To wonder why parents are so risk averse?

(83 Posts)
gingerdad Wed 28-Oct-15 07:26:11

http://gu.com/p/4dah3/sbl

On my phone so not sure that link would work.

For me it frustrates me they my DDs friends are so risk averse. One example DD1 14 wanted to go to a city with friends for an event but none of her friends where allowed to go unless a parent went with them. Why? For me it's the next stage they've been to the local town on bus and train and proven they can be trusted.

Having seen this article we we as a country much more risk averse than ever before. Kids need to be allowed to push boundaries and get into at least a little danger / risk at times.

BrandNewAndImproved Wed 28-Oct-15 07:35:36

I overheard a conversation in the playground the other day. They were talking about playing out and the mums all agreed 11 is the age when they can play out in the street. I live on the same road and my dc have been playing out from 7/8, they must think I'm an awful mum.

Enjolrass Wed 28-Oct-15 07:36:20

Depends on your definition of danger though doesn't it?

Why don't you take your dd instead of getting pissed off that other parents won't allow their kids to do something that she wants to do.

I don't think parents are more risk averse. But then my mum was a worrier and very risk averse in the 80s.

Essentially it's up the the parents. I am sure people will blame media etc and that maybe true. We hear about everything bad that happens.

But tbh some of the things that people say they did in the 80s and 'it didn't harm me' is horrifying.

MajesticSeaFlapFlap Wed 28-Oct-15 07:38:17

My eldest is in year 8. a large number of kids are still walked in and picked up by mummy everyday.
Not allowed out with mates after school or on weekends either.

Enjolrass Wed 28-Oct-15 07:39:38

Posted to soon.

I have lots of friends that were allowed to buy fireworks and run around the streets with them. Not as powerful as some now but a few were injured.

I think all parents are different. I don't allow my 4 year old to play out on the street alone. A few of the neighbours have let their kids play out from that age.

Our house in on a corner and we have seen a couple very close to being run over. Their parents insist they are road safe and street wise. They aren't. And it's not just about the kids, it's trusting adults to drive safely as well.

The ones who take risk are always the ones who are correct.

Whoknewitcouldbeso Wed 28-Oct-15 07:44:39

Because the media does a very good job of frightening people with their ever increasing sensational stories complete with gory details.

Bully for you for being a cool parent. Many parents want to ensure their kids stay safe so they are extra cautious. If we felt as though child sex attackers and violent offenders were actually dealt with effectively within the court system we might feel as though the streets were safer.

gingerdad Wed 28-Oct-15 07:44:53

We did go with DD and a friend so they didn't miss out.

tibbawyrots Wed 28-Oct-15 07:47:26

My eldest is in year 8. a large number of kids are still walked in and picked up by mummy everyday

Really? shock that is odd.

PreciousxBane Wed 28-Oct-15 07:47:43

I was practically feral and running about doing dangerous stuff as a very small child as was my sister but she got up to some really bad stuff. She was glue sniffing, shoplifting and begging at least I was just swimming in the sea in February, scrumping apples and having cow pat fights.

Having had that life of total freedom it has made me risk averse as I know what can happen. My DS was allowed to play along our road from about six but only a short dostance from house and with NDN DD. so both us Mums would glance out often.

gamerwidow Wed 28-Oct-15 07:48:01

I think the media skews the perception of risk and makes things seem more dangerous than they are. Parents love their dc and get anxious about putting them in danger as a result. The irony being that it's more dangerous to complete avoid risk then to exposed DC to risk in a controlled way. In the case of your dd's friends though maybe they aren't ready for a solo trip to town, not all dc mature at the same rate. my Neice could manage a solo trip like that at 14 but my nephew definitely couldn't.

gingerdad Wed 28-Oct-15 07:49:46

That's just it there is no more risk of a stranger sexauslly abiding your child then 100 years ago. The risk hasn't increased but the perception has.

The biggest risk of child abuse is you, your Oh, close family or friends.

Defiantly not a "cool" parent just don't think anything has changed from when I was a kid. But then used to travel on bus/ferry every six weeks to school.

Enjolrass Wed 28-Oct-15 07:51:39

*My eldest is in year 8. a large number of kids are still walked in and picked up by mummy everyday*

Could there be reasons though.

I drive my dd to secondary every day. Because if not its 50 minute walk (she starts at 8.10am so would have to set off about 7.20) and is a walk down a lane with no foot path and no street lighting between two farmers fields.

A few parents thought we were odd when I pointed out that they all lived in the other direction so their kids had a 15 minute walk along a main road, they saw my PoV.

She does walk with friends in the afternoon. She walks to ds primary and we meet her there.

