A man has been receiving backlash for giving his opinions on parenting, despitehaving no children of his own.
Mario Mirante took to TikTok to share a video about what he observed when he watched a mother and her son at a park. “Please watch the whole video before you comment. Thanks,” he captioned the clip, after the original was taken down.
“The kid is just playing quietly, not being annoying. I don’t hear a peep from him, he’s just doing his thing on the playground,” Mirante said. “The mom the entire time is on her phone, staring right down at her screen. Doesn’t look up one time.”
He explained that as he walked by, he noticed the child sitting on top of the slide. “I hear: ‘Hey mom, watch. Watch, Mom,’” Mirante recalled. “And at the top of her lungs, shrieking like a Velociraptor, this mother screams: ‘One second!!!’”
The TikToker claimed the mother yelled so loudly that he stopped abruptly to hear what the problem was. When her child heard his mother scream, Mirante claimed that he looked “terrified” and confused, thinking that he upset his mother.
“He wasn’t doing anything wrong,” Mirante said. “Mom never looks up from the screen as the kid goes down [the slide].”
Mirante added that he is most definitely “judging” the mother based on what he saw in those few minutes.
“When your kid isn’t doing something wrong, or in danger, you probably shouldn’t scream at them. It might have some traumatic effects in the future,” he declared, before asking: “Are you guys that attached to your phones?”
He explained that his original video was taken down due to the amount of negative comments, with people telling him he shouldn’t judge a mother when he is not a parent himself. According to Mirante, some TikTokers told him that “maybe the mom needs a break and she takes him to the park to get that break” or that the mother could’ve been a single mom.
Even content creator Abby Eckel stitched Mirante’s TikTok, explaining in a separate video that he has never experienced being the default parent. “A default parent is typically one who is ‘first in line’ when it comes to caring for children, child-related responsibilities, or home-related tasks,” clinical psychologist Amber Thornton wrote in Psychology Today.
“If you have never been the default parent, and you don’t know what it’s like to be constantly needed all day, every day if you’re not the one consistently and constantly regulating your child’s emotional needs while also having to regulate your own, which also likely means that you’re having to relearn how to do that because you weren’t taught that as a child,” Eckel said in her TikTok video. “I think it’s wise if you pipe down.”
Many people agreed with Mirante’s video, while others continued to disagree in the comments section. “I am a single mom, I 100 per cent agree with you. Kids remember who is actually PRESENT with them, not glued to their phone, the TV etc etc,” one commenter wrote.
“That feeling of ‘but what did I do wrong?’ will stay with that child for a long time. It can be very damaging,” another comment read.
“My kid used to say ‘mom’ every five secs. It was a joke in the family. I’d lose my mind about 2 per cent of the time about it. You just caught a bad moment,” one commenter pointed out.
Another person wrote: “I thought the same way as you. And then I became a parent. Until you become a parent, you do not understand the struggle.”
The Independent has contacted Mirante for comment.