Last night a Channel 2 News segment was about parents ignoring their children. It was spurred by ScaryMommy's blog post "Ignoring you Children" (High Five Scary Mom!).
From day one of B's life, I knew I could never be as the reporters term a "helicopter" parent. No, hovering is not my style. Going to places like Little Monkey Bizness make me irate when there are more parents out in the play land than kids, making sure their toddlers don't get hurt running on the well matted floors or bouncing in the air filled jumpers. I particularly get a glow of red in my face when I see a mom standing up for her little Johnny when another 3 year old tries to go down the slide before him considering he's sitting there scared and mommy is creating a life lesson for all involved, "excuse me little girl, it is my Johnny's turn, it's not nice to cut in line, you need to wait. Johnny, that little girl is rude (and probably just shy of 2!) and in our family we are not rude, we take turns." It gets even more hovering as she's heard saying "honey, it is OK if you are scared, mommy gets scared to. If you don't want to slide down you don't have to, just take a breath and imagine going down the slide, do you want mommy to go down with you, do you want mommy to come up and get you down" all while 1. it's a Little Tykes Step 2 slide that is less than 5 feet high and 2. "Ignoring Parents" have been beaming with pride from the tables sipping our coffee watching our younger than johnny kids climb down from the step 2 slide and go balls out for the 10 footer instead!
Yep, I always considered my parenting style "Go play outside til the street lights come on Old School" but last night It was renamed "Ignoring" and in the eyes of the media this is a fringe culture parenting style that has helicopters irate and ready to phone DCFS.
I always want to ask other parents, why the hell must you be up your kids ass like that, but being polite and knowing that hey, we all parent different and that's the joy of being a parent, I don't. But really, WHY???
So, for a new news segment I suggest channel 2 interview some "helicopters" and ask them to chat about their style BUT not allow them to use the terms "protecting" or "good/responsible parent" and get to the real reason, might I suggest that be fear?