TheSilveryPussycat Wed 28-Oct-15 07:52:47

Had the same thing with my DD, then 14 - she wanted to go to a gig in Birmingham, it's a longish journey but only one train. No other parent would let theirs go.

She went on her own, we were back-up from home. It was a while ago, so technology slightly more primitive, but she had her mobile and we were on the end of the phone, with Google maps to help.

She's now a lovely young independant adult.

SaucyJack Wed 28-Oct-15 07:52:47

If every single other parent said no, and you were the only one who said yes doesn't that suggest that it's your judgement that's off?

Wolfiefan Wed 28-Oct-15 07:52:53

I take my kids to school and collect them. Right through primary.
They don't play out in the street.
It's not due to the media. It is due to experience. As a teacher I had to tell a boy his sister had been hit by a car, a few years ago someone tried to get a teen boy in a car and there is a man who's been reported wanking just outside a local school.
So I am taking sensible precautions.

gingerdad Wed 28-Oct-15 07:53:26

bane agree. Have seen it from both angles where scouts I worked with on had the strictest parents on earth and another couldn't give a shit where there kids where. Both ended up in prison

I'm looking at the middle ground of some risk and not running the streets with fire works or sniffing glue.

Enjolrass Wed 28-Oct-15 07:54:47

The biggest risk of child abuse is you, your Oh, close family or friends.

But who says kidnap and sexual assault is the reason parents are risk averse. Parents have far more worries than that.

I am more bothered that the dickheads who seem not be able to drive down my street at less that 40 mile an hour (despite it being a 20mph zone) will hit a child. Sexual assault whilst playing out never entered my head.

gingerdad Wed 28-Oct-15 07:56:41

Saucyjack maybe but I don't think so.

Finola1step Wed 28-Oct-15 07:59:46

Things have changed since I was a child. Where I grew up, it was very common to be out and about from the age of 6 or 7. Lots of us had older brothers and sisters who were expected to keep an eye out. We just went him for lunch and dinner on the weekends and school holidays.

But it is different now. I live in a very naice town. Very family focused. Almost all the children on my road go to the local primary school which is just a few minutes walk away. My ndn has 3 boys and she happily lets them scoot off ahead, out of sight while she pushes little one in buggy. I've heard a few almost tuts from other neighbours about this. Which in the surface sounds ridiculous. But the youngest boy is six and scoots along with no care and every house in our road has its own driveway. There have been a couple of near misses this term with cars reversing out and boy whizzing past, almost knocked over. Ndn doesn't see as she is a few minutes behind but other parents see. And stop him. And comment.

But I also see the nonsense if walking Year 6 children to the door of their classroom. Right to the door. So no surprises that said children will find going to secondary school hard and will still be walked in and collected by a parent.

gingerdad Wed 28-Oct-15 08:00:21

Enjolarss was a specific reply to Bane.

That needs dealing with too many cars parked on our main road to get over about 25 mph.

Can't say speeding in the street would stop me letting them play out.

BathshebaDarkstone Wed 28-Oct-15 08:04:04

It depends on the child. I was still very young at 14. I'd be worried about men thinking she was older than she is too.

lashawn Wed 28-Oct-15 08:04:19

Kids need to be allowed to push boundaries and get into at least a little danger / risk at times.

Why on earth should children be allowed to get into danger? Every bone in my body wants to keep my DD out of danger. That's why people are risk averse and agree that if every other parent takes a different line to you it was probably your judgement which was off.

Wishful80smontage Wed 28-Oct-15 08:05:56

I don't think the media has influenced me as much as my experiences in life... My sister was ran over as a child and was extremely ill for a long time so obviously I am more wary of rta than others might be, I used to work in a health environment where I would work with information about very seriously ill children- again I might be more reactive over slight illnesses than others etc etc
Things that I did as a child- my mum letting me out to play and me and my friends at 9/10 thinking it was a brilliant idea to go and play on the train tracks shock so again I might be more hawk eyed with mine but I'm trying not to be too much of a helicopter parent but its hard.

Enjolrass Wed 28-Oct-15 08:06:56

That needs dealing with too many cars parked on our main road to get over about 25 mph.

It has been dealt with. Several times. Directly and through the residents association. It still happens.

One car goes so fast, there is a large very wide (about 12 feet wide) speed bump. One car goes over so fast his car jumps.

It doesn't stop my oldest playing out but it stops me allowing the youngest (4) as he isn't as aware of these dangers. Neighbours still let their kids play out from 4 or 5 and I have witnessed and reported several near misses

it may not stop you but I won't risk my child's safety to make a point to some dicks who think they can drive as they wish.

southeastastra Wed 28-Oct-15 08:07:22

tim gill's book is well worth a read on this subject!

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