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Mum Furious At Being Asked To Clean Up After Her Kid At Cafe

Mum Furious At Being Asked To Clean Up After Her Kid At Cafe

“Cafe worker gave me dustpan and brush to clean up after my baby – I was furious!”

When you have young children and you take them out to cafes and restaurants it’s almost inevitable that they’ll leave some sort of mess behind. Whether it’s a few crumbs on the table or spilt drink on the floor it’s something as parents we’re used to handling. Some of us will pull out the wipes and clean up the mess if we can, while other times it’s impossible to as we need to exit the cafe ASAP due to screaming bub.

One mum however, was mortified when a member of staff at her local cafe, handed her a dustpan and brush and asked her to clean up under her baby’s high chair. She doesn’t think that was fair or justified so she wrote into Mumsnet to see what other mums thought.

Here’s what she wrote;

“I go with a group of friends and out babies to a cafe each week. Apparently the week before last, the cafe manager had a go at one of the mums because she said that her baby made mess under his high chair and she didn’t clean it up before she left.

This week, as I was packing up to leave (with a screaming overtired baby who is refusing to nap because of teething) she gave me a dustpan and brush and pointed at the few bits of food under her high chair and asked me to clean up after myself. 

To make it clear, if my daughter had made an unreasonable mess, I would of course have cleaned it up (or tried, it’s a bit difficult when you don’t have any cleaning materials). But it was a few bits on the floor. I’ve offered to clean up in other cafes and they’ve said, ‘don’t be silly, we’ll do it’.”

Her mum suggested maybe she should write a bad review and embarrass the cafe. “She said I should leave a negative review about it on their cafe page because she seemed to think it was unreasonable,” she said.

“Is it unreasonable to ask a parent to clean the floor after their baby? I’m torn because on the one side, I can see how it would be annoying for the staff. On the other hand, I don’t bring cleaning materials with me and it’s advertised as family friendly., which I would think would mean they’re aware that babies make mess,” she asks.

Hmmmm. This is a tricky one. And interestingly, the comments left on her post were mostly supportive of the cafe staff and not her, with many saying, ‘her baby, her mess, so clean up’.

One commenter said: “I’d say food on the floor is beyond the realms of normal mess and I’d expect to be asked to clean it up. People are absolute rotters in cafes and restaurants.”

Another said: “It’s super odd to be handed a dustpan and brush!!!! But then how much mess was there?!!!”

One mum shared her story: “When my son was at that stage of dropping things from a high chair (and note that I always bought all his food from the cafe or whatever) I would ask for a dustpan and brush or use wipes to tidy up. Its just polite to the staff.”

If they offer you the dust pan and brush and your baby made the mess with food I would clean it up before I left. Surely you sweep it up whilst baby still in highchair? It would take a minute to do it,” added one.

And another interesting take focused on the cafe surroundings: “I look at it a bit differently. If I walked into a cafe and there was food in the floor, there’s a good chance I’ll walk back out. I don’t want to sit surrounded by mess and my mind says, ‘if it’s like that where the customers sit, what’s it like in the kitchen?’ If the staff are busy and I had caused the mess, I’d think it only right that I should clean it up – to make it look like the sort of place I’d like to eat in. It’s only fair.”

What do you think? Is it the parent’s responsibility to clean up after their child’s mess? Or the cafe’s?


Images: Pixabay



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Chrystal Lovevintage

Chrystal Lovevintage

Chrystal is a writer and blogger who loves nothing more than watching back to back episodes of crime shows. Should she ever find herself needing to cover up a crime, she'll know exactly what to do! Her dream is to one day live in Palm Springs where she can do her writing poolside while drinking endless gin and tonics. Mum to the cutest twin boys in the world, she loves nothing more than the sound of their laughter (usually heard when they're conspiring against her). Entertainment writer and pop culture junkie, she will be bringing you all the celebrity gossip and news that your brain can handle. You can follow her blog at and on Instagram at Chrystalovevintage

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