Little shop of horrors.

by mssinglemama on January 25, 2009

A girl has to get her hair cut. 

Especially when she’s leaving on a fun weekend escapade in six days (more on that later).

Unable to find a sitter, I decided earlier this week (thanks to my Twitter peeps) to just take Benjamin to the salon with me. The place, right down the street from our apartment, is an industrial type of salon and also doubles as a barber shop. Not your average frou frou place and being edgy and alternative I figured Benjamin would be welcome there. I’ve also been going there for four years, maybe more. 

I even asked when I made my appointment – just to be sure, “Is it okay if I bring my two-year-old with me?”

“Of course!” 

I packed up a book, a few toys, a coloring book with crayons and some treats and we headed to the salon. After my shampoo and two minutes into the actual cut (half of my hair was 2.5 inches shorter than the rest) the salon owner came up to me and told me very shortly, “Is there anyway you can do anything about this? We can’t have him running around like this.” 

I said, “I can try.” 

But I knew it was impossible. Hell, I was just happy Benjamin wasn’t throwing a tantrum or breaking things. From my point of view, his crawling around beneath my legs and gabbing with salon patrons was excellent behavior. Given this, if half my hair weren’t gone I would have walked out that moment. 

So the hair cut went on and so did Benjamin – my little rascal.

See him there on the floor… being sweet and having fun. 

The entire time I’m now very well aware of the owner’s glare.

From the front of the small shop and even while she sat in the back and ate her lunch, she was scowling and shaking her head. The rest of the staff members, including my stylist, were incredibly cool about it – playing with him, picking up his crayons when he dropped them in the middle of the floor, telling me it was “cool” and “not to worry.” 

In the meantime I’m realizing painfully that my son is not ready for a hair salon. I feel bad, actually, and decide that this won’t be happening again– for years. I even consider tipping everyone in the place. 

One hour later my hair cut is finished and I jump out of the chair. 

“Time to go Benjamin, c’mon baby.” 

I’m paying, gathering my stuff – frantically almost. I just wanted to get the hell out of there.

When I turn around she is standing within six inches of my face.

The salon owner, who looks like she should be permanently fixed to the back of a Harley with streaky blond hair snapped out of an 80’s time capsule, is out for blood. Then she starts in on me – loud enough – for everyone in the tiny place, staff and patrons alike, to hear perfectly. 

“Out of respect for me and everyone in the salon I just want to say that – this,” she points at Benjamin who is now running around between our legs, “was completely disrespectful to everyone. My staff had to pick up after him and none of us could work.” 

“I understand and we definitely won’t be coming back again,” I say this expecting her to then leave me alone. But, no, she continues.

I can’t remember exactly what she said because at this point my brain is pumping with adrenaline and the butterflies are crawling through my stomach, the sobs are welling up in my throat and I’m also on the verge of punching her in the face. 

She went on berating me and then paused because Benjamin had just slapped her calf with his Bob the Builder toy. He does this when he’s running between people’s legs. Toddler tag or something. 

“If he hits me one more time,” she growls. 

“He’s two years old,” I growl back, “and I called and asked if he could come beforehand.” 

“We have two-year-olds in here all of the time and they are perfectly behaved.”

Then Benjamin hits her again. And she says it again, “If he hits me one more time.”

Instead I say, “I would like to leave so he won’t be able to hit you. But you’re not letting me leave.”

And then he hits her again. 

At this point it’s all a blur. I grabbed my little man, scooped up all of our stuff and pulled him outside with no coat on. 


I wanted to add that as soon as we got home Benjamin and I were both sobbing, crying messes on our couch. He was sad because I don’t think he’s ever, ever seen me cry that hard. I rarely cry. I didn’t want her to get the best of me… but this was just too much.

Just didn’t want you all to think I’m some kind of bionic woman. I’m not… at all


I’m still trying to sort it all out in my head.

Again, my mistake for bringing him there and the salon owner had every right to tell me not to bring him again — but she had no right to treat us like that, no right at all.  

Have you had any experiences like this? How did you react? 

I’m already brainstorming ideas for a mom review website or some kind of organization that gives mom-friendly businesses a seal of approval. Businesses should be held accountable for how they treat mothers… we are, after all, raising the next generation. Motherhood is not an easy job. Far harder than running a hair salon. 

If people were held accountable for treating parents this way, then perhaps, they would go out of their way to make our lives easier – not more difficult – in this way we could focus on what’s really important, our children. 

Airports have family lines now. Why don’t grocery stores have family aisles? Why aren’t staff members rewarded for helping a mother with her shopping? 

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve stood in line at a store with Benjamin on the brink of throwing a tantrum only to have the childless people in front of me firmly hold on to their place and also turn their backs. 

There have been exceptions… nice people who are friendly and improve my experience. From now on I’m going to give them the most enthusiastic thank you I can muster.

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September 7, 2009 at 8:12 pm — Blog — Little Shop of Horrors
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{ 63 comments… read them below or add one }

Angel January 25, 2009 at 8:52 am

I’m so sorry, Alaina! That sucks! What a horrible woman! Seriously, does she own the place? If not, I would have a great talk with her freaking boss. Maybe even get her fired! My daughter is 7 now, but when she was a baby I took her in her stroller to the Christmas Store. I could NOT get the stroller through the aisles because they were too small and an employee and customer told me that I should bring a baby in there. I turned around and told them on no uncertain terms that they were absolutely rediculous because children are what Christmas is all about. I also pointed out the fact that my stroller was small, how the hell were they planning on accomodating somebody in a wheelchair? The next day I made a call to the Americans with Disability Rights office and let them know of their little violation issue. I never EVER went back and this was six years ago.


