Bus stop

Niki - posted on 01/17/2012 ( 7 moms have responded )

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do you drive your children to the bus stop if the weather is 20 degrees? Also, would you let your 7 yr old and 5 yr old walk 4 houses length s over by themselves and wait for the bus stop.? im seriously disturbed by this neighbor that lets her child walk 4 houses down and doesnt watch them not even at the front porch! Then sends the 2 kids out with light jackets no gloves , so i went to buy them some and the kids were very happy i did this. their mom didnt seem to happy, tho

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Danielle - posted on 01/26/2012

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My daughters took the bus to school until this year. We live in a fairly nice section of Philly with a public school across the street from us, but they went to Catholic school until this year. Philly won't bus until 1st grade, so I had a few years of driving them to school & worrying about leaving work to pick them up or getting someone else to. When my younger daughter was in 1st, they started taking the bus both ways every day. At 1st I would wait with them for the bus (1st & 3rd grades) in the morning. They got off independently & walked the 2 blocks home to my aunts. But then last year I needed to catch a bus to work myself, so I started leaving them to wait on their own. They each had cell phones & would text me to let me know they were on the bus. Or call me to say the bus was late. And they waited in all kinds of weather too! Now they go to the public school across the street from our house.



And as fas as the lack of hats & gloves, part of that may be the child. At 8, my oldest used to walk to her gymnastics class 2 blocks away in shorts, a tank top & an unzipped winter coat in the middle of winter. Now, at 11, she tends to wear a light jacket all year. I'll be bundled up with a scarf & gloves & she has on shorts & a light jacket. And I have trouble getting a coat on my 7 yo son at all!

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Sherri - posted on 01/27/2012

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Nope I have never driven my kids to the bus stop even in subzero temps they have to wait in the cold for it.



If I knew my neighborhood and knew they were safe sure I would let a second grader and kindergartner wait together. I used to have my 1st and 2nd grader walk across the street together and wait for the bus.



Now if you were talking blocks or streets away I think that is completely a different story. The lack of clothing. I was anal about making sure they were bundled and dressed appropriately and I still am with my 5yr old. However, with my 13 & 15yr old they are on their own and I don't think they have worn a winter coat all winter. They choose to wear only sweatshirts and no gloves well let them freeze their butts off sorry but as teenagers I am not fighting with them.



Now although I am anal with my 5yr old. Their is one parent in his class that allows her 5yr old to decide what he wants to wear that day even in subzero temps. Somedays he shows up in a winter coat others in a light weight fleece. So I guess all parents are different and it isn't my place to judge.

Danielle - posted on 01/24/2012

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I drive my son down to the bus stop and back in all weathers no matter what. (He's 10 by the way) Our bus stop is about 5 or 6 blocks from our house. I do it because it's easier for me to pick him up.

Sylvia - posted on 01/18/2012

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I had to go find a Fahrenheit-to-Celcius converter before posting LOL. Turns out 20°F is only -6°C. It was colder than that here today, and my 9-year-old walked home from school as usual ... so I guess that gives you my answer. No, it would never occur to me to drive my kid to the bus stop, even on a really cold day (which -6°C isn't). And only partly because I have neither a car nor a driver's licence.



I don't understand what the issue is with letting kids walk 4 houses down to the bus stop. The lack of adequate winter clothing is a genuine problem, but Shawnn's right, you don't know the whole story -- I know when I was that age I was always going out in the winter without a hat, in runners instead of boots, without mittens, etc., because bundling up was for little kids :P (And where I grew up, -6°C is a warm day in the winter.) This was absolutely not my mom's fault, any more than it's my fault my DD has started refusing to wear her snowpants to school. Or maybe this mom has bought her kids mittens and hats that they've worn to school and lost. It was nice of you to give the kids mittens, but there are less obtrusive ways to do stuff like that.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 01/18/2012

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Gina, I can relate to "the daycare lost my kid"...Been there, been FURIOUS at them!



But, I'll say this, it DID help me get over my "can he walk home from the bus stop" qualms, since the place that lost him actually put him on a bus to an empty house, since dh and I wouldn't have been home for another 3 hours. I hadn't even shown him where the bus stop WAS!!!



My (then) 6 yo recognized the neighborhood, knew how to get home (from landmarks) and thank goodness at the time we lived in an area where locked doors just didn't happen. I was not so fortunate, I almost had to be sedated by the time I found him at the neighbor's. Needless to say, I realized I couldn't be everywhere, and that, somehow, I'd managed to instill the right things in my kid, and he'd actually absorbed them! I've not worried (much) since

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 01/18/2012

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I only drive my son to the bus if the weather is sub-zero, or the wind chill is low. But, I drive my son to school 4 out of 5 days because I don't trust the little monsters on the bus to not destroy his cello. (another story...LOL)



But, when they were little, (oldest 9, youngest 5), they regularly walked to the stop, which is 2 blocks away.



4 houses is basically one block, so no, I certainly wouldn't have had a problem with it at all. And, while your spirit is giving, you may want to not be so obvious in your "gifts".



If you feel that she's being inattentive, go ahead and call her in, but just remember that, unless you know her WHOLE story, you could be making the wrong call. You don't know that she "only sent them out with light jackets". Maybe she figures they need to learn early on what is required to stay warm, and if they argue about putting on a winter coat, let them go a day in a light jacket and see how that feels.



Maybe she just got tired of arguing with them about what to wear. I know that I have thrown my hands up in despair because my younger son didn't understand why I wanted him to wear a hat that covered his ears. So, I said "fine, you do what you want". It only took a day, and he wears a hat in the winter now.



Maybe she can't watch the older two because she has an infant that you aren't aware of, that requires more immediate attention than watching two kids who are old enough to know the difference between a stranger and a trusted adult, and who actually have their house in sight. My whole point is, don't assume anything.



I know, I'm the coat/hat mom in our neighborhood. But, there are some families who do not welcome assistance, for any number of reasons. You don't want to create a situation that could be uncomfortable for the kids. Unless you are certain that there is a situation in need of investigation, you're opening the door to bad neighbor relationships.



Maybe, instead of assuming that she's a poor parent, introduce yourself to her, and offer to give her kids rides with yours. This will work, if they already play together. Or, perhaps, instead of just giving the kids gloves/hats, you could take a couple of pairs and a couple of hats over and tell her that you've got way too many, and could her kids use them? That way, you're not making her feel like a poor parent.



Another thing is that some families can afford good winter gear. Others can't, but they also don't want handouts, or "assistance". Assisting without stepping on toes is hard, but it is possible, if you get to know the family, and get to know their needs.

Gina - posted on 01/18/2012

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My neighbor lets her 7 year old walk about 10 blocks with a few turns by herself, so I guess everyone is different. Personally, I'm a helicopter mom and pick my daughter up at the bus stop. Some parents believe that having them walk themselves and remember to get their jackets and such on their own shows them to toughen up and instill independence. For me, if I can keep my kid safe and warm and teach her how to take care of herself by keeping her safe myself, I'll do it. I can understand when there are working parents who simply can't pick up their kids because they're at work, but if you're at home watching One Life to Live while the kindergartener and 1st grader are freezing on their way home that's just wrong. Not to mention the horror stories you hear about kids being picked up by strangers on the way home in even the safest of neighborhoods... if I don't have to risk it, I won't. Then again I also had my daughter turned into me by police because the daycare didn't notice my three year old walk out of the center.. so I've got a whole other can of issues that make me over protective.

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