Brat Bans | No Kids Allowed | Child-Free Trend

I’m a Mom and Yes, I Agree With These “Brat Bans”

Mom Jeanine
July 28, 2011


Good Question, hot topic, Jeanine Edwards

  • Link

If you haven’t heard about the no kids allowed movement, you will. There’s an article on Shine about it, but chances are it’s bound to hit your city or town sooner or later. Basically, more and more stores are making rules that exclude when and where you can bring your child. On one airline, you can’t bring a baby in first class. In one grocery store, there are certain hours when you can’t shop with a child.

Initially, of course, I was a little taken aback. Correction: I was pissed. It’s not like I’m walking up on your plane or in your store with the plague or something. Plenty of people without children do things that gross/annoy the crap out of me, but I deal with it. It’s part of living in society with other human beings. So if you can’t deal with my kid speaking a little loudly or running past you in the aisle, order your groceries online.

But the more I thought about it, the more I began to think these “brat bans” could actually be a good idea. As annoyed as some people are by children, nothing annoys a parent more than someone who looks at their child in disdain for being a child. So maybe it’s not such a bad idea to keep parents and these kid-haters separate. I feel like it would actually make shopping and traveling so much more enjoyable for parents too because we wouldn’t have to deal with the judging glares from people who have no idea what it’s like to raise a child.

And for the record, I totally resent the name of this “movement.” In the same way every woman isn’t a nag and every African-American isn’t a hoodlum, every child isn’t a brat. There are plenty of children who are perfectly well-mannered and -behaved on planes, in restaurants and in the grocery store. Brats and children are two totally different things.

So what do you think of this child-free trend? Does it annoy you that you’d be prohibited from going certain places just because you have a child? Weigh in in the comments.

Sign up for our newsletter to get even more finds delivered right to your inbox.

Click here to email Jeanine, the author of this post.

Next Post: »


  • Lisa
    July 28, 2011

  • I think it is ridiculous and it is age-based discrimination. Can you imagine the uproar if Senior Citizens were not allowed to shop at certain hours because they don’t move fast enough in the aisles or take too much time? People should boycott and write letters to these business owners.

  • Qtpies7
    July 28, 2011

  • I don’t know how I feel about it. I think it is fine in a restaurant, but a grocery store? Really? It is funny how you can ban kids, but you sure can’t ban stuff that is offensive to others. I want to be able to go someplace when I know my kids won’t be exposed to swearing, smoking or PDA. Can we ban that during certain times, too? Yeah, right!

  • Janet
    July 28, 2011

  • Wow, brat bans. The name is pretty harsh, but I have to say that it’s kinda nice! I have two brats, er… kids, under 3 and let me tell ya, I hate to shop with them and I hate to fly with them. If I were on a kid-free girly trip or getaway with my husband and had to listen to screaming kids all the way there on the plane I would be so very annoyed. I agree that you can’t discriminate between people with kids and those without, but I totally agree with a couple of kid-free hours at the grocery and kid-free seating sections! Bring it on!

  • Lou
    July 28, 2011

  • I think that is totally ridiculous to ban children from restaurants and stores! But i do agree with a ban of very young children on first class. And this is from a mom who flew SEVERAL times in FIRST with my daughter under the age of two. I was a nervous wreck even more than when I am flying coach. Most of the people who sit in first had to endure thousands upon thousands of miles of air travel to get that status. And traveling that much is NO fun. So just a little bit of peace while flying in a stale air tin can is nice. Thank God my daughter and I got many compliments on how good she was on each flight, but than was not without death stares as we boarded the plane.

  • Shari
    July 28, 2011

  • “A person’s a person…no matter how small.”

  • Ann
    July 28, 2011

  • I agree with Janet…

    If we have no smoking sections, we can have brat free zones too!
    Really, I have had to pay upwards of 100 bucks to sit in a restaurant and be mauled, kicked, and made crazy by screaming tantrums….
    How about a citizens fine for the price of the meal you just ruined for me too while your at it!

  • Shari
    July 28, 2011

  • REALLY people??? OK then. Let’s have the following bans as well:

    No senior citizen’s driving on the road day.
    No walking your dog that pee’s (because that’s OK) in my yard day.
    No riding your bicycle in my car lane day.
    No overweight people taking up two seats on the plane day.
    No smoking ANYWHERE day.
    No drinking and making a fool of yourself in a nice restaurant day.
    ….ad infinitum

  • Jo
    July 28, 2011

  • Frankly I would like some of the additional bans mentioned in the comments:
    No Smoking every any where
    Very large people would need to buy two airline tickets or event tickets so that they do not occupy my seat as well as theirs
    No Children under 6 in upscale restaurants
    No Children under 6 at better hotels
    No crazy candidates or ones with personal agendas running for political office
    No dogs using my yard as their toilet
    In general it all boils down to each of us respecting each other and treating each other with kindness – then all of these listed above would be unnecessary except for the crazy political candidates

  • Helen Williams Chaffins
    July 28, 2011

  • The problem is many parents no longer discipline their children. Most people wouldn’t mind well behaved children in stores (and other places) but more and more every year I see these children who are monstrous and their parents make no effort to contain them and those parents are ruining it for everyone.

