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

147 replies

jigglepuff · 22/09/2007 21:23

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.

OP posts:
3andnomore · 22/09/2007 22:12

hm ..honestly people only make judgement for your children, you really do NOT know other children that well...
if in a professional position of looking after Kids it is a completely different story anyway, that is not comparable.

Like I said, es was o.k. whiklst still 3 year old, if almost 4..but ms and ys will be a bit solely depnds on the Kid and the area...

and whilst I think it is a bit harsh if okder children would be permanently responsible for older siblings, I think, sometime it really would be a good think for them to experience and learn...

MamaMaiasaura · 22/09/2007 22:12

How else do we form opinions on what choice's we make as parents? Mainly through trail, error and experience of friends and family. Therefore I dont think I am wrong in believing 3 year olds shouldnt play out unsupervised. My opinion.

FrannyandZooey · 22/09/2007 22:13

I think it does vitomum if it is unnecessary and paranoid supervision. I don't think supervising your 3 y o in the street falls into this category, but if you can fail to consider that someone else's 3 year old might be perfectly safe playing outside their house on a quiet street for 10 mins, then I think you're quite liable to be falling into the above category before too long

MamaMaiasaura · 22/09/2007 22:13

sp - meant trial.

Clova · 22/09/2007 22:14

"You think I neglect my child?"

That is not what I said - what I did say is no 3-year-old or 4 or 5-year-old is eqipped with enough sense to be playing unsupervised in this day and age.

harpsichordcarrier · 22/09/2007 22:14

blimey calm down.
the OP says that there are lots other children playing out most of the time. Usually with one or other parents watching them.
when did that turn into "unsupervised"??
in lots of places this is called "playing out" and it is very very normal.
maybe some children learn to be safe by being allowed a certain amount of freedom, in a relatively safe environment.

MamaMaiasaura · 22/09/2007 22:15

but franny - you are judging parents who dont do as you do as paranoid. How is that fair? Surely it is a case of each person doing what is right for them and as human nature dictates we tend to make decisions of what is acceptable/unacceptable based on our own experiences. For me it is unacceptable, for you it is acceptable.

3andnomore · 22/09/2007 22:15

franny says she knows her child...well, I would assume ratehr well, just as we all do, too, or at least should do....and anyway, I know franny through other threads...and one couldn't be a more brilliant and responsible mom if you tried...come on I wouldn't be able to homeeducate...for starters....Franny is not a neglective mom...of course, some parents tha\t let their kids roam the street, and event eh majority possibly, is neglecting their duty of parenthood...franny is NOT one of those...

harpsichordcarrier · 22/09/2007 22:15

what day and age?
goodness, I seem to have fallen into a parallel universe where Franny and I are fighting the corner of independence for three year olds

MamaMaiasaura · 22/09/2007 22:16

harpsi - the OP then said the child is left unsupervised.

FrannyandZooey · 22/09/2007 22:17

you said

"I didn't bring a child into the world for him to come to harm due to my neglect which is precisely what letting a 3-year-old play unsupervised on the road is."

if a 3 y o playing unsupervised outside is neglect, then I have neglected my child

you are talking to real parents here, not just hypothetical ones

HC I think I started the unsupervised bit because I let ds do it and for him, I think it is safe. So I was questioning the repeated assertions that a 3 y o out without their parent was in danger.

FrannyandZooey · 22/09/2007 22:18

No Awen, I don't think it's paranoid if you feel confortable watching your child. I think it's great.

But if you refuse to see that another child might be ok in the same situation, then I think that is paranoid

jigglepuff · 22/09/2007 22:18

I really can't think what I would say to this little girl's mum, without sounding accusatory. She really is out for hours at a time, with them having no clear idea of where she is. They can't see the street from their windows due to the position of their house, so they're not watching her in any way.

Perhaps I worded my question wrong? Maybe I should have said, AIBU to be p**d off that I feel responsible for this girl?

OP posts:
nightowl · 22/09/2007 22:19

i think the point is, its taking the piss a bit just to expect that because another mum is out watching her child, that she can watch someone elses. my dd is 3.5 and not allowed out, because i dont have time to watch her...i dont expect other people to and so she doesnt go out. simple as. its not hurting her, we have plenty of toys in the back garden.

MamaMaiasaura · 22/09/2007 22:19

3andnomore (hi again ) I havent deemed Franny as iressponsible/neglectful or anything of the sort. Also agree she knows her child better than anyone. However, for me and my experience I think 3 years old is too young.

FrannyandZooey · 22/09/2007 22:20

If it really hacks you off, I would go and knock and say a bit flustered "oh dear your dd has just cycled down the street right near all the traffic. ooh it did give me a fright"

type of thing

I would then repeat every time she did something dangerous

if it didn't bother me I would think it was my bit of public service for the day and hope someone else would do me a good turn later

harpsichordcarrier · 22/09/2007 22:20

Awen, well the OP is wrong then because there are clearly lots of adults and children around, htough not necessarily the child's own parents.
I personally don't thin kthat a sensible three year old needs one to one adult supervision from his/her parent at all times. In the right environment, with a gorup of children she knew well and I knew well, close ot my home and with adults around and close at hand, then I don't see for the life of me why it would be neglectful to let a child play with a group of friends and neighbours.
that's what children do. isn't it? I really don't see what is so startling dangerous about it.

ChantillyLace · 22/09/2007 22:20

i look after other peoples kids all day long and they are very different. my 3 yr old has an astounding awareness of road safety and her being run over is the least of my worries should she be allowed to play outside the front of the house. OH works with juvenile offenders and it makes me shudder the number of them that are put into secure units because of what they have done to younger kids they have 'come across' or been left playing with.

my dd3 stays safely in the back garden or at the park with me or OH.

MamaMaiasaura · 22/09/2007 22:22

I dont know any sensible 3 year olds

LadyVictoriaOfCake · 22/09/2007 22:22

last week, two girls in my daughters school were playing out unsupervised. they are year one so age 5/6. they decideed to that it was a good idea to hop on and off the road. their street is a quiet cul de sac, where i live, isnt.

i honestly dont think any 3yr old has enough sense 100% of the time to play out unsupervised. i have seen many tots run out into the roads round here after balls etc. in fact my driving instructor says 'if you see a ball go into the road, expect a child to follow it'.

FrannyandZooey · 22/09/2007 22:22

amd jiggle I think if a 3 y o is roaming the streets on her own for hours, then that is a dangerous and worrying situation, and if you didn't know the parents well enough to speak to them / offer help etc then I might consider contacting SS

this scenario is a bit different from just playing outside with lots of adults and children, isn't it?

harpsichordcarrier · 22/09/2007 22:22

jigglepuff - she isn't your responsibility, though I can see how you might think she is.
if you are around, then by all means look out for her but otherwise, she is her parents' responsibility. how old are your children? can you ask them to keep an eye on her?

FrannyandZooey · 22/09/2007 22:24

are we sorted now HC do you think? Shall we go and talk about shoes or something instead?

vitomum · 22/09/2007 22:25

i agree also jigglepuff that if you have actually witnessed her doing dangerous stuff then you should tell the parents. i am sure that you could find a way of putting it that didn't sound accusatory - 'just to let you know etc etc'. at least then you are giving them a chance to act on it. they may be genuinely unaware of what she is up to

maisym · 22/09/2007 22:25

what sort of games do these little kids play outside on the pavement?

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