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  #1  
Old 03-22-2014, 07:08 AM
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Default Interesting Article On How We're Overprotecting Our Children

I saw this on another discussion board and thought it was really interesting. I grew up not far from where 'the land' has been created and had a similar childhood. It was a lot of fun!

I thought I would share it here and see what you folks think:
http://www.theatlantic.com/features/...-alone/358631/
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Old 03-22-2014, 07:54 AM
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This is how I grew up. We played with whatever we found and rode our bikes all over the city as long as we were home before the streetlight came on. Now, the whole "Think of The Children" mentality has seeped into everything. Children can't play without parents standing over them the whole time making sure they don't get hurt/traumatized on the playground. Don't get me wrong, I'm all for parents making sure their child is safe. But the level of safety obsession is ridiculous.
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Old 03-22-2014, 09:52 AM
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This is how I grew up too and that playground is supervised. I'm a little leery about the fire though.

Yesterday I had my dck's at the park. The surface under the playground is that hard rubber stuff. I usually just put my just turned walker in the swing while the others play but tried to let him roam around on that surface thinking it was safe enough. He took a few spills where he landed flat on his stomach like he was diving. One was close to some equipment and he just barely missed hitting his face on a metal bar. So we just had snack and left. Later in the p.m. I took him out in my yard and he had several spills on the grass and it is a much better surface for falling little ones.

I realize this playground is for older kiddies but the part in the article about playgrounds in general just made me think about this.

Laurel
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Old 03-22-2014, 09:57 AM
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I'm all for offering kids the opportunity to explore and I understand that that comes with the unavoidable bruises and skinned knees sometimes. But starting fires? Um, no. Just no.
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Old 03-22-2014, 11:35 AM
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As a kid who was almost kidnapped, I disagree.
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Old 03-22-2014, 07:04 PM
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Interesting approach though I doubt it will ever catch on in the states. I have always subscribed to the theory that this generation is the "wimpy generation". children are sheltered and coddled to the point were they can barely take a step without the parent picking them up and brushing them off. Most parents of young kids freak out if they have the smallest of bumps or bruises.
Except for the fire that video showed children exploring and figuring out things on the own. We are just not as progressive here on the states.
Deb
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Old 03-22-2014, 09:03 PM
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In my Family, Child, and Community class my teacher said that there is a critical age between 10 months and 18 months (during the 'Autonomy VS. Shame' stage of Erikson) where children need freedom to explore in a relatively safe environment and that there is a apparently a connection between the freedom to explore in this time period and confidence. This is the most important age range when setting up your child's sense of self.

The long lasting confidence of the child depends on the type of 'mother' (was the study base, but can apply to any caregiver situation) they had. Mother A would set up her house in a relatively safe manner (everything that is sharp or poisonous out of reach and appropriate baby proofing) she would be comfortable giving her child the freedom to explore the home and be less likely to helicopter over the child. Mother C was the total opposite of Mother A, she is overwhelmed by motherhood and not only baby proof (though some mother C's don't BP and that is the cause of their anxiety) but often always puts the baby in some type of "safety contraption" (play pens, high chairs) when at home and not holding the child, resulting in them not letting the tot on the floor out of fear that they will make a mess or get into something. Mother B is a medium between the two. The children of mother A are more confident, thus more likely to take healthy risks and more likely to be successful. Mother C children are supposidly more likely to have low self-esteem and more likely to be depressed.
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Old 03-23-2014, 10:07 AM
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I think it's great! Aside from the fire (which is supervised) I would think it's awesome. Kids NEED to be able to make choices on their own. It's part of growing up. The paranoia in today's society is just beyond crazy.

I was almost kidnapped as a child as well and it's always a thought in the back of my head, but as the article pointed out, kidnapping are not on the rise or anything. They're still very tragic but often by people we know, not strangers. My children walk to school together and they play outside by themselves and I feel good about it. We live in a friendly neighborhood and if they got kidnapped while playing it would devastating. But I won't be keeping my children indoors or under my constant watch to prevent the super slim possibility of being kidnapped. Believe me, I get it, but this article was a great eye opener about the opposite of these helicopter parents who are crazy controlling because they think that's what's best but not looking at the long term skills. We're raising future adults not children. They need to have independence and choices to establish their footing in the world.
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Old 03-23-2014, 11:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwinKristi View Post
I think it's great! Aside from the fire (which is supervised) I would think it's awesome. Kids NEED to be able to make choices on their own. It's part of growing up. The paranoia in today's society is just beyond crazy.