Angel January 25, 2009 at 8:53 am

Sorry, should “NOT” bring a baby in there…… should have proof-read.


Miranda January 25, 2009 at 8:57 am

That is just appalling that you were treated like that. Obviously that woman has some of her own personal issues with children.

I really like your ideas about a mother reviewing site. This would definitely help to alert mothers of which businesses are kid-friendly and which are not. Also, family aisles in the grocery store? Awesome idea. Keep us posted on this! I would love to assist and I’m sure many others would as well.


O Solo Mama January 25, 2009 at 8:57 am

Well, you know how I feel about this. This manager sounds like she was not even in tune with her staff. I took Sim to a restaurant once when she was two and she chose the moment some idiots sat down next to us in the next booth to howl briefly. They immediately got up and laoudly demanded a new table–but that wasn’t enough. Grandma (an original old bag complete with baubles and blue shadow) had to berate me for having the poor judgment to take ANY child into a restaurant. Any child? puh-lease.

I think your listing should be very undergroundish. Sort of like MSM’s LIST, just like Craig’s List. Start in your own town and move out? It should be one of those things that no one wants to be on. You could award the Poopy Diaper award to the offenders and give the nice ones some type of nice recognition.

Like I said, the breastfeeding lobby did get somewhere after years of protest. It’s funny, though, some people in our city (where there are some world-class stores and restaurants and neighbourhoods full of toddlers) think we have gone too far in accepting kids most everywhere. I beg to disagree. Also, he may be fine in the same venue in two years. . .sometimes it’s just trial and error. Girls are more into what goes on in a salon. . .

I am so glad yesterday is over for you!


SingleParentDad January 25, 2009 at 9:01 am

Wow, what a be-atch, if you don’t mind my french.

Yo so didn’t do the wrong thing, you even called to check first, and everyone else seemed to be ok with it. If they get 2 year olds that go in there that sit still and do nothing while their parents are groomed, I would be concerned for the kids. What sort of rod are they being parented with?

I had similar experiences with my boy, and found an actual hairdressers that was specifically for kids, and their moms generally. Cuts 4 Kids or similar. They had a small play area and TVs with kids stuff on.

But I moved too far from there so I just take him to our local salon, we both have our haircut by a lovely young girl, who I think Max actually likes. I did used to take a portable DVD with me when he was about Benjamins age, and that used to really work, except when he needed his fringe cutting!


Cassie January 25, 2009 at 9:05 am

This is appalling! I want to slap this lady myself! “If he hits me one more time.” What was she going to do hit him back? This gets my blood pumping. Most people are pretty cool when I have to take Aiden places. Still I feel guilty if he is running around. That lady was uncalled for!


pgoodness January 25, 2009 at 9:29 am

I would have had to say “If he hits you one more time, WHAT?” What would she have done? You were trying to leave!!

I am sorry that she was so absurd. You’ve been going there for years and you called first – WTF? And especially since the rest of the staff was fine with it, that makes no sense!

Since she was the owner, there’s not a lot more you can do except never go back there. But as an owner of a business myself, I do say you should write her a letter so she knows that you aren’t returning and exactly why.

At my office, we try to keep the children out of the exam room so the parents aren’t distracted while seeing the doctor – so my staff makes sure the kids are ok – we have a kid area with a table, toys, books, etc. The short time that my staff has to “babysit” is well worth the satisfaction of the parents.


Wondermom January 25, 2009 at 9:50 am

That’s crazy! When we go to get our haircut, we go to one of the little chain places and the kids usually run around sweeping up the hair. Everybody thinks it’s adorable. I took Squirt for a haircut the other night and Pork Chop was getting a little antsy so I asked if he could sweep. He wound up just “pushing” the hair all over the place and one of the stylists got a little irritated and started going behind him trying to sweep it up. The one that was cutting Squirt’s hair just winked at me and told me the other one was a bitch. The manager came over after a few minutes and started playing some form of hockey with the hair and brooms with Pork Chop and then put him up in a chair and gave him a pretend haircut (I kept hinting that he really needed one but I just didn’t have enough money that day). When we left, she gave me a handful of coupons and said she couldn’t wait to see the boys again. The bitchy stylist just rolled her eyes. I don’t understand some people!


Keeshabee January 25, 2009 at 10:46 am

Hey Single Mama, I ‘m one of your newest blog fans. Awesome site you have! Can totally relate as I’m a single mom too.

I’m with the others, thinking what the heck is she gonna do “if he hits her one more time.” She obviously has no tact at all, talking to you like that, and even in front of customers. Is that the way to run a business? Or treat people? Boycott!!

I had a similar experience when my lil’ mama was much younger (about 5 months). Took her to the nail salon to get a mani/pedi. At that time, she would still sleep in 2 hour stretches so I thought I would be able to “get away” with it.

