Childrens behavior at community dinner
From: Rob Sandelin (
Date: Mon, 13 Nov 2006 09:31:41 -0800 (PST)
  Deborah Mensch posted about children at dinner under a different subject
heading so I changed the subject heading. Please, the only way to find stuff
in the archive is by subject, and so if your post does not match the title
in the subject, please consider changing the subject so that it matches.

I have had dinner at several cohousing groups and one of the common
denominators is the dinner behavior Debra described, where kids are up and
active and parents sit and have adult conversations amid the din.  It is
this very environment that I find that I can't deal with and so I have not
attended community meals for some time. Many parents have a high noise and
activity filter and so the din is just normal background for them. For those
who are not parents, or who have a different meal time expectation, the din
can be overwhelming. At Sharingwood we have tried many ways of managing this
and none of them stuck, for the very reason that the parents did not notice
a problem or think it was a big deal. One by one people have dropped out of
dinner and so all that are left are the most noise tolerant diners. This is
a natural selection of sorts but to my surprise, the suggestion of a private
quiet dinner club in peoples homes was met with some hostility and thus has
not yet happened. 

So I am curious about this. Do people who want quiet, peaceful dining
habitats have their needs met in your community around group meals?

Rob Sandelin
Sharingwood Cohousing, Snohomish County
Naturalist, Writer
The Environmental Science School
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