Posted by: Ticktock | August 18, 2009

Parenting Unleashed Part Two

This is drifting toward an argument from emotion and away from science and reasoning, but this is an example of why the harness-leash decision bothers me:

I find it infuriating that this lady can’t manage her kid well enough to remove him from the Verizon store in a better way than dredging him across the thin carpet.

To be fair, parents forcefully yank their kids around all the time without requiring a leash, but somehow doing it with a harness just makes it seem that much worse. But, in no way am I trying to use this as an argument against mobility restraints for children. I just forgot to include this video in my last post, and it was one of the reasons that I was thinking about the topic.

-Ticktock

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Responses

  1. I think this lady was completely wrong. I do use a leash and harness with my 1 yo nephew, just like I used to with his now 4 yo sister. I would never haul him around like this. If I need to move fast I would scoop up both him and his sister if need be. I rarely have them out when they are so exhausted that tantrums are going to happen, in that case I would also scoop them up and carry them.

    He wants to walk – and I think walking is better than being pushed around in a stroller. I have a skin condition that causes my hands to fissure and bleed if I’ve reacted to something. So there are times my hands are raw and it is painful to hold their hands. He has had a couple of outbreaks of rashes also, and I think that may be one reason he hates holding someones hands.

    I remember it burning when I had to hold adults hands. One time my father had used Lava soap after working on an engine. He gently held on to my arm in a crowd. I started crying. Within a few minutes you could see here his hand had been because of the reaction to the soap residue on his hand. Try explaining that at a first aid tent.

    Also I’m tall and I worry about accidentally hurting him or me trying to hold on to his hand. Basically I have to bend over or risk lifting him off the ground.

    When he is verbal enough to respond instantly to my voice, and give my name and cell number to an adult – the back pack will just be a stuffed animal for them to play with. For this transitional time it is a tool I can use to keep him safe. His parents know I use it and why they have not problem with it.

    So this is a long way of saying the problem isn’t the tool it is how the tool is used.

  2. That makes perfect sense. I can see why you use the leash. I think it’s good that you let your children graduate from it when they’re able to comprehend you. I really think my 1st post was in reaction to seeing an older child restrained. That really bothers me – and, of course, this lady bothers me, as she would most people.

  3. Yes, but I think we have all seen parents dragging their kids by the hand in a very similar manner. That’s difficult to watch as well. The difference is that only their legs are dragging, not their entire body.

    This mother totally lost control here. I’m not sure I’d say it’s a function of the leash.

    • That and the fact that they could have their shoulder dislocated by being dragged by the hand.

      • Very true. I’ve been warned several times by my mom not to pick the kids up by their arm (playing) because she had her arm pulled out of it’s socket when she was a child.

      • Yup. I personally know of instances where that has happened.

      • There is a condition called “nursemaid elbow” caused by a kid having their arm pulled.

  4. I agree it is definitely a tool and it all depends on how it’s used, like so many other parenting tools.

    For instance, some people like to compare playpens/cribs to cages. I don’t agree generally, but I know there are some parents who plop their kids in there and leave them there all day (even while they scream to be let out) and in that particular situation it is more like a “cage”.

    So similarly, using a leash could be likened to treating your kid like a dog (although, I would assume plenty of people would’ve been upset if it had been a dog being dragged like that too) and it would certainly apply in some cases, but for the most part it is just another tool with uses and drawbacks.

    I used to be against them too. It was because one had been used on my brother in a very degrading way (it was used to tie him into bed at night, and tie him to the couch leg during the day) and I hadn’t realized it could be used gently and lovingly as well until I became older and read other accounts that were nothing like what I saw.

  5. I used a leash for my son when he was young. He wasn’t a runner, but he WAS quick, and if you think about it, hand holding for a kid is basically like having to go around for long periods of time with their arm up in the air. They’re so much smaller than we are, and eventually their arms are going to get uncomfortable. It’s no wonder they don’t want to hold hands all the time.

    I never, ever dragged my son, though. He was pretty good at staying next to me most of the time. Leashes can be effective, as long as they’re used properly, quite unlike the lady in the video. Gah.

  6. Haven’t you leash people ever heard of strollers?


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