Hide and seek is dangerous for Toddlers

Katherine - posted on 03/28/2011 ( 4 moms have responded )

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This past week, 4-year-old Bryce McCraken of Missouri went missing while playing hide-and-seek. More than 250 people searched for 12 hours, before he was finally found around 11 p.m. about an hour from his home. He thankfully was unharmed, but there's an important lesson to be learned from this story: Hide-and-seek is dangerous for toddlers.

The whole premise of the game is just asking for trouble: Go and hide somewhere creative and don't come out even when I call your name. Do you have any idea how creative toddlers can get?

In Auckland, the game got even more seriously dangerous. A prisoner there has recently admitted to multiple sex acts on children while playing the game of hide-and-seek. While the incidents happened years ago, it still highlights the potential for problems with such a secretive game.

Hide-and-seek isn't alone, there are plenty of other games ripe with dangers for toddlers:

London Bridges

Take the key and lock her up, lock her up. Planting the idea in a toddler's head of locking anyone up is asking for trouble.

Red Rover, Red Rover

You really want to encourage your toddler busting through things -- especially people? Beware the mall if you do.

Musical Chairs

Stitches waiting to happen.

Golf

I thought golf camp would be so cute for my 4-year-old. The first day he required stitches when another child's putter went way above putt level.

Pinatas

Oh, it's fun to watch them try and hit those colorful candy-containing devices ... until they hit someone else. A good rule to live by with toddlers: No sticks.

What games do you think are most dangerous for toddlers?


Image via ianmunroe/Flickr

4 Comments

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Medic - posted on 03/28/2011

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Oh but red rover is soo much fun!!!!! Most of these games I let my kids play or partake in. Every game has rules and the rules will be followed and if someone gets hurt someone gets hurt. Kids will always find a way to get hurt, and it is usually minimal.

Jessica - posted on 03/28/2011

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If any parent lives in a bubble wrapped world for thier children because they are scared it does more damage than stitches. I am a mother who suffers from severe anxiety and post traumatic stress disorder, and every game my child plays poses a risk in my head. I have to fight every step of the way to ensure that she is safe and i dont have a heart attack because I am to worried. thus being said my daughter is not a normal 3 year old. I wish I wasnt cursed with this but at other times it comes at a blessing. Its not the games that are dangerous. as a parent we are teachers and support. Make sure your toddler understands the rules of the games, hide and seek with such little ones should be played in a house or in a fenced in back yard. Red rover can be very dangerous so change the rules just a bit when the child reaches the arms to hug instead of busting through. Golf... I never really understood why a toddler would want to play that sport but at the same time they are waving a shiney club at a tiny ball. Stand back or switch the 5 iron to a plastic one. Of course we worry about our children and of course they are going to get hurt. But we are always there to kiss their boo boos away. I think that as being moms the only thing we can do is teach our children about hurting others, and about stranger danger. and just pray pray pray that nothing happens. best of luck to you

Katherine - posted on 03/28/2011

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I totally agree, Jennifer. Some of this are a bit extreme. I think if you do it the right way with a lot of supervision, then your child should be safe.

Jennifer - posted on 03/28/2011

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wow, sometimes I think people can get a little carried away. I want my children safe and never to get hurt, obviously, but they also need a chance to experience life. We all need to do our best to keep them from getting hurt, but some of these (yes I said some, not all) I would let my children play. I mean wow, I played golf when I was a toddler and never needed any stitches, but I also played basketball with my brother on a cement slab in our back yard, and fell down chasing the ball and scraped up my knees and elbows. So, does that mean I should have never played basket ball either? The point I'm trying to make, is that everything has the potential to be "dangerous", but if you set boundries (ie, locks on the doors so a child can't sneak out of the house during hide and seak, or keeping others far enough back in golf, so that the club doesn't hit them if it goes too high), you can decrease the dangers and let the children have a little fun.

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