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comment by b_b
b_b  ·  201 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: What watching my daughter play ‘The Legend of Zelda’ taught me

A little off topic, but mk and I were just discussing the other day how as parents you make a ton of choices that are rational in the immediate situation, but are probably detrimental in the long run. Yes, you want your kids doing fun things and learning, so you sign them up for this and that, and no you don’t want them getting run over, so you say stay in the backyard or whatever. But ultimately, they need to find their way around the world on their own. I just let my five year old bike to the neighbor’s house on his own the other day, which is like down to the end of our block then around the corner by a few house (with sidewalks the whole way, so not exactly dangerous). And it felt good. But then I think about how I walked a mile each way to and from school when I was in kindergarten, and it doesn’t feel so big. I don’t know how to thread that needle between safety and freedom, but I try to give myself credit for at least thinking about it a lot.

kleinbl00  ·  201 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I dunno, man, at the age of 6 my daughter decided to get up early one Saturday morning and go wander to the forest half a mile away. When she got back we set the ground rules (1) no leaving the house without telling us where you're going (2) no crossing streets with traffic lights without a grownup around (this limits her to about a 3 block radius). When COVID hit and she ended up at home ALL THE TIME I bought a pair of shitty walkie talkies so she could stomp around with the neighbor kids without me needing to keep an eye on her.

I have used "if I was good to do it, she's good to do it" as my operating principle since (1) the world is hella safer (2) she has a much better safety net than I ever did. I think a lot of today's child-rearing problems come from visible hypocrisy.

b_b  ·  201 days ago  ·  link  ·  

In Grant's memoirs, he relates a story about traveling to Lexington from outside Cincinnati where he lived to do horse trading as a 10 year old. Apparently, even for the 1830s that was a bit uncommon, but at least it illustrates how much more competent kids are than we often give them credit for. Love the walkie talkies.

kleinbl00  ·  201 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Lenore Skenazy's main point in Free Range Kids is the modern world is so much safer than it was in the 70s or 80s but because of Jon Walsh and the WhiteWomanInPeril ABC Sunday Night Movie we're all a bunch of paranoid fucks.