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Persistent Parents - HELP

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Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by Lollipop_Painting on Mon Aug 04, 2014 3:32 pm

So, I'm really new when it comes to face painting and I've already encountered this problem a few times-please shed some advise on what I can do in the future with still sounding nice & professional.

-It never fails, a child is great until they sit in front of me and cry.. The crying I can deal with but, what do I do when a parent is forcing a crying child to get face painting when they clearly do not want it.. I had one man try and hold their child down (kicking, screaming and all..). I feel SOOO uncomfortable.. I do not want to offend the parent especially of they are the ones throwing the parties but I can't work on a crying child either. HELP PLEASE. †confused
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by tashasbowtique on Mon Aug 04, 2014 3:38 pm

oh wow! really what kind of parent lol!!!!

I'm not sure either what to do..but I think my advice is to tell the parents to wait...maybe let other kids do the face painting and watch them...and maybe they'll warm up to it. (I never face paint...just started..not even started..just ordered some paints from amazon..)
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by Morninglory on Mon Aug 04, 2014 3:59 pm

Inform the parent that the paint is water activated and because of this you are unable to work on a child who is crying. If the child settles down later and can sit without crying you will be happy to paint them, but till then it is just not possible.
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by thouartbeautiful on Mon Aug 04, 2014 6:57 pm

I only paint happy children and I tell the parent such, I am not a dentist, I will not scar the children from enjoying the experience.


Last edited by thouartbeautiful on Tue Aug 05, 2014 10:39 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by DebbieB on Mon Aug 04, 2014 9:31 pm

I have ran into this quite a few times myself, and I will never understand the parental impulse to force a child to have their face painted. It's not a life or death situation where they must get it done, but some parents just insist.

If it's a party and I have time, I will try to engage the child and hand them a brush to paint their own arm or even paint me if I think it will help. Sometimes that works, sometimes not. Sometimes I let them "help" me paint the next child to show it isn't anything to be afraid of. If all else fails, I explain to the parent that I can not and will not paint a crying child because to them, I am a stranger coming at their face with a pointy stick and it would be best if they stand back with the child and let them watch other children and maybe they will decide to have theirs done.
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by eviedejesus on Tue Aug 05, 2014 3:14 am

I have it in my contract that I will not paint a child that does not WANT to be painted. Parents are ridiculous sometimes. I will try and calm the child, paint their arm if they let me. sometimes painting the parent first or having the parent sit the child in their own lap works. If the child resists, I just say ďsorry, maybe next timeĒ. Sometimes the parent can be persistent but I just tell them itís too dangerous and that I wonít do it. When I get hired to do a party for children 3 or younger, I tell the parent that there is a 50/50 chance the child will not allow me to paint them.itís even worse when Iím at a festival - the parent has waited over an hour, then the kid wonít let me paint them. I get that itís frustrating (my daughter did that with a Santa picture once - ugh!), but itís life - I really donít feel TOO bad about it because itís not my fault. At one party I even handed the dad my brush with paint on it and said ďyou try."
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by Lollipop_Painting on Tue Aug 05, 2014 2:04 pm

O boy! Those are all great tips. I'm keeping my fingers crossed tonight goes well (working for a Mc Donald's family fun night). -I know for sure, I'll be sure to let them know about the paint being water soluble.

You all have been a great help! Wish me luck!†Very Happy
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by rthling on Tue Aug 05, 2014 7:49 pm

I tell parents that I only paint willing faces.
They all seem to understand.
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by Forest-Fairy on Thu Aug 07, 2014 8:53 pm

I never paint a child who doesn't want to be painted. I have had parents try similar things.

Their reasons are many:
- Their own vanity wanting their kid to get face painted to show them off.
- Living vicariously
- "Are you kidding me? we waited in line for 20 min and you are changing your mind NOW? Nuh uh, this is happening because you made me wait!"

What ever the reason, it's the kids face and this isn't a flu shot, so it's THEIR choice, NOT the parents.

I know you don't want to offend the parent but think about it, they have no problem offending YOU by asking you to do something you are uncomfortable with. Learn how to say 'no'. Learn it as early on as you can. This is YOUR business and it's up to YOU how you want to run it.

Here is how i deal with this situation.

If the don't want the face i suggest the hand, that way they can SEE what is happening AS it's happening. If that's cool, then I have them sit on the parents lap. First i test the paint on my hand, then on the parents, then slowly on theirs, talking sweetly as i paint something fast like a flower or something.
If i feel they are a bit extra reluctant then i might pit an entire flower on the mom so they can see how awesome it is and will want one. (also the parent is more likely to pay you for your time since you actually painted something. mah ha ha ha ha. *Cough* what? They actually are taking up your time, even if the kid isn't painted, so why not? Wink )

If that doesn't work, and the pull away, or don't even want to get in the chair at all, and it's obvious they are not down with this, then I have this line in my pocket:

"oh it doesn't seem she/he wants it today. But here is a sticker just for you little one. Maybe next time. Bye!"

Always. Have. Stickers.

If the parent is even super persistent even after that, then i bring out the big guns.†
Big guns said in a sweet smiling voice of course.

