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I'm holding on tight over here, ready for the bashing! :) In the book Free-Range Kids, there is an amazing statistic. "If you actually wanted your child to be kidnapped, and held overnight by a stranger (not that anyone does) How long would you actually have to leave him, outside, unattended, for this to be STATISTICALLY likey to happen????"


So WHY are we all freaked out? Why do so many of us not let our children play unattended outside? Even for a few small minutes? Why is everyone convinced we need our children on a leash for them to be safe??

A result of parents being overly protective and nervous/scared, results in timid frightened children who are never experiencing the thrill of individual accomplishment or the joy of taking a risk... GREAT article by the way!

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 7:54 AM on Oct. 6, 2010 in General Parenting

Answers (21)
  • Tell that to the parents of the kids that have been kidnapped, raped and murdered.

    Answer by shanlaree at 7:57 AM on Oct. 6, 2010

  • On the assumption your a kidnapper taking notes...there's no way in hell I'm ever going to answer this question. And if your not, then I'm sorry. ;-)

    Answer by Zoeyis at 7:59 AM on Oct. 6, 2010

  • I think this is stated this way because MOST kids are kidnapped and hurt by people they know and trust. How many times has it been found out that an absent parent, uncle, family friend, are the ones who did it?

    Where did you get the article and what is the title?

    Answer by tyfry7496 at 8:01 AM on Oct. 6, 2010

  • My kid was and is allowed outside unattended to play...I AM a Free-Range parent. I agree with you. The odds are astronomical..and haven't changed in years. Media makes it seem so. I would rather take that chance and have my kid grow up free of worries and  NOT held back out my own out-of-proportion fear. Sure kids are kidnapped, raped and murdered...but, no more than always. And all the protection in the world can't stop it from happening. Elizabeth Smart was removed from her bedroom while her sister slept there too.


    Answer by BradenIsMySon at 8:03 AM on Oct. 6, 2010

  • omg lol. zoeyis. :) no i'm not a kidnapper. shanlaree - don't be mistaken - I am not at ALL insensitive to parents of lost children - not at all my point... I do feel for them - however at the moment I'm not talking about them, I'm talking about the odds of this, and giving children a "little" freedom. I apologize if this offends any parents of missing children - it is not my intent.... I DO have a heart. :)


    Answer by Tiffany8168 at 8:04 AM on Oct. 6, 2010

  • For me, its not a matter of statistics on has to do with knowing that my child is doing the right thing....making sure they are learning how to deal with certain situations correctly....and being aware of how they manage themselves as an learn all these things and to pay attention to my child is NOT being overbearing. Its being a parent.

    Parenting is an ADJECTIVE which means that you are DOING something. I let my kids have a little rope and as they learn and mature and grow I will give more and more....they are not just BORN with the whole rope in their hands.....

    What are parents suppose to do? Have a child and just push it out the door as soon as it can walk? How is that parenting?

    Answer by mom2twobabes at 8:09 AM on Oct. 6, 2010

  • I whole heartedly agree with free-range parenting. I always know WHERE my children are, but I'm not "helicoptering" over them all the time.

    Answer by twinsplus2more at 8:12 AM on Oct. 6, 2010

  • Wow, no one said we shove our kids out the door and no nothing about where they are or what they are doing. Free-Range means letting them in the yard and not standing over them, but, being inside. As a teen, they can roam a little farther.

    Answer by BradenIsMySon at 8:15 AM on Oct. 6, 2010

  • So, what ages are we talking here? My 4 yr old dd does not go anywhere without me, period! My 11 yr old dd can walk around our neighborhood but I'm more comfortable if she is with friends. My 17 yr old dd is a different story and has lots more freedom. I definitely do not "helicopter" over my children but I do take the necessary precautions. It also depends on where you live. I grew up in ND, the lowest crime rate state of the country, but we are now living in Houston, Texas and kidnapping, attempted kidnapping, adult abductions, carjackings, murders, rapes and so on are a very real part of our lives.


    Answer by shanlaree at 8:17 AM on Oct. 6, 2010

  • I ALWAYS know where my kids are, what they are doing, who they are with, I have all the numbers, know the other moms, etc. My son knows his rules, and makes good choices if not - trust me - there's a consequence. If he does anything he's not supposed to I know about it, kids talk. We talk about it, and learn from it. He really doesn't do much as far as breaking any rules. Hes a great kid if i do say so myself. :) Standing out there watching the almost ten year old boys is fine for me - IF i felt it was necessary - which i don't. How can he learn to be independent - and make good choices on HIS OWN if he always know he's being watched. He needs to make the same good choices when no one is looking! How can he learn that if not given the opportunity????


    Answer by Tiffany8168 at 8:20 AM on Oct. 6, 2010

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