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To think that this is a bit neglectful?

(6 Posts)
GustyParson Wed 21-Dec-16 20:45:36

Background: We live in the arse end of nowhere, in a cottage surrounded by miles of nothing. Our nearest neighbour is a transport cafe a couple of miles away that's beside a trunk road (we're down a lane from that road). When I'm driving home from dropping DH at the station, or kids at school, or the supermarket (all 15 miles away) I sometimes stop off at the cafe for a cuppa and a slice of cake. Lately we've been having our kitchen switched so I've been calling in more often, for soup or a hot lunch. Mmmm, chips.

Anyway, every time I've been in over the past few weeks, which has been at all different times of the day from 8.30am to 6pm - maybe eight or ten times in all - a baby has been strapped into a pushchair behind the counter of the cafe. She is about 15 months old, I'd guess. I stay maybe half an hour or 45 minutes each time and the baby is never released. She just watches the cafe happen around her. A lady (I guess her mum) working as a waitress chats to her in passing, but she has no toys/books/anything, she just sits and looks about her. No signs of distress. Just a neutral, blank little face looking about.

Is this ok? My instinct is that she's a toddler who should have freedom to roam and play and stretch her muscles. But maybe she has a disability that limits her mobility? But shouldn't she have some stimulation anyway? Or is people-watching providing her with company and input?

The first couple of times I saw her I assumed it was a nap time and that's why she was in the buggy, but the fact I've been at random times and she's always there, alert and passive, has made me concerned.

What do you all think?

Stormwhale Wed 21-Dec-16 20:50:06

It's not ideal, but you don't have the facts for how long she is being left in the buggy. I hope it isn't too long as otherwise you would think she would be distressed. Or, a horrible thought is that she is so used to it, she doesn't fight it. It's not good to have a child that age strapped in a buggy with nothing to play with. They need both mental stimulation and to be allowed to move around.

My cousin is adopted, and she is the only one out of numerous siblings who hasn't got severe developmental delays and special needs due to being strapped into highchairs and given no stimulation. It's awful.

Birdsgottafly Wed 21-Dec-16 21:00:25

Being strapped in a buggy in a house, is very different to being outside a busy workplace.

OP, you don't don't enough to decide, tbh.

You could liken it to infants strapped on their Mothers, whilst they work, which happens around the World, to no ill affect.

You could chat to the Waitress (Mother?) about it.

Velvetdarkness Wed 21-Dec-16 21:13:50

If she's getting little to no stimulation or interaction then yes that's neglectful. I would call the local health visiting team and flag it so they can look into it.
Mum clearly needs some extra support if she's working with her baby there.

NavyandWhite Wed 21-Dec-16 21:15:33

It's not ok. Maybe the mum has nobody to else to leave the baby with?

Poor baby.

LockedOutOfMN Wed 21-Dec-16 21:22:18

Ask the mum.

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