bug off. It’s tough when you are a kind person who doesn’t confront people. It’s better to be kind, so good for you! 🙂

  23. I am sorry you had this experience but what a teachable moment! Like you, in moments like this, I also find it hard to react with well chosen responses. It is easier to just stand there being shocked by another’s behavior.

    We had an experience that shocked us but in the end turned into a blessing. A visitor arrived at church and sat right behind my family. Now she could have chosen just about any other seat since our family of 9 more than doubled the amount of people who went to that church. A church building that seated about 100. So really, she could’ve sat anywhere besides right behind us. One daughter sat in the back to record the service. We have one son (at the time age 3) with ADD. The membership consisted of the pastor, his wife, and 1 other couple, all of whom understood our issues with our son. We allowed our son to go from us to our daughter in the back 5-6 times a service. He did so quietly. We were all quite use to it. Visiting lady was not. On his 3rd trip back, the lady grabbed his arm, and vehemently told him to sit down and not get up again. This explained all the huffing I had heard from her prior to this. We were all so shocked by this turn in events in the middle of the service that all we could do was hold our son who now had curled up into a fetal position. After church she approached the pastor and apologized for our son’s disturbance! She had no right to interfere. She had no right to grab his arm. She did not love us. She did not know us. She did not know that his traveling back and forth helped him stay well behaved through out the service. I don’t know her background so I can’t begin to understand why she felt compelled to interfere with our parenting. Her return visit the next week though did turn out to be a blessing. We decided to visit a different church so as to not allow our son to be put in this position again. The new church immediately felt like home and we have been there ever since. Now if someone tells one of my children to not do something it is out of love and concern for that child’s welfare.

    These experiences teach us and grow us. May we learn grace and love for others thru them.

  24. Wow! Unbelievable. Personally, I don’t think you said anything wrong. You were making a joke, you would have explained it and your daughter would have understood.

    I once had a man say to me “you are a mean mom” in front of my kids, because we were standing in line at the post office and my kids were poking each other and I told them to stop it. I explained that poking leads to pushing and shoving and that we were in line and I didn’t want them disturbing others. That’s when he said I was mean.

    Until a woman and her kids came in. They immediately began to scratch off some of the Christmas art painted on the window while she let them do it. Then they began pushing each other and bumped into that man several times. After several times of being pushed, hit and stepped on he said to me “I apologize. You are a GOOD mom.” Lol!

    I once had another man ask me why my kids weren’t in school and began to talk badly about homeschooling right in front of them. I said “Please do not talk that way in front of my children. You are going against my authority as their mother.”

    We talked a bit, he asked questions and I answered, and he spoke with my kids (we were in a doctor’s office at the time). By the end of our conversation he apologized and told my kids that they should be very proud to be homeschooled.

    Of course, those were two good moments. I’ve had some annoying moments too, including one lady who chased me ALL over the store to tell me how bad a pacifier was for my child. I couldn’t get away from her!

  25. I don’t normally post on blogs, but I did want to post on an interesting bit of info.
    YOU can report people that do this to the store. After you gather your lids, go to the front desk and let them know that there was someone that purposefully put them selves in-between you and your child, and that you felt unsafe and violated. Many store take this VERY seriously and will review the tapes to be sure you had not looked “abusive” and what the other person had done.

    So be aware if you are someone like me who growls at her kids with a sour look when they get out of line. You may have to explain what was going on with the kids first.
    The way I found out about this is that I had a very similar thing happen and a cashier asked how my shopping trip was. I told her I was never so glad to leave a store and I would probably not be back. She seemed quite surprised at this because my kids were standing quite nicely beside me and she most likely assumed it was due to them. But she did go ahead and asked “oh my, why not?” And I told her we had someone to basically follow us around the store and try to talk to my kids and even step between us a couple times. And it made me AND my kids nervous. This upset her very much and she said if anything like that happened again no matter what store I was in to go to a register or help desk and let them know.
    In asking a few of my friends that work in retail, they confirmed that you can do this. It is up to the individual store on how they handle it though! So be aware of that if you do speak to them.

