Poll: Well, are they?
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View poll results: Well, are they?
Yes
190 79%
No
29 12%
Unsure
20 8%
Voters: 239.
Page 1 of 3
#1
http://theweek.com/article/index/96342/the-last-word-advice-from-americas-worst-mom


I just read that, and the lady makes a great point. I do think her decision to let her 9 year old find his way home using NYC public transport was a bit dangerous, but the concept is a good one.


I definitely think parents are too protective of their kids these days.


My mom has a friend who won't let her 13 year old son ride his bike around town because the sidewalks are uneven and he might fall. That's only one example of how protective she is. A kid recently threatened to punch this same kid in the face at a school festival, so his mom reported the kid to the school and threatened to report him to the police if the school didn't do anything about it. I seriously want to punch this lady in the face.

Oh, and she also won't let him walk 2 blocks to get the bus to school. She literally drives him to and from the bus stop every day.


My parents let me go out and play around the neighborhood all I wanted. As long as I was home for dinner or home before dark they didn't care.

I still live in the same neighborhood, but I rarely see kids out playing with each other anymore, or if they do I see at least one or two parents shadowing them the whole time.
#2
Definitely. What they don't realize is that their kids need to get hurt and make mistakes, to learn how to take care of themselves.
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#3
I must admit that what I've seen of parents with younger kids seems to seem much more protective.

When I was a kid, I had pretty much the run of the entire neighborhood (from the age of 7 or so anyway) and was allowed out with friends all day without supervision until dark when I had to come in.

But the example you give is simply crazy. Fact is that half the fear about kidnappers is hype, the stats show we're probably safer than ever.

But that article is crazy- yeah, kids need to be allowed to be independent, but ýou have to really make sure the kid can handle it. I know at 10 I couldn't use the Metro system by myself.
#4
O my goodness gracious yes. I was lucky enough to grow up in a rural area rather than a city. I got to experience playing outside from sunrise to sunset and getting INJURED. I cannot stress how important it is for kids to experience scrapes and bruises. No kid realizes it at the time, but the very first time you fall off your bike/climb a tree and fall is the very first building block on the road to being a tough individual. (not tough as in some testosterone fueled jock asshole. Tough as in someone who possesses fortitude)

EDIT: also, about the fighting part. Allow me to quote from Fight Club for a second. "How much can you know about yourself if you've never been in a fight?"

Truer words are rarely spoken. Kids NEED to fight. Since the beginning of school kids have had fights in the schoolyard. It's just the way it goes. Young animals of all types FIGHT, humans are no different.

EDIT2: "Fight" may be a bad choice of words. "Sparring" is probably much more appropriate.
Last edited by Lt. Shinysides at Jun 21, 2010,
#5
Parents are way too protective. My parents wouldn't let me go a block away to the store without someone else until I was 12, which was the same year I started smoking, drinking, and trying weed. I got into a fight in grade school, and I wasn't allowed to watch pokemon, because apparently I tried to thundershock him. Although the day I hit 18 I didn't have any rules except don't smoke in the house.

Once kids hit the age of 13ish, they are supposed to start rebelling, for the species sake. If we didn't, we wouldn't evolve and we'd have all died off a long time ago.
#6
I think that a certain degree of protection is needed. You know, the general "Stay away from shady figures" thing. But the point daytripper made about the lady not letting her 13 yo son ride his bike is absolutely rediculous.
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Last edited by KGB_INC at Jun 21, 2010,
#7
Well, there are always those parents who don't care and just let their kids run wild and then there are ones that are way too overprotective. The difficult thing is finding a balance of how strict/lenient to be.
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#8
Quote by Lt. Shinysides
O my goodness gracious yes. I was lucky enough to grow up in a rural area rather than a city. I got to experience playing outside from sunrise to sunset and getting INJURED. I cannot stress how important it is for kids to experience scrapes and bruises. No kid realizes it at the time, but the very first time you fall off your bike/climb a tree and fall is the very first building block on the road to being a tough individual. (not tough as in some testosterone fueled jock asshole. Tough as in someone who possesses fortitude)



Possibly the first time I've ever agreed with you. Kids need to play, to explore and as you day, get scrapes and bruises.
#9
That was a good read. However, I just read about some guy named Hamilton Fish who was a serial killer in that area back in the early 1900s. He would kidnap children that age and younger who were outside, rape them, torture them, then eat them. So... I don't know how I feel about her particular decision.

