My feed

to access all these features


To keep using reins even though DH is against it

297 replies

Suntrapped · 25/06/2017 12:55

For background I'm a SAHM.

DD seems more excitable/hyperactive than other toddlers her age. Eg she always runs instead of walking and runs off. In parks she is the one racing round the perimeter or trying to climb over the fence, while my friends' toddlers potter happily nearby.

I use reins as I'm terrified she'll run into the road or out of sight. She doesn't come back when called. Only time she's off reins is the park, at child-friendly places like farms or if DH and I are both with her. Recently he insisted we start letting her off reins so she gets used to it. Yet she won't hold hands for long. She ran off in the street (pedestrian zone luckily) and tripped up a lady before DH could catch her (not the first time she's tripped people up as she darts in front of their feet.

DH thinks it's bad for her self esteem and development to be on reins 'like a dog' and she needs to learn to behave without them. He thinks she's too old for them.

What do you think? Please be honest

OP posts:
Nanny0gg · 25/06/2017 16:12


I just love your username. Did you pick it specially?

WellThatSucks · 25/06/2017 16:13

guess some people are those sort of parents. Dummies, reins, jars of baby food, kids in nappies and buggies until 3+

guess some people are those sort of judgy, practically perfect in every way, sanctimonious twats parents.

They aren't happy just doing it their way they have to insist everyone else does it their way too. Here's the thing, anyone can claim to be the quintessential EBFing, 24/7 sling-wearing, co-sleeping, child-led weaning (fresh organic produce only obvs) Earthmother who never gets a cracked nipple, backache, sleep-deprivation or ever runs out of quinoa and kale to purée - on the Internet. And I'm a gorgeous 25 yr old astrophysicist billionaire!

Meanwhile back in the real world...

dustarr73 · 25/06/2017 16:15

I used reins on all mine.Made it easier getting the bus, didn't need a pushchair

It gave them a bit more freedom, luckily mine weren't bolsters. But I used them as a bargaining tool, didn't do what you where told. Out came the reins.

SpringTown46 · 25/06/2017 16:40

One of mine was a bolter and needed reins in certain situations until she was 3+ and able to cooperate consistently. Situations, for example, that could be disastrous if there was a 'pull away and run' scenario, like near deep water or drops, walking along busy roads, etc.,. You know your child best and even in the same family you get children with different needs.

CarrotFingers · 25/06/2017 16:54

I guess people' own experience of toddlers informa their opinion. My DM was never a fan of reins (I was apparently a compliant and non-bolty toddler who always held her hand Hmm) but she has changed her tune now she knows DS. In the park she smiled and shook her head when I said how fast he was ('I'm sure he'll be ok ) until he almost hurled himself into a bed of nettles. Then another time I told her to watch him in a museum book shop when I paid for something - she turned to find her bag on a seat, but in that split second he legged it out of the shop and almost had reached the road outside. She hadn't even seen him go, but I'd been watching and ran straight after him. She never said another word about reins after that.

witsender · 25/06/2017 17:37

We had a couple of months when my eldest used them, she loved them! She was about 21 months and I was heavily pregnant/had a newborn on me and was slow...we used to walk into town to do the weekly shop and there was one road in particular that worries me. We had the old school ones so she had a long leash. 😁

I nearly ran over a girl of about 6 once when she started in front of me... luckily I was going slowly but still had to donate violent swerve up a pavement. I heard her mother's scream as it happened, it was heart rending. So yeah, do what you have to do to keep your kids safe.

LiveLongAndProspero · 25/06/2017 18:07

But have you not noticed that are only acceptable in Britain?

I'm not in Britain. We used the reins/backpack hybrid, widely available across Europe.

Bluntness100 · 25/06/2017 18:13

They are seen as a hideously lazy horrible thing to do to a child. Why is that?

And here's your answer.

I used them as a bargaining tool, didn't do what you where told. Out came the reins

Aeroflotgirl · 25/06/2017 18:21

Your husband is an idiot. Much rather safe than sorry! Your toddler is still only small and not yet grasped safety as yet, she will when she's older, as she's impulsive, would definitely put reins on. Why not put reins on and hold hands at the same time, so reins are like a safety net. I thunk James Bulgers mum wished she had used them!

SquinkiesRule · 25/06/2017 18:27

We used them on two of our three children. Not running off seems to come with maturity, she will eventually listen if she wants the reins off.
I had them while living in the US they weren't uncommon, most used the wrist strap one and held onto a hand, it just stopped the child bolting. Dd had a backpack one, it was a monkey one and I used to hold the tail. I still carried it in my bag till she was about 4 and it would come out if she was having an day of bolting when free.

