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to judge this family in the park?

(51 Posts)
EricNorthmansMistress Sun 03-Jul-11 14:02:51

I took DS to a 'pleasure park' today. It's a fair size, with a park, miniature train, ponies, paddling pool etc. It has no traffic inside. It has a play area which is fenced off.

I was ignoring watching DS play and saw a woman come into the play area with a toddler on reins. Boy was 18mo-2yo. He was straining to get away and play but she didn't take the reins off. She lifted him onto the slide (instead of letting him climb the steps) and walked alongside him on the (very safe) walkway bit, sticking her hands over so she was touching him at all times. She manhandled him onto the top of the slide and yanked the reins back when he got to the bottom. After his one allotted slide she carried him to the seesaw, sat on the same side as him and bounced for a few seconds, got off, walked him round the park a bit then left.

Her P was sitting on a bench watching.

The whole park is incredibly safe, presuming you watch your child a normal amount. The play area is very modern and not massive. Can there be any reason for behaving like this? I suppose it could be due to MH issues, but I can't imagine why SN would mean she needed to restrict him like that.

I freely admit I judged, but it really was too sad and I just felt so much for this poor little boy.

allhailtheaubergine Sun 03-Jul-11 14:04:53

Maybe he has brittle bones?

LadySybil Sun 03-Jul-11 14:05:21

dont be. He will be off on some sort of illegal drugs soon enough. Mom wont have a clue how to deal with him and her dp will have long since left

or the alternative scenario is that he will continue as is, and his dw will be on her in twenty years time compliaing about his lack of knowledge of laundry baskets and washing machines, or even kitchen sinks. her controlling mil, and welll, blah blah blah.

EricNorthmansMistress Sun 03-Jul-11 14:06:28

LadySybil - that's exactly what I was thinking. One extreme or the other.

Allhail - could have been. He could have an illness that makes her very overprotective. But still...

TidyDancer Sun 03-Jul-11 14:06:58

I wouldn't judge probably, because there are a number of reasons why the mum may need to be careful, but if you knew that she was just being overprotective, then I would pity the child if she continued this way.

lisad123 Sun 03-Jul-11 14:07:08

doubt it would be brittle bone if she yanked the reins, more like PFB

BluddyMoFo Sun 03-Jul-11 14:07:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

EricNorthmansMistress Sun 03-Jul-11 14:08:39

Bluddy - yes smile

To be fair, I only judged inwardly. She didn't know.

EricNorthmansMistress Sun 03-Jul-11 14:09:41

He looked like a healthy, robust, chubby little boy.

BluddyMoFo Sun 03-Jul-11 14:13:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SE13Mummy Sun 03-Jul-11 14:13:45

YABU, you don't know why this parent chose to do things this way. At 18 months my DD2 couldn't walk but loved slides and seesaws so I'd have done something similar. At 23 months she could walk but not climb stairs, balance on a seesaw/beam due to her hypermobile ankles.

She's now 26 months and can climb stairs and even balance a bit thanks to physio input but she doesn't have the stamina of most 2-and-a-bit-year-olds so may well be carried from one piece of play equipment to another if she's tired; I'd rather she enjoyed the equipment and wasn't put off trying them due to having exhausted herself by walking from one bit to another.

Maybe today was a tired day for this little boy - catch DD2 on some days and you wouldn't guess that her mobility was an issue. See her out and about on others and there's no denying it.

BluddyMoFo Sun 03-Jul-11 14:15:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

hocuspontas Sun 03-Jul-11 14:19:01

How do you know it was his parents? It might be a childless friend/relative taking a child out for the first time. Just enjoy your own children and let other people do what they want to do. So yes, YABU.

Omigawd Sun 03-Jul-11 14:21:35

Betting odds:

- 90% PFB syndrome
- 10% Other rational reason ( brittle bones, alien child, mummy really wanted a horsey etc)

Sorted grin

EricNorthmansMistress Sun 03-Jul-11 14:23:59


SE13Mummy Sun 03-Jul-11 14:24:11

I should have probably added that DD2 often looks like an advert for an NSPCC campaign... covered in bruises in places I once thought unbruisable such as her cheeks, shoulders and inner thigh. Had I not witnessed the acquiring of such dramatic bruises I might question what she got up to whilst I was at work. However, her most bizarre bruises have been acquired in front of my eyes and are always the result of her co-ordination failing (inner thigh - landed hard on the edge of a step she clearly thought she'd cleared, cheek - 'ran' into upright edge of breakfast bar at my parents' and couldn't stop).

You'd definitely judge me if you saw us at the park this weekend!

BluddyMoFo Sun 03-Jul-11 14:26:36

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BluddyMoFo Sun 03-Jul-11 14:27:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DoMeDon Sun 03-Jul-11 14:29:57

Think I may have been at the same park, judging the same thing grin

Anyway!! I think it's impossible not to inwardly cringe a bit at what looks like helicoptor parenting. Others are right that there may be reasons for it but think some things just stike an instinctive chord in people. I often think it's a shame when parents are religiously following their Dc with 'helpful' play hints - LEAVE THEM ALONE!!

BluddyMoFo Sun 03-Jul-11 14:32:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PrettyMeerkat Sun 03-Jul-11 14:41:13

BluddyMoFo That's a good point.

pranma Sun 03-Jul-11 14:42:44

Well I wouldnt let an 18 month old loose in the park where he could fall off a ladder,be hit by a flying swing or overbalance on a seesaw-he could have been younger-just big for his age and if he was a pfb....Everyone would be quick to complain if he had been toddling about on his own and attempted to climb a climbing frame,fallen off and been hurt.He was a baby!Leave them alone at 3ish yes but not before 2.

EricNorthmansMistress Sun 03-Jul-11 14:43:10

Not Brooklands was it DoMe?

NestaFiesta Sun 03-Jul-11 14:50:15

YABU- you're only guessing his age and this is only a snapshot of his life.

Perhaps he has been to casualty already this year and she is scared of going again, perhaps he is her first and she knows of a child who died in a playground accident, perhaps he has delayed development, perhaps he is getting over a heath problem, perhaps he is 14 months and big for his age....

Maybe she is being overprotective but maybe she is just scared. As for her P "just watching"- how is that a problem? let him watch. Perhaps it's not his turn and he did it last week. I'd be more concerned if they had wandered off to get a coffee and left him there than hovered over him to excess.

God if people watched me for ten minutes with my kids God knows what conclusions they'd come up with. They'd have to follow me for at least a month before they knew what sort of mother I am.

meravigliosa Sun 03-Jul-11 14:50:21

Omigawd PMSL at "mummy really wanted a horsey etc". 26 wks pg w no3 so PMSL is just a whisker away from being literal rather than metaphorical.

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