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Child-tolerant? and other questions... 2012/2/28 14:52
Hi all, I will be going to Tokyo for 8 days on 28 March with my 19-month-old and my husband. I was wondering if the locals are tolerant toward really mischievous, hyperactive and cheeky child? From I have observed in my country, the Japanese kids are always well-behaved and stick to their parents, sit in their chairs for meals and stuff. My daughter is a complete opposite and though I'm Asian, I often think that my parenting method has failed terribly. How would the locals react if they see a child run about in a restaurant, or trains or places where running is not allowed? It kinda worries me as this is the first time I'm bringing a child along(been to Japan for 2 times).

Next question is, my husband and I would really love to try authentic ramen not in a family restaurant, so is children allowed? Are there take-aways for these ramen shops?

Do the convenient stores like Lawson etc or supermarts sell warm fresh milk? I know they have warm tea and coffee but cannot remember about fresh milk. Or if they don't, any idea where I can warm the milk up? Are there any places where I can get hot water for free?

Thank you!
by angela (guest)  

Re: Child-tolerant? and other questions... 2012/2/29 16:19
Japanese people are pretty tolerant of kids and they are welcome in most restaurants (other than fine dining establishments of course).

Like in any country, it's appreciated if you don't let your kids run around anywhere they might get in the way or disturb other people. Running in a train or on the platform can be dangerous and people do their best to stop their toddlers from running in these places.

Not sure about ramen shops as I haven't been to many but pretty sure you will be fine- at some times they can be crowded and busy though.

Warm milk is not sold at convenience stores or supermarkets but there is almost always a microwave you can use to warm up a bottle if you have one.

Cafes often have steamed milk on the menu for kids.
by Sira (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Child-tolerant? and other questions... 2012/2/29 17:40
At the risk of being screamed at...let me point out how extremely dangerous it is for your child to run loose, especially in crowded places, anywhere, including you own town.

I have seen parents in North America that had a vest on their child with a short leash...pretty much the only way, unless you can have her in a buggy with a belt.
Have you considered leaving her home with relatives?

Apparently my brother and I---like many other kids--spent months at a time when we were toddlers away from our parents (it has to do with war time).
They did come to see us once every 2 weeks for a couple of hours...We kids don't even remember that at all, so obviously it hasn't traumatized us!!

We also lived away from our parents from 12 to 18, seeing them only on weekends and school holidays...as a result we got along great..we only saw the good side of one another
by Red frog (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Child-tolerant? and other questions... 2012/2/29 18:23
angela,

The Japanese kids are always well-behaved and stick to their parents? Your country is sure doing a good job in accepting only the good ones!

Anyway, naughty kids aren't a rarity here in Japan either. But it will help a lot as well as attract sympathy if the parent(s) can show that they are trying.

For example, you can take your child out of the shop, restaurant, train or whatever public place you are whenever she is annoying the others. Getting around with a baby or toddler is like a board game. You go forward, but then you may need to stop for a moment or even go back and start all over again. That's how it is, and as long as you take enough time, it's do-able.

If she has trouble sitting still, you can buy "take-out" foods and eat at a nice park. The great thing is that toddlers are easy to carry. Even if she doesn't want to go, you can carry her out or even carry her to a nicer place where she can find something more interesting while the other parent dine in peace. You can also ask if there is a "ozashiki" the tatami floor at restaurants where more parents may feel at ease.

As for ramen, there are indeed a lot of places accepting children, but mind you that ramen is best when served hot. So feeding a toddler or take-aways are not authentic, right there. Perhaps you can take turns with your husband when eating authentic ramen. Of course, you are free to hop into a hotel conceirge or tourist information to see what other options you have.

By the way, don't think that you have failed on parenting, because that is the same as saying that your daughter is a failure. She is a person with a lot of potential just like her parents are.
by Uco (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Child-tolerant? and other questions... 2012/2/29 21:47
Thank you all for your replies.

Warm milk is not sold at convenience stores or supermarkets but there is almost always a microwave you can use to warm up a bottle if you have one.

Cafes often have steamed milk on the menu for kids.


Thank you for this info, Sira-san.

For example, you can take your child out of the shop, restaurant, train or whatever public place you are whenever she is annoying the others. Getting around with a baby or toddler is like a board game. You go forward, but then you may need to stop for a moment or even go back and start all over again. That's how it is, and as long as you take enough time, it's do-able.

Ya that is the least I can do and in fact, I've been doing this whenever we eat out =.=
I just hope the locals won't find her a nuisance because she also likes to make contact with the people she sees, esp women and children, like stopping them to say "hi" and "bye" and doing "high-fives".

If she has trouble sitting still, you can buy "take-out" foods and eat at a nice park. The great thing is that toddlers are easy to carry. Even if she doesn't want to go, you can carry her out or even carry her to a nicer place where she can find something more interesting while the other parent dine in peace. You can also ask if there is a "ozashiki" the tatami floor at restaurants where more parents may feel at ease.

Yes my husband plans to bring her back to the hotel and buy take-aways once she is cranky, but I think I like your suggestion best.

By the way, don't think that you have failed on parenting, because that is the same as saying that your daughter is a failure. She is a person with a lot of potential just like her parents are.

I am touched by what you said, Uco-san. Well, I guess I'm still inexperienced as a mother :) Thank you for your encouragement.
by angela (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Child-tolerant? and other questions... 2012/3/1 11:40
I just hope the locals won't find her a nuisance because she also likes to make contact with the people she sees, esp women and children, like stopping them to say "hi" and "bye" and doing "high-fives".

That is the cutest thing! And those who don't like it are free to ignore it. I find it nice when parents give a slight nod-like bow or a smile to those who make contact to their children.

I often make faces discreatly to a stranger's child who seems to be getting restless. I enjoy our secret communication and the "why did she stop crying?" expression on the parent.
by Uco (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Child-tolerant? and other questions... 2012/3/1 12:52
Actually, while I don't like it when a small child run all over the place--especially when parents are totally indifferent to it all, I don't mind at all when the same child want to talk to me, shake hands etc. as this means that we are communicating, if only with gestures and smiles.
by Red frog (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Child-tolerant? and other questions... 2012/3/1 13:27
Actually, while I don't like it when a small child run all over the place--especially when parents are totally indifferent to it all, I don't mind at all when the same child want to talk to me, shake hands etc. as this means that we are communicating, if only with gestures and smiles.

Hi Red frog-san, I will keep this in mind :)Thanks.
by angela (guest) rate this post as useful

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