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to expect my friends to not let their one year old run around on a busy road.

(17 Posts)
welshone51 Wed 02-Sep-09 16:04:26

Hi I dont want to be shot down in flames here as I am writing this thread due to genuine concern and not because I am interfering or saying my parental style is any better than my friends.
Basically I have 2 very good friends who I see on a regular basis due to our children being the same age and the fact that they are good company. They have a one year old daughter (2 in Dec)who is their only child at present. They dote on this child, however I am a little concerned about the fact that the other evening after going out for a meal-they allowed their daughter to run up and down a pavement attached to a main road on a cold, dark, drizzly night not just for a few seconds but for the entire length of the road with cars whizzing past( it was a 50 mph road ). This was due to the child not wanting to go in the pram, be carried or to hold her parents hand. It frightend me and my husband but I decided not to say anything although I kept a close eye on her. But my husband who is a man of few words or who wouldnt dream of interfering actually turned to the child and said ''....... Hold your mums hand this road is dangerous! My friend then made a grab for her hand but the child started crying so was soon allowed to run up and down the pavement. My friend then turned to me and said I bet the neighbours will have something to say to this about this but tough! Afterwards I asked my husband why he made the comment and he says its up to individuals how they raise their children but he didnt want to see the child hurt or killed on the road and he felt he had to say something. This does tend to happen frequently and it leaves me frightened and wary that the child is going to get hurt! Am I being unreasonable to think the should take more control with their daughter on roads.

anastaisia Wed 02-Sep-09 16:08:51

depends completely on how 'present' the parents were being. If they were right there next to their DD, ready to steer her away from the road if she went near it, or grab her if she was about to run in it then I don't see a problem.

If they were ignoring her and taking no interest in whether she was on the road or the pavement then they were taking a risk.

We've never enforced holding hands for roads, that isn't the same as not being in control of the situation.

welshone51 Wed 02-Sep-09 16:10:52

The child was basically running from her mum to her dad who was a lot further up the road and back again.

PM73 Wed 02-Sep-09 16:13:58

I think you are right to have concerns over this,by the sounds of it the little girl was running up & down the pavement so wasnt near her parents if she did stray onto the road?

I think she (the Mum) realised when she responded to you when your dh spoke up.If it was a one off i wouldnt say anything further.

YANBU,plus its very unfair on the drivers to see a small child running loose near the road.

welshone51 Wed 02-Sep-09 16:14:06

Oops for some reason I have added this 3 times- bloody computer sorry x

anastaisia Wed 02-Sep-09 16:17:32

Were they paying attention to where she was? Could one of them have reached her easily if she veered off towards the road?

Those are the kind of things I'd be judging safety on with regard to my own DD - not if she walked next to me or held my hand.

welshone51 Wed 02-Sep-09 16:20:00

She was alone on the pavement not within reach for some of the time as she was running between them. So there were times that she could have run into the road with noone grabbing her.

MmeLindt Wed 02-Sep-09 16:22:29

That is something to worry about. YANBU.

Difficult situation. It does not sound like your friend would react well to you bringing up your concerns.

PM73 Wed 02-Sep-09 16:22:37

I was always taught by my parents to walk next to them by roads,thats how i teach road sense to my ds.

Just going off an a tangent here but we always cross on a crossing (if there is one available)& we always wait for the green man & it is very bloody annoying when people just run across & ds asks why they can cross & we cant.

Sorry op.

GrimmaTheNome Wed 02-Sep-09 16:27:14

I think your DH was absolutely right to say something. Children need to learn limits. That some things are a no-no and that they can't get their own way by crying. From your description the child was not sufficiently under control in a dangerous situation.

IMO that little madam could do with a set of reins. A dog-owner would get slated for having his pet off-lead by a 50mph road - children are more important than dogs aren't they?

GrimmaTheNome Wed 02-Sep-09 16:29:54

Of course, once a child is mature enough to walk sensibly by the adult that is great - but this toddler quite clearly wasn't doing anything of the sort.

gorionine Wed 02-Sep-09 16:30:00

Posted on your othrer thread.

mollythetortoise Wed 02-Sep-09 16:37:43

i agree it is tricky. My ds absolutely refuses to hold my hand when crossing the road, and rolls on floor kicking etc when I force it so i don't. I usually let him walk beside me instead unless very busy road when I pick him up (despite protestations) and carry him.

Your friends dd CAN't have roadsense at not yet 2 (my ds is only now getting it at 2.4).

I would probably try and keep lighthearted.. e.g.. gosh, are you not worried about cars. I'd have a heart attack if my dd/ds was running in the road etc..

seems a crazy thing to let a one year old do (especially as they dote on her). I wonder if they just allowed this as they were with you and to avoid the tantrum. I know my children get away with things when I am with friends I wouldn't allow when just with me. Not dangerous things though.

gorionine Wed 02-Sep-09 16:50:26

I do agree with you Anastasia. The op says she did not say anything but kept a close look on the little child. I think she is assuming the parents were not, I do not know what she makes that assumption on!

If you really worried you either say something (like OP's DH did)or you take upon yourself to act by let's say carry the child(can still be lighthearted to just offer the DD a ride in first class arms). If you do not say anything or act I think you should not write an AIBU about it.

notquitenormal Wed 02-Sep-09 17:09:20

When I was about 11 I saw toddler (just turned 2) run over by a lorry in very similar circumstances to what you describe. He was running from his mum to his dad, who was walking about 10ft ahead, and suddenly--totally without warning--veered of into the road.

My grip, when walking with children who might possibly bolt unexpectedly, is vice-like.

I definitely would have said something, and I'm usually very laissez faire about almost anything.

welshone51 Wed 02-Sep-09 17:28:33

The thing is I didnt know what to say as her two parents were there and I was pushing my son in his pushchair. I am not saying that her parents werent keeping an eye on her but at times she would of been able to veer into the road before her parents got to her. I dont think I am being unreasonable to post this thread as I am unsure what to do next if anything as its a tricky situation and I am just asking for advice.

readyfornumber2and3 Wed 02-Sep-09 17:36:08

I think I would have said something just like your DH did.
I have 4 week old twins so DS (3) has had to start walking everywhere and he knows that he must hold the pram handle or my hand at all times, he also knows that he should stay on the side of the pram furthest from the road.
When he was 18 months-2yo I hated him being out of his pram as he was a runner and would have thought nothing of running ino the road.

I think they were taking a big risk because even if she normally stays on the path it only takes a small distraction or for her to trip and the unthinkable could happen.

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