I was almost kidnapped as a child as well and it's always a thought in the back of my head, but as the article pointed out, kidnapping are not on the rise or anything. They're still very tragic but often by people we know, not strangers. My children walk to school together and they play outside by themselves and I feel good about it. We live in a friendly neighborhood and if they got kidnapped while playing it would devastating. But I won't be keeping my children indoors or under my constant watch to prevent the super slim possibility of being kidnapped. Believe me, I get it, but this article was a great eye opener about the opposite of these helicopter parents who are crazy controlling because they think that's what's best but not looking at the long term skills. We're raising future adults not children. They need to have independence and choices to establish their footing in the world.
Well the whole playground is supervised so that is a good thing.

I'm wondering if our general fear about everything nowadays has any connection with these 24 hours news channels that sensationalize every bad thing (and even good things) to the point of making everyone fearful about stepping outside their door? When I was growing up (I'm 62), people seemed to watch less t.v. and there was no air conditioning in the houses so outside was just as appealing to be in as staying inside for kids. Plus most moms (in my neighborhood anyway) were stay at home moms for a more supervised play time overall. If one mom wasn't looking out her window another was.

I think that more moms working outside the home and children pretty much institutionalized all day plus more electronics to keep them busy in their air conditioned houses not to mention the 24 hr. news channels made for a societal change in the 'helicopter parenting' area.

I was on another forum recently and more than one person was saying how crime was up as compared to when we were kids (me). I looked it up and that is just untrue. I forget where I looked now but crime is actually down. People perceive crime as going up though because there is always some horrible crime that we see on t.v. I think.

Laurel
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Old 03-23-2014, 12:40 PM
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No article is going to bring back a child.

No article would’ve spared me the almost certain rage & torture I would’ve suffered.

What saved me wasn’t my mother’s willingness to let me play without her watchful eye; it was her words of wisdom.

Most people think it would never happen to them or their child. They are probably right. There are thousands who were wrong.
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Old 03-23-2014, 01:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KidGrind View Post
No article is going to bring back a child.

No article would’ve spared me the almost certain rage & torture I would’ve suffered.

What saved me wasn’t my mother’s willingness to let me play without her watchful eye; it was her words of wisdom.

Most people think it would never happen to them or their child. They are probably right. They are thousands who were wrong.
I'm not sure what this is in response to. Statistics are really all we can go by. Of course bad things happen but I don't know what it really has to do with this article? They said the worst thing that has happened was a skinned knee which happens all the time even with helicopter parents nearby. The article simply points out that children making choices on their own and flirting with danger doesn't equal dead kids. It creates kids who have more social and decision making skills and maturity because they've been allowed to make these choices. When kids are kept constantly under watch they know the decisions are made for them and go along with it. But then you grow up never having made a choice for yourself or learning how as an adult not as a kid with a safety net.

This is what I read so many providers complaining about, children who need entertaining to be satisfied, children who lack imagination and creativity, children who don't play well with others and who would rather play with a device than play outside or get dirty. Here is a story basically confirming that this is a problem our whole society is dealing with because of our over-protectiveness. The tie-in with child kidnappings was that there hasn't been an increase since the 70's when people started really having "fear" of children playing unattended. I was a kid in the 80's when a bunch of blonde haired girls were kidnapped in my area and my mom was paranoid. I had to check in and stay within a certain distance and respond quickly when my mom called for me, etc. I didn't go to people's houses without calling when I got there and our parents talking. I wasn't kidnapped because I ran like hell when someone came after me. I lived in the same town as a girl Polly Klaas who changed our lives. She was kidnapped from her own bedroom playing with friends at a slumber party. So no one around here really thinks "oh it won't happen to me" because it did happen to our whole community. But statistics show that this isn't on an upward trend and family-friend abductions are more common with the divorce rate increasing from the 70's.
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Old 03-23-2014, 04:20 PM
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I think we would all like to go back to that kind of play. In those days it wasn't thousands of dollars to get medical care after an injury. People didn't sue their daycare over injuries. Social services didn't hand out neglect findings for injuries from that kind of play. The state didn't shut down a care provider for injuries.