  26. I work at boots and I am forever seeing parents , some are shouting at the kids stressed others are calm , no matter what I support the parent as most are trying their best , I did once explain to a child something as their parent could not get the child to understand once the child did we were rewarded with a smile but I asked the parents permission first , I have no children of my own and don’t claim to know better but sometimes we all need help , the woman did not understand the situation and should have kept quiet , to all mums out there you are doing a fantastic job , keep.it up

  27. I can sincerely appreciate how you feel right now. Several years ago I had taken my extremely challenging ADHD son to the mall to walk around. He was 4 at the time. When it was time to go pick up his brothers from school he began throwing a fit that lasted through most of the walk through the mall back toward the store where we had entered. As we neared the entrance to that store he said quite a few nasty things to me. So, I said, “That’s not very nice. I’m taking your bouncy ball away.” I took it and put it in my purse. I was holding his hand as we walked past a rack of belts on display. He swatted out his arm and flung a pile of belts off the hook onto the floor. I calmly turned and said, “Now pick up all the belts.” At this point he began to cry because I honestly think it scared him that all the belts flew off and he was feeling sorry for doing it. A lady behind us suddenly jumped in and started patting him and asking if he was okay and telling him he didn’t have to pick up the belts. I assured her he was fine, he was just throwing a fit. She suddenly snapped at me, said I was being abusive and that I had dragged him into the rack of belts! I told her I watched him hit them onto the floor and She kept arguing with me. She yelled at me all the way as I continued to try to leave the store saying she was going to call the police on me! Her daughter also joined in. I couldn’t believe it. I still cringe at the horror of that woman doing that to me when she obviously had no idea what had happened. They had their backs to both of us when he lashed out and they were looking at the jewelry counter. She assumed because he was now crying that I had hurt him, she saw belts on the floor and made up a picture in her head. It was awful. I’ve never felt so violated as a mother. So…I want you to know I get it. And I’m praying for you to have peace with what happened. On a side note: My Mom raised me with an over sensitivity to the words “kill” and “die” so much that we weren’t allowed to say we “died” in a video game. Now that I witness so much desensitization to human suffering and human lives, I agree with her about the role playing video games and keeping that choice of words at the forefront of their consciousness. But I would never step into someone else’s role to choose their words with their own children. I’m like opposite woman above…I try to nod and smile understandably. I try to offer a word to let them know I get them, too. It’s a hard and often lonely job. <3

  28. If I were in that aisle when your very smart daughter caught that from you I would have laughed hysterically!!! Your child is so quick to know that “killing you” would be mean… Most children wouldn’t even think about it. But you have a sweet and empathetic child there. GOOD FOR YOU!!!! That’s what we need more of. Screw that rude and invasive lady. You are a real human and a great mom. Ps… Get the cheap doll, it won’t matter in the grand scheme in life and they are so expensive!

  29. I’m not a Mom yet but I can tell you that when I am, I will feel just as put out as you were this to happen to me. What’s frightening to 20 something’s about becoming mothers is the intense pressure placed on us to know EVERYTHING about the perfect way to parent. I would like to say that most mothers seem to put their whole heart into raising children & I have nothing but RESPECT for those who do so with love, patience, wisdom & GRACE when they mess up.

  30. I understand where you’re coming from. I’ve had to correct myself in front of my kids before. I’ve also stopped saying some figures of speech because kids are literal. They don’t get it, their minds aren’t there yet. And I’ve been a CPS worker. There are some CRAZY people out there. This lady had no way of knowing if you were one of them or if you were just a mom who mis-spoke. She might have been in court yesterday, or at a nasty drug house for the 15th time, or taking an abused child to the doctor. You never know where other people are coming from.

