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People not watching their kids.... - Page 6

post #101 of 180
I think everyday we encounter parenting situations that we wouldn't personally undertake. What I try to remember is that I have rarely if ever met a mother who didn't love their child to pieces. Sometimes that mother has too much on her plate, doesn't know about child development, has past issues, that create a situation that is less than ideal for the child. In instances where real harm is occuring, there are ways to make sure the child is safe and the mother can learn better skills and get assistance. In cases where it is deemed to far gone, the child is placed in others care. For the grey areas in between, it is fascinating how quick we are to judge.

I am not saying that the mothers reaction, slow....reaction, wasn't odd to me. But to speculate why, well, we don't have enough information honestly. I probably would have come quickly but showed no emotion because if I did I would be a blubbering mess. I dislike being emotionally vulnerable in public, so I would choose to put that emotion to the side for later. In effect, I would look very uncaring just to keep sane.

I am not too woried about child aduction, though the thought terrifies me. I have a somewhat more relaxed attitude but I better know where you are. I think the same is true for kids, they want to be able to find you even if they are being independant.

I think the fact that the child knew to go to a mom is a good sign. Perhaps he was taught that. I do like to give benefit of the doubt to moms only because the worst judge of mothering is from other mothers.

OP, I don't chastise you for telling this story at all. It makes me aware of differing styles of parenting, of things to do for our children to make sure they are safe, and knowing that there are moms like you who will help my children if they are ever lost and scared. I am glad you brought it up.
post #102 of 180
It was kind of odd she wasn't outwardly concerned. Maybe her yelling at the child was her way of showing concern. When I was younger I got lost in the store my Mom worked at, my father yelled and screamed at me when he found me. Thats just how he was (and still is).

I think everyone needs to be a little slower to judge and a little quicker to understand. Right now I have a 3 month old and a 2 year old and my husband isn't with us. When I go out anywhere my DD walks either in front of me or behind me and Im always getting dirty looks from people. I know exactly where she is, if shes behind me Im always looking making sure shes still there. She knows not to go into the street and if she tried I would be able to stop her. If she did bolt though I wouldn't want people to think "What an aweful mom" but rather "You know, shes always alone with those two babies, maybe she needs a hand with those grocheries". Unattended kids don't always mean a bad parent.
post #103 of 180
Agreed, OkiMom. I have a 3-year-old and an almost-one-year-old, and lately my DD has decided bolting is fun. She never used to do it and always would stick by me, understanding that she had to keep her hand in mine in or near parking lots or streets and almost never even trying to twist away. Then the other night, leaving day care, she started to bolt down the sidewalk (I used to let her walk without holding my hand until we got near the parking lot, because she had always been good about it and I wanted to reward her for that) and headed straight for the street at full tilt. No amount of "Red light!" or "Freeze!" could stop her, and I was barreling after her with my 10-month-old son under my arm like a football. Thank goodness she finally stopped a few feet short of the curb.

On a different but related note...

The other day, we were in Target and my DD was having a meltdown. (I've decided she's allergic to Target and will make all future Target runs either when she's in day care or when DH is also around.) Anyway, she threw an absolute fit and refused to put her coat on or allow me to do so. I could have either a) put her coat on by force, eliciting hysterical screams, kicking, fighting, etc. or b) let her ride the cart outside with no coat in 25-degree weather.

I chose option b. Needless to say, by the time we got to the car she was saying, "Mommy, I cold!" Um, yeah. So I put her in her coat and got her in the car, but as we walked out to the car I noticed two women walking toward their car behind us, watching us, shaking their heads and making comments that I couldn't quite make out but that sounded pretty disparaging in tone. They actually pulled up behind us as I finished loading the car and one of them was on her cellphone--I half expected to get a call from DYFS about neglecting my child.
post #104 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by JD5351 View Post
I didn't ask him how old he was, but if I had to guess, he looked to be about 4 or maybe a small 5.
4 or 5 is PLENTY old enough to keep up with your mom while she goes through the grocery store. It's too bad that he got scared, but I don't think the mom was at all wrong for blaming him for getting lost.
post #105 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by ginadc View Post
No amount of "Red light!" or "Freeze!" could stop her, and I was barreling after her with my 10-month-old son under my arm like a football. Thank goodness she finally stopped a few feet short of the curb.
Do you think her stopping was a matter of sheer luck or if she actually might have known that she needed to stop and despite running at a good clip planned on stoping. I ask because sometimes my kids like to give me a heart attack, but in the meantime do plan on stopping short of killing themselves .
post #106 of 180
I think you're right that she probably knew. I don't know if she actually intended to give me a heart attack or was just enjoying running full tilt, but she took a good ten years off my life!