Nope, she decided to wake within 45 mins. And all hell broke lose. The bad part was I was in the middle of my manicure/tips being done so I was just so confused what to do. It was so awful, I felt like I was gonna join her in the tear-fest. Everyone just stared at me and her in dismay. Not until a nice older lady got up, picked her out of the carrier and rocked her. The owner gave me dirty looks and kept saying “why did you bring her?”

Uhhh…well I’m like you. Never again. Maybe that’s why my nails, feet, and eyebrows were jacked up for a while…lol. Now I’ve started being more resourceful and learning to do my own grooming (well not the eyebrows though).


Susan January 25, 2009 at 12:03 pm

I nearly cried reading this.

I despise drawing attention to myself, so this sort of public humiliation sounds excruciating. You handled it cooly and beautifully. Hugs to the boy, who should not have to witness someone treating his mother so poorly.

It’s horrendous to tell someone about another child’s behavior as comparison–do these people really not know it’s a roll of the dice? On airplanes, I’ve had old bats compliment my temporarily perfectly behaved child and visible point at some exhausted, squabbling toddlers and their struggling parents. I’ve certainly been on the receiving end of the pointed comments and do they make anything better except make an already-frustrated parent feel worse? But, you guys know this. Being a parent teaches you about grace–every day–how does it get forgotten so easily?


C January 25, 2009 at 1:29 pm

That is so ridiculous! My stylists begs me to bring in my kids so she can see how they are growing! Is the lady even aware that salons are more about service and friendly attitude than skill and atmosphere? I’m sure she won’t last long in her business. i wonder if you can report her to Better Business Bureau and other organizations that review places in the area? Even internet yellow pages will allow you to rate a listed business.
I feel the same way about the university I attend. Their sick policy does not cover having to stay home with your child when they are too sick to go to daycare but are not sick enough to go to the doctor. You still have to pay a co-payment to get your doctor to sign a note that says the parent had to stay home with their child. Of course, they only consider their traditional students so if you get stuck with an ungracious professor, their policy won’t consider childrens’ cold seasons. Our Non-Traditional Student office may have to go up against the student senate and other committees to get this fixed.
What a pain…. what does not kill us makes us stronger. Right?


Gosia January 25, 2009 at 1:31 pm

This gets my blood boiling… WTF? Don’t give me that crap that other children are little angels… bulls**t… I would consider Benjamin’s behavior PERFECT considering the circumstances… an hour of boredom? are you kidding me?
I had a similar experience flying with my daughter… two hours on a plane sitting next to a very large, middle aged, angry looking man. He was sort of overflowing his window seat, I had an isle seat – and N. was in the middle (otherwise – she would have been all over the place) N. kicked or touched Mr. Big BY ACCIDENT once or twice – and the guy went ballistic! Telling me to keep the kid away from him and asking if I paid for her seat (what the hell?!?) sooo I apologized and loudly told N. to be careful – because Mr. Big eats children – in fact it looks like he had two for breakfast that morning… She spent the next 1.5 hours “reasonably well behaved” by my side… and the guy did not look in our direction for the rest of the flight…


cyndi January 25, 2009 at 1:38 pm

WOW! I’m on the verge of tears just reading this. I am so sorry. What an insensitive bitch. I’m sorry, but that’s all I have to say about her. I would report her to the better business bureau or call one of the news stations if they have one of those trouble shooter guys and make her publically account for her entirlely inexcusable customer relations.

Benjamin is two. This is what two year olds do… ALL of them. She clearly has no experience with children. If he hits her one more time… what? What is she going to do? You handled far better than I would have so kudos to you for that.



bad mummy January 25, 2009 at 2:17 pm

So, next time you see this lady, imagine she’s Anne Coulter. Give her a piece of your mind!

My ‘salon’ is a First CHoice Haircutters just 10 minutes away. I know what days my favorite woman works and I’ve taken The Mook with me while I get my hair cut. Mind you, there’s no wash involved and my style is short and tousled so I’m done in 20-30 minutes, but they’ve never balked about me having The Mook in tow. In fact, I’ve managed to keep her busy in their waiting area for up to an hour

The last time we were there, she got her hair cut first, then my turn. While I was in the chair, The Mook helped clean up – first with a broom, then armed with a dustpan. She even played hide and seek with the other staff.

I’ve come across women like her tho. Once I overheard a woman say to her friend, as my kidlet and her buddy dashed around a neighbourhood store that is VERY kid-friendly: “My dog is better trained than those kids”. I was appalled. The woman in question is a bartender at a place I frequent. And she will never – ever – get a tip from me.

Here in Toronto, our public heath produced stickers for places that are ‘breastfeeding friendly’. The same should be produced for places that are kid-friendly as well!


Sarah January 25, 2009 at 4:21 pm

I am still so disgusted and angry by the way you were treated by this woman. I think it’s a great idea to create some sort of mom-friendly review website. With your readers scattered through the U.S., we could create quite a network. Let me know what I can do to help!


Canadian Bald Guy January 25, 2009 at 4:49 pm

I know how difficult it can be to ask a 2-year old to do something. It’s hard enough at home, much less out of the house when there are things to do and places to explore (heh).

Obviously, the person who told you it was cool to bring Ben didn’t check with the manager or just assumed he would sit quietly in a corner.

