when is a good time to let your kids out without parent supervision

Janet - posted on 11/15/2014 ( 2 moms have responded )

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My daughter is in 8th grade she is a good student and she has a nice group of friends I know all of them and most of the parents too. Know that she is older she wants to socialize more last night she asked me if she could go to a school football game with her friends I drove her and another friend to the event and the other parent drove them home. There were adults at this event such as school teachers. My problem is that my husband thinks she needs to be supervised he tends to tread her like she six

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Janet - posted on 11/15/2014

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Thanks for your reply that is what I am trying to accomplish small outings to school events with friends. She knows to stay with her group and she also has a strong sense of right and wrong and won't be a crowd follower my husband comes from another country and if you look at a 10 year old there and one here they are completely different and I need to remember that

Chet - posted on 11/15/2014

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One thing I've found useful is to set a goal in terms of independence and to work backwards from it. I think you need to sit down with your husband and point out that if your daughter is going to go to college in four years, you need to start building up to that level of independence and freedom a little at a time (so you're all ready for it when the time comes). Otherwise, it's likely to you all like a ton of bricks.

Where we live there are no school buses after elementary school. This means that kids start taking public transit (city buses, the subway, and commuter trains) on their own when they're 12. Our oldest is 10, and in a little less than two years she's going to have to start taking the subway on her own to get to grade 7.

And so she started walking to and from our neighbourhood school on her own when she was 8. This summer past (right after she turned 10) she started going to the library and the local pool on her own with her friends. These are short outings to places very close to our house, but if she can't be confident and independent in the half mile around our house she's not going to be able to take the subway to another part of the city in two years.

And as scary it can be, every success builds confidence and competence. Every bit of independence lays the ground work for more independence. I wouldn't criticise your husband that he's treating your daughter like she's six, I would encourage him to recognize that independence is a life skill, the best way to acquire it is a little at time, and that overprotection does a huge disservice to kids.

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