    While I probably wouldn’t step in and tell a child their mommy was wrong, even if she was actually doing something awful…I would still chose different words. I have become more apt to step in as I get older (I’m only 30). That screaming kid, sometimes a stranger saying hello will shock them into listening to mommy (I’m thankful for the people who have said hey to my kids and surprised them into good behavior). The Chick-fil-A playground…they should pay me to moderate that place, seriously, does nobody else go in there with their kids?? The mom who looks way overwhelmed in line at the store, I might offer to help put her groceries on the line…which really offends some people, but is a lifesaver to others.

    There are a million different scenarios, and probably 50 million different reactions. Try to see the good in people. Learn what you can from an interaction and move on. Perfect none of us will ever be.

    I also live in a rural area of the southeast, so we have more the takes a village mentality, I suppose.

  31. Wow! This is beautiful in every way. What an amazing grace filled way to respond like Jesus did. Even though I will never meet you, I’m proud to call you my sister in Christ and hope to one day be half the mother you are to your kids.

  32. Okay, I kept meaning to come read this one and now that I did, I am speechless. I can’t BELIEVE that woman! SERIOUSLY! That’s all I have to say. Just…shock and solidarity from me.

  33. Oh my goodness!!! I can’t believe the audacity of that woman. I agree, we do need to support eachother. I’m not a mom (yet), but I would never try to parent another woman’s child. It’s not my place. You handled the situation well. And you’re right, no one showed that woman grace, so how would she know how to behave. It’s sad for her. You just keep on, keepin’ on! 🙂

  34. What a crazy experience! Maybe the only thing that would redeem the situation is using it as a teaching tool for your daughter and pray for that woman together that evening at home. Loving others is hard!

  35. I am sorry this happened today 🙁 What came to mind in the first response is, what a great mom I used to be. Before I had kids. Thank you for sharing such an eloquent and heartfelt post about this incident

  36. Bravo for your post. And kudos to you for taking a stand. In this hyper-sensitive, gotta be politically correct at all times, fearful society, it’s no wonder you were concerned CPS might be knocking on your door.


    While kids are being kept in cages, starved, abused, and neglected, we have bigger fish to fry. Let this woman take her concern for children and use it where it is needed. And appreciated.

    I would be ‘that woman’, if and only if, I felt a child’s life and well-being was in imminent danger. That’s it. Period. If I had serious concerns, I would likely call the police. But If I just didn’t like someone’s word choice….pffft……are you kidding me?

    And while this isn’t necessarily addressing the point of your article, I can’t help but share that I feel this is exactly why we (not me personally!) are raising a generation of sissies and entitled kids. Yes, I just said that.

    In spite of perfect word choice or not, I’ll take REAL and NORMAL any day. Keep up the good work! Sounds to me like your kids are abundantly blessed for it!



  37. Wowza, that woman was out of line. I’m equally stunned at the comment she made to your son. I’m so sorry you experienced that.

  38. People like this are the reason I’m almost afraid (and not in a good way) to just be myself and speak in public anymore. For some reason, it seems like the whole country is in a phase of just looking for a reason to be offended, just as that woman did with you. So sorry that happened to you. Not fun.

  39. I just stumbled across your blog via a post that’s going around Pinterest (in case you’re interested, it was your writeup of how you use your Simplified planner – which I loved, by the way! I’m an Erin Condren girl but that post has got me rethinking things!)…

    ANYWAY, I got sidetracked 😉 I hardly ever comment on blog posts, but I felt compelled to send a little support your way about the content of this post. I am a big fan of freedom of speech, as long as it doesn’t infringe on anyone else’s rights and is not hatespeak. “She’d kill me” is a figure of speech. Any rational adult with basic comprehension skills would have known that you weren’t actually fearing that this other mom would inflict harm on you. Yeah, kids take expressions at face value sometimes. But if they aren’t exposed to different uses of language, how will they ever learn to differentiate between what is figurative and what is meant to be taken literally?