On a side note, how often do you cut HIS hair? I know with my son (also named Ben…go figure) it’s darn near impossible and my ex-wife normally cuts a little off herself every night until he gets a “full” haircut after about a week. Any suggestions on alternatives? lol


Kim January 25, 2009 at 4:58 pm

I hope my other half a post did not post, not sure what I did-sorry!
Here is Kansas City we have a hair solon especially for kids to get their haircuts but I am unaware of a child friendly place like that for the Moms. Nobody should ever be treated like you were. You did everything you should have, toys, snacks, called first. She is just a horrible business owner and person in general. Here is the link for the kid friendly place , maybe there is one in your area for the first cut. Keep your spirits up, ignore the rude people who have no clue!


Bavani January 25, 2009 at 5:47 pm

I just have to say. What a B****!

I haven’t had such a bad experience, but I have had the mean glares and loud comments – considering I do have an extremely active 2-year old. I used to be really bothered, but these days, I am just ready for a “fight” if I’m faced with such a situation. And from the sound of it, Benjamin was far from being a brat. He was just being a normal 2-year old! Ahh!!! This really pisses me off. You reacted much better than I would have.

That’s why I dream of opening my TRUE family-friendly food shop one day – sorry, I have no idea about hair salons.


Megan January 25, 2009 at 6:00 pm

Oh – that witchy woman! How horrible. I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the other customers decide not to patronize her salon after witnessing her treat you and Benjamin so badly.

I always had to take my kids EVERYWHERE. Sometimes they were super good, and sometimes they were…kids.

Once, I was at the Dept. of Motor Vehicles getting a replacement driver’s license. While I was waiting for the woman to process my photo, my son (he was about 2 years old) curiously reached over toward the camera machine. He hadn’t even touched it when the woman reached out and SMACKED HIS HAND! I was shocked and just didn’t know what to say! She immediately apologized and said it was habit and she was a grandma. Oh my goodness. I think I just mumbled “it’s okay” and left asap. It was funny but just so wrong!


Erin January 25, 2009 at 6:37 pm

Wow…I just cannot believe this! What a humiliating ordeal. I would have been a sobbing mess.

I do love your idea about some sort of business review site. There are many places where people have been extraordinarily rude/extraordinarily kind to me and I would love to have someplace to praise (or NOT praise!) their behavior so that other moms can know what they’re getting themselves into! Plus I would like to know others’ experience so that I can avoid situations like yours!

I hope you get to feeling better. In my opinion, you did nothing wrong. I would definitely be writing a letter to the owner explaining EXACTLY why I would not be returning.


Katie January 25, 2009 at 7:20 pm

Okay, seriously…WTF??? You and Benjamin did nothing wrong. AT ALL. My dear friend, has a two year old who is a delight but is high maintenance and if anyone ever treated her or her ds like that, well there would be hell to pay. It sounds to me like she is a biotch and you did nothing wrong. You asked in advance if it was okay to bring him, and he acted like a normal, well behaved two year old would. Did this woman not have kids or what? I am so sorry you and Benjamin had to put up with that witch.


Ms. Single Mama January 25, 2009 at 7:38 pm

Thanks everyone so much for your supportive comments.

We felt much better today… much better. And we had an amazing day together, tons of fun and I also took some time to write a nasty review for her business on every single site I could find with the name. That made me feel better.

I really like this idea of a Mommy Friendly seal of approval, much like the breast feeding one mentioned above.

And – this woman was the salon owner – to clarify that one. And no – she doesn’t have any children, a point made by my stylist.

As for Bald Guy’s question – I take Benjamin to get his hair cut at Great Clips (b/c it’s so cheap) and b/c the staff members are always sooooo very nice to us.

Thanks again everyone … by far, I just love hearing that my child is not a freak. That’s what really got me – her saying he was somehow out of control when he clearly wasn’t. I’m still proud of him for being such a good boy in there.


Amber January 25, 2009 at 7:40 pm

That lady clearly has issues. I can bet that everyone else in the place got amusement out of watching Benjamin play. Im so sorry you were put in the position of feeling like an imposition. No one should ever have to feel like that.

Over Christmas last year i took my now 2 year old to the mall in her stroller and we were having a great day. the mall was buzzing, people were happy, and my daughter was happily eating her goldfish and offering some up to anyone that looked at her. When we were strolling along and i suddenly met some resistance while pushing the stroller. I looked down and my little munchkin had grabbed a womans scarf and we were, quite literally, dragging and choking the woman (not elderly, late 30s probably). I stopped and apologized profusely and passers by thought it was halarious and adorable. The lady with the scarf thought otherwise. She belittled me and insulted my kid, and told me that people like “us” are the reason she did not reproduce. I was totally humiliated. Disgusted. I cried. In public. Anywho, i went and bought my girl a pretzel and ice cream and thought, this lady is troubled and not worth my tears.

PS~How did your haircut turn out?


movin' down the road January 25, 2009 at 7:54 pm

Oh yeah. I have not ventured so far as to bring my kids when I get my haircut. If I am immobile, it is impossible. My girls have rolled around in the middle of the floor in our very quiet bank. At the doctor’s office, we were in the exam room and they hid behind the bit table thing you sit on and the doc came in and just saw me sitting there, even though it was their appointments. And then they crawled out from behind the furniture. And of course, running the aisles chasing and screaming (having fun) at the market. On that one, it was so bad and there were so many people around, I left my shopping cart, dragged them out and went home. Basically I always have and always will avoid having to take them places where I can’t pick up and leave if I need to. Now that they are older, it is easier though. I am sorry that happened and sorry the salon owner was so horrible.