Her day care buddy's dad was with us and he ran after her too (unencumbered as day care buddy was already in his car seat), and was quite impressed that even carrying a baby I outran him. But she outran both of us.
post #107 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sierra View Post
Do you think her stopping was a matter of sheer luck or if she actually might have known that she needed to stop and despite running at a good clip planned on stoping. I ask because sometimes my kids like to give me a heart attack, but in the meantime do plan on stopping short of killing themselves .
DD went through a phase like that, where she'd bolt headlong, but stop short of the curb. I knew she was going to do it, but was always still terrified that this would be the time she'd get over-excited and forget. Plus, she took a long time to remember about driveways. Scary stuff.
post #108 of 180
I'd like to know what changes between 3 1/2 and 4, or if its because my child is delayed - but If my son got lost in the store I would not think it was HIS fault at that age. I recognize though, that I do not know what its like to live with a typical 3 1/2 year old, or how much changes between 3 1/2 and 4. they do change a lot during this time. I just think 4 or 5 is still young in my mind.
post #109 of 180
I would be pretty disturbed by a non-chalant parent being separated from a child that age. Does that make me judgmental?
post #110 of 180
SGM, I'm not an expert, but I will say that I have noticed that the four- and five-year-olds in my daughter's day care seem to listen and understand instructions much better than the three-year-olds. DD has a buddy who is four, and I am always struck by how much more "mature" she seems (and I don't think she's unusually mature, from what I've seen). When DD is romping around the lobby, trying to run up and down the stairs as I'm putting DS into his snowsuit, her buddy will always ask her to sit down with her and have a snack, clearly trying to keep DD from getting too rambunctious. All the 3-year-olds seem to be hard to contain at the end of the day, wanting to race wildly back and forth together in the lobby, while the kids closer to 4 and up seem to calm down a lot easier and listen when asked not to wreak havoc. (Most of the time.)

Maybe I'll think differently when mine is 4 or 5, but from what I've observed it seems like something happens between 3 and 4-5, and many kids really become much more conscious of what's going on around them and what the rules are, capable of restraining impulses, and able to listen to instruction and do what they're asked for more than about 30 seconds at a time.

That said, I don't know that I think that this would make it the 4 or 5-year-old's "fault" for wandering away from a parent at the store, rather than the parent's for not keeping an eye. It's hard to judge without knowing all the circumstances.
post #111 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by karina5 View Post
I would be pretty disturbed by a non-chalant parent being separated from a child that age. Does that make me judgmental?
If you're just saying you would be disturbed, and are owning your own emotion, no. If you tried to shame her, or say she's a bad mom, or she should act differently, then yes.

There's a big difference between naming our own emotions and reactions, and turning around and putting our values on someone else.
post #112 of 180
I'm not trying to shame her or say she's a bad mom, but yeah, I guess I do place some judgment when there is a parent that non-chalantly allows a child to be separated from them in a place where they could be kidnapped.

I guess this goes back to the "is judgment always wrong" question, and how far would people go with that. I actually don't think I'm all that judgmental overall of how people parent, but heck yeah, I place a value on situations involving children's safety. I don't see how that's really such a bad thing, but I am also listening with open ears and an open mind. :-)
post #113 of 180
I noticed a little girl wandering through the store almost in tears. I stopped her and took her to the electronics department to have her mom paged.

The poor kid sunk to the floor and disolved into tears saying "My Mom is going to be so mad at me".