    As a woman pregnant with her first baby (32 weeks today!), I know I have only just begun my journey on the path of family, friends, and strangers thinking they know how to raise my kid better than I do – but I am already fed up! I will never understand why people feel entitled to chime in on someone else’s parenting. Unless a person observes a parent doing actual direct harm to her child, or there is a suspicion of actual harm being inflicted, or it’s a matter of public health, everyone needs to mind their own business. It’s that simple.

    I don’t think you were being overly sensitive at ALL. In fact, I admire the way you handled it – I (and my Irish temper/raging pregnancy hormones, haha) would have blown a gasket! Thank you for sharing your story. We differ on our theology, but I wholeheartedly agree with your views that if we all treated each other with a little more grace and understanding, instead of the constant barrage of criticism and condescension, the world would be a better place. You’ve got a new reader in me!

  40. You didn’t say you would kill the mom – you said the mom would kill you – which is a phrase Americans have used for decades. I cannot believe ANYONE would make a deal out of that. I would have been burning inside if someone stepped in like that to my children. I would have to ask Jesus for the grace to be kind. I applaud you for being so kind to her. I’m like you – I don’t do good thinking of quick responses – which may be a good thing! I do my very best to be kind when others are not, and would love to one day be able to eloquently have a quick, kind response. We can always work toward that! 🙂

  41. I have had this happen a few times to me in my 12 years of being a mother. And like you, I was in shock and couldn’t think quick to tell that person how I gelt. But, that was a blessing when I think back to those uncomfortable situations. Thank God that he had that one hand over my shoulder and the other over my mouth!!!! However, I am glad that you brought this to attention because we as mothers, and faghers, learn something new. We don’t have to be belittled, and honestly embarrassed. Our children know us and that woman should have stayed out of it. I am proud of you. Be honest, the little girl’s mommy would have at least thought about killing you, so you weren’t that wrong entirely!!! Good job, Mom!

  42. Love this!!! This is exactly how I feel some days out shopping….other people’s eyes constantly judging. Where has our sense of compassion and empathy gone in the world today? I always need a huge cup of grace. People only see us through the “store window” but don’t really know who we are inside as a mom or as a family who stands together.

  43. very well said!!! i recently had an experience in wal mart where my 6 yr old was disobeying me and i had already given her a warning. while checking out she decided to disobey again so i reminded her of the consequences of disobeying a third time to which she responded she would get a spanking. the man behind me decided to interject that he WOULD NOT allow my to spank my daughter. i turned to look at him and with great restraint told him that was not his decision to make. before i could finish the cashier decided to respond. she told the man he should be greatful that i was taking the time to teach my children about consequences and how to respect authority. that i was doing the job God had given me and then she turned and thanked me for being the kind of mom who takes the time to invest that into her children and to keep up the good work. talk about encouragement!!! (and i needed it at that moment as well)i am so sorry that you had to face that moment. i agree that as mom we do need to encourage one another as well bc we never know when that mom might just be at the end of her patience or just trying to have a “teachable” moment in the best way she can. i love the fact that you sat down with emmy and talked it out then took the time to pray for the lady. what a teachable moment and great example that was!!!!

  44. You already know how I feel about this, but just wanted to stop by the actual post and give you a big internet hug! 🙂

  45. Wow. This lady was so far over the line she probably can’t even see it anymore. The fact that she stepped.in between you and your children would.have been enough to get me to.react in a not so nice way. She would have gotten some choice words and a call to security and/or the police for “making me fear for my children’s safety”. I don’t play with people like that. Mind your own business lady.

    1. That’s the part that shocked me the most – her stepping in between my child and me. I wish I was quicker on my feet, and I would have responded the same way! But I’m also grateful that I didn’t say something I’d regret later. That would have been easy to do!

