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To think that 3-yr olds shouldn't be allowed to play out by themselves?

(148 Posts)
jigglepuff Sat 22-Sep-07 21:23:41

We live on a lovely quiet cul-de-sac. There are lots of kids playing out most of the time. They will usually have one or both parents watching them. However, one family doesn't come out to watch their children. I think that as one of their children is only 3, they should be keeping a closer watch on them. Would you consider this acceptable? I don't feel that it's fair that I'm effectively responsible for this child, whether I want to be or not.

littlelapin Sat 22-Sep-07 21:24:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lomondgal Sat 22-Sep-07 21:26:04

I wouldn't let my 3 year old out (she is actually nearly four!) ahe has no road sense and I just don't trust people these days.

FrannyandZooey Sat 22-Sep-07 21:26:47

My ds plays out and has done since he is 3. There aren't any adults out there, usually some older children but not always. I don't think he needs watching when he is just playing on the pavement in front of the house and I wouldn't expect anyone else to be watching him either.

If you ARE out there, does one more child really matter? I don't know, is it worth getting aggrieved about? I imagine the parents enjoy the break, I know I do.

jigglepuff Sat 22-Sep-07 21:27:38

Do they have older children out there?

Sometimes, but not most of the time.

HappyMummyOfOne Sat 22-Sep-07 21:32:02

My DS is 4.5 and we live in a quiet cul de sac but he doesnt play out without either myself or hubby watching him so no I wouldnt consider it acceptable for a 3 year old to be playing outside alone.

3andnomore Sat 22-Sep-07 21:35:35

Hmm, by the sounds of it they have older children playing out there..what age are they?
You also mention it is a quiet cul de sac location...what sort of area is it?
I am just saying this does so depend on the area, the estate and also the individual child and their siblings playing out with them!
MY es was playing out by himself aged almost 4, and I would check half hourly on him, this was in an army estate, that wasn't closes up, but it was a small community, etc...however ms is now almost 5 and only rarely, when his big brother (now 11) agrees, go out on the playing field with him, and ys is only allowed with him if there is another child similar age to es looking after him...
but letting them out alone on a regualr basis, not yet...
this estate doesn't make me feel safe enough for it, neither does my Kids behaviour...

MamaMaiasaura Sat 22-Sep-07 21:35:35

I dont think 3 years old is old
enough to play out by themselves.

FrannyandZooey Sat 22-Sep-07 21:47:18

What are people worried might happen to a 3 y o playing on the pavement of a quiet street outside their house?

ChantillyLace Sat 22-Sep-07 21:47:45

my dd3 is not yet 4 and there is no way I would let her play out the front without one of us with her! I agree that they should be able to play where they want and we live in a quiet cul-de-sac too, but there is no way I would take the risk with my little girl!!

laura032004 Sat 22-Sep-07 21:49:16

We have a similar situation to this on our street. However, we have cars coming up and down our road, so we continually have to shift the kids off of the road. If there were no other adults around to make sure one particular child wasn't on the road when a car came, I'm not sure what would happen.

FrannyandZooey Sat 22-Sep-07 21:49:34

But just because you wouldn't choose to do it, doesn't mean that it is wrong for another parent to let their child do it. Why should this parent not let her dc play outside if she wants to?

harpsichordcarrier Sat 22-Sep-07 21:49:48

if there are lots of kids playing out and parents then yabu. it is a lovely quiet cul de sac. you are not responsible. it is a group of children playing, that's all. you are neighbours!

FrannyandZooey Sat 22-Sep-07 21:50:17

I am not talking about playing on the road where the cars are, btw

I mean outside the house, on the pavement of a quiet street.

harpsichordcarrier Sat 22-Sep-07 21:50:39

the other children will look after each other - that is what always used to happen and still does in lots of places

scienceteacher Sat 22-Sep-07 21:50:41

My five year old now plays in the street. I wouldn't have let her out earlier. She has strict ground rules which she appears to follow.

Nightynight Sat 22-Sep-07 21:51:49

Franny, my dd2 is almost 4, but she still has no road sense - if she saw a cat on the other side, she'd run across without a second thought. Also, she might decide to go and look at the river, or something else. Or, someone might stop and pick her up. I know somebody who was almost kidnapped as a child, so I dont buy this "its so rare it will never happen to your child" stuff.
dd2 plays outside - but only with her brothers and sister, or an adult.

FrannyandZooey Sat 22-Sep-07 21:52:23

My ds plays out on his own, there aren't always other children there

I see it as about the same as him playing in the back garden - in fact a bit safer because the front of the house has not got big stone steps which the back of the house has

i haven't heard anyone explain why they think it is wrong yet, just that they wouldn't do it so the other mother shouldn't

FrannyandZooey Sat 22-Sep-07 21:53:22

sorry NN, cross posts

agree if your child runs into the road it is not safe

I know plenty of people who have been injured in car accidents btw or as pedestrians but I still let ds go in cars and walk on the street

Nightynight Sat 22-Sep-07 21:55:16

in answer to the OP - if the 3 year old stays with the others, then its ok.

pointydog Sat 22-Sep-07 21:55:48

I think it depends on many things - traffic, number, age and nature of other kids

Clova Sat 22-Sep-07 21:55:49

To let a 3 year old child play out side on their own unsupervised is utterly irresponsible. In my street 5 year olds are allowed to do this. They have very little road sense and are usually knocking lumps out of one another and other children or destroying things while the parents are blissfully unaware of what their little "angels" are up to. It's about time that the parents realised that they are responsible for looking after young children before a tragedy happens

pointydog Sat 22-Sep-07 21:56:33

they'd need checked on very regularly

jigglepuff Sat 22-Sep-07 21:56:52

It's quite a nice area, but there are cars coming up and down the road. The children play on the road, as well as the pavement. The older sibling is about 7, but he is usually in the house.

Am I really not responsible for this child? I know legally I'm not, but morally I can't watch her do something that I know might cause her harm and ignore it - e.g. watch her cycle to the end of the cul de sac onto the main road!

Nightynight Sat 22-Sep-07 21:57:12

dd2's lack of road sense is scary
She saw the ice cream parlour on the other side of a main road recently, and just took off. I had been walking beside her, not holding her with the necessary vice-like grip. Luckily, she didnt get hit by a car, but I felt bad mother vibes directed at me from all onlookers.

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