Sunday, August 30, 2009

I Am the Crazy One

Warning: there's a cuss word in this post :-)

So I’m convinced now that I am the overprotective, paranoid parent. Here’s why …

Joel has an 8-year-old girl friend who stays home alone for a couple of hours at a time. This same friend decides to go shopping with a friend when she wants. Apparently they do that all the time. And they go to the local library alone, too. I live in a decent area, but just across a major street is the equivalent of the semi-privileged ghetto (does that even make sense?).

Joel has a 7-year-old girl friend. Her dad lets her stay out a set amount of time doing whatever she wants. He tells her what time to be home, but she doesn’t have a watch. She goes around knocking on doors until somebody lets her in to see a clock.

Another 7-year-old boy in the neighborhood rides around on a mini motorcycle and doesn’t look before he blasts across streets. I told him I hope I don’t accidentally run him over sometime. Don’t you need a license to ride a little motorcycle? The kid says his bike goes 30 mph. We live in a busy area, and most drivers have their heads up their asses while talking on their cell phones.

I’m not letting Joel go to the lake (3 hours away) with neighbors we don’t know THAT well. He doesn’t really want to go anyway, but I told them I’M overprotective. I still say a prayer when Joel and Michael cross the street alone to go ahead to the park before me.

Tresa got frustrated trying to convince the CarMax people that it was NOT okay for her to leave her kids (ages 2 and not-yet-4) in the little waiting area while she went out to look at cars.

NEWSFLASH, People: It’s not the 1950s anymore, like when my dad, as a kid, could ride the bus to Downtown and hang out all day and be safe.

Why am I usually the odd woman out when it comes to giving a shit about my kids living or dying or getting molested? I do know 2 moms who won’t let their kids spend the night anywhere. I respect that. Maybe they think I’M reckless with my kids for letting them stay the night with friends sometimes.

What is it about the magical age of 7 that makes kids think they are completely responsible, and why do so many adults seem to agree with that? And the stories above are just a tiny sampling. I can’t tell you how many times people have dropped their kid off at my house at 2 p.m. and they hadn’t fed their kid lunch yet.

FYI: I’m pregnant with my 5th kid. Just because I’m all capable and crap doesn’t mean that I am to be used. If I watch your kid daily for 3 weeks, then you should damn well say YES when I ask if you can watch my 3 oldest ones for 3 hours. People have no manners.

I’m moving to the country with other people with freaky values. Maybe Tennessee. Or Oklahoma.

Sorry to rant on you. I’ll be all serene after the baby comes. And I’ll be hinting to all these users that I need MEALS … and Pizza Hut delivery is just fine, thank you. They can just call in a double order when they call in their twice-weekly dinner order.

8 comments:

  1. I will most defiently bring you a dinner or two once bambino is here.

    I have a friend that left her 8 year old daughter at home with her newborn son as daycare all summer. She let her walk home from school and stay by herself at 7 until she got home from work.

    I am with you the older Haley gets the more protective I feel of her. She can only spend the night at family and 1 or 2 friends (whom I have known for 20 years)houses and it will likely always be that way. You just don't know what goes on in peoples houses. Molesting aside you don't know what type of values they might see and pick up on. I want to teach her the ways of the world on my timetable.

    Pizza Casserole sound good. Ohhhh or homemade chicken parmesan?? Yummy. I am a good cook I will hook you up.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Your GOOD friends will be having a poker game for meal bringing...

    I see the homemade meal and raise you Stroud's, with a frozen mocha for Kerrie and a 6pack of seasonal Boulevard for Aron.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I can't imagine leaving my kid alone for a couple hours at 7, but I suppose if you HAVE to, you HAVE to. That is so different IMO than allowing your kid to use a motor vehicle on a busy street.

    Hey, I'm a pretty tolerant person, and people can do what they want with their kids within reason. I'm one that doesn't let my kids go out overnight and my oldest is nearly 16!!