Goingtobeawesome · 25/06/2017 18:33

I wonder if people who judge others who use reins are actually thinking the parent hasn't taught their child to walk nicely/hold hands / do as they are told. Stupid of course, but you know. Some people are.

Starlight2345 · 25/06/2017 18:41

I am a childminder...All my children go onto reigns when they start walking out the house..You have no idea which ones are bolters and which aren't. I don't ask permission I simply do it.

What I do though is hold hand and use riegns as a back up that way they learn to hold hands not run off in a public place.

sycamore54321 · 25/06/2017 18:42

I've only read the first and last page of this thread but have already come across two utterly disgusting posts suggesting that the mothers of children who suffered terrible terrible fates including James Bolger should have used reins. How can another human being say something so horrific about families who suffered such loss? Putting the blame on mothers like that? Those posters should be ashamed of themselves. What were they thinking? If they have any decency, they will report their own posts and ask for them to be removed.

WaahImTellingTheDorchester · 25/06/2017 18:43

MrsPresley Flowers

I'm glad you didn't mind me posting your post.

I think of you every time one of these threads come along.

I'm sure you've indirectly saved more than one child injury or death.

I'm so sorry about your DS.

sycamore54321 · 25/06/2017 18:50

Mrs Presley, I'm very sorry for your loss and thank you for sharing your story.

Iamastonished · 25/06/2017 18:55

"I wonder if people who judge others who use reins are actually thinking the parent hasn't taught their child to walk nicely/hold hands / do as they are told. Stupid of course, but you know. Some people are."

No. they are extremely vertically challenged and are happy to break their children's fingers to make sure they keep holding hands.

Of course I don't think that, but their unbelievably stupidity elicits a stupid response.

Yura · 25/06/2017 18:57

my fathers cousin managed to escape from
my grandmother's hand for a couple of seconds (no way you can hold a child's hand tight all the time). straight into a car. all our family uses reins near streets until the child has developed some common sense.

Spikeyball · 25/06/2017 19:00

My 11 year old with no road safety awareness still wears reins. Anyone who thinks there is something wrong with that is an ignorant twat.

Spikeyball · 25/06/2017 19:03

And as for those saying it is lazy - you have no clue.

Aeroflotgirl · 25/06/2017 19:06

Actually sycamore I have read Ralph Bulgers autobiography, in it, was said that they wished they did things differently that day, they wish they took the buggy, but didn't for some reason.what happened to James Bulger is why I used reins or backpack reins.

Yura · 25/06/2017 19:07

My grandmother never got over letting go of that hand - she had severe psychatric episodes for the rest of her life. Reins would have saved that little boy's life, my grandmothers sanity, and made my dad's childhood a lot happier (this happened is the 50s, so reins were not that common. i'm born in the 70s, so were my cousins. we all had reins).

laurzj82 · 25/06/2017 19:11

Sorry I haven't read the replies but my DD was like that. We used reins. I don't see the problem with them tbh. If you have got a runner I think it's better to be safe than sorry! It's too easy to slip their hand out of yours and be off.

DD is 3 now and (most of the time) much more sensible

Aeroflotgirl · 25/06/2017 19:12

I did not say anything or the sort sycamore, I was simply saying what Ralph had said in his autobiography, about wishing they had done things differently a and takenbuggy that day. Same goes for reins, long as a very young child is restrained. My daughter 5 thinks getting lost is a game, and has got lost twice in Cadburyworld, next time.e I have told him, he will be wearing a backpack when we go to a theme park. Your hearts in your mouth, and your world stops when they are lost.

Tazerface · 25/06/2017 19:17

I think anyone that trusts themselves or a toddler to not run or not to be able to wriggle free from a hand is an idiot. I won't apologise for that.

Children younger than 2 (and in most cases, up to about 3 and a half) have very poor impulse control. In safe areas of course don't use reins. Walking next to a road, even a not busy one - if you'd seriously rather put 'how it looks' above safety then you're an idiot. Presumably you're adults and can tell anyone that has an opinion that you put safety above their opinion every time.

TheSkyAtNight · 25/06/2017 19:24

Firmly believe primary caree of child knows best. I've worried myself about being a 'helicopter parent' in the playground. But then when I did step back, dd (who sounds like yours!) hurt herself badly. Turns out I knew her better.

Glad for our spirited, energetic girls, but anything to keep them safe!

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.