The government is actually investigating a mother for child neglect by teaching her daughter responsibility. What’s wrong with this picture?
The answer: Everything.
A Chicago mother was shocked to have police arrive at her door shortly after her 8-year old daughter took the family dog, Marshmallow, for a walk around the block.
One of her neighbors
snitched called the authorities concerned that the girl was walking the dog without an adult present.
This complaint launched an investigation by the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services to determine if the mother, Corey Widen of Wilmette, a town just outside of Chicago, was neglecting her children.
“For something like this to happen to me, there’s something really wrong,” said Widen, 48, who agreed to let her 8-year-old daughter and 17-year-old son get the Maltese puppy last year as long as everyone took turns walking her. Widen, who asked that her daughter’s name not be used, said the girl’s walk around the block — most of which Widen says she can see out her windows — is the only time her home-schooled daughter is unsupervised. “The funny thing is … I’m a joke with my friends because my kids are around me all the time.”
She’s not alone. This is an issue all over the United States where anonymous reports of neglect are made when children are in no danger.
Dear ClashDaily Reader, I’m not sure how old you are, but in my day, children could go to the park by themselves. My friends and I used to go to the corner store on our own fairly regularly to pick up candy and then head over to a nearby creek and catch frogs.
Children can’t do that anymore because of the hyper-vigilance of alleged ‘child safety’ advocates. With the imperative to keep children safe, children can’t be children anymore.
Widen’s daughter was taking the dog for a walk on her own — a task that was commonplace in childhood just a few years ago. It’s a chore that teaches the responsibility of pet ownership and gives a child a sense of independence. No wonder we have a bunch of wussified little snowflakes! They’re not allowed to walk the dog alone at 8 years old!
God forbid that you leave a child in your car to pay for gas or, as one mom did, left her sleeping child in the car as her other children dropped money into the Salvation Army kettle.
This isn’t just an attack on childhood and children but on motherhood and mothers, as well.
And the expectation that mothers should keep a constant eye on their children, even when there’s little to no real risk, is one that does not often extend to fathers, said Barbara Risman, sociology professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
“This shaming mechanism underlies the cultural logic that women should spend all their time making sure their children are never alone,” Risman said. “The opposite is true of dads. No one presumes fathers have a moral responsibility to take care of (their children). When they do, they get praise and positive reinforcement.”
The judgment placed on moms who give their children more freedom is not logical, Risman added. “We create street myths about dangers, and then everyone fears that it will happen to their child. And then we overcompensate. Children are not allowed the freedom really to become themselves.”
Reports are made to police not on what is actually happening, but what could possibly happen.
Don’t we have better things to do with our limited time and resources in the Department of Children and Families than investigate an 8-year old walking her puppy around the block?
Widen said the incident has caused her entire family stress after DCFS investigators visited her home, and talked to her children, other family members and their pediatrician. After about two weeks and several interviews, investigators told Widen’s attorney last week that they did not find evidence of neglect, Widen said.
“Everyone needs to allow the parent to do what is best for their family,” she said. “No one will dictate my parenting choices.”
Source: Chicago Tribune
That’s the way to be, Ms. Widen!
Everyone needs to calm down a little and realize that kids aren’t in danger 24/7. Kids need to be kids, learn how to relate to other kids, problem-solve, and fend for themselves. That happens when we stop being the constant helicopter parent and let them loose a little.
With the tragic stories that the Media (D) pushes, we’re all concerned about the safety of children. The fact is, many people go way too far.
Some parents are fighting back.
Last May, Utah introduced a ‘free range parenting law’ that protects parental rights. The law allows children to play at a park unsupervised, walk to and from school by themselves, and be left in a parked car alone for brief periods of time, all under certain conditions.
That sounds like a good start.
Now, I’m not advocating for neglect, but maybe we can let an 8-year old go around the block to walk the dog.
I know that might sound radical these days, but that’s just how I roll.
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