Wednesday, June 06, 2007


It is eerily quiet, the only noises come from the washing machine and the dishwasher.The house does not ring to the sound of sleeping teenagers or snoring 21 year olds, Beauty is in school and I am home alone. Even though they go to school, to college and to university it is a very rare occurrence for my home to be children free.Obviously Anastasia is busy in her research institute in Austria, Belle is happily teaching in her school in Florida, I think SnoWhite is in University(who knows with that one!), Ariel and Fiona have gone to town shopping and Beauty is in school. And I am left home alone to do all the housework, again.
Beauty has learnt a new word, KEYBOARD and she uses it with meaning, she uses it to signify that she wants to use the computer. I was talking to a mother of a normally developing child the other day and she was telling me how good her 6 year old child was on the computer and she was telling me all the things that her child could do. I was thrilled to realise that Beauty could do everything that this child could do and more. I am so glad that Beauty has so much that she is capable of doing because I know other children with autism who have nothing, a friends child does not play with toys, watch TV or videos or play with the computer. It must be very difficult when the child is that locked in.

Free to roam

A report from the Children's Society warns that parents' fears about safety are stopping children from playing outdoors unsupervised.

Riding a bike
"You're not riding that bike outside."

And it shows how today's parents are not giving their children the freedom to roam that they enjoyed in their own childhoods in the 1970s.

Why are we such paranoid parents? Why do I worry at the idea of my uber-competent 10-year-old daughter walking on her own to school - when I was making my own way to school at a younger age?

Maybe it's because we live in a society that is drip-fed insecurity.

From the first car alarm of the morning, to the last police siren at night, we know much too much about the threats around us.

If Beauty wasn't autistic would I let her play out in the streets the same way I see other local children playing from the age of 3 or 4?
Let me see ..............Holly and Jessica, Sarah Payne and Madeleine McCann.


Anonymous said...

I let mine out to play. Sorry... most children are taken by family not strangers.

We've managed to create an insecure, paranoid, FAT (b/c they aren't allowed out to play on their own and parents don't have time to go out with them) group of children.

I on the other hand... am raising independant children not bubble wrapped ones.


I unfortunately do not live in as brilliant an area as I would like to, I know of burglars, drug dealers and paedophiles who live locally and that is just the ones that I know of.My older girls went out to play together from the age of 8 or 9 but they were always together.One of my girls was a victim of an attempted abduction when she was 12 years old but luckily she managed to escape.We were walking home after a Christmas concert in the evening and she was dawdling behind and an individual on drugs attempted to drag her into a park.Thankfully he was caught and sent to prison for attacks on other children.
Even though I worry about my girls I still feel they have managed to grow up independant and confident.I found the year that Anastasia spent in Russia as a student particularly difficult because a number of foreign students were attacked in the city where she was living.
I am not looking forward to the study year that Ariel has to spend in Syria for her degree.

holyflamingsmoke said...

ther Of Many on this. There are 4 convicted paedophiles living on my street and several others in the area close by. Apparently small seaside towns like the one I live in are like a magnet to these people. My children are 7 and 9 and I will not let them play out unsupervised. A nine-year-old girl living just over a mile away from us was riding her bike in her front garden in broad daylight when she was threatend by a man, taken to a churchyard nearby and raped just a few weeks ago. I am gradually allowing my children to become more independent as they grow older, but for now, in the area we live in, they need some degree of protection.

Anastasia said...

I am totally with you on this one Mother Of Many. If the house was in a better area then playing outside would be ok, but as it is -letting young children out to wander aimlessly locally is asking for trouble - an adult isn't the only threat, other local children, cars driven too fast and dogs are also an issue unfortunately. Nxx


I'll have to make some money and move to a nicer area, Beauty would love a bigger garden.

Jerry Grasso said...

I dunno, I think good parents worry period...doesn't matter the neighborhood. Kids wander, drivers drive while fiddling with the radio...accidents happen in nice or dangerous neighborhoods.

Changing comments, yes, it is nice when the house is quiet...then it gets too quiet, too fast, in my experience. I start to miss the noise greatly.


I am shocked at how many people that I still see talking on their phones whilst they are driving,and it is illegal.I don't think that I would be able to drive carefully and talk on a phone that wasn't hands free.I see so many drivers do so many crazy things that I am surprised that there aren't more accidents.

Unknown said...

I'm in complete agreement with you as well mother of many. Like Anastasia said if we lived in an area that had less cars, bikes and dogs then fair enough letting children wander the surrounding streets wouldn't be as much of a worry.

Responsible parents worry about where their children are and what their doing. Thats just natural.

Your worrying for our safety has helped to make us (me and sisters) independent yet aware adults and I am grateful to you for that.

snow white xx




An Irish Blessing

(A Blessing from St. Patrick)
May the road rise to meet you,

May the wind be always at your back,

May the sun shine warm upon your face,

May the rains fall soft upon your fields,

And, until we meet again,

May God hold you in the hollow of His hand.