  • Heather H.
    July 28, 2011

  • As a mom, I don’t think this is ridiculous at all. I don’t agree with the name 100% either, but I don’t have a problem respecting business owners wishes. If you have a problem with the way they run things, it’s quite simple–don’t shop there. I also agree with the writer in not thinking it’s a bad idea to separate those that have a problem with children from those that don’t.

  • Betty
    July 29, 2011

  • Last week my glasses were knocked off in a CVS. Two preschool kids were 2 or 3 aisles away running around and it sounded like they were pulling stuff off the shelves. And then a kickball sailed over the aisles and hit me in the head, knocking my glasses off and eventually leaving me with a blackeye where the ball pushed the glasses into the left eye. The mother at the end of my aisle turned around put 2 and 2 together and promptly turned back to her shopping ignoring what had happened. She didn’t ask if I was ok, if the glasses were broke nor did she corral the kids. She just walked away. Fortunately the glasses were only bent a bit and I was ok, just felt like someone had smacked me. A senior could easily of lost balance and fallen or that kickball could of knocked down something much heavier off the shelves to fall on me. anyway, The store personnel said they were in a precarious position where saying anything to the mother about controlling her children can land the store in a lawsuit.

    Most parents do not let their kids run free in stores. I’m a mother and certainly don’t want to have time restrictions when children can be in stores.
    BUT – I would love to see certain mothers banned from shopping with kids. Stores are not a playground and if the parent cannot or will not be bothered to be in control, those few parents should not be allowed to bring children in the store. I don’t want to hear how no one else has the right to say anything negative about their parenting skills or uncontrolled child.

  • Alicia Webster
    July 29, 2011

  • There is something to be said for both points of view. But I do wish that the anti-child group could think back to when they were children, and I wonder if they could think about what it might have felt like to them to have been excluded from something and made to feel unwelcome. I wish that compassion and empathy ruled the day, instead of hatred and the desire to exclude…

  • Nia
    August 1, 2011

  • I can definitely see both sides but any store that doesn’t want my child there isn’t a store I want to visit. The name is incredibly harsh. Kids are people, little albeit, but people nonetheless so how can you even do that? Crazy!

  • Mommy Crib Notes
    August 1, 2011

  • When I heard about the high-end restaurant ban on children under 6, I was in agreement. In fact, I wrote a post about it for Momtastic ( But something about it becoming a “movement” bothers me. It’s this attitude of intolerance. Like you said Jeanine, there are plenty of annoying things that adults do that bug me when I’m in public places and I tolerate it or go somewhere else. It’s a part of living in society. I once stopped in a shoe boutique near my house with my baby in a stroller and was told by the shop owner that they don’t usually allow strollers in the store. There was no sign posted out front and it made me feel not wanted. Needless to say, I never went back. Unlike my post about the restaurant, if stores start banning children I think I’d likely never shop there, on principle only.

  • Dee
    August 4, 2011

  • How is it discrimination? I remember being a child, and distinctly remember many occasions where I couln’t do something due to being too young. Yes, it sucked, at the time I felt it was the worst thing ever, but it also meant that I appreciated my first trip to a posh restaurant on my 16th birthday, my first 5 star hotel at 19 and my first strip club at 22. Perhaps we’d better take away legal age limits for driving as well, my God waiting to be 17 for that one really irritated me!

  • Maple
    August 4, 2011

  • All I know is that there is a reason for these bans, and it isn’t because of some misconception or because ‘people hate children.’
    In all reality, it really isn’t even the children, it’s the lazy parents who allow them to run around like wild animals that just escaped from the zoo, or worse, that have caused these bans to pop up.

    Also, I think people are misunderstanding the name.
    They aren’t calling it a brat ban because it’s banning all children.
    They’re calling it a brat ban because that’s what it’s aiming at, banning obnoxious brats who ruin the night for everyone (excluding the parent it seems sometimes.)

    With the exclusion of places where children shouldn’t be in the first place, and those simply trying to create an adult atmosphere (such as higher class restaurants, some vacation spots, etc) most of these places wouldn’t mind well behaved children.

    Heck, they most likely wouldn’t mind a child who misbehaves as long as the parent is considerate enough to do something about it that actually ammounts to something. As in getting the child out of there, or using some form of discipline greater than “X, you’re embarassing me.” or “X, you’re such a turkey.”