#10
After working in a hotel, I can say that I think parents should intervene a little more than they do. Fridays and Saturdays where I work is absolute chaos. These little buggers break and destroy and spill and ruin every single thing that they possibly can. This pattern is only doomed to repeat if these kids have kids. Parents need to be protective, but to an extent. Letting your child run wild in a hotel is irresponsible, having your child find his way home on a semi-dangerous transit system is pushing it, not letting your kid ride his bike is ridiculous.
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#11
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That was a good read. However, I just read about some guy named Hamilton Fish who was a serial killer in that area back in the early 1900s. He would kidnap children that age and younger who were outside, rape them, torture them, then eat them. So... I don't know how I feel about her particular decision.



That's one example. If we all got scared over a handful of serial killers we'd never leave home.
#13
Her decision was a bit careless but I agree. Parents are too protective.
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#14
I visited my mom's house yesterday. I went on a bike ride with my little brothers to the park down the street. These black kids rode by on their bikes yelling all kinds of shit at us. I'm older now so I can take care of myself for the most part, but I remember being young and scared of bigger kids picking on me for no reason. I didn't really know what to do, I didn't want to get my little brothers involved in some pointless fight. But they gotta learn how to defend themselves when I'm not around right? Or at least how to avoid trouble. I don't want them to be afraid to go outside their house.

Then I have an aunt who won't let her kids walk home from their school that's literally two blocks away. I can see why she's so paranoid, but kids these days should be able to take care of themselves. Right?
#15
Quote by BrokenDstring
After working in a hotel, I can say that I think parents should intervene a little more than they do. Fridays and Saturdays where I work is absolute chaos. These little buggers break and destroy and spill and ruin every single thing that they possibly can. This pattern is only doomed to repeat if these kids have kids. Parents need to be protective, but to an extent. Letting your child run wild in a hotel is irresponsible, having your child find his way home on a semi-dangerous transit system is pushing it, not letting your kid ride his bike is ridiculous.



intervening is not the same as protecting. Parents who don't intervene when their kids are being dicks are just shitty parents. Parents who keep their kids locked in the house to prevent kids from breaking THEMSELVES are the ones who overprotect.
#16
yes, i think parents have become hypersensative to the dangers out there because of a global media and shows like 'to catch a predator'. i really dont think that there are any more dangers out there today, whether it be pedophiles, rapists, murderers, robbers, etc. than there was 40 years ago.

now, when some 11 year old white girl gets abducted and raped, it makes the headlines of every national news network and nacy grace plans her tv show around it for the next two months. 40 years ago, something like that would have made the local news within the state it happened in. now because some paranoid housewife sees a new kid has been abducted every week, they all of a sudden assume that its not safe for little billy to go down to the park to play with his friends without adult supervision without regard for the fact that there are millions and millions of kids in the US that arent abducted.

i dont really think its healthy for kids to teach them to be that dependent on parents, and to never allow them any sort of freedoms where they would be able to begin learning to take care of and think for themselves.
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#17
i was totally unacknowledged to protection when i was a child but my brother... he lives the most sheltered life ever under my mother wing,he dosent even take his shirt off because my mother says he'll get skin cancer.
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#18
No.

I would say more people were strict back in older generations. As far as I've seen, my generation and younger people than me have been very lax. I mean, most parents let their kids watch anything they want at any age, will even buy them birth control at 13 just so they can have sex without worrying about a kid, shoot guns, etc...

I remember making molotov cocktails when i was 10 and when i was 11 me and my friend who was also my age were walking around myrtle beach for 3 days without any parental contact. my dad also let me drink when i was 10 and also told me that i shouldnt have been trying to hide that i was having sex and that i could just do it at home and they dont care (years ago i would just leave and go to other peoples houses).


either everyone here is extremely relaxed or you live in a crazy world. if it was any less protective then i would be worried
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#19
No, as a matter of fact, I am absolutely appalled that most parents don't wrap their children in bubble-wrap and have them incased in styrofoam until they're 18, when they burst from the wrappings like a butterfly from a cocoon and lead a full adult life with no deficiencies or psychological problems.
#20
Some are, some aren't. You can't really say "parents today." What does that even mean? The ease with which kids can get into trouble today seems somewhat easier than in the past, although I didn't live in the past, so I don't really know. What I do know is that a 16 year old's highest priority in life shouldn't be something akin to getting wasted every weekend. Any parent who allows that is asking for trouble and it's up to them to guide their child onto a positive path.
Last edited by RockInPeaceDime at Jun 21, 2010,
#21
Yes. My parents weren't too overly protective, and it's only really my Mum that's protective with my Dad only saying things because she pressures him to. Mum's tried to get more protective as i've gotten older, but it's something i've never liked and always reacted badly to, so i've managed to keep a distance from my parents having too much control.