April January 25, 2009 at 8:07 pm

I have three teenagers and boy do I remember the experience of having toddlers – they are unpredictable. My youngest would make a scene every time we left the house, I got to the point I didn’t want to go ANYWHERE.

I don’t agree with the salon owners behavior at ALL, it was completely inappropriate and terrible customer service. I wouldn’t go back.
However, let me tell you about my experience. I am a single parent in all regards, with no involvement from their dad, NONE. I will usually go the gym and hit the sauna for that much needed break, just a quite place to get my sanity back. I was in the sauna truly appreciating the peace and quite, until…. 4 adolescent girls came in, laughing, screaming and carrying on, running in and out. I was wondering where the hell their mother was( probably enjoying peace and quite someplace else in the gym)! Being the stressed out parent that I am, desperately needing quite time, away from kids, I felt more stressed than when I got there. I was almost in tears myself, I just wanted quite time, how difficult should it be?. I didn’t want to be an ass or that bitch so I left, more stressed because I didn’t get to unwind and was frustrated that my attempt to relax was ruined by exactly why i came to begin with – screaming kids.

As parents, we also have to be considerate of other people and realize that not everyone can tolerate a child screaming, or being loud. For some, it is like nails on a chalkboard. We overlook it because we are used to it and it is a part of our life and we have to cope somehow, sometimes, by tuning it out.

The website is a terrific idea for kid friendly places, or not so friendly. It might help prevent experiences like the one you hand. Lord knows we’ve all had them.


Valerie January 25, 2009 at 8:18 pm

I take my son to a special haircut place for kids and they do parent’s hair too. I couldn’t imagine being treated that way. That is terrible. I hope you never go there again!


Angie January 25, 2009 at 8:28 pm

Wow. That woman really sounds like she has issues. First one being that she likes to belittle others.

I know how hard it can be to find a stylist, especially one that you like. Maybe you could contact her/him and tell them how you felt after what that horrible “thing” did and said to you. I’m sure they will understand. Maybe he/she could do your hair at their home instead.


MommaMac January 25, 2009 at 8:35 pm

Well, you know how I feel about this one. I myself have a crazy two year old. She’s generally well behaved. But she’s two and is curious, always exploring always testing her limits. This is most apparent whenever we visit a Target store. I don’t use a cart and just let her walk closely to me, but there are times when she sees something she likes and she’s off. It’s funny I remember all the horrible experiences I had with my oldest child, but not with my youngest. And the younger one is a lot more wild. I guess I just don’t care anymore! It’s what two year olds do. Also on a child development level this is the most active time of a person’s life! Seriously, it’s a wonder they slow down enough to sleep!

Like I said before, as well. I’m a retail manager and in a two level store. One level is devoted to our baby and kids section. And it is crazy up there! All two year olds run around, and come to think of it most children do. We also have balls in baskets for customer’s to buy and about a million times a day a ball comes flying from the 2nd to the first floor after having been launched by a child. The only time I ever reprimand a parent is if they are encouraging behavior (I had one parent help a child deface store property and another encourage his son to beat up a little girl) or allowing their children to play on our escalators (death trap) otherwise our management team generally lets most kid behavior slide because it is kid behavior and as long as they aren’t doing anything dangerous it’s keeps the parents happy and they buy more stuff!

Totally down with the mom review thing. I think all moms generally do this via word of mouth, but it would be great to just look it up on a website. Not all moms Twitter!


Sheila January 25, 2009 at 9:07 pm

🙁 People suck and what she did was way, way, way out of line.

I’ve noticed that I get the stink eye so much more often now when I take Andre out than ever before. He’s a kid, he’s going to yell — get over it.


Apples January 25, 2009 at 9:24 pm

OH MY GOODNESS I am sooo sorry.

What was the name of this salon again? Since the owner was SOO nice (note my sarcasm) we should ALL bring our kids in there right around nap time after a mid-day candy snack…….


Zoeyjane January 25, 2009 at 10:09 pm

You held it together very well, in the face of immaturity (hers) and disrespect. People have bubbles – we don’t cross into them without it being known that we’re making a statement. What she did was demeaning and regardless of whether you end up putting together a directory of parent-friendly businesses, I think that you should consider making a formal complaint. Possibly to a local newspaper.

I’m not exactly sure about the two year olds that are in there all the time ‘behaving’ – I don’t actually know anyone who could do that under the age of, say eight. But trust me when I say that you handled it well and far better than I.

Hearing someone say, ‘if he hits me one more time,’ with a threat in their voice? There’d be an Opi-infused explosion, in the least.


mssinglemama January 25, 2009 at 10:23 pm

The hair cut is awesome.

So was my stylist – we’ll be connecting soon I hope.

I am reluctant to say the name here just because. But if anyone wants to e-mail me I’ll give you her phone # so you can call and bitch.

I did leave thorough reviews on every website mentioning the salon… and Zoey Jane – totally considering a letter to the editor. Maybe just this post – hell, it’s already written.


jen January 26, 2009 at 12:00 am

I hate it when people are really judgemental about kids’ behaviour and she so definitely was. It was totally, and only, her problem but not very good for business. I’d consider writing her a letter too.