    The problem is that there are so many ill behaved children. Children who kick and scream loud enough to almost litterally make someone deaf, who throw food or whatever is at hand, who will hit people and even their parents, who will pull their pants down and poop/pee on the floor/in the pool/etc, who will run around as if the place is their personal playground (which isn’t just dangerous to the kid but to everyone else as well.)

    And of course their enabling, inconsiderate lazy parents who often hide behind that BS “That’s how children act.” Who believe if people don’t agree, then They’re the ones that should leave and of course not the problem child and their parent.

    Here’s a little bit of personal experience as well. I’ve witnessed parents and their children being tossed out a grand total of two times from four different establishments.

  • Debbie
    August 4, 2011

  • Don’t say you agree with the “brat ban” when you obviously do not. You’ve just used this topic as a sounding board for your passive-aggressive retort! You said it yourself, you resent it, you don’t agree with it. This whole article made me lol!!

    Poor parenting and genuine brats are becoming an epidemic in our society which is why there is a need for brat bans. If the majority of children today were “just being children” and not brats, there would be no need for such bans. Not all kids are brats, but more and more of them are.

    Stop blaming society for being intolerant and look around at how many kids are allowed to behave like animals in public! Lots of kids are well behaved, these are not the kids in question, but its the true brats and their lacidazical parents who have created this issue in the first place.

  • Sherri
    August 4, 2011

  • This is backlash for lazy parents not controlling their kids while in public, and letting them run around like wild animals, knocking people over, knocking things off the shelves in stores, letting your kids scream endlessly while just sitting there doing nothing.
    If all the lazy parents had bothered to control their kids in public, this wouldn’t be happening. So, if you want someone to blame, blame them/yourselves.

  • Sherri
    August 4, 2011

  • “But I do wish that the anti-child group could think back to when they were children, and I wonder if they could think about what it might have felt like to them to have been excluded from something and made to feel unwelcome.”

    When I was a kid, I was excluded from lots of things. My parents didn’t take me everywhere with them like parents today do. If something was not appropriate for kids, my parents didn’t take me or my siblings with them. We stayed home with a babysitter. It’s not going to kill your kids to not take them *everywhere* with you. Some things/places are not appropriate for kids.

  • Kathryn
    August 6, 2011

  • Good! We don’t want your sanctimonious attention-whoring self among us either! Your inability to control your brat is not my problem.
    I will NOT censor myself because you chose to bring pwecious into adult environment.

  • Lavinia Gass-Johnson
    August 12, 2011

  • As a mother of 3 children, I agree children should not be everywhere. But, I think this “brat ban” is an example of what is wrong in the world today…intolerance. My middle soon has autism disorder and I have almost lost my cool a few times he was happy and squeled and some jerk turned around with disdain. The sad reality is despite our differences, there are a bunch of selfish, inconsiderate people who are “look down” on anyone that is different.

  • Steph
    September 24, 2011

  • Woot, can’t wait for this thing to hit my town! I am definitely a kid hater and proud of it! All kids fuck off forever please.

  • Maureen
    March 14, 2012

  • I agree with it.There are so many people who let their kids run wild and do not correct them. If parents would do their job and be just that then there would be no need.I have a son who is autistic and he is well behaved when we go in public.He will always have the mind frame of a 6 year old the rest of his life but knows how to behave and not run around tearing up the joint. I agree with others on the name.Brat is for just those. You would think that in our generation would have more sense. .I think some need to go watch the original Willy Wonka because those kids are ones I see anymore. My parents would not let me run around senseless and act up like that in public with alot that you see. Oh and one thing with kids running around like crazy away from parents and so on is , There are predators out there that wouldn’t think twice about kidnapping a child. Teach your child some manners and get some while your at it and keep your kid next to you.It is your childnoone else should have to deal with it.

  • Theresa
    March 14, 2012

  • I’ve been waiting for something like this to come along for a very long time. I raised 3 boys and we didn’t allow them behave like these kids do today. If they had a tantrum in the store, restaurant, etc we took them and left. These parents today seem afraid to discipline their children and that’s why these kids totally control their parents.Being on the plane with them is the worst because you can’t leave. At least you can walk out of a store or restaurant but not a plane. We flew for 2 hours with a child that cried and screamed the entire flight and the mother would just say “honey be quite”. This woman had no control over this child. They actually were going to move them to first class and I’m thinking oh no you’re not. And these parents who say we’re intolerant, no we don’t want to hear your children scream, kick the backs of our seats, or ask a thousand times “are we there yet”. I pay good money to fly and eat at upscale restaurants and I don’t want to be made misable by your kids that shouldn’t be there in the first place. There are plenty of family friendly restaurants to go to so why bring them to nice upscale restaurants where they probably want even eat the food. We don’t go to the family friendly restaurants even if we like them for that reason. I hope more and more will ban little ones. Maybe one day we can have family friendly flights and adult only flights! Go Jet Blue!!!!! Wish more airlines would follow suit.