"I'm sorry sir/mam, but I don't paint any one who doesn't want to be painted." Smile
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by jlirie on Fri Aug 08, 2014 11:27 pm

had a thought about the pushy parents. for those of you who use line managers or have friends or family with you, have you ever tried this?

if you spot a young child in line, ask the parents if it's their first time getting their face painted. if so, you could say something like this to the child and parent, "wow, is this your first time getting your face painted, would you like to try a smiley face while you wait?", and have a brush and a bit of face paint with you to paint a quick line drawing of a smiley face on their face or hand.

if the child seems uncomfortable or refuses, you could say to the parent, "oh, it looks like this doesn't seem to be their thing today, how about a sticker to take with you?" and give the child a sticker, as forest-fairy mentioned.

it would prevent the parents from unknowingly waiting in line and then getting upset when their child doesn't want to get painted.
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by Giggle Loopsy on Sun Aug 10, 2014 11:14 am

Gosh, I can totally relate to what you're saying and it's a difficult decision! I decided that I would not paint a child in that situation. It's just too unpleasantĖfor all of us.

Instead, I keep a little goodie bag of small (and cheap) kids toys. Instead of painting the little tykes face, I give them a toy. This generally calms them down and the parents are okay with it too.

Also, it helps to build a relationship with the child. More than once I've had the same kiddo come back later to be painted. When it was on their terms. =)

Good luck to you!

Giggle Loopsy
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by Lollipop_Painting on Thu Aug 14, 2014 2:05 pm

That was all such great advise, looks like I'll be buying some stickers tonight!! †Very Happy

Thanks Forest-Fairy for the tip!
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by Forest-Fairy on Fri Aug 15, 2014 4:39 pm

Glad I could help.

Stickers are a great addition to any kit, they have SO many uses.

They can be used for.....
- Kids who don't want to be painted but don't want to feel left out.
- Kids who changed their minds after waiting in line
- Little kids who are too little to get painted
- Sick kids!
- To hand out to late comers after you pack up. (this one has saved me butt many times from the "oh can you just paint one more?" parents)
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by bubbleblossom on Fri Dec 19, 2014 3:34 am

I've only done a few jobs so far and encountered this on my first one! The mum sat in the chair....held the 2.5 yr old boy down and said "just paint him. I don't care if its a simple circle or star...just get it on him so he realises it's okay".

I said "why don't we see if he would be more comfortable with me painting his hand." She said okay. I said to him "hello little man, would you like a little picture painted on your hand?" He squirmed and whined as in NO! So I said "would you like to see my paintbrush? It's like yours at home when you paint on paper." That got him curious. "Shall we paint mummys cheek and see what it looks like?" He nodded. I painted a very simple design on her cheek. He liked it. "Shall we try your hand now?" Screaming ensued. The mum yelled and screamed at him and the other kids in line started looking a little upset...so I interrupted and said "maybe next time. it's okay a lot of little ones his age aren't sure about it yet." She said "WELL!!! I was going to hire you for his birthday but it ddoesn'tlook like THAT'S going to happen" and she stormed off.

Next....

Move on. Nothing you can do about it. Be as polite as you can. make suggestions. then say flat out no.

I'm also a character performer and one time when I was doing a queen Elsa gig a mother slapped her 2 yr old in the face in front of hundreds of people because her lil one didn't want to cuddle me for a photo.... That left me speechless and furious.... And I couldn't do a thing about it! Some parents are just unbelievable.
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by Forest-Fairy on Fri Dec 19, 2014 3:39 am

wow bubble, that's nuts. You should add these to the Nutbar thread, we love collecting crazy nutbar stories there lol.
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by bubbleblossom on Fri Dec 19, 2014 4:30 am

Lol nutbar thread... Didn't know there was one I'm new here! Will have a looksy :-)
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by eviedejesus on Fri Dec 19, 2014 7:30 am

That makes me VERY sad bubble blossom. The nutbar thread is a very long one (although very entertaining) - I think I lost track at page 13.
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Re: Persistent Parents - HELP

Post by fantasticalfaces.com on Sat Dec 27, 2014 4:34 pm

Hello Lollipop-Painting~

I agree with Forest-Fairy on suggesting the hand as an alternative. I also do glitter tattoos and sometimes they will go for that rather than the face painting and then it's a win-win.

I also have a standing policy that I will not paint kids under 3 years old. They are the ones who tend to be more apprehensive; plus, much of the time, the designs get smeared in an instant; with the paint ending up in their mouths. Though the paint is non-toxic, I certainly don't want to get a parent angry because their child ate some of their face paint off and then blame me if they get sick. (More than likely it's the fair food they've fed the child, but the face painter is always an easier person to blame.)

I have one other trick that is more of a be all/end all. I always bring some small trinkets with me to events... They are inexpensive toys that I find in the party section of most dollar stores. Sometimes I have plastic airplanes, fairy wands, princess crown clips, plastic cars, etc. They cost me maybe 10 cents each if that.

So even if the child adamantly chooses not to get painted, to ensure they are not bruised for life from a traumatic experience, I present them with a little parting gift to help make them feel better. And, hopefully next time, they will look for me when the child is ready to have their face painted. (Sometimes, after receiving the gift, they are then willing to sit to be painted too. I hate to say bribe children to sit still, but in those worst case scenarios, it can be a lifesaver.)

Just my two cents anyway. No one likes a parent with bad etiquette; it's awkward and uncomfortable for everyone, and can make a good day go bad rather quickly. Just remember next time, it happens to ALL of us. Smile

I hope that, if there ever is a "next time" it all goes smoothly for you.

-tif-
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