    I should take that back. There are about two families I've known for years I would allow my oldest to stay with very occasionally. But generally speaking I can't imagine that large teen sleepovers are a good idea. Yk?

    ReplyDelete
  4. Come on to Oklahoma, sweetie! My oldest is 15 and we just started leaving him alone. Call me anal anyday, I'd rather be anal than live with knowing I allowed something to happen to my child. My 6 yo has never stayed the night with anyone except my mom. They are allowed to have boys spend the night as long as doors are open and I check in often. We'll never have a co-ed sleepover. That's just ridiculous. I'm overprotective but my kids deal with it really well.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Found this intersting info when I was checking to see what the laws were for leaving my kids home alone (ages 10 & 12) while I run up to the grocery store 5 minutes away for milk.

    Latchkey Children Age Restrictions By State
    The following table lists legal age restrictions for children left at home alone categorized by state within the U.S. Please note that city and county ordinances within each state may have more definitive and restrictive laws. Call Child Welfare Information Gateway at 800-394-3366 to learn about age guidelines in your area.



    State

    Minimum Age of
    Home Alone Child

    Reference

    Alabama None Alabama Babysitting Laws
    Alaska Unknown No Resource Found
    Arizona None Arizona Department of Economic Security
    Arkansas None Definitions of Child Abuse and Neglect - Arkansas
    California None Child Abuse Prevention Council
    Colorado 12 * Colorado Department of Human Services
    Connecticut None State of Connecticut Attorney General's Office
    Delaware 12 * Delaware Division of Family Services
    Florida None Florida Eighth Judicial Circuit Family Court FAQ
    Georgia 9 NBC Augusta.com
    Hawaii None Hawaii Department Of The Attorney General
    Idaho None Idaho Department of Health & Welfare
    Illinois 14 University of Illinois Child Care Resource Service
    Indiana None No Laws Govern Leaving Children Alone
    Iowa None Iowa Department Of Human Services
    Kansas 12 * Kansas Health & Environment
    Kentucky None LAW & JUSTICE Children at Home Alone Nov, 2003
    Louisiana None Louisiana Department of Social Services
    Maine None Maine Kids & Kin
    Maryland 8 Maryland Unattended Children Law
    Massachusetts None Massachusetts Trial Court Law Libraries
    Michigan None Calhoun County Courts
    Minnesota None Minnesota Dakota County Attorney's Office
    Mississippi None Mississippi Coalition Against Domestic Violence
    Missouri None KRCG Latch-key limbo An Education Report 2006
    Montana None Montana Child & Family Services
    Nebraska 11 * Midwest Child Care Association
    Nevada Unknown No Resource Found
    New Hampshire None State Of New Hampshire Attorney General
    New Jersey None NJ Department of Human Services
    New Mexico None VogueSeattle.com Lawyer Answers
    New York None New York Children & Family Services
    North Carolina None NC Health & Human Services
    North Dakota 9 * North Dakota CSCC (Kid's Council)
    Ohio None The Cleveland Law: Home Alone Children
    Oklahoma None Lawton PD - Guide For Working Parents
    Oregon 10 City of Albany, Oregon FAQ
    Pennsylvania None Pittsburg Post-Gazette.com article June, 2007
    Rhode Island Unknown No Resource Found
    South Carolina 8 * NBC Augusta.com
    South Dakota None South Dakota Cooperative Extension Service
    Tennessee 10 * Tennessee Juvenile & Family Court Judges
    Texas None Texas Family & Protective Services
    Utah None Children's Service Society of Utah
    Vermont Unknown No Resource Found
    Virginia None Chesterfield County, Virginia Social Services
    Washington 10 * Child Care Resources
    West Virginia Unknown No Resource Found
    Wisconsin 12 * Prevent Child Abuse Wisconsin
    Wyoming 12 * Wyoming Child Protective Services

    * Guideline ONLY. These states do not set a specific age after which a child legally can stay home alone but do provide recommendations.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Found this intersting info when I was checking to see what the laws were for leaving my kids home alone (ages 10 & 12) while I run up to the grocery store 5 minutes away for milk.

