View Full Version : When Is It Neglect Or Just A Different Style Of Parenting?

07-14-2011, 10:57 AM
What I consider not up to par in raising children may not be what the county would consider bad. What do you all think?

This set of parents I know always have their children eating candy. Children are 1 and 2.
Their carpet in their apt is trashed, filthy with stains. I suggested that they have the maintence come in and shampoo their carpet. They have lived their over a year. time to get this cleaned. With two toddlers ages 1 and 2 and they let the kids walk around drinking junk mostly koolaid and eating junk all over the house. You can imagine what the carpet is like.
If the children are in their high chairs they are not buckeled in. The oldest when younger fell out of the high chair onto his head. You think they would have belted him from that point on and the 2nd child as well. NOPE!

The outlets are not covered, stairs are accessable to the little ones at all times. THe oldest child fell out the upstiars window when he was not even 2 yet. YEP 2nd head injury. Got up the steps while mom was in the bathroom. Still no gate at the stairs. Bed is still under the window as well. That is how he got up to the window. I suggested helping them move the bed right after the accident they said they were going to do it. (I should have just moved the bed to the middle of the room) Child protection came out and did their investigation after this window accident and deamed it an accident. (They didn't move the bed either) They did supply them with gates and outlet covers and door knob deals. This stuff is NOT being used.

Cords are hanging easily accessable to the children. They have those kids in front of the tv constantly. If you turn it off the 2 yr old has a complete fit. 2 yr old not talking like a 2 yr should be. no eye contact really. I suggested getting him evaluated. Could this be from falling out the window? Who knows. You would think as a parent you would be staying ontop of this. I have offered to help chid proof their apt.

They never take the kids outside to play and the park is right outside their door they look at. Any closer they would be living in it. NO excuse.

The kids are always sticky from all the junk they eat and are never dresssed always in diapers. Youngest has a nasty rash as well. (when they go out they are dressed and their apt is very warm but still t-shirt with little shorts would be good) Kids will wake up around 11 at night to play or do what ever.:eek: Then they sleep in because dad sleeps in until almost noon. I suggested that they get some type of daycare assistance and mom brings them to daycare so dad can look for a job. Even if one parent works nights they still need to sleep and those kids would benfit greatly from daycare. Key word there care what I feel they are lacking. I had even offered to start doing daycare in my house and I would watch them. I would quit my job at the center and start doing daycare in my house.

I try to put myself in the parents place such as one parent working the dad home with the kids that can be stressful with a 1 and 2 year old. Now the mom has her 2 other kids from her marriage there living with them. (10 and 6 their dad, mom's ex, is in prison now.)

2 bedroom apt. They can't even afford rent really. They have assistance for food. The dad that is home with the kids has fines up the wazzoo from his past. He has no drivers licesnse due to fines and oh not paying child support for his first child. Mom just got her liscence back so she says.

We have tried to help this couple out by helping them make a list of what needs to get done to better themselves. NOTHING. They are lazy.

Would you make a call? Is this something that child protection would find inconclusive? by the way this my husband's nephew and girlfriend. Is laziness a reason to call child protection? Or can I not see the forest for the trees here and there really is an issue?

07-14-2011, 11:16 AM
I think the answer is right here, "I try to put myself in the parents place such as one parent working the dad home with the kids that can be stressful with a 1 and 2 year old. Now the mom has her 2 other kids from her marriage there living with them. (10 and 6 their dad, mom's ex, is in prison now.)"

I think that this family does not know how to be any other type of parent other than the kind they are being. I think most of what you described is simply just the result of poor parenting skills and that if you called CPS, you would not get anywhere. If you are truly concerned with the type of parenting that is going on you would best be served by offering to help them learn to be better parents and why. You can't just tell them. Show them. Teach them. Explain why we (as parents and providers) do what we do in regards to healthy foods, routines and environments.

07-14-2011, 11:27 AM
ok, so i understand your frustrations with this family however I want to mention a few things...

The majority (not all) of what you posted is just poor parenting. Nothing reportable, nothing to honestly concern yourself over.

I never baby proofed my home. NEVER. Obviously dangerous things are just not left within reach etc. But my philosophy is....Children will learn. The stove is hot when the oven is on or an element. Touch it and you will get burned. Playing on the stairs....you might fall and get hurt.

These thing are things that they will encounter. When you visit someones house, and they have sets of stairs, a child will climb them. You cannot bring a baby gate everywhere you go. Children learn very young. Sometimes they forget, and we are there to remind them. Supervision is key. But I mean, if you baby proofed your house, and everything within reach for a child is fair game and ok for them to play with, how can you go anywhere else? Many people have trinkets on and in their coffee tables, on shelves, etc. Should they have to baby proof for you to visit? No, a child needs to learn some things are not to touch. End of story. Takes a lot of repeating to learn this.

As a daycare, I of course do not allow these children to be around stairs ungated, or near a hot oven. But they learn this stuff at home.

This family needs some help for sure, but I don't necessarily think it's neglectful. It's just bad parenting. Kids get hurt, but falling out of a window is not something that should've ever happened.

07-14-2011, 11:32 AM
That is probably why I have not turned them in. It is just poor parenting.

That and the stress of 2 little ones.

07-14-2011, 01:52 PM
You have to consider if the kids would be removed from the house and if they really would be better off in foster care. CPS is not a proactive agency, they are responding only to calls after something has already happened. Candy and little supervision is not a crime although totally not okay in my book. Are the issues big enough to take CPS time away from a family that really really needs the help (physical and sexual abuse, abandonment and whatnot)?

07-14-2011, 08:12 PM
acually maybe if cps was involved, they can help this family. Maybe this family just needs someone to direct them in the right direction. I would call and explain that you have concerns and ask them what you can do. They are not going to mad (cps) but sometimes they can tell you who to call.