We are expected to have ZERO injuries. We have moms of infants stripping their baby down the minute they get home and texting their daycare about a scratch the size of a babys fingernail.
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Old 03-23-2014, 04:54 PM
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Originally Posted by nannyde View Post
I think we would all like to go back to that kind of play. In those days it wasn't thousands of dollars to get medical care after an injury. People didn't sue their daycare over injuries. Social services didn't hand out neglect findings for injuries from that kind of play. The state didn't shut down a care provider for injuries.

We are expected to have ZERO injuries. We have moms of infants stripping their baby down the minute they get home and texting their daycare about a scratch the size of a babys fingernail.



This is so true. Minor bumps and bruises are a normal part of childhood but, for whatever reason, we've got parents who think they aren't.
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Old 03-23-2014, 05:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KidGrind View Post
No article is going to bring back a child.

No article would’ve spared me the almost certain rage & torture I would’ve suffered.

What saved me wasn’t my mother’s willingness to let me play without her watchful eye; it was her words of wisdom.

Most people think it would never happen to them or their child. They are probably right. There are thousands who were wrong.
I am sorry for what happened to you. There are always going to be bad people who try bad things. However, children who know how to take risks and have learned their limitations are safer kids. They have a confidence in their own abilities that helps them become stronger. These are the kids who are able to say no and mean it. The ones who feel that little prickly feeling on the back of their neck and listen to it. They have experienced things, and learned from them.

As to the playground itself, as a provider, I would not condone fire or even a lot of what is available to the kids, but as a mother, I LOVE the idea. My kids from the ages of 4 to 12 were ALWAYS doing such things, and they have become some of the most resourceful people I know. Their playground was the woods and river behind the house, and the massive amount of "garbage" and junk collected by the community residents twice a year that was supposed to be thrown away but became fodder for the neighborhood "clubhouses."
Not one of them would change it for the world. And just for the record, every one of them could safely start and manage a fire by age 7.
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Old 03-23-2014, 06:55 PM
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I used to take my own kids to this mud park
http://www.yelp.com/biz/adventure-pl...ntington-beach


Back when we went they had a huge fort like set up where kids can hammer,nail and saw wood and "make" a house
slide down a huge mud slide and land in a pool of mud water
and sail across the mud sea with your own wood boat and paddles

My kids loved it!!
of course we had to sign waivers but this is about as far as I would go as far as this articles talks about.
I think it's still open and I am thinking I might take my dd
I used to take my neighbors kids and mine all the time

I will just make sure I refill my anti anxiety pills
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Old 03-24-2014, 09:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angelsj View Post
I am sorry for what happened to you. There are always going to be bad people who try bad things. However, children who know how to take risks and have learned their limitations are safer kids. They have a confidence in their own abilities that helps them become stronger. These are the kids who are able to say no and mean it. The ones who feel that little prickly feeling on the back of their neck and listen to it. They have experienced things, and learned from them.

I know that there is also a lot of bashing on letting children watch certain movies and TV shows that depict violence and adult behavior; but I think this actually helped me growing up (I used to watch those lifetime special movies and Dr. Phil/Oprah specials). I was always an early bloomer and used to walk home a lot; there were multiple occasions where grown men would be driving and pull up to the sidewalk and try to convince me to get into their cars (one even said that he was a friend of my mom whom she had sent to pick me up) and I always said 'no' (even when I lived on the other side of town I would have loved to skip a hour and a half walk home). Many times I would wander 'Do they really think I'm that stupid? Who (my age at the time) is that gullible?' then in high school a friend and I were talking about that stuff and she said "yeah, the one time I did accept a ride from a stranger I wound up herpes " (it was consensual)
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Old 03-24-2014, 02:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Leanna View Post
[/b]

This is so true. Minor bumps and bruises are a normal part of childhood but, for whatever reason, we've got parents who think they aren't.
That's because now days kids don't get bumps and bruises at home. They sit in front of the tv, video games or computer and they don't get hurt.
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