Wednesday

Your Thoughts?

Wednesday, February 13, 2008-WSJ
Nanny Watch: Do You Look Out for Other People’s Kids?
Photo by Katia Strieck

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

My commeent? Big brother is here and here to stay. We have to get ready to relize it is 1984 for real this time. Anything you do is up for grabs for peeps to scratch about. Watching someone how they treat kids and blasting them makes more sense than blasting bad tippers. that mor elike a privacy invasion to me. you know?

original vi said...

Is everyone in hiding today on account of last night?

Anonymous said...

I find it hard not to watch other kids, even though they are not your own. Though that's mostly because my kids are playing in the same area. But, as a parent, I would be more concerned about people who are there that don't have their own kids to watch.

Anonymous said...

Yes, even as a nanny not a mom I watch out for other people's kids. I think it is just what you do when you care for children and their well being.

Anonymous said...

I only look to see if they're in imminent danger - left alone on a slide, wandering around a store, running down the sidewalk. Otherwise, I stick to my job.

paul the intern said...

Do tell, Holly Go Lightly- What is your job.

And it is funny she says one of those nanny blogs.

There is only one nanny blog!

§marypoppin'pills§ said...

In this day and age where it unfortunately takes both Parents to be the breadwinner, we need all the help we can get.
If you can't be around your kids 24/7, wouldn't you want someone helping to keep an eye on them?

mnanny said...

Yes, I do. There have been so many times when I have been watching my charges and watched a kid walk off from his/her parents and then when the parent finally notices I tell them the kids is right over there. If I go to the park, there are always kids whose parents sit their asses on the bench with their phones while their kids ask strangers for help. I watch out for the kids because someone has to watch them, but not the point where I am not paying attention to my charges.

Anonymous said...

I think that the ones that mind being kept an eye on are the ones we should actually be worrying about. Otherwise, they would have nothing to hide.

Anonymous said...

I do watch out for others kids. It's hard not to. "My" kids are playing with or near theirs. So it is in my best interest that I know what is going on around us.

Anonymous said...

Always.

just anonymous said...

In my opinion, good nannies always keep a watchful eye out. We are getting paid to be hyper vigilant. Not that I will neglect my own charge for another's, but if I'm pushing mine on a swing, I can easily push the child on the swing next to ours if the Mom/Nanny is busy with a second child.

Sarah and Mitch said...

Even though I decided to stop nannying because we are now expecting our first baby, I have always found that I am the "parent" in many situations. Both with my adult friends who definitely act their stereotypical age sometimes, and while I am out and around children in any environment.

I don't step on other parents' toes, but I can't help but keep an eye on the child, especially if it is next to the marina playground, or in a busy store or mall. Even at my work, I give the kiddos stickers and kind of play with them if I have the time. I am always on a constant guard dog-like watch of little ones around me... it's pretty engrained in my system.

erics mom said...

I usually just keep my eye on my son. Because he is so young, I am afraid he will run out on me. Plus, I am very fearful of kidnapping. Ever since having him, I have been more nervous about this. Usually, I go to the park right outside my house. I know the other kids that come and their parents. So I feel pretty good. If I see something I will say something. Like oh your child is running out. Or what out your going to get hurt. If I do go to other parks, I go to ones that are not too big, fenced in, and not in a wooded area. Not secluded. Its a scary world!!!

erics mom said...

opps I meant watch out not what

Anonymous said...

erics mom
you must be a new mom? it sounds as if you might be a little more than paranoid, but better safe then sorry i guess. it's always good to keep a close watch on our kids, but why are you worried someone is going to snatch YOUR baby? what are you famous or something? i mean the chamnces of that happening while you are with the baby are slim to none. i'd just like to see somebody be able to grab my baby from my arms - they'll come back with stumps!!

mom said...

6:42 and Eric's mom,
I watched really closely like Eric's mom describes too. It is a scary world, and even though the odds are in favor of each child NOT getting kidnapped, it still does happen. So it's really scary.

