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Child destroys $1,600 worth of makeup – how to get your kid to behave in public

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WATCH: Should parents pay for what their children destroy in stores? Experts say yes – Nov 22, 2017

Sometimes you can’t leave your child alone, even if it’s just for a minute.

That’s what one mom may have learned last week after bringing her child shopping. The tot allegedly ended up destroying over C$1,600 worth of Sephora makeup.

READ MORE: Avoid parenting burnout: Why it’s important for parents to take time for themselves

“[One thousand three hundred dollars] worth of Make Up Forever eyeshadow destroyed at Sephora tonight due to a small child,” Brittany Nelson, a makeup artist based in Georgia, wrote on her Facebook page. “I’m sure he/she thought they were like fingerpaints and had no idea how naughty they were being.”
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According to Nelson, she had witnessed the mom and her child leaving the store just after the incident, which left employees angry.

“[Mamas] please shop for your makeup without your tiny humans,” she wrote. “It’s not fun for you… or them… or the expensive product.”

The photo garnered a lot of feedback, getting over 27,500 shares and 21,000 comments as of Wednesday afternoon.

“Can’t be that hard to teach your children to respect things that aren’t theirs,” Jordan love, a Facebook user commented. “Or actually watch them when in public.”

“I have been on both sides of this situation, as a mom and as a sales person,” Heather Himmelspach wrote on Facebook. “I’m afraid many parents these days let their kids run al through the store doing anything they want as long as they (the parent) gets finish what they are there for… When your children are too small to know better it is YOUR job to mind them. When they are big enough, they need to understand how to behave appropriately in public.”

And parenting experts Gail Bell and Julie Freedman-Smith of Parenting Power agree that this event was due to a lack of parental supervision.

“This is total lack of supervision,” Bell told Global News. “It’s a parent’s responsibility when you’re in a different environment to accept the rules before you go [into a store] and supervise your child at all times.”
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It’s also a parent’s responsibility to keep a child safe, as well as caring for them and watching their children even when they’re at home, Freedman-Smith adds.

“There’s not a child that can’t be taught how to behave in public,” Bell says. “[The parent] has to take the time to teach them and set [the child] up for success.”

And until children are ready to behave in certain situations, Freedman-Smith says, kids should not be left on their own.

(This is excluding children with developmental issues, Freedman-Smith adds.)

READ MORE: BLOG: What to do when your toddler hits

This means having age-appropriate expectations. For example, if a child is a toddler, expect them to do things a toddler would do – not what an older child would do.

“Start small with spending a short amount of time in stores, have success and then come back,” Freedman-Smith advises. “But you wouldn’t expect to take a one-year-old into a store and expect them to manage themselves.”

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Parents also need to lay out the expectations before entering a public place. If the child is known to have busy hands, make sure you’re keeping a watchful eye on them and holding their hands, Bell and Freedman-Smith say.

Lay out rules you expect the child to follow. Tell them when they’re allowed to walk without holding your hand, when they need to be in the stroller, etc. And let them know that if they don’t follow the rules that you’ll be leaving the store – and follow through.

If an incident does happen, both Bell and Freedman say it’s important not get angry. First, remove the child from the situation then come back to the store to deal with the damage once the child is looked after.

As the parent, take full responsibility, Freedman-Smith says, and offer to pay for whatever was damaged.

Lastly, if the child is older, have the child apologize to the store.

“It comes down to a parenting responsibility,” Freedman-Smith says. “It’s not the store’s job to [keep your child contained] and it’s not the job of other people to do that. If there’s a little nagging voice in the back of your head saying you’re not sure you can do this, listen to the voice.”
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And if that’s the case, it may be best to leave the child at home.