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Leaving sleeping children in the car for under 3 minutes - Page 2

post #21 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by siobhang View Post
I guess I am not comfortable with the blanket belief that car=dangerous.
Me neither. I think that belief is ridiculous and illogical. Sure, you can think of horrible things that could potentially happen while kids are left alone in a car for a few minutes, but aren't there just as many horrible things that could potentially happen if you get the kids out and take them in? A careless driver could hit a kid walking across the parking lot, or an armed robber could come into the store and start shooting, or someone could grab a kid and run away with him . . . Of course none of those things are likely enough to worry about, but I don't think they're any less likely than, say, the possibility of someone breaking into the car and trying to abduct a kid.
post #22 of 407
Quote:
I guess I am not comfortable with the blanket belief that car=dangerous.
Especially if it is locked, everyone is strapped in and a sleep, it's cool, in a safe neighborhood and it's in full view for the all of 3 minutes that you're getting a drink for them.

It'd be far easier for someone to corner and carry off a child in a park.

I don't think the au pair did anything wrong, especially since in her country it is the norm. And I'm sure she'll never do it again, given the verbal abuse. That is why I don't leave my kids in the car no matter how safe. I'm less worried about someone stealing the car, more worried about someone deciding to call CPS.
post #23 of 407
Again the fear our culture has instilled in us doen't allow adults to make a pretty harmless decision without being verbally ATTACKED and am appaled people here would have done the same thing I coud unserstand mentioning that you dont think its legal and she should look into that before she does it again but to rip her a new one is just plain wrong.
post #24 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by Daffodil View Post
Me neither. I think that belief is ridiculous and illogical. Sure, you can think of horrible things that could potentially happen while kids are left alone in a car for a few minutes, but aren't there just as many horrible things that could potentially happen if you get the kids out and take them in? A careless driver could hit a kid walking across the parking lot, or an armed robber could come into the store and start shooting, or someone could grab a kid and run away with him . . . Of course none of those things are likely enough to worry about, but I don't think they're any less likely than, say, the possibility of someone breaking into the car and trying to abduct a kid.
Yep. You're more likely to get killed by a car walking across a parking lot carrying a chiihld than your child is likely to be taken out of a locked car. And if someone wanted to steal a child, what's easier? Knocking you down and taking the child vs. having to break into a locked car?

I agree that there are times/places situations where its not appropriate, but to turn it into a blanket "you can't walk more than 10 feet from your car with kids in it" is hysteria in the other direction. I once had someone tell me that she wouldn't walk four parking spots down to a cart corral in the supermarket parking lot because that was "leaving your kids in the car." I just have to disagree and leave it there.
post #25 of 407
I wouldn't have yelled at her, but I wouldn't have approved of it, either.
post #26 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by siobhang View Post
I guess I just cannot think what could happen to them?
That is why they call it the UNTHINKABLE.

If you google around you can find all kinds of stories: cars stolen, cars reposed, cars mistakenly reposed, accidents, kidnapping, injury, etc.

I am not saying that I cannot imagine a scenario where I would decide to leave my kid in the car. In a true emergency they may be safer in the car. However, running into the 7-11 to buy juice is not one of those cases. I value my kids, and their safety too much to chance anything.
post #27 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by treqi View Post
Again the fear our culture has instilled in us doen't allow adults to make a pretty harmless decision without being verbally ATTACKED and am appaled people here would have done the same thing I coud unserstand mentioning that you dont think its legal and she should look into that before she does it again but to rip her a new one is just plain wrong.
Sorry. I wasn't thinking that neglect of children was harmless, and personally I wouldn't want to stand there with a stopwatch to determine of the adult was coming back soon and the degree of neglect involved. I'd rather jump the gun and try to protect the kids - option A being calling the police and letting them know that two kids were left in a car, and option B being dialing the cops, seeing the adult, and laying into her for being so careless - especially with someone else's kids.

At least one of the OP's kids is at the age where s/he could unbuckle if awake, and wander into the parking lot to look for this missing adult.
post #28 of 407
the stranger shouldn't have yelled maybe, but the au pair was totally in the wrong, full stop. you do not leave kids alone in a car ever. completely aside from stranger-danger (which is totally overblown), there are so many cases where one kid unbuckles, or unbuckles the other kid, opens the windows, puts the care into neutral and it starts to roll...

in any case, she is paid to mind the children, and she wasn't minding them. it's just irresponsible.
post #29 of 407
I think with better planning and foresight on the part of your au pair, she would not have had to choose between leaving your children in the car or waking them up to buy drinks.
post #30 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by dallaschildren View Post
I think with better planning and foresight on the part of your au pair, she would not have had to choose between leaving your children in the car or waking them up to buy drinks.


I never, ever, go out without taking water with me- and when I had little kids, I always had snacks AND drinks with me. If we finish the water, I refill the bottle(s) in a water fountain or public bathroom sink.

If I'd found myself out without drinks, I would have simply skipped the trip to the park and gone right home.
post #31 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by cappuccinosmom View Post
That is why I don't leave my kids in the car no matter how safe. I'm less worried about someone stealing the car, more worried about someone deciding to call CPS.
Unfortunately, that's my thinking as well.
post #32 of 407
Just a head's up - it may soon become illegal in Virginia to leave children unattended for any length of time in a car. Legislation is pending in that state and 12 others to address this issue.
post #33 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by beka1977 View Post
That is why they call it the UNTHINKABLE.

