Babies at Movies. Yes, I’m judging.

I don’t have a TV so I know very little about the whole movie theatre shooting. I do know that a lot of people are upset about the Colorado parents being judged about bringing little kids to movie theatres. While it isn’t the most important issue in the theatre shooting, I do think it needs to be talked about because it’s a huge pet peeve of mine. The most important issue being this:

If you bring a little kid to a Rated R movie you are a bad parent.

There are no ifs ands or buts about this. Very few things are as cut and dried to me as this. Only a parent who is incredibly selfish would bring a child to a strictly adult movie. Why not find a babysitter? Or go see something that won’t give your kid nightmares? You might say that it’s none of my business. But it certainly becomes my business when your child comes to school and teaches mine to drop the f-bomb. ┬áIt becomes my business when your child is exposed to tremendous violence. What do you think will happen to children who are desensitized to violence starting at such a young age? Hopefully they won’t end up shooting people at a movie theatre when they grow up.

I’m not talking about tiny babies. If you have a newborn you can get away with bringing her to a movie; she’ll probably sleep right through it. Depending on the sleepiness of my babies I could bring them to movies until they were 2-3 months old. Which brings me to my second pet peeve.

Babies and toddlers in movie threatres. If there are not talking animals then please consider not bringing your child. Especially to a prime time movie. Nothing makes an audience more upset than a whiny, crying, runny baby or toddler. You know why there aren’t more babies and toddlers at the movies in the evening? Because the rest of us got babysitters. Don’t be selfish/idiotic/rude and think that somehow your kids don’t count.

Please know that if you bring someone under age 4 to a movie, there is a good chance that you will have to leave the theatre. Even a newborn can wake up and start wailing. For the love of Netflix, please watch a DVD at home or get out there and hunt up a babysitter.

Mostly I just want parents to not be selfish. Get a babysitter. If you can’t afford one then what are you doing paying for a movie on a Friday night anyway? If you don’t know any babysitters then ask your neighbors for some names. Babysitters are not that hard to find!


17 thoughts on “Babies at Movies. Yes, I’m judging.

  1. I will point out that there was a time when Larry and I could afford a babysitter OR a movie date, but not both. That said, I didn’t bring a baby to the movies past the age of 4 months (and, really, that didn’t work out too well). I was shocked to be sitting in Lethal Weapon 2 (aeons ago) in the company of preschoolers. That’s just messed up.

  2. AMEN and AMEN! Exposing children to screen violence is a crime that should be punished by BOTH parents being forced to take a course in healthy parenting. And, as you say, parents can wait for a few months and rent the same movie at RedBox for a buck, and watch it at home — after the kiddies are safely asleep!

  3. I completely agree. I think it extends beyond this issue as well. I used to think parents who did not train their children to be decent people were only hurting themselves, but I have been realizing how much their negligence affects me and my children…and our country and society for that matter.

  4. don’t even get me started. i am SO upset about this. i live in the denver area, not that far from the theatre massacre. it really upset me that one of the deaths in the theatre was a six year old girl. her life could have been saved if her parents had had the common sense to realize that a child of that age does NOT need to be at a midnight showing, let alone for a movie that is WAY too adult for her. makes me sick. i just feel horrible that an innocent girl’s life was taken by a crazed lunatic, but she would still be alive today if it weren’t for the ignorance of her parents. i guess i’m a judger too.

  5. Working in an elementary school, I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve heard students talk about going to R or even “just” PG-13 rated movies–often at a late evening time before school the next morning. And don’t get me started on what they can see and hear on TV at any time of day. The children of caring parents are obvious to educators (do not think your care goes unnoticed!) and what is also obvious is that they are increasingly in the minority. How wonderful to have all these terrific blogs like yours that give parents a chance to share their experiences–the good, the bad, and the funny–and relieve some of the stress of parenting–because it IS often beyond stressful. However, how does our town/state/country/society fix the epidemic of parents who don’t know how to handle the stress and decide anything an adult needs to do to relieve stress is fine for a child to do as well. I don’t think a law banning children from midnight showings of R-rated movies is the answer. Just not sure how we can give back to all our children their childhood.

    1. How do you not say something to the parent? I’m afraid I would constantly be on my soapbox. If you’re the one who is with the kids all day, you have the right to tell them what to do!

  6. You have a way typing exactly what I’m thinking which is great because reading your blog is much easier than starting my own.

  7. Ohhhh I so agree. This is SUCH a hot topic for me. The meanest and most disrespectful kids at my kids’ school are the ones talking about the latest action movie- and none of these kids are even tall enough to get into the theater by themselves. I cannot believe that’s coincidence.
    I actually get judged for being too particular about what my children can and cannot see, beginning with not letting my then 2yr old see the first Pirates movie in theaters! Even if I didn’t believe that desensitizing them to violence, bad language, whatever, would cause long term issues, there’s the issue of nightmares to consider and I like to sleep without interruption.
    The argument I present to my son (who is now plenty old enough to notice that his friends see all the latest super hero movies and he does not) is that if the standards of Hollywood say that a movie shouldn’t be seen by someone under the age of 13 or 17, then there is NO WAY I’m going to say otherwise, sticking to my own standards thankyouverymuch. And when he’s stubborn about asking for a movie, I have shown him the parental advisory on IMDB about said movie, and that has talked him out of asking anymore.

  8. Amen to this. I’ve seen young kids in just PG-13 movies, but I was still surprised that the parents had brought them, mostly due to the violence/swearing. Fortunately I haven’t had to experience much on the interrupting-toddler side.

  9. THANK YOU LAURIE!! As a Kindergarten teacher I have PLENTY to say about crappy parents!! We know what your children are exposed to as they talk/draw/play pretend/ask about it ALL DAY LONG! I will never understand why people think it’s fine to bring their children 1. to a midnight showing of ANYTHING 2. Something over PG if they are under 8 and 3. let them watch tv that is more mature than they are.
    I judge too. There are somethings I feel we need to stand our ground on, and the “code of parent conduct” dwindling is one of them.

    1. Carrie, you give me hope as a parent. I don’t volunteer much in the classroom, so I’m always worried that the teacher will think I’m a loser parent. But maybe they can tell by my child acting nicely (hopefully!) that I’m not an awful parent.

  10. I can’t say “Here, here” (or “hear hear”?) enough to this post! Especially here in the land of the cheap and prolific. If I have shelled out good money to get away from children for an evening, it means I do NOT want to listen to YOURS during my dinner and/or movie. Newborns, yes. I get it. If they don’t sleep 18 hours a day anymore, leave them home! If you can’t afford a sitter, trade babysitting with someone who also has small children. Just don’t ruin my night because you’re deluding yourself into thinking it is socially OK. It isn’t!

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