Server says customer referred toddler as 'half' a person when asking for table

@katlynnnnnn16/TikTok Nicoleta Ionescu/ShutterStockl (Licensed)

‘Say 5. please’: Restaurant worker says customer called toddler ‘half’ a person when asking for table

"My response is always 'so 5?'"


Phil West


Posted on Jul 17, 2023

A toddler is not ‘half’ a person. There’s a server out there who would like all the parents of young children to know that.

The advocate for a toddler’s full personhood is TikTok creator Katlyn (@katlynnnnnn16) who recorded a short video and put it up on the platform last Tuesday, getting more than 2.4 million likes as of Monday.

Katlyn, whose bio notes that she’s affiliated with Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, included an on-screen caption explaining her stare into the distance throughout the short clip.


say 5. please.

♬ Cartoon Eye Blinking Sound – Anna

It reads, “How I react when I’m 6 hours into my shift and someone says ‘4 and a half’ referring to their toddler when I ask them their party size.”

She included a cartoon blinking sound to augment her reaction.

The caption provides additional direction for families, reading, “Say 5. please.”

Several commenters were on board with this.

One quipped, “My response is always ‘so 5?’”

Another remarked, “Right like I refuse to play your little games.”

Someone else added, “I used to get so upset when I was like 5 and being referred to as half a person.”

Toddlers at restaurants are already a testy subject for diners. A previously covered story revealed one mother’s “hack”—packing her own food for a toddler to eat when dining out which divided viewers. Other online articles, such as one from, dispense advice for parents who want their kids to behave in restaurants.

Just six days ago, the Daily Dot published a story about a TikTok from a Texas Roadhouse server analyzing a request for “three and two high chairs.”

The references to “half” people and “high chairs” parents tell hostesses might be well-meaning ones, but for Katlyn and other restaurant workers, it’s not the way to go.

In the comments section of Katlyn’s video, she unveiled another example of how parents reveal there are children in the party.

“Or when they’re like ‘there’s 4 of us’ and then later mention that there’s actually 5 but one’s ‘just a baby so it doesn’t count,'” she wrote.

One parent was apologetic in the comments section.

“Now I feel terrible,” that person shared. “My baby is just now 7 months and I never count her. I do bring my own attachable high chair. I’ll start after this.”

Katlyn reassured her, “Don’t feel terrible it just helps to know if the table needs to be big enough for another person.”

“I always say ‘two and a baby’ because she needs a high chair,” another remarked. “I thought it was easier than saying 3 but one is a baby who needs a high chair.”

Katlyn responded, “I prefer ‘two and a baby’ when I’m working. Just depends on the person ig so say whatever u like haha.”

Another person chimed in, “Just don’t say 2.5 or ‘2,’” adding, “The problem is half the people act like the kids aren’t autonomous beings that require chairs.”

The Daily Dot has reached out to the creator via TikTok comment.

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*First Published: Jul 17, 2023, 2:16 pm CDT