Tricia January 26, 2009 at 6:32 am

Oh boy! I have so been there and know how hard it is to keep your cool when someone is critisising your child who is being a child! I know the feeling of being a single Mom and not being able to go ONE SINGLE PLACE without your children and how hard that can be in situations like the hair salon. People who treat you like that are the problem themselves.

I hope it manages to affect her business. I get so sick and tired of being in the grocery store sometimes with two feuding children (and yes they are pretty well behaved but they are just children being children) and you get these “looks” that would kill if they were weapons. It is so hard not to go up to the person and ask if they have kids or if they have any sense of humour or compassion! I have come close a couple of times.

I feel for you and your little one. Don’t let this woman affect your confidence in your parenting and yourself and i hope there is a way to expose this woman for the bad business she practices.
Hugs (((( ))))
Tricia 🙂


Wyliekat January 26, 2009 at 7:34 am

Gawd, that’s brutal. There was no reason for her to be such a wretch about it. None whatsoever.

It’s so hard to get things done when you have a small child. They’ll never know. I can only hope, however, that you do not reward her with your business. IN fact, I’d publish her name and her company’s name.

Contrast this to me taking both girls to my hairdresser (at a nice salon), and her patiently going through the brushing and ouching process with Juniper, while Rosebud chattered at her, and climbed under chairs.

Now imagine that this is the owner’s daughter. And that she smiled the whole way through.

That’s how it ought to be.


Kelli January 26, 2009 at 7:39 am

I am new to your blog and I have to say it is great. I really enjoy reading it!! I am a mother of two teenage daughters that are two years apart but I can remember the days when getting a haircut was challenging. The attitude of this lady is awful!! I have worked my whole adult life with children (day care, head start and now in a elementary school) so I was boiling mad while reading this story. Give me a break he is two!! That is a long time to expect me to behave let alone a small child. I go to a hairstylist who owns her own shop and runs it out of her home. She has young children of her own so she understands. Hope you find a better place for you and your son next time you need a haircut. God Bless!!


Redneck Mommy January 26, 2009 at 9:10 am

Holy crap. After raising three toddlers (two of them very high spirited and only a year apart) I can tell you it sounds as though your kid was typically behaved.

The owner, however, is another story.

If she growled “one more time” at me, I’d have smiled evilly and just begged her to do it. So I could press charges on her for touching your kid.


I certainly hope you have spread the word far and wide about what a charming kid friendly place that was. I’d have every single one of my mommy friends with toddlers descend upon that salon all at once to get haircuts just to watch that woman squirm.

Farcking witch. I’m sorry you had to deal with that.


Andrea S January 26, 2009 at 9:57 am

I had a lump in my throat reading this. I’ve had experiences where I’ve waited for someone to confront me in that way cause my daughter was…well…being a kid. I cannot tell you how many times that I’ve skipped an appointment or frantically looked for a babysitter cause I am unsure if I will be welcome at an establishment with my child. I dont think that we should have to be anxious before we go to a new restaurant or to a salon because we’re not sure of how we will be accepted with our child. When I was part of a pair of parents I never worried about this, I dont know if it was just because I knew that there was 2 of us and that would could conquer it together but now as a single mom…I think about it all the time. My daughter is very well behaved IN PUBLIC usually but I’m always waiting, anticipating her next break down cause it happens to everyone.
On another note, I was previously a business owner and it’s unfathomable that you would be treated in that manner by the salon owner. As a business owner you need to roll with the punches (sometimes from Bob the Builder) and that berating a customer at all or confronting one infront of other customers is no way to run a business. I hope there were some other mothers there to witness that and I hope like you, they will not be returning.


lola0604 January 26, 2009 at 10:49 am

I know which salon you are referring to, and I also know that they spend a great deal on radio advertising. My advice is to go ahead with the op-ed piece and start an “antiPR” campaign. It will undo any amount of money they have spent on ads and thensome. No way she should be allowed to get away with treating people like crap and threatening your son, especially her own customers.


noringsattached January 26, 2009 at 11:09 am

What a B***H!!!!!

I am so sorry you had to go through that-so awful!

Im totally on board to help you with your new idea!


Dawn January 26, 2009 at 11:15 am

Could you just offer the “fan club” an address to send the salon owner a post card of “WTF” — My note to her: Why fore thou treatest our beloved Alaina like shit dear barren woman … something like that.


littlemansmom January 26, 2009 at 1:04 pm

Are you kidding me! As soon as she opened her mouth with “Out of respect for me and everyone in the salon I just want to say that – this,” she points at Benjamin who is now running around between our legs, “was completely disrespectful to everyone.” I would have “and with this (as I CLEARLY indicated the very 80’s beast with the big mouth speaking to me) is also disrespectful and clearly you have some issues and I suggest that you speak of my son as a person and NOT as a ‘this’ again or you just may have a difficult time dislocating where I ‘respectfully’ put the bob the builder toy!”

This ‘person’ clearly needs to get a grip! Neither you nor Ben did ANYTHING wron…clearly SHE has done wrong……..grrrrrrrrr……makes me want to come over there with my pointy shoes on!


Miss Notesy January 26, 2009 at 2:37 pm

What a jerk! Honey, you did NOTHING wrong. *big hug*


Carolina January 26, 2009 at 2:46 pm

aww sweety i’m so sorry u went throught that. She obviously doesn’t have any kids or forget how a 2 year old can be.