  46. I’m sorry EllaM, but your comment sounds rather judgemental and harsh to my ears. I do not get the feeling from Kayse’s post, that she was being overly sensitive at all and she was not bashing the woman in Target. It was absolutely non of the others woman’s business to insert herself into that conversation and to undermine Kayse’s value or authority in front of her children. Something like that would leave me fuming for hours! And Kayse’s blog is an excellent avenue with which to process the thoughts and feelings that would have arisen as a result of that altercation! In this day and age of social media, I think that common courtesy and privacy is starting to disappear. We share much of our lives publicly, and maybe some people are becoming confused as to when it is appropriate to comment on another’s life, and when it is not. The only time I would EVER interfere between a parent and a child is if I was seeing some serious form of abuse. We have absolutely no idea what happens in a family or how another person parents. Just because it doesn’t look like how we parent, doesn’t mean that it is wrong. I also teach my children to refrain from using the word kill. I don’t like them to use it in play and I try to avoid using it in the same context that Kayse used it in; however, I have said those exact words before…and in nearly identical situations! It happens…so what!! It is not being insensitive to any tragedies that have happened…it is simply a figure of speech and doesn’t need to be over-dramatized. We all need to relax a little bit, encourage each other more, and remember to laugh…do we need to take everything so very seriously every. single. minute. of the day? Kaysee, I wholeheartedly agree with the thoughts that you expressed and I am encouraged by your story. You are wonderful and the world needs to be filled with more women like you…women who are real, who make mistakes, who share those mistakes with others. Women who love and laugh and cry and lose their minds every once in awhile, but who get up the next day and try to keep doing her best! Anyway Kayse, thanks for your blog…I love it and I say good for you for giving that woman in Target, and people everywhere who are unable to mind their own business, a little reminder of how our actions can really affect someone else. Keep sharing 🙂

    1. “We all need to relax a little bit, encourage each other more, and remember to laugh…do we need to take everything so very seriously every. single. minute. of the day?”

      Amen, sister. I love this. Thank you for your sweet encouragement!

    2. Maybe EllaM IS that mom from Target. Just a thought, considering her harsh and defensive response. 🙂

  47. You are amazing. Who knew a parent’s complete approach to and practice of parenting could be demonstrated during a two minute interaction at Target. If she only knew YOU, she would know what a blessing you are to your children and to all who know you.

  48. 1) This is why I stopped going to Target. Seems like every complaint from moms happens when they are at that store. 2) She was wrong to use the word “kill” even though it’s a phrase. We need to watch our words. Including the ever popular OMG. Can we just stop that now? 3) Maybe I need to meet this mom because by golly, I do think I’m doing a good job parenting. I’m learning lessons and teaching them about God. Period. That’s what good parenting is. I don’t always get it right, but I’m looking at the big picture. Cut yourself a break once and a while. 4) One mom needs to not step in, and the other mom needs to stop being so sensitive. Both are at fault. Blogging about it will not fix it. Now you’ve bashed one person to make yourself feel better about the fact that you were mad at them. At least that’s what this post seemed to be about. If it’s not, mea culpa. 5) No one in America is going to walk up to you and say, “Jesus loves you” in Target. It’s part of our journey in the Vale of Tears. If someone walks up to me and pats me on the back I’m going to go into Mama Bear mode. Maybe you live in a safer part of USA, I don’t. We’re lucky if we get a smile from each other.
    – Former bank manager turned SAHM of 3 children plus 2 in the arms of God.

    1. I think I’ll just address these points by number.

      1. I actually love Target. They serve popcorn. 🙂

      2. I’ll agree with you about “OMG”, as the Bible is pretty clear on not taking the Lord’s name in vain. But I just don’t think that the word “kill” falls into that category. I might not choose to say it again, but as a part of a common phrase, I don’t think it’s usage here was inherently wrong.

      3. I think you’re right about good parenting – learning lessons and teaching them about God. I’m glad you’re so confident in your own parenting! That’s wonderful. I can’t honestly say I know many other moms like that.