    Latchkey Children Age Restrictions By State
    The following table lists legal age restrictions for children left at home alone categorized by state within the U.S. Please note that city and county ordinances within each state may have more definitive and restrictive laws. Call Child Welfare Information Gateway at 800-394-3366 to learn about age guidelines in your area.



    State

    Minimum Age of
    Home Alone Child

    Reference

    Alabama None Alabama Babysitting Laws
    Alaska Unknown No Resource Found
    Arizona None Arizona Department of Economic Security
    Arkansas None Definitions of Child Abuse and Neglect - Arkansas
    California None Child Abuse Prevention Council
    Colorado 12 * Colorado Department of Human Services
    Connecticut None State of Connecticut Attorney General's Office
    Delaware 12 * Delaware Division of Family Services
    Florida None Florida Eighth Judicial Circuit Family Court FAQ
    Georgia 9 NBC Augusta.com
    Hawaii None Hawaii Department Of The Attorney General
    Idaho None Idaho Department of Health & Welfare
    Illinois 14 University of Illinois Child Care Resource Service
    Indiana None No Laws Govern Leaving Children Alone
    Iowa None Iowa Department Of Human Services
    Kansas 12 * Kansas Health & Environment
    Kentucky None LAW & JUSTICE Children at Home Alone Nov, 2003
    Louisiana None Louisiana Department of Social Services
    Maine None Maine Kids & Kin
    Maryland 8 Maryland Unattended Children Law
    Massachusetts None Massachusetts Trial Court Law Libraries
    Michigan None Calhoun County Courts
    Minnesota None Minnesota Dakota County Attorney's Office
    Mississippi None Mississippi Coalition Against Domestic Violence
    Missouri None KRCG Latch-key limbo An Education Report 2006
    Montana None Montana Child & Family Services
    Nebraska 11 * Midwest Child Care Association
    Nevada Unknown No Resource Found
    New Hampshire None State Of New Hampshire Attorney General
    New Jersey None NJ Department of Human Services
    New Mexico None VogueSeattle.com Lawyer Answers
    New York None New York Children & Family Services
    North Carolina None NC Health & Human Services
    North Dakota 9 * North Dakota CSCC (Kid's Council)
    Ohio None The Cleveland Law: Home Alone Children
    Oklahoma None Lawton PD - Guide For Working Parents
    Oregon 10 City of Albany, Oregon FAQ
    Pennsylvania None Pittsburg Post-Gazette.com article June, 2007
    Rhode Island Unknown No Resource Found
    South Carolina 8 * NBC Augusta.com
    South Dakota None South Dakota Cooperative Extension Service
    Tennessee 10 * Tennessee Juvenile & Family Court Judges
    Texas None Texas Family & Protective Services
    Utah None Children's Service Society of Utah
    Vermont Unknown No Resource Found
    Virginia None Chesterfield County, Virginia Social Services
    Washington 10 * Child Care Resources
    West Virginia Unknown No Resource Found
    Wisconsin 12 * Prevent Child Abuse Wisconsin
    Wyoming 12 * Wyoming Child Protective Services

    * Guideline ONLY. These states do not set a specific age after which a child legally can stay home alone but do provide recommendations.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I'm super protective too. At church, I have to have known the people for a loooong time to have my kids go play during the day with their kids. I seem to watch a lot of people's kids but people can be very selfish and not do it in return. I don't even have anyone to watch my kids when I have this baby. I'm finally paying someone a lot of money just to get help. and I've watched all four of their kids for free for a whole week! Goodness gracious.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I'm super protective too. At church, I have to have known the people for a loooong time to have my kids go play during the day with their kids. I seem to watch a lot of people's kids but people can be very selfish and not do it in return. I don't even have anyone to watch my kids when I have this baby. I'm finally paying someone a lot of money just to get help. and I've watched all four of their kids for free for a whole week! Goodness gracious.

    ReplyDelete

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