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Ok I admit it - I've pulled my judgey pants well and truly up - but still bloody cross at these irresponsible adults!

(60 Posts)
ChasingPavements123 Thu 31-Mar-16 16:17:08

So today we took dc's (3 &5) to a local popular attraction. Place was very busy and we were having a great time - its a brilliant place for kids but not one where you'd want to leave them completely to their own devises - i.e. animals, vehicles, water features etc. We were having a great time and wondered into another part of the park and found a little boy playing at the edge of a pond, looking around couldn't see parents etc or obvious group he was with and so started to talk to him. He told us he'd lost his friends, he'd lost them 'long time ago' and so I walked about asking people in the local vicinity etc and as we had no luck I took him back to the nearby restaurant and alerted the park staff. He was three years old, relatively articulate (i.e. could tell me his name and after a long conversation I realised he was with his mum's friends rather than his mum) but scared, sad and worried. Luckily having two young dcs I had colouring bits and dino snap on me which kept him amused. It took the park rangers 25mins to locate the mum's friends. Now my 'judgey pants' are not up because the child got lost. Crikey some of the best of us have had that heart pounding moment when you can't see your dc and maybe they have run off momentarily, I was furious because they didn't realise he was missing!!! Apparently it was only because the park ranger stopped a truck they had got on to take them to a different part of the park and asked if anyone was missing this child by name that they realised. When a woman turned up to collect him she immediately was remonstrating him and he was obviously sad, upset and scared No cuddle, no anything.
I've no idea how long he was lost for - he told me he'd been lost a long time and I was with him for 25mins - how can you not realise you have lost a 3 yr old child in your care!! My children would have been upset and I'd have been beside myself.

Buzzardbird Thu 31-Mar-16 16:20:26

Let's hope he can tell his parents about what happened when he gets home, and he is believed.

Katedotness1963 Thu 31-Mar-16 16:23:35

My next door neighbours daughter took my then three year old, to the park with her daughter and lost him. They were an hour later back than expected when the door went and she was asking if he'd come home by himself. He had not. It was about an hour later that we found him. To this day I have no idea just how long he was missing.

He had left the park while she was chatting to her friend, latched onto some other kids and followed them home. There was a language barrier involved too. Bloody nightmare!

Allyoucaneat Thu 31-Mar-16 16:24:10

Omg if I lost sight of any 3yr old child in my charge for more than a few minutes I would be worrying, never mind over half an hour! That's awful, poor boy. Good job you were there to help him out op.

MunchMunch Thu 31-Mar-16 16:31:11

Bloody hell my hearts in my mouth easing that! Especially him playing next to the pond. shock

The sad part is the poor dm is at home blissfully unaware that her most precious person in the world was missing and not even someone else's second though. She'll probably be asking him all about the good time he's had. I very much doubt she'll ever find out he was missing and I'm hoping she is a MNetters so can take steps to avoid her friend looking after him again. Fucking shocking!

MunchMunch Thu 31-Mar-16 16:31:31


Euphemia Thu 31-Mar-16 16:38:13

My blood ran cold reading that!

ChasingPavements123 Thu 31-Mar-16 16:40:32

It was him playing by the pond that caught our attention as seemed a concern unsupervised and hence we were looking for people with him. I was actually shaking with anger after they collected him and went off, honestly wanted to explode at them but thought better of it with the child there. I did point out how long I'd had him and where he was playing and it seemed irresponsible when he was only 3. The park ranger had strong words I believe!

RufusTheReindeer Thu 31-Mar-16 16:40:39

Bless his heart sad

Very scary for him, i hope mum does find out i would very angry if it was me

Arkwright Thu 31-Mar-16 16:46:20

I would put a message on your local facebook page saying what had happened and the name of the child. Hopefully the mother would hear about it. Poor child so lucky you were there to help.

Xmasbaby11 Thu 31-Mar-16 16:47:59

Crikey that's scary. I'd assume he is normally very well behaved and wouldn't usually run off or get into trouble, and so the parents weren't keeping a close enough eye on him.

When DD was 3, I couldn't take her eyes off her even for a couple of minutes. She'd have been off!

ChasingPavements123 Thu 31-Mar-16 16:48:21

I do know the child's full name and the mothers first name so did actually have a search for her on fb but no luck. From the way the child worded it I don't think the parents live together and maybe therefore her surname is different from his - but do feel she needs to know!

MrsMainwaring Thu 31-Mar-16 16:50:04

Poor child . I hope he tells his parents

Buzzardbird Thu 31-Mar-16 16:50:38

Well she won't be a million miles away from you. Someone is bound to know her.

BillBrysonsBeard Thu 31-Mar-16 16:53:22

God that's awful, both yours and Kate's post.. 3 years old is so little, it could have so easily ended in tragedy. If I was in charge of a little one that young I wouldn't take my eyes off them, a few seconds and they can be lost. Your judgey pants are justified!

ChasingPavements123 Thu 31-Mar-16 16:54:37

Ok I've put a post on my local pages asking if anyone knows parent of this child.

angielou123 Thu 31-Mar-16 16:58:41

Well done you, for taking the time to help this poor boy. I dread to think how his day could have turned out had you not stopped to observe if he was with anyone. Just think how many people saw him and ignored him.

Minisoksmakehardwork Thu 31-Mar-16 17:13:20

Post on the attractions page, praising the Rangers for finding the missing child's carers after you found the child. If they're local to the attraction then word of mouth will get back to the mum.

Gatehouse77 Thu 31-Mar-16 17:19:18

In that situation your judgey-pants were well warranted!

As you say, most (if not all) parents and kids get separated at some point but to not notice after a period of time shock! Even with my own 3 I would do a quick head count before moving from one are to another - even at Disney when they were teenagers.

And the reaction of the responsible adult was awful. I get that the worry can turn to anger (irrational and unreasonable but nonetheless human) but to not even offer any comfort is horrible. Poor boy. I hope his mum showed more compassion.

ChasingPavements123 Thu 31-Mar-16 18:25:47

Well place just contacted me (I have annual membership) as does child apparently so was traceable, they wanted to thank me and to let me know they have informed the mother as felt they had a duty of care to report the incident. Have to say I am impressed with them!

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Thu 31-Mar-16 18:30:08

I wonder if it was similar to when people leave their kids in back of car because they aren't usually with them and so truly forget.

Or they could just be irresponsible, yes.

RaspberryOverload Thu 31-Mar-16 18:38:51

It's good the mum now knows.

Wonder how the friend will spin it?

ExasperatedAlmostAlways Thu 31-Mar-16 18:46:34

That place is brilliant for notifying the mum, I'm so glad they did.

Atenco Thu 31-Mar-16 18:51:25

Unbelievable! I know when I have had to look after someone else's child I would be ten times more careful than with my own, because the idea of telling a mother that something happened to their child while in my care was my worst nightmare.

ChasingPavements123 Thu 31-Mar-16 18:59:36

Exasperated I am really, really impressed with them. They reacted really well when I took the child to them and within in a couple of minutes rangers were with us and others scattered across the park. They were really concerned by the carers reactions and the head ranger who spoke to the woman was very cross so I suppose I am not too surprised they followed it up - though very glad they did.

I also think that had I not come across the child another person would have. I can't imagine many people walking past a lone 3 yr old and not being concerned and not reacting appropriately. So many other people tried to help once I raised the alarm and started asking for parents missing a child etc (they were all asking around, going off to different parts of the park to look for people missing a child etc) - I have renewed faith in most of humanity at least!

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