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Ask Rene: What Can I Do About My Friend’s Bratty Kids?


Ask Rene:
What Can I Do About My Friend’s Bratty Kids?


Hey Rene:

I have a problem and need your advice. I have had more then my share of being around friends and family whose kids are a handful so I’m not naive by any stretch of the imagination. But what is it with parents whose kids act like complete brats, yet they sit there and do nothing? I don’t get it!

I have a couple of good friends who have children act out, scream at her, misbehave in public places, just all manner of bad behavior, yet she does nothing. It’s almost like she’s immune to the screaming! I, however, am not and it’s literally exhausting to be around. Every so often, one of them will do the “count to three” thing and threaten time out but then doesn’t follow through.

I’m old school, Rene. I don’t believe in time out; I believe in TIME’S UP! So my question Rene is will you tell a friend her kids are brats and you’d rather her not bring them around if she can’t control them?


Get Your Kids Under Control!



Dear Control,

I feel your pain on this one. I have been around friends whose kids regularly showed their butts – but you know what I did? I bit my tongue until it bled in some cases. You know why? Because there are few things that will ruin a friendship faster than telling someone else how to raise their kids or that they’re doing it wrong. Having said that though, I do think you have a few options.


1. Speak Volumes Without Saying A Word

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If you haven’t already, you need to learn how to administer, swiftly and deftly, the heart-stopping stare. This typically works best with your own children but can be used on offspring other than your own. It works something like this; Drop your chin and lift only your eyes. Make sure they are absolutely devoid of emotion and give the cold, hard stare. Hold it for a bit longer than you think necessary, preferably until the offending party looks away. You may also curl your lip into a slight sneer for added impact. If the kid sees it, great; if he/she sees it and mom does too, all the better. She might actually be embarrassed enough to say something.


  1. ct

    March 19, 2016 at 10:21 am

    Horrible advice. Simply TELL your friend her kids are out of control and it is ruining your time with her. If they are running wild at your house and she does nothing, tell her to control them or YOU will. If she laughs you off, let them have it. I can’t stand bratty kids and their moronic parents. Kids don’t HAVE to bratty, it is their way of crying out for attention from a robot of a mom who is in her own lala land. Give them discipline, then give them good, positive attention when appropriate, and all will be well. How do I know this? Experience!

  2. jp

    March 19, 2016 at 11:25 am

    The most effective method of dealing with ill behaved parasites is to simply unfriend your breeder friends. Befriending child-free folks is the best way to go.

  3. Sarah

    March 20, 2016 at 12:05 am

    While I agree that dealing with bad kids is a pain, what the heck is a “time’s up!”? Do you beat them until they are unconscious? Strangle them? What, precisely, does that mean?

    Btw, as a mom, yes, we do get good at selective hearing. And why aren’t you bringing up to your friend how bad her kids are? Tell her to get them under control or you’ll see her without them.

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Combing the aisles at Target in search of the best deal on Cheerios, it hit Rene Syler like the stench of a dirty diaper on a hot summer’s day. Not only is perfection overrated its utterly impossible! Suddenly empowered, she figuratively donned her cape, scooped up another taco kit for dinner and Good Enough Mother was born.

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