DEAR ABBY: My brother-in-law is a restaurant owner. The atmosphere is casual and slightly sports-oriented, so many of his patrons take their young children to dine. The majority of the time, this is not a problem. However, some adults take children who do not want to be there. They yell and scream and run around the restaurant unattended. It's very disruptive for other patrons.
The staff takes juice, crackers, crayons and coloring books to entertain the children while the adults converse, yet the children continue to be disruptive, and the adults at the table make no effort to address the situation.
On occasion, my brother-in-law has had to ask the adults to do something about the children's behavior and has been met with some very rude responses from the patrons. He needs some additional input about what to do. We'd appreciate any suggestions as to how adults should handle situations where children are misbehaving in a restaurant. -- ROCHELLE IN PHOENIX
DEAR ROCHELLE: The disruptive behavior you describe is not the fault of the children; the parents are responsible for their children's behavior. If the youngsters create a nuisance for other diners, their parents should be asked to give them a "time-out" -- in other words, remove them from the premises until they settle down.