In any case, most of the things I do with my spare time involve me staying at home in my room.
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#22
IMO, parents are having trouble finding a happy middle where they're not overprotective yet not too careless.

I've seen bad cases of both, and it scares me away from having kids for now.
#23
I hardly ever see kids playing outside anymore, but that's mainly because their parents warn them not to go close to my house.

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#24
It's all relative to the child in question. If the parents had a discussion and thought this kid could handle it, then the kid could probably handle it. What the media doesn't understand is that kids mature at different rates; one 9 year old is different to another 9 year old, and while some cannot handle being out on their own, some can.

I was allowed to walk to and from school when I was 9. My brother was not allowed until he was 12. Different kids have different maturity levels and different needs.

Lots of parents are way too overprotective. I think my parents did a good job with me, and are still doing a good job with my younger brother (who is still in high school). They understand kids need limits and supervision, but they also need to be able to face things on their own to turn into a properly functioning adult.

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#25
Oh hell yes they are.
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#26
It's a difficult question.
Yes, parents are more protective of their kids than they used to be, but then, parents need to be more protective of their kids than they used to be.

When I was a kid, my parents gave me quite a lot of freedom, I could basicaly roam half the town I lived in and could also pack myself some food and go off into the local countryside for the day, just so long as I wasn't on my own but with friends.

Now I have my own offspring, living in practicaly the same area, although one of them is practicaly an adult now and the other one is starting high school this year, but as they were growing I wouldn't dream of giving them anywhere near the same freedom as I had, because when I was a kid, you didn't see drug dealers on half the street corners, you didn't see people regularly fighting in the street.
Thefts, muggings, burglary, these were very rare occurences localy when I was a kid, now they seem to be happening every other day localy, then you have the offspring of the local drug addicts and alcoholics. They've grown up hard and have no qualms about running around vandalising public and private property and bullying the other local kids into doing the same, as well as bullying their pocket money off them.

Of course, this is just my area, but I think it is fairly indicative of the whole country. It simply isn't as safe for kids out there as it used to be.
#27
Mine weren't sure Ihad your average rules when I was younger than 16 but after that I could go "I'm going out" and they'd just say "don't die".
I am me. Live with it.
#28
Yes they are. i remember my ex girlfriend about a year ago, she couldnt come out, not even to see her friends, just incase she somehow got raped while with a group of friends n broad day light.
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#29
Parents are over-protective in the wrong ways.

For instance, I think it would be alot better to be more protective about letting kids below a certain age have free, unsupervised access to the internet, but not letting kids ride a bike to school or whatever (which even my mom doesn't let my siblings do), is being waaaay to overprotective. Not letting your kids do things like that means that they never learn responsibility until they leave the house (thank god I never listened to my mom )

EDIT: also, we live in a very quiet, peaceful city in Germany, which already has a relatively low crime rate. it really depends on the area you live.
I sure wouldn't let my kids roam around freely in the middle of a city like LA or Houston.
Last edited by CoreysMonster at Jun 21, 2010,
#30
Depends entirely on the individual parents to be honest. Some parents probably are slightly overly protective of their kids but I think the vast majority of parents (in this country at least) let their kids go out wherever they want and do whatever they want, or at least it definitely seems that way at this moment in time.
#31
Quote by CoreysMonster
Parents are over-protective in the wrong ways.

For instance, I think it would be alot better to be more protective about letting kids below a certain age have free, unsupervised access to the internet, but not letting kids ride a bike to school or whatever (which even my mom doesn't let my siblings do), is being waaaay to overprotective. Not letting your kids do things like that means that they never learn responsibility until they leave the house (thank god I never listened to my mom )

EDIT: also, we live in a very quiet, peaceful city in Germany, which already has a relatively low crime rate. it really depends on the area you live.
I sure wouldn't let my kids roam around freely in the middle of a city like LA or Houston.

So true! if i want to pop down the road to the shop my mum is like "have you got your money? have you got your phone? have you got automatic rifle? have you got backup on speed dial? have you got your bullet proof vest? have you got your chav spray? have you got TEH GUTZ??? :'(
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#32
Going by what happens around my area, definitely not. Parent just let there kids go wherever they want and usually have no idea where they, whenever they want them to come home they literally have to go and search for them first. Also they clearly don't see that this guy who must be at least 19 by now who hangs around with them (and is on bail for assaulting a 6-year-old) is a pedophile.

So yeah, definitely not, there are a few more sensible parents round here but the majority aren't very protective at all
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#33
Quote by SlackerBabbath
It's a difficult question.
Yes, parents are more protective of their kids than they used to be, but then, parents need to be more protective of their kids than they used to be.