Heidi January 26, 2009 at 3:09 pm

I’m so sorry you had that experience! That salon owner had no right to berate you like that. It sounds like Benjamin was very well behaved. I had to take both of my boys (ages 5 and 7 years) to the salon once. Considering their age, I was not happy about their behavior — using the salon aprons as superman capes, turning the hair dryers on and off. But my stylist (the salon owner) was very cool, and she gave them permission to explore the place a little. I hope you’re able to find another place that is more tolerant!


Christine January 26, 2009 at 4:00 pm

WOW! It totaly doesn’t surprise me that she doesn’t have any kids. That was obvious by how she treated you, which totally was unacceptable! I hope that people do NOT go there based on your review of her place.

I’ve taken my sons to places like that before. It’s been a long time since they were little, so I can’t remember if anyone ever treated me or them like that.

I’m sorry you had to go through that. It didn’t sound like Benjamin was doing anything inappropriate or misbehaving at all!! Don’t let one woman keep you from taking him to another more family friendly place!


A January 26, 2009 at 5:40 pm

Aw…totally sucks. And what a bitch. Even if you didn’t call to ask, she has no right to be all rude like that in your face. And what was she trying to do? Threaten you??? Ugh … I don’t know what I would’ve done if that was me. I would’ve been soooooo MAD. Actually yeah I just totally feel for you..this makes me angry reading this. You need to put the name up of the place so no one will go there but seriously I mean from the sounds of it, seems like she was the only one who had a problem. And the thing is is you even called to ask and they said it would be totally fine….and each kid is different…not all two year olds are gonna be sitting pretty ..hello they are kids.. she obviously does not have any..childless punk ass bitch…

By the way, I love the family /momfriendly business website idea…it’s actually a great idea… it would be most effective in the salon and spa industry….more places like those need to have some child friendly places going on… and i totally know what you mean about standing in line with the kid while people up front just ignore it. i like to think that most of the time, they don’t want to give us “special” treatment because offering us a choice to make it easier (even as simple as giving a spot in front of em.) makes it seem like we can’t handle it….but other times, it’s like..people are just ignorant or in a rush or just.. dicks…family lines in the grocery store is very smart though. there should be signs like on the busses…u know how there’s like “courtesy” seats..there should be some courtesy aisles lol where if you’re standing in that line and there is someone elderly or with kids, you need to let them go in front of you or just go to a different lane.


LTP January 26, 2009 at 10:00 pm

So many responses…not sure you’ll get to mine but my advice would be a Letter to the Editor of the local paper or better yet, let all of us in on her name & address! Maybe after a few hundred or thousand letters, she might change her tune!

She was completely inappropriate….I don’t care if she is the salon owner! It wasn’t as if he were stabbing people with scissors for god’s sake! I have been into a couple of different stores lately (the most recent being a mattress store) that had a very inexpensive play area set up for kids–just a Lego table–that kept them occupied while I shopped for a mattress! That woman needs to get a clue!!

Hang in there, girl!! : )


susan h January 26, 2009 at 11:44 pm

OMG what a b*tch!! i would have sucker punched her… and what was she planning on doing ‘if he hits her one more time’?!?! im so sorry you had to deal with someone like her.. too bad none of the sylists said anything in your favor…


yvonne January 27, 2009 at 12:18 am

The thought of you and your little one crying breaks my heart.

Karma is a b*tch. She will get hers.


H January 27, 2009 at 1:07 am

Wow, all I can say is “How HIDEOUS!”

I can’t believe she would treat you like that! If she had a problem with Benjamin being there, which she shouldn’t have, the appropriate thing would have been to take you aside and discuss the issue quietly, like an adult, not to chastise you in front of everyone! She could have at least approached this in a sensitive manner.

However, since you asked if it was ok to bring him, and it sounds like he was reasonably well behaved for his age, she shouldn’t have had a problem! Seriously, was her staff really spending all their time picking up after him?

Compared to other countries, the US is really quite uptight about children. We seem to still follow the idea that “children should be seen and not heard,” or not even seen at all, in some cases! In other countries, children are just a normal part of life. Here, you can be regarded as if you’ve brought a howling hyena into the place—like “What crazy person would bring THAT into a place like this?” I’ve never had such a bad experience as you, but I’ve definitely received “the look.”

I am surprised you were able to hold it together as well as you did! I applaud you for that though, as that’s setting a good example for your son.

Do you think maybe he was hitting her because she was being so completely terrible to you? I wouldn’t blame him! Poor little guy! Poor BOTH of you!


Dana (iHeart) January 27, 2009 at 8:38 am

I honestly do NOT understand people who are intolerant of children. Uhm, duh? I mean…

HELLOOOOOOO. WERE YOU NOT A CHILD ONCE?????? Isn’t that how most people actually become grown-ups? By being a child first at some point? And thank GOD somebody didn’t kill YOU for being so childishly unbearable when YOU were this age, or else you’d have never gotten the chance to become the lovely, charming blossom you are today.