What are the stats for stranger abduction in our country...like 500kids a year? I'm not really sure, but I think it might be something like that. That's an average of 10 kids per state per year whose families go through hell...many for a lifetime afterwards 'cause I think stranger abductions tend to end on the gruesome side. And what the poor kids suffer before being killed is perhaps even more disturbing than anything. So....while the odds are comparatively small that it will be your child, it always has seemed to me that even the possibility that it could happen at all means we have to be very careful. A lot of people may say "not me," but it is somebody, on average more than once a day so, "why not me...or you?"

I have to admit that there were times I really envied moms who seemed to be so relaxed and unconcerned, while I was always on guard and a little tense. I think (no, I know) I was over the limits of "normal" on this one, but I couldn't change my mindset, so I just lived with it and watched really carefully. I did have a man once try to lure me into his car when I was in 1st grade...so maybe I had more of a "this can happen to you" mentality than others? I don't know. I found it unpleasant to be so worried all the time, and in hindsight maybe I should have looked into it...but oh well.

I once turned my back on my 18 month old son for LITERALLY 10 seconds or less as he played with a Brio train in the Sesame Street Store. When I turned back, he was gone..from the store. I knew because all of the employees jumped to my aid and searched the place with me. There was a carousel outside the store, so we then searched that whole area...and no baby. I was sure he had been grabbed and carried away (because he couldn't have walked far enough to be so thoroughally "gone" so fast) and it was one of the scariest times of my life. It took ten full minutes (at least) to find him. (A security guard had seen him exit the store and scooped him up immediately...and taken him back to his desk at security, rather than back into the store.) In the meantime I felt myself start to faint at one point, but told myself, "No, if you lose another second, you may never see him again!" I was thinking "Adam" and composing what I might be able to say on television to plead for my child's life that might actually reach far enough into the heart of a psychopathic child killer to convince him to let my child go unharmed. It was so horrible. When I saw the guard holding my son I ran and grabbed him from his arms and immediately broke down in tears. The guard started to give me a lecture about the dangers of not watching him better...and even though I am incredibly shy, I said, firmly, "Don't even tell me. I already know!"

A couple of months after we left CA there were at least three (that I heard about) incidents right in that area where a man and woman tried (thankfully unsuccessfully) to grab infants and run, right in front of their mothers...one from a shopping cart outside a grocery store, one from the mother's arms and one out of a stroller just beside that same carousel where my son went missing. In the incident by the carousel, they actually had the child in hand and were running away, and the child was saved by strangers who gave chase and grabbed him back. The kidnappers escaped, but at least the child got back to his mom. So 6:42, that happens too.

Anonymous said...

Eric's Mom is right to be careful. My secretary was commuting home on the train with her 14 month old who is in a daycare facility at work, bouncing him in his lap, pointing out the window and talking to him when what appeared to be a well dressed business man came up to her and politely told her he think he got on the wrong train and asked her if she could help him get where he was going. She was giving him directions on where to get off to transfer to the train line he needed as they pulled into the station. As soon as the doors opened the man grabbed her son (who was still "standing" on her lap looking out the window) under the arms and tried to yank him out of the train with him. Luckily, his foot was caught between her thighs and the man did not succeed in grabbing him away from her despite her being quite small. She said it all happened so quickly that noone in the car realized what just happened--they thought the man threw something at her son because she suddenly started hysterically screaming, clutching her son and the baby was crying. BTW, she filed a police report but never heard they caught anyone--she drives to work now.

erics mom said...

6:42

I never said I was famous. I am not. But kidnappings happen to ordinary people just as Mom stated, and 10:16.

I guess I came off paranoid. Yes, I keep my eye on my son while he is playing. If its an enclosed park on the small side, I just watch him play. But if its a park like the one Jane Doe posted I stay right next to him.
My friends are the same way. Even when we are in the enclosed space of storytime at the library. Because we know if the door opens our kids are usually trying to run out. Their just toddlers they don't know better. We are the parents, and better to be careful, then taking a chance of our child being hurt. You don't want to be this way, trust me. But the world is so bad. If it was a perfect world of course we wouldn't be like this.

I felt bad after reading about the lady in the subway. My goodness that must haunt her all the time. I can't imagