Parenting/Family Advice, Social Advice

Ativan Meets its Match

Dear TinyMom,

My three-year-old, mild-mannered son was gently playing with the blood pressure machine at the drugstore the other day while I was trying to get the pharmacist’s attention. Then after ten minutes of ignoring me the pharmacist came out and started yelling at my son. I in turn freaked out on him and got the manager involved. I don’t think I did anything wrong per se. All my son was doing was putting his finger in the slot and watching the light go on and off. But I’ve never yelled like that in a store before and usually pride myself on handling these kinds of things better, knowing that retail workers put up with crap all day long.  On the other hand, I don’t feel like I need to go back and apologize to someone who yelled at my son. Do I? And if I don’t, should I switch pharmacies? This happened at a Duane Reade and the other one is a Rite-Aid.

Sincerely, Mommy Needs Ativan

Dear Mom I Can Relate To,

Please don’t apologize unless the pharmacist apologizes first. There’s no excuse for him taking his bad day out on a defenseless kid. He came down on your son, and you brought the manager down on him — that’s maternal instinct, not overreaction, and fully forgiveable.  For all you know previous women remained calm with this man and you’re the one who finally got through to him.  If you keep your business at Duane Reade because the Rite-Aid is worse, as it is in my neighborhood, pretending the incident never happened will serve the greater good.  If you’re worried about your Ativan being switched with uppers and the Rite-Aid really is that bad, as in my neighborhood, then apologize insincerely but, please, only as a last resort.  A store that has candy in the checkout aisle and little stuffed animals next to the batteries shouldn’t grouse about a child’s behavior, period.

Sincerely, Been There Done That

About TinyMom

TinyMom is Judith Basya, a petite writer whose ten- and seven-year-old daughters are within centimeters of being taller than her. When not driving them places or packing their lunches she writes book reviews and an advice column called "What's Wrong With You" for Though currently residing in Northern California, she's also lived in Manhattan and Southern California and proudly retains the lessons of both. Questions about this blog may be mailed to


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