      4. You’re right, that woman shouldn’t have stepped into my conversation with my daughter. But that’s the only part of this point that’s right. I don’t believe I was overly sensitive – the woman literally placed herself in between me and my child, and spoke poorly of me to my daughter, without knowing either one of us. I also did not write this post to “bash her”, or “fix it”, or “make [my]self feel better”. I wrote this post in hopes of sharing a story that would encourage women to speak to other women with grace and kindness.

      5. I think that’s so sad. Maybe people aren’t going around saying “Jesus loves you”, but we can certainly love people like Jesus would, even in Target. Especially in Target. A smile, a nod of encouragement, or a kind word can go a long, long way.

      1. Very well said, we all need to learn to give other moms more grace. I thought you handled yourself very well given the circumstances by the way.

      2. I whole heartedly agree with the part about not taking the Lord’s name in vain. Have you ever looked up the word “golly”? It’s origin is a euphemism for “God”.

      3. I have had people walk up to me and tell me Jesus loves me . I’ve heard a man sing to Jesus at the top of his lungs all the way through the grocery store … These are not the usual encounters but it does happen and we should lead each other to Jesus not judging and correcting.

    2. Wow, talking about being careful with our words…. It will not matter how much we teach our children about God if we are not able to apply those truths to our lives. We should not only teach, but also set as an example mercy, grace and love. Your comment is insensitive, especially coming from a SAHM mom :(.

  49. I understand your frustration and the lady at target was wrong for stepping in. BUT (you knew that was coming right) as a mom of 4 (grown children) and a employee in the school system; saying I would kill or voicing any type of harm gets a child in a lot of trouble in school. I know you home school and that is great but with the world today you never know if the child means it or is kidding. Don’t get me wrong I am not saying I did everything right by any means, but just some words of advice; from a mom and a school employee; with what happen at Columbine it is just wise to say words that show harm or violence.

    1. That’s sad. The world is so uber-sensitive today that we lack common sense about whether an everyday figure of speech might be meant in a violent matter? If people can’t understand the complexities of the English language anymore, they might otherwise want to be teaching others.

      1. *not want. I hate autocorrect sometimes.

    2. Are you kidfing me? We should not “say words of harm or violence?”
      This world teaches the WRONG message on so.many.levels.
      There are colloquialisms and common vernacular used every day and kids KNOW that for the most part.
      A 2 second response from the Mother would have clarified.
      Would I want my 7 year old saying that? Of course not…just like this Mom, we all…EVERYONE of the moms in the world, have said something we regret and then hear it from our kids’ mouth.
      How about words of “mind your own business” or actions that show RESPECT for someone dealing with their own child…or boundaries! Or teaching kids in public school that just because you make a gun with your fingers doesn’t mean you’ll be the next Timothy McVeigh. Statistically speaking. ..despite what main stream media says…our country is VERY VERY safe!
      Man…I would not have been as gracious because I would have ZERO issue is telling her to mind her own business and how sad she was raised to but ibto someone else’s life when there is NO relationship whatsoever.

    3. Thanks for your comment. My purpose in writing this was to discuss the fact that a complete stranger stepped in and didn’t allow me to do my job as a mother. In the future I probably won’t use the same phrase again, but I’d at least like the opportunity to explain it to my daughter and have that conversation on our own.

      1. This woman probably doesn’t many, if any friends due to the way she is. You handled the situation with more grace than I would have! You are doing just fine. Also, people need to stop being so sissy sensitive. We need to teach our kids not to be pansies and cry over every little thing.

      2. I totally feel ya. I made this same type of comment when my son was small and he had the same kind of confusion. Luckily I made this faux pas at home, but it did alert me that some things in the english language we take for granted. Another one I had to learn was “stupid” – as my family used it as an adjective to describe everything. To my husband, it is a BAD word that you just don’t use carelessly. So I had to retrain myself to say “silly” instead of “stupid.” It’s all a learning process but I’m sorry someone was that rude to you.

