RE: Don't you just hate –
On the flip side, I've long made it a personal rule that if a young child (12 and under) is showing signs of being overly scared, I'll back-off. Last night at The Baxter Avenue Morgue, there was a guy bringing through his two young sons and two of their friends. The two sons of course, had their dad with them, but the other two kids were basically 'flying solo" and were scared to the point of tears. A debate ensued for nearly 10 minutes (thankfully, Thursdays are our slow night) about how the two should "toughen up" and go along and how they were "never being invited to come along ever again" for wanting to leave. (One of the boys went along with "Mr. Parent-of-the Year" and his sons while the more frightened of the pair was escorted to our souvenir tent to await the others.)
I'm usually slow to anger, but I was THIS-CLOSE to stepping out of character and grabbing "Mister Macho" by the t-shirt and shaking some sense into him (granted, I'd probably still be shaking him come this time NEXT year with still no noticeable effect). For Christ's sake, lose $15 now and try again next year, or spend $1,500 on therapy 5 years down the road. As I've said before, I'm there to entertain, not emotionally scar some kid... (Stepping down off my cobwebbed sopabox)
"We all go a little mad sometimes..."
- Norman Bates