When the mom showed up, she was REALLy mad at the poor kid.
post #114 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by karina5 View Post
I'm not trying to shame her or say she's a bad mom, but yeah, I guess I do place some judgment when there is a parent that non-chalantly allows a child to be separated from them in a place where they could be kidnapped.
If you take that to its logical conclusion, we should never leave our children in another room in our own homes, because they could be kidnapped from their own home.

What does being "nonchalant" about it have to do with anything? NOBODY in this thread knows what was going on in that mom's head - nobody. We're basically casting judgment on her because the OP has made assumptions about how she lost the child and how she reacted, based on her actions and behaviour at least 15 minutes later, when she knew the child was already found...and even those actions and behaviour tell us nothing without further information.

A parent can care about their child without being visibly freaked out in a socially acceptable manner every time something happens.

Quote:
I actually don't think I'm all that judgmental overall of how people parent, but heck yeah, I place a value on situations involving children's safety. I don't see how that's really such a bad thing, but I am also listening with open ears and an open mind. :-)
Children's safety is an area where parents have many different opinions. I know many people who believe the "bubble wrap" approach to keeping children safe is actually more damaging overall than taking a few more risks. That doesn't make them bad parents - it means they have different priorities.
post #115 of 180
Ya know, it's not that big of a deal to me. I'm not all worked up about this.

There *are* parents that don't keep an eye on their kids. So to step away from this exact specific situation for a moment....that does happen. Right?

And I would think that a parent that does not prioritize keeping a young child close to them is not appropriately parenting their kid and keeping them safe.

So while I don't know what this particular mother was thinking (and yes, the OP was about a specific situation), I am speaking more IN GENERAL that I do judge that.

But again, I'm not all worked up about it. I just don't always believe that every parent has their children's best interest in mind. That is naive.
post #116 of 180
The number of times I have seen kids literally dropped off at the toy part of the super market so the parents can food shop in peace is ridiculous.
post #117 of 180
I know that the whole "stranger danger" issue is statistically less likely, but I can't help thinking about Adam Walsh whenever one of mine takes off in a store. ITA that molestation by a relative is statistically far more likely, but what about abduction, rape and murder?

I really prefer to have my children in FRONT of me in stores. I hate bringing them to Borders, the bookshelves are like a maze, and I can't see behind them. I've got runners, so I definitely NEVER judge the mom with the kid who takes off, but non-chalance about young children wandering alone in a store or other public place? I don't get it...

After one episode of them both running wildly away from me, refusing to listen and stay with me, I carried my kicking and screaming 4 year old out of one store (I'm sure, with many a mom and yet-to-be-a-mom judging freely hence the reason I never judge any mom dealing with a tantrum) I sat them down, and explained to them *why* I was upset when they ran off and the need to stay with mama. I hated having that conversation with them, and tried to keep it brief and simple, but I like them to know the "whys" behind our rules (at an age appropriate level.)

BTW, Karina, I typed the above before I read the last page, and then scrolled down before posting to see the last few posts. It's bizarre that we both chose the same word to decribe what we're thinking. I'm beginning to think we're dopplegangers with some of our opinions - on pretty widely varying topics!
post #118 of 180
As to defining "non-chalance", WRT this situation, I think that chit-chatting on your cell phone while you're strolling up to customer service counter, taking your sweet time to retrieve your child, that's being pretty complacent about child safety.

Again, I've got runners, so I totally understand the kid streaking across the parking lot, the child being found by an employee and a freaked out mom to come and claim them.....but I guess I sort of "expect" some level of "freaked out" if your 4 year old is "missing" for 10 or more minutes in a store, etc.
post #119 of 180
It's sad, but what I find even more sad is that we live in a world consumed by so much fear.
post #120 of 180
I guess "consumed by fear" v. a world including sociopaths is a personal balance. I do (admittedly) tend towards the side of being overprotective, but I partially I think it's because if anything I could have prevented did happen to them, I'd never forgive myself.

Also, I think every parent has their own personal issues - ie I let them climb everything, I stuff down the "ZOMG!!" when they're doing something relatively daring (physically), but protecting re stranger abduction and car seat safety are 2 of my issues.

That and our zombie plan.....
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