  • Julie
    March 14, 2012

  • I’ve taken my 1 year old to a fancy steakhouse on valentines day because me and my husband couldnt find a sitter for her. Everyone was shocked at how well behaved she was. My child is not a brat and i find these “brat bans” offensive and discriminatory. However, if you cannot calm your child they should be allowed to make you step outside and away from others who are trying to enjoy their experience.
    I dont mind small children, i’d rather their be a ban on loud obnoxious teenagers who wont shut up on their cell phones and who are rude, I’d rather their be a ban on people who wont shut up in the movie theater. I’d rather they make cell phone driving a crime on par with a DUI but noooooo, they wanna go after little kids.

  • Kelly H
    March 14, 2012

  • We do not hate kids, its the parents who choose to ignore bad behavior. Unfortunately the parents who twach their children ti behave have to suffer. With that said, children do not belong in bars, casinos, rated R movies, and nice restaurants. On a plane try to teaching them not to kick the seat in front of them would help too. Do not assume reasons as to why some people do not have children or that they automatically hate them, you do not know anything about them.

  • Fred
    March 14, 2012

  • I think is is perfect, and frankly I would go there. There have been places where children were not allowed for a very long time. Bars. R rated movies. Soforth and so-on. Whats the big deal? No one should be forced to listen to your child scream. IF you dont like it, dont go there. Its a free country, biz owners can ban kids if they want to and I can eat my $60 dinner in peace if I want to. Just because you decided to procreate does not mean I have to endure the product. I will support and patron any biz that is kid free as is my RIGHT.

  • GH
    March 15, 2012

  • Children are now everywhere. There is no adult time. Bars, expensive restaurants, late nights, babies crying in adult movies. There are plenty of child friendly places where children can be enjoying themselves with their families.
    Adults need time to unwind enjoy dinner and drinks. I used to sit in the bar for dinner now children are in there too.

  • skip church
    March 15, 2012

  • Finally…businesses are waking up to the fact that many people don’t want rotten kids around when they are spending their money to enjoy something!!

    First to the parents: No we don’t think your kids are cute! Most of you shouldn’t even have kids, cause you have no clue on how to rasie them. Plus, most of you can’t even afford to have them, and that’s just not the food stamp crowd, either.

    Three, four, five kids in tow, really?? What is it with you idiots, are you all freaking Mormons or what?

    In conclusion: Keep your screaming, crying, uncontrollable kids away from mature people trying to enjoy themselves in restaurants and such. You are a menace to society. Just get together with all of your other friends and relatives that have broods of their own, and stay out of the public places during peak times, at least.

    March 16, 2012

  • I love this idea. I have been thinking that it would be nice to able to shop and dine out without hearing children scream and parents scream louder in an attempt to get the children to stop screaming. I hope this catches on all over the world!!! It would not be so bad to have children around if parents would work with their children and teach them to use indoor voices, basic manners, and not to run. Also, parents need to remove children from a business the second the children become disruptive.

  • Amy
    March 21, 2012

  • Kid-haters huh? So not enjoying being banged into by running screaming children means a person hates children? Look there are areas where children should be and shouldn’t be. A restaurant that has no kiddie menus is one of those places. When you become a parent you have entered a new lifestyle. People with no children have a different lifestyle. From time to time these worlds clash. Calling a person that does not see children as cute when they are loud and obnoxious kid haters is as ignorant as childfree individuals judging all parents for the behaviors of a few.

  • William Carter
    March 22, 2012

  • I think it is important to look at this from all sides. One restaurant I was in had the sign outside that they welcomed your “well behaved” children. This seems to put things in perspective. It is not that people no longer want to be around kids, it is their bad/obnoxious behaviors to which adults object. I think even parents can agree that someone who is trying to enjoy a nice meal out of the house should not have to listen to your child scream and whine throughout the entire experience. I’ll never forget the time I was flying home from New York to Dallas and I was seated next to a young father with a two year old. I said my prayers well before take-off. Unfortunately, however, the child started screaming the moment we left the ground and–except for about 10 cherished minutes–continued until we got to DFW. My thoughts at that time were that I had paid good money to be miserable for about 3 hours. Sometimes it is just the parents that don’t know when and where it might be appropriate to take their young child. It isn’t appropriate to take your baby to a nice restaurant. Take them to McDonalds. It is not appropriate to take them to a movie–unless you are willing and ready to leave the theatre (go out in the hall) as soon as they start acting up…. I think Ms. Chaffin’s post/remarks completely hit the nail on the proverbial head.