When I was a kid, my parents gave me quite a lot of freedom, I could basicaly roam half the town I lived in and could also pack myself some food and go off into the local countryside for the day, just so long as I wasn't on my own but with friends.

Now I have my own offspring, living in practicaly the same area, although one of them is practicaly an adult now and the other one is starting high school this year, but as they were growing I wouldn't dream of giving them anywhere near the same freedom as I had, because when I was a kid, you didn't see drug dealers on half the street corners, you didn't see people regularly fighting in the street.
Thefts, muggings, burglary, these were very rare occurences localy when I was a kid, now they seem to be happening every other day localy, then you have the offspring of the local drug addicts and alcoholics. They've grown up hard and have no qualms about running around vandalising public and private property and bullying the other local kids into doing the same, as well as bullying their pocket money off them.

Of course, this is just my area, but I think it is fairly indicative of the whole country. It simply isn't as safe for kids out there as it used to be.
+1

Overprotective implies more protective than necessary. While some parents may be overprotective, simply being more protective of their kids than their parents were of them does not make them overprotective - in most cases it just makes them sensible.

As for the article, I have no idea what the New York subway is like but I was just thinking about the London Underground. I feel a lot safer on the Underground than on the bus I get to school everyday because the underground doesn't go to some of the worst areas in London (and my bus does go to one) but I don't think it's safe for a 9 year old to go on the underground. Not because everyone on the underground is a kidnapper or the underground is terribly unsafe but because I think a nine year old would be vunerable if any dangerous people were on the underground, which is unlikely but it happens.

Also, this woman says "But, no, I did not give him a cell phone. Because although I very much trusted him to get himself home, I was a lot less sure he’d get the phone there." If you don't think someone is capable of not losing a mobile on the way home why on earth would you trust them to get home safely. The way she says it doesn't seem like she is saying that he would be in more danger with a mobile (which I would question but it seems like an argument agaisnt giving him a mobile), it just seems like she thinks he'll lose it and that's not a risk she wants to take...she's definately got her priorities in order then.
#35
I think most parents are the opposite from protective here. Almost no one watches his kids anymore. The kids can do more then ever. Hence the criminality in my town. Good parenting can solve that.
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#36
Perhaps the media over exaggerate this mommy-coddling culture, like they over exaggerate everything?

Anyway, I think there is evidence to back up both

There are some stuffy neurotic parents that are overprotective, and some rubbish parents who don't even care about their kids

So, it's really dependent on the parents
#37
My parents are a bit protective even though I am 18; my mother tried to talk me out of my prospective plans to study abroad is one example. Unprotective parents on the other hand, are usually the parents of the biggest douchebags I know.

Also, I am happy that my parents are caring for me and my brothers, they could have trusted me a bit more though.
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Last edited by sfaune92 at Jun 21, 2010,
#38
Yes! My parents let me hang out til dark, I just had to keep in touch every few hours if i was going somewhere on the other side of town, i remember getting hurt, getting yelled at by other kids, and yelling at other kids. It helped me grow up a lot man.
#39
Why so many yeses?

There are plenty of over-protective parents. I've met them. However, on the whole, parents definitely are not over-protective. Which is a good thing; it's a more liberal society, and I'm pretty happy with that.

EDIT: I'm just glancing back at all of my friends in school. I would consider very few of their parents to be over-protective. The only frequent trend in being protective was coming back home on time.

Also, +1 to all of the posts emphasising what good being free to make error and get hurt can be.
Last edited by Craigo at Jun 21, 2010,
#40
Quote by SlackerBabbath
It's a difficult question.
Yes, parents are more protective of their kids than they used to be, but then, parents need to be more protective of their kids than they used to be.

When I was a kid, my parents gave me quite a lot of freedom, I could basicaly roam half the town I lived in and could also pack myself some food and go off into the local countryside for the day, just so long as I wasn't on my own but with friends.

Now I have my own offspring, living in practicaly the same area, although one of them is practicaly an adult now and the other one is starting high school this year, but as they were growing I wouldn't dream of giving them anywhere near the same freedom as I had, because when I was a kid, you didn't see drug dealers on half the street corners, you didn't see people regularly fighting in the street.
Thefts, muggings, burglary, these were very rare occurences localy when I was a kid, now they seem to be happening every other day localy, then you have the offspring of the local drug addicts and alcoholics. They've grown up hard and have no qualms about running around vandalising public and private property and bullying the other local kids into doing the same, as well as bullying their pocket money off them.

Of course, this is just my area, but I think it is fairly indicative of the whole country. It simply isn't as safe for kids out there as it used to be.

I was under the impression that crime was going down on an aggregate scale (which naturally drains out the reality of localities).
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