If you google around you can find all kinds of stories: cars stolen, cars reposed, cars mistakenly reposed, accidents, kidnapping, injury, etc.

I am not saying that I cannot imagine a scenario where I would decide to leave my kid in the car. In a true emergency they may be safer in the car. However, running into the 7-11 to buy juice is not one of those cases. I value my kids, and their safety too much to chance anything.
If someone's approach to life is all about the highly, highly unlikely, how do they justify leaving their house?

Won't raise my kids this way.
post #34 of 407
Your in Annanadale and you think 3 minutes is okay? Um, nope. This is Metro DC - even in the burbs we have crime. And that is just the issue I'd be 1st on, the safety of it (this week is cooler but a few weeks ago? 3 minutes could have = 160+ degrees)

In Hawaii there have been TWO carjackings from a similar 7-11 (huge window, 3 feet door to spaces, only five spaces) with sleeping children in the car in my lifetime. I've seen the faces of those distraught mothers - it would NEVER be worth it.
post #35 of 407
It is against the law in our state. I have actually had to cal the police many times on people for doing the same thing. Although I have never confronted the individuals. It may seem innocent but what if the line was long or there was a problem checking ou, or what if someone hit the parked car. You never know. I would go without the beverages Thank you. I was a nanny for fifteen years and never have I even considered leaving a child unattended in the car.
post #36 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by carmel23 View Post
If I had seen the kids in the car, you would have a broken window--I wouldn't have hesitated to break the window and get the kids out.

Are you serious??!!!!! :

It was at 7-11!!! Obviously the person isn't going to be in there for hours, and it wasn't even hot outside!! How would you be justified in destroying another person's property like that??

Don't you think that it would be traumatizing for the kids to be woken up a raging, self appointed safety officer smashing their car window and taking them out of the vehicle???!!!

It is not illegal to leave your kid in the car for 3 minutes in front of 7-11 where I live...but you will get arrested or physically attacked if you break a persons car window and take their children out of the car. I think that is called breaking & entering and attempted kidnapping.


IMHO their is nothing wrong with the Au Pair leaving them for a couple minutes as long as the OP is okay with it.

This is one of the silliest threads I've seen here in a while.
post #37 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by carmel23 View Post
If I had seen the kids in the car, you would have a broken window--I wouldn't have hesitated to break the window and get the kids out.
That would be criminal destruction of property, possibly kidnapping, would risk traumatizing the kids, and I just don't understand it. It's also a near complete waste of time and energy to protect other people's safe as houses children. We could fight for children's lives who are in actual danger. I understand the children of Darfur are suffering.

If there is no danger of climate issues and I want you to tell me why a stranger gets to pick that I can't choose some far-fetched risk for my children of being in the car rather than the far-fetched risk of being in or on the way to the 7-11 during, say, a holdup or mugging or a car careening through the lot and crashing into the plate glass window. What child is easier to snatch, the child following me out to the car or the child locked and buckled inside? Child snatchings are fantastically rare outside of the family.

I doubt anyone could defend criminal charge in that situation with "But your honor she left them in the car." Or the civil suit. Even if it's a misdemeanor for the mom to leave her kids in the car. Not unless there was some actual danger to protect the children from. Not the bogeyman, not what if clouds suddenly darkened the clear blue sky and a lightning strike felled the tree next to the car and crushed it. Actual danger.

If there's a law that says my babysitter has to be 12, and I leave my sleeping kids with a trusted 11 year old and cross the street for coffee, you are not allowed to break down my door and carry them to some place you choose.
post #38 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by LilyGrace View Post

At least one of the OP's kids is at the age where s/he could unbuckle if awake, and wander into the parking lot to look for this missing adult.
My DS Is the same age as the OP's oldest and he cannot undo his car seat harness yet.
Also, the vehicle was in sight, so she could have returned if one of the children opened a door.

Lets start a thread about the dangers of going pee and leaving your children unattended in your house for 3 minutes, where you can't see them. I am sure there are many more things that could happen in that scenario, and I am sure that most of us do that at least occasionally.

Car does not equal danger!
post #39 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by candiland View Post
I personally think there is a happy medium in all things.

It used to be accepted and normal to be too laid back....... no car seats, swatting, yelling, spanking, kids running all over the neighborhood up to no good.

Now the pendulum has swung to the opposite extreme.... where common sense isn't allowed to dictate that there are some circumstances where the "rules" can bend a bit. Now we're seeing a generation of kids so overprotected they are like animals in cages afraid of their own shadows.

Poor girl. She must've felt awful.
I tend to agree with this kind of thinking. I am VERY concerned about the state of fear in our society. That said, there are lots of awful people out there, and one has to be very careful and weigh the risks with the benefits in a situation like this. It's extra difficult to be from a different country with a different concept about what is appropriate and safe, but it's also necessary to know what's appropriate in the society she is now caring for children in. Personally, I am not passing any judgment over here. I don't see myself leaving dd in the car at a 7-11 while I ran in, but that doesn't mean that I necessarily think it's wrong-- especially if she really could see the car the entire time. Though I do think that'd still be too big of a risk for me to take. I do, however, think that the other woman was in the wrong for screaming at your au pair about it. There are much better ways to handle that concern.
post #40 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by hipmummy View Post
It may seem innocent but what if the line was long or there was a problem checking ou,
because they would run out of air? food? All the serious problems in the world and you are calling the police why?

Quote:
or what if someone hit the parked car. You never know.
Maybe we should pass a law that you cannot transport kids in automobiles period, because there might be a traffic accident.
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