*rolling my eyes so hard I’m pulling an ocular muscle*

Seriously. You did everything right. You even called ahead, for heaven’s sake. She was an utter witch. Kudos to you for not putting her throat between the wall and your boot heel when she started with the empty threats. So sorry you had to deal with that. Completely unnecessary damper on your day. 🙁


LiLi January 27, 2009 at 10:44 am

“…childless punk ass bitch”

Hey, now, no need for that. I don’t have any kids myself (yet), but that doesn’t automatically make me, or anyone else who doesn’t have children, ANTI-KID wackos. That’s just the salon owner’s personal brand of crazy. If I saw a 2 year old playing in the shop, and I was waiting for a haircut, I probably would have been glad to play WITH him, with the mother’s permission.


Lori January 27, 2009 at 12:51 pm

“If he hits me one more time…” You: I will buy him a new effing toy because old hags like you suck all the enjoyment out of life OR “AND WHAT?! YOU”LL HIT HIM BACK?? TRY IT.”
BTW, may I please have the address and phone number of this establishment? Because I’d love to do a little word of mouth advertisement. Un-advertisement more accurate. People, in general, need to try to be more understanding and accomodating. What’s wrong with a little compassion?


mssinglemama January 27, 2009 at 4:37 pm

Lori – you’re awesome… but I think I’m going to hold off on handing out the phone number. : ) I’ve calmed down about it now…

And, yes, I felt the same way. Like she was threatening him or something. Urgh.

LiLi – you rock. I was the same – before I had kids – I would definitely have been that person playing with him.

To all of you – thank you so much for your comments. Has made me feel a million times better about this. You all took a lot of the pain away. And I think next time something like this happens I’ll have all of your voices coupled with mine and I may not be so courteous.


Christina January 27, 2009 at 6:37 pm

Oooh, now I want to know where this place is, so I can avoid it. Even having calmed down, you were still told it would be OK to have your son there, and she acted far worse than any toddler could have behaved.

There does need to be a directory for each city to point people to child-friendly places. Columbus could certainly use one – I know of a few places that are good, and others to avoid, both by personal experience and word-of-mouth.


Nina January 27, 2009 at 7:36 pm

yeah, I would have been tempted to say what are you going to do? I would have been like hey, instead of eating your lunch you could help here.

the other day I brought A to my favorite chinese/vietnamese place. the waitress said “oh chinese have a saying if you hold them once you hold them always” because he only sat in the high chair for about 5-8 minutes…

I’m sorry that happened…rotten lady. a list is a great idea.


Nina January 28, 2009 at 6:53 am

oh to bald guy – i took my son to a place esp for children – here its called cookie cutters – its pricey but they are good and fast. each seat is a toy like a plane or a car and the kids pick their favorite to sit in, each station has a little dvd player and the kids pick out their favorite dvd at the beginning. my son was just 1 so that was pretty much over his head but like I said they are FAST…like 5-7 minutes and very experienced with kids so they are ok with them moving around and all…I had a traumatic experience as a nanny taking a child, the lady cut her hand open badly with scissors cause the child kept moving his head around…so I’m glad to spend 14 bucks (they also have coupons around) to not have that happen to anyone or my son again. I tried to do his at home due to lack of funds recently and it was ok but VERY uneven…sigh…now its grown out again so back to cookie cutters for us


Dave February 4, 2009 at 1:00 am

I've been following this thread with interest. I'm curious about the timing of your photos. Based upon your post, It doesn't appear that you took after you left the salon, so you must have taken have been before you entered. Which suggests to me that you planned to write _something_ before you entered. Yes? No?


Ms. Single Mama February 4, 2009 at 1:09 am

I take pictures ALL of the time, sometimes because I may end up writing a post about it but mostly just because I like to document Benjamin and I's adventures – we have them often.

In this case, I was hoping to write about how well behaved he was in a salon and about how understanding the staff was at his little toddlerisms. Unfortunately that was not the case.


dsc1964 February 4, 2009 at 1:15 am

Thanks for the clarification.


Renee August 17, 2009 at 11:37 am

The lady’s reaction was very rude and should have been handled diffferently and in a kind way. There are however, many hidden dangers in a hair salon for customers, especially children and the elderly. A running child could accidently run into another hair stylist and get burnt by a curling iron or stabbed by a pair of scissors. Also, running children can easily knock down an elderly customer who more than likely won’t heal as easily as a child. Since you called ahead, it would have been very simple for someone who wasnt busy to play with your child for the short time that it takes to get a haircut and then there wouldn’t have been a problem at all.


Vivian December 14, 2009 at 8:06 pm

As a salon owner, I do not allow children in my salon unless they have an appointment & can be supervised at all times. Most the kids are wonderful that come in. They bring snacks, toys, dvd players. But we had a few mothers that would come in let their children run wild, break things, grab hot irons, and slide on the floors. It was making our other salon guests feel very uncomfortable. Most of our clientele is stay at home moms, but they were very suportive when we chose to change our policies. We just had way to many accidents, and potential accidents. I do however disagree completely with the salon owners way of being very unprofessional, when we first changed, we sent out a very polite email, and told all of our clients they needed a get away of sorts. To relax away from the kiddos. I have not lost one client since we changed the policy. Its the way you treat people. You can’t have a child rolling on the floor in hair, grabbing at hot irons, while you are relaxing and expect the staff to take care of your child. Its just not a safe place, chemicals, hot tools, scissors. So I can relate to the owner in a way that mothers cannot see, but you do have to treat people with respect, and that you were not given.


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