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Is this child neglect or just normal parenting?

(110 Posts)
Maman79 Mon 19-Jun-17 10:14:50

Would you consider this neglect of a child?

-Leaving toddler in bath alone & in front of tv for a few hours while mum sleeps upstairs
-Leaving weedkiller/ fertilizer near a bouncy castle in shed where children could get chemicals on hands/ lick and ingest etc
-Leaving doors unlocked-kids could get out onto road

Every time I hear about a new incident and am wondering how 'endangered' the kids actually are and if there is cause for concern.

NormaSmuff Mon 19-Jun-17 10:15:41

yes sounds like neglect, leaving a toddler in the bath really dangerous!
not keeping an eye on toddlers also dangerous

Maman79 Mon 19-Jun-17 10:16:27

The mother has PND and is struggling.

justkeepswimmingg Mon 19-Jun-17 10:19:04

Yes sounds like neglect. You say the mother has PND, and is struggling, there is no harm in contacting social services with your concerns. They will support mum with her mental health also, as well as ensuring the children are safe.

ColdTattyWaitingForSummer Mon 19-Jun-17 10:20:29

I'm guessing you have something or someone specific in mind?
I'm sure though that as a single parent of toddlers I have (like many others) crashed out and slept when ill while using the TV as an electronic babysitter.. Not ideal, but sometimes needs must.

AnniesTurn Mon 19-Jun-17 10:21:02

The bath thing is the only neglect bit there

I don't lock doors or lock weedkiller away. I teach them not to leave the house and not to touch things they shouldn't

corythatwas Mon 19-Jun-17 10:21:18

The first definitely neglect and probably the second. The third would obviously depend on the level of supervision. I never used to lock the back door but I was pretty good at knowing where my dc were at any given minute.

SwissChristmasMuseum Mon 19-Jun-17 10:21:40

Are you going to offer to help?

corythatwas Mon 19-Jun-17 10:22:25

Sorry, by the first, meant the bath bit rather than the telly. Would also say the weedkiller as a one-off and/or with strict supervision might not be actual neglect.

NavyandWhite Mon 19-Jun-17 10:23:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WhooooAmI24601 Mon 19-Jun-17 10:24:03

I think it depends on context (except for the bath; that's absolutely ridiculous). We've all had moments of "oh fuck, I left that there" or fallen asleep for 20 minutes on the sofa while the DCs watched Peppa Pig on a loop. But if these things are happening regularly with no change from the parent and no effort to improve the level of attention, that's when it's dangerous.

Are outside agencies involved and supporting the parent?

hoddtastic Mon 19-Jun-17 10:25:52

the bath thing is bad, the rest 'meh' sounds like you're finding things - are all your household detergents under lock and key? Mine aren't.
I lock doors because we live in a high crime area, if we didn't, i wouldn't.

what is your relationship to the child/mum? Are you the absent father/his sister/his mother?

MrsHathaway Mon 19-Jun-17 10:26:47

-Leaving toddler in bath alone Actively fucking dangerous. Should never do this.

-Leaving toddler in front of tv for a few hours while mum sleeps upstairs Not brilliant, but on a very bad day probably not dangerous. Would be better to doze on sofa with toddler watching Peppa within arms' reach.

-Leaving weedkiller/ fertilizer near a bouncy castle in shed where children could get chemicals on hands/ lick and ingest etc Is the shed shut? I don't think this is necessarily neglectful although again it isn't the best idea in the world.

-Leaving doors unlocked Again, depends. I lock my front door because my 3yo is an escapologist, but if he were more compliant and I was always in the room with him then I don't think it's a problem. Quite cultural too, I think: some people think it's rude to have the main door locked and only do so when they go out or go to bed.

If you think the PND is making her take unnecessary risks then you could inform the HV or GP in confidence. They shouldn't tell you anything about her but can use your disclosure to inform their dealings with her.

NormaSmuff Mon 19-Jun-17 10:28:34

my d sis drunk the bleach when a toddler.

DJBaggySmalls Mon 19-Jun-17 10:28:44

Thats not simple neglect. Its active endangerment. Neglect is neglecting to do things, like washing or cleaning teeth. Endangerment is putting the child at risk.
You dont leave kids near water or poison.

Maman79 Mon 19-Jun-17 10:34:07

The mum is getting therapy for her PND. I am her nanny and have seen this first hand but am unsure what to do.

These incidents do happen regularly but there are no outside agencies involved. I am worried the child may say something at nursery and then they would have to report it. It is such a difficult and delicate situation. they are fed, clothed, happy etc so I don't think they would take much interest.

BeyondStrongAndStable Mon 19-Jun-17 10:34:16

The bath thing is dodgy, but I assume they weren't totally unsupervised as they must have gotten out of the bath to then be watching tv after?

I've never locked chemicals away, or locked my front door during the day. And I was frequently asleep while the kids were awake when younger.

It does sh

BeyondStrongAndStable Mon 19-Jun-17 10:34:49


... sound like you are loooking for faults tbh. What's your relationship to this woman?

BeyondStrongAndStable Mon 19-Jun-17 10:36:35

Do you mean nursery as in the child is three/four and therefore not a toddler, or childcare (I assume the first if you are the nanny)

PotteringAlong Mon 19-Jun-17 10:36:57

Bath thing is dangerous. Leaving weedkiller in the shed? Where else do you expect people to leave them? I reckon 90% of households with children and sheds have this!

Steeley113 Mon 19-Jun-17 10:37:03

The bath thing is a bad but the rest sounds nit picky. I don't lock all my cleaners away, I just teach them not to touch. I don't lock my front door in the day when I'm in because I'm there to supervise. I've 100% fallen asleep while the kids watch tv and I sleep in on mornings while they play upstairs. That it pretty normal parenting.

Steeley113 Mon 19-Jun-17 10:39:29

She has a nanny and a kid in nursery? If you're her nanny and have seen her do this, surely you were there to watch the kids?

QuiteLikely5 Mon 19-Jun-17 10:39:33

It is down right dangerous to leave a toddler unsupervised and I don't care if she has got PND!

She should sleep on the sofa or go to bed earlier at the very least.

Can't you gently raise this with her?

PND does not = leaving your child in dangerous situations

Northgate Mon 19-Jun-17 10:42:14

The bath thing - very dangerous. Clear risk of drowning.

Leaving in front of TV while mum sleeps upstairs - not great, especially if this happens a lot. How childproofed is the room with the TV? Can the toddler access the stairs, and if so, is the toddler competent at using them? DS2 is 3.5 yrs and only just at the stage where I feel he can be trusted to use them without close supervision.

Chemicals in shed - depends. Can toddler get in there easily? Is toddler frequently left in the garden unsupervised near the shed?

Doors unlocked - again, depends. If the toddler is supervised so that any attempt to open the door would be noticed, not a major issue. Or if the unlocked door opens onto a secure childproofed garden, again, not a major issue. If the door's left unlocked when the toddler's unsupervised downstairs and able to get at the door, that's a problem. Especially if the unlocked door lets toddler wander out near busy roads or other hazards. Is the door left unlocked when toddler is watching TV alone for hours while mum sleeps?

Are Health Visitors or other professionals involved, if the mum has PND?

Maman79 Mon 19-Jun-17 10:43:26

There is a toddler and a child at nursery. I mentioned the bath thing a few time sbut she shut me down and said it was fine.

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