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Old Yesterday, 05:11 PM
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sillysally sillysally is offline
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Default Is 9 Too Young? What Do You Think?

I came across this story today, and honestly don't know how I feel about it:http://news.yahoo.com/sc-moms-arrest...185002738.html I don't think the mother should have been arrested, but I don't have enough experience with 9 year old kids to know if this is too young to be alone at a park or not. I grew up in the country on a busy road and had my mom home with me all summer, so this isn't really something I can relate to.

So, what do you think? Was the mother right or wrong? If she was in the wrong, should she be punished?
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Old Yesterday, 05:22 PM
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Depends on the child, the park, the area, etc. Personally I couldn't bring myself to let my kids go somewhere alone at that age.
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Old Yesterday, 05:24 PM
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I'm don't really know how I feel about this story either. Do I think the mother should have been thrown in jail and lost custody of her child. HECK NO!!!

I grew up and was raised on a farm and my brother and I had free reign of the farm since we where like 6, but of course this is different.

I know I would feel safe in my town to allow by 9 year old to go play at the park, heck kids are always running around the neighborhood without parent supervision. But I also live in a smaller town of about 5000 people so I might feel different if I lived in a big city and depending on what kind of community it was.

So really I don't have an answer to your question lol
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Old Yesterday, 05:30 PM
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I remember being in 3-4th grade and going out to the park and even walking to school with just my friends at that age. When I was that age we spent pretty much every part of every day we weren't in school outside by ourselves. We would have at least 3 or 4 of us, sometimes a dozen playing street hockey, racing bikes and roller blades, building forts in the woods, walking to parks, walking to the school playground, etc. Some of the kids were a bit older than me but not but by a few years. We'd always tell our moms if we were leaving our street but most days we'd be out on the street playing till dark. The moms would check on us every once and a while.

I do feel like times have changed and I am not sure what I'd do as a parent now (not that I plan on being a parent ever). But looking back at my childhood yes we went to parks by ourselves all the time around that age.

My neighborhood now I see kids around with no parents too. Just playing basketball or walking over to get an ice cream from the nearby McDonalds. Neither of my sisters really spent their childhood like mine though... Especially my youngest sister. She didn't ever have days like that where you'd leave the house all day with your friends, check in for lunch, then go back outside without any supervision. It is probably safer but I also do sort of feel sorry for kids now too.... Those were some of the most fun times of my life.
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Old Yesterday, 05:42 PM
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I wouldn't send Hannah to the park alone at that age but mostly because there isn't a park close enough that I feel comfortable. At almost 7 years old she does walk to friends houses alone in the neighborhood.

I think what strikes me more than the age is the fact that the kid was just taken away and her custody revoked just like that. We need to STOP this crazy ora tice of just removing kids from their homes willy nilly!!!' Maybe she should have to attend a parenting class? I don't know but the government is just way too quick to remove kids from their homes and families!!!
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Old Yesterday, 05:52 PM
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For me, it really depends on the neighbourhood, and if there are other kids around, alone or supervised. I was allowed to go to the park alone at that age, but I often went with a friend, and we were never gone for more than an hour or so.

In my current neighbourhood, there are tons of kids who play at the school that look to be 9 or younger. I would definitely let my 9 year old go to the school yard or park alone, for an hour or two, not an entire day.

In this case, it sounds like the girl was not in immediate danger, there were lots of adults around, food and water available, kids to play with...I feel awful for her mother. I think her punishment was far too severe. A ticket and a warning/safety talk would be much more reasonable in my opinion.
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Old Yesterday, 06:04 PM
Fran27 Fran27 is offline
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That really raises the problem of childcare when school is out... but I think here the problem is that she would drop her kid there while she worked... for hours, every day. Yeah I have a problem with that. Sure, at 8 I used to go to the local playground too, but I was with my sister, and it was just for an hour or so.
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Old Yesterday, 06:10 PM
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I agree that it is really hard to say without knowing the area, but it does seem like a really extreme response.

Quote:
I remember being in 3-4th grade and going out to the park and even walking to school with just my friends at that age. When I was that age we spent pretty much every part of every day we weren't in school outside by ourselves. We would have at least 3 or 4 of us, sometimes a dozen playing street hockey, racing bikes and roller blades, building forts in the woods, walking to parks, walking to the school playground, etc. Some of the kids were a bit older than me but not but by a few years. We'd always tell our moms if we were leaving our street but most days we'd be out on the street playing till dark. The moms would check on us every once and a while.
That was pretty much my childhood as well. Maybe it was different because it was always a small group for me, rather than just one of us at the park alone. But I bet I was about the same age when we all started going to the pool/park by ourselves. We'd bike the 2 miles or so there in a group (the boys were a few years older, so probably 9 to 12 years old), spend most of the afternoon at the pool, maybe bike to the park next door or the store nearby to get snacks. We were basically "on our own" from lunchtime until dinner. And we'd be out in the streets/woods after dinner until bedtime.

I know times change. But it makes me really sad that kids don't get to do that anymore.
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Old Yesterday, 07:05 PM
Psyfalcon Psyfalcon is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurelin View Post
I do feel like times have changed and I am not sure what I'd do as a parent now (not that I plan on being a parent ever). But looking back at my childhood yes we went to parks by ourselves all the time around that age.
Well, the violent crime rate is much lower now. If any time was too dangerous for a child on their own, it was when we were kids.



Welfare reform has even made the situation worse.
http://www.thenation.com/blog/180753...r-own-failures
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Old Yesterday, 07:15 PM
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Just to echo what everyone else has said, it is definitely dependent on a few variables.
Some 9 year old children are incredibly responsible and aware of their surroundings...whereas others aren't.

And the location is a definite factor!
Where I grew up was a small everyone-knows-everyone type village. It wasn't uncommon for kids to be running around unsupervised. And it was safe.
Whereas the place I live now, even I barely feel safe going out alone.


From the sounds of this case, there were people at the park that knew this kid, and I get the feeling that they were trusted and looking out for her.

But hey, let's do a charge of "child abandonment" with actually taking this single mother away. Yeah, that seems right O.o
I really don't get the legal system sometimes.
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