This is what I secretly want to say to any stranger that comes up to touch either of my children. Usually the person is friendly and says how cute they are. Then they start to speak to them. At this point in my head I am saying, “Okay, now please just go, don’t touch them.” A lot of the time, the person will just speak and then be on their way. However, there are those times when the person will proceed to touch their hands or face. That is when I start to think, “Darn it! Make sure you wipe their hand/face off.” I will repeat this to myself, so that I don’t forget once the person leaves. I get really annoyed when I don’t have any antibacterial solution on me. That is when I will just use a baby wipe until I am able to get them to soap and water.
This really has not happened in awhile, but it did recently while we were on vacation a couple of weeks ago. We were standing in the line on the boardwalk in Ocean City, NJ, waiting to order food. A women was sitting at a table finishing her lunch with someone else. I watch her get up, wipe her hands and mouth with a napkin then throw her food away. She walks over to the line and begins to talk to a child that is with his parents. They are directly in front of us. I watch her grab the child’s hand and pat his head, while he was walking back and forth with his dad. I was thinking, “Please don’t come over here, lady!” She proceeds to walk over to T-1 who is asleep in his stroller. So, she bends down and says how cute he is and pokes his legs. “Not too bad”, I think to myself. I was pushing T-2 in her stroller and I thought she was asleep as well while we were waiting. The women thought so too and begins to walk away, but then T-2 lifts her head. “WHY?!” The lady turns around and starts talking to her, touching her cheeks and patting her legs. All I could think of is how she had just finished eating who knows what, touching her fingers to her mouth, then touching another child and now she is touching mine. This was also one of those times that I did not have any antibacterial solution. I was so upset and after all of that we didn’t even get food from the place because they we were taking too long to get orders.
If you are one of those people who loves children so much that you want to touch their cute little hands, sure go ahead! But only to the ones that you know. I don’t mind you speaking nicely to my kids from a distance, but don’t get too close and begin to touch. It’s annoying and inappropriate. I’m sure I am not the only parent who feels this way. You wouldn’t walk up to another adult that you don’t know and begin squeezing their cheeks or hands, so why would you think its okay to do it to my child?