      3. What a high handed person, who is clearly used to being the authority; most likely in a school system. Good thing she didn’t do that to me and my child! Best for those situations when we are gobsmacked by such invasiveness is to say exactly what comes to mind, such as “Your involvement is not required here. You are dismissed.”

    4. I am not saying what I’m going to say here to attack, so please understand this. This is the dichotomy I’m discovering as a homeschooling parent who also has many friends who are teachers in public school: many teachers, and those within the public school system I’ve experienced, feel they have more authority to “educate” children more so than any parent they meet. Lately, parenting is coming under fire more and more and parents are being told how to parent according to a governmental set of standards based upon reaction to parents who have chosen to abuse their gift to be a parent. In turn, this standard is then applied generally tool parents, and now those who don’t intentionally harm their child…but at times say a “wrong” word…come under such scrutiny, they’re seen as just as wrong as the parent who physically abuses their child in the eyes of the government. It seems parents as a hole, according to these set (and ever growing) standard, are being required to be “perfect” (immaculate) in their parenting. This places undue stress upon parents who have the heart to do what it right, but at times just goof up because we’re human (and in our humanity alone, flawed). Grace is absent from governmental standards and laws and address the general assembly here…and honestly, this kind of governing has no place in the realm of parenting in general. Yes, there are those parents out there who abuse the gift of being a parent. But this doesn’t mean every parent out there who says one “off word” to their child in public, needs to be reprimanded and expected by the general public to adhere to a status quo just for the sake of fearing being called in by CPS. I very well know the abuse parents can dole out, and it took me 35 years to figure out the parental abuse I endured (emotional/narcissistic) and accept the truth that for the ages of 3-12, I indeed was physically abused by my father in the name of “spanking/discipline.” Prior to this revelation God led me to discover, I had already been in counseling and a support group for depression and anxiety. I’ve continued my recovery place since learning of this abuse nearly 4 years ago, but I’m learning that part of my recovery deeply involves my parenting. Many times, my son triggers the ever living life out of me, and I say something not quite right. Or I behave no quite right. God convicts me, I pray for God’s direction and forgiveness, I accept it…and I go to my son to discuss with him how sorry I am and explain to him how I felt whenever he said or did…xyz. In my sharing this, it’s to share with you that just because some people think they know what’s going on in a family’s life based on what they hear/see (and filter it through a set of generalized standard and expect others to live by that standard), the reality is they don’t. And to suggest they do, oversteps boundaries. We’ve become a culture in our nation of policing parenting, rather than letting parents be parents…and/or encouraging parents to be better if/when they struggle. So while I understand clearly what you’re saying, honestly, (and I mean this with all kind sincerity) I don’t find it a justifiable reason of having a complete random stranger to me (and/or my child) step in to do the parenting for me. God has placed my child in my life, and me in his life, for a reason. That reason is between each of us and Him…and Him alone. If either of us step out of bounds, He will help lead the right people to help encourage us in loving correction…not shameful finger pointing and stepping on toes.

  50. Kayse, I’m so sorry this happened to you. That lady was crazy out of line! I can’t imagine that any human being in the world hasn’t used a less-than-stellar word choice at time and crikey! Every child out there has to learn common figures of speech.

    You’re doing great. You’re a good mom. I bet your kids were a bit creeped out by that interfering lady. I can’t even IMAGINE doing that to someone.

    I’ve determined to be the OPPOSITE lady: the one who encourages random moms with a smile or a word of encouragement, because you’re so right! Parenthood can be confusing and disheartening on a regular basis. We need to stop listening to those voices that say we’re doing it all wrong, and tell ourselves that with God’s help we are capable of doing it well. Not perfectly, but well. God bless you!

    1. You’re so sweet. I want to be the opposite lady too!

    2. She would have had a polite hand block in front of her face.

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