To feel sick with worry when i see a parent crossing a busy road with a "just" toddling toddler

(71 Posts)
Lucyellensmum95 Sat 02-Mar-13 09:38:30

I know IABU, i suspect I have done loads it but recently whenever I see a parent with a child out of puschair crossing a busy road my heart is in my mouth and i have to watch to make sure they they cross safely. I just worry that the child might slip from the parents grip and walk out...........sad

A woman in London the other day was doing this and actually crossed half of the road and then stood in the middle until there was a gap in traffic, ok there was heavy traffic and the cars were going slow but not slow enough to stop imo. I wanted to wind the window down and scream at her!

Now i know that would be a crazy woman thing to do and its sort of turning into a bit of a phobia thing for me (no background reason for this other than general anxiety which is quite high at the moment so maybe why i have been reacting)

I just can't help but think - oh my god, what if she lets go, what if the child trips? Seriously, my DP thought i had gone mad yesterday when i saw another woman doing it today - i was ranting away in the car about it.

So yes, over reaction i know but really? would it be so hard just to pick them up or have them on reins or those little rucksack things.

tumbletumble Sat 02-Mar-13 09:42:08

Sorry OP, but it sounds to me like you have anxiety problems.

Lucyellensmum95 Sat 02-Mar-13 09:45:30

No shit sherlock, i did actually say that smile. Hence the reaction. But then i got to think about it - its not THAT much effort to pick up child or have reins if you can't? is it? Anxiety or not, there is always that one in a million chance ... why take it?

EuroShaggleton Sat 02-Mar-13 09:45:57

I think it is your anxiety at work here (although clearly not everyone employs best practice when crossing roads whether with children or not).

PedlarsSpanner Sat 02-Mar-13 09:48:08

I do think YABU, folk do stuff differently, not wrongly.

Tell us more about your anxiety, how does it manifest itself?

Lucyellensmum95 Sat 02-Mar-13 09:52:08

I ABU for feeling so strongly about it, but its not that sensible surely? Maybe i'm just plain ol' barking!

Don't worry i wont be racing up to women screaming at them to pick their child up! blush

Hulababy Sat 02-Mar-13 09:52:17

If you look at everything that goes wrong you'd never go out or do anything.

What if the reins fail?
What if child falls even with reins?
What if mum slips whilst carrying child?
Etc

So long as holding hand and taking care then crossing abroad should be fine with a toddler.

greenandcabbagelooking Sat 02-Mar-13 09:52:57

I feel the same as OP, although perhaps not s strongly. I do feel a little nervous when I see a just-walking child crossing a road, or walking unrestrained close to the road.

aderynlas Sat 02-Mar-13 09:57:14

Dont want to give you something else to worry about op, but when I see little children trying to climb the side of a bridge to look at the water below it scares me silly. So no I dont think yabu, or maybe we both are.

BegoniaBampot Sat 02-Mar-13 09:58:49

Do get nervous when I see young kids walking near the road, maybe have walked ahead and are waiting for mum at the crossing etc. Soon as I see a young child near a road I always slow done and watch them like a hawk. I do get annoyed when other drivers just whizz by at high speeds without seeming to notice them.

livinginwonderland Sat 02-Mar-13 10:00:24

i think yabu. there's always a danger when you cross the road with a child - you can do everything right and a motorist/cyclist can come out of nowhere (sorry to give you more things to worry about!)

Svrider Sat 02-Mar-13 10:03:57

I read op to mean the child doesn't have their hand held, in which case yanbu
I saw 2 children yesterday about 2yo
They were running along alone near a very busy fast road
Mums were at least 100 yards away, round the corner
I have to say I'm surprised other posters think the op is in the wrong!

MrsPresley Sat 02-Mar-13 10:04:41

Well I for one, know exactly where you are coming from!

I say this a lot but GET REINS!

My DS died after being hit by a car when his dad didn't put his reins on. He was distracted by DD for a few seconds but that's all it takes sad

I would never want anyone to have the life I or my EX-H have had for the past 28 years, for the sake of a few pounds.

Yes accidents happen, but we can do things to minimise the risk, wont always work but at least we know we did all we could.

Lucyellensmum95 Sat 02-Mar-13 10:06:19

Oh MrsPresley - i am so sorry for your loss sad and sorry if this bought back horrible memories for you.

mrsjay Sat 02-Mar-13 10:06:58

grin At no shit sherlock yes ansiety like that is a bugger, I used to have my heart in my mouth if i saw toddlers at a pond edge we used to go and feed the ducks and it was a mecca for parents and toddlers and Id imagine them tripping falling in etc etc, OP just dont look at them turn away

mrsjay Sat 02-Mar-13 10:07:46

anxiety*

mrsjay Sat 02-Mar-13 10:08:37

OH Mrs Presley I am so sorry about your son sad

OxfordBags Sat 02-Mar-13 10:10:00

And how, exactly, are we mums of toddlers supposed to teach them how to cross the road correctly and safely? When I'm with my DS and he is unrestrained on the pavement or we're crossing the road, my every ounce of concentration is on him. I have trained him slowly but surely what is permissable and what's safe and what's not. If you wait too long to teach a child certain skills, they will actually be crapper at them or they don't do them so automatically, as you've missed the window for it becoming so natural that it's how they do it forever, IYSWIM.

This is all about your anxiety, but you know that. It's very patronising to imagine that other women can't be trusted with the people they care most about in the whole, wide world. I think you might be having some powerful and scary issues of things being out of your control, unsafe, unpredictable, etc., and it's easy to transfer these feelings into worrying about a specific slightly risky thing that others do. It's far easier to worry about what others might be doing wrong than look at the things that aren't right in one's own life.

But hugs for your anxiety, I do know what it's like.

TheFallenNinja Sat 02-Mar-13 10:11:24

It's all well and good that your anxiety focuses you on the potential danger of others, but, if your focus is there you aren't focused on yourself potentially being a dangerous distraction to you and those with you.

OxfordBags Sat 02-Mar-13 10:11:59

X-post... sad for Mrs Presley. We use reins for Ds, but are just trialling him not using them (but we do live in a quiet area). Might rethink this for a bit...

Still stand by the rest of what I wrote, though.

someoftheabove Sat 02-Mar-13 10:14:05

So sorry for your loss, Mrs Presley.
I also go into complete panic mode when I see little ones running along the pavement of a busy road with parents some way away. Although they probably know their own child and may have taught them to stop when they get to the road, as an observer you don't know that.
When we lived abroad, my then two-year-old ds strayed near to the edge of a tram platform and I yanked him back in fear, dislocating his elbow in the process. I felt so guilty but I had recently got to know an elderly couple whose six-year-old ds had been killed by a tram and I became paranoid after that. Trams can't stop suddenly; their ds didn't stand a chance.

Svrider Sat 02-Mar-13 10:15:11

Oxfordbags toddlerhood is NOT the age to be crossing the road unrestrained
You're taking a huge risk IMHO

Lucyellensmum95 Sat 02-Mar-13 10:18:38

ooh, do you think so fallen? Thats a good point, perhaps i shouldnt go out at all - i mean, i'm worrying about other people i can't possibly be thinking about myself so am bound to just walk in front of a lorry me!

TheSeniorWrangler Sat 02-Mar-13 10:20:53

how do we teach toddlers to cross a road safely?

By making it damn well clear they STOP about 2feet from the road and they WAIT and they LOOK BOTH WAYS and that they HOLD YOUR HAND while they WALK across.

what you dont do is allow them to charge upto the pavement edge where a simple overbalance could pitch them into the road, stand there while they play on the kerb, let them run across on their own or anything else equally stupid.

use reins or hold their hand or put them in the pushchair or carry them if they refuse to walk safely and sensibly.

I always had the pushchair and my kids were taught if they wanted to walk and not sit, then they had to follow my rules or they were strapped in tightly!

mrsjay Sat 02-Mar-13 10:23:16

I think the OP knows she is being anxious and unreasonable why is she getting a hard time from posters is beyond me, we all have anxieties about stuff and a busy road and young children is perfectly reasonable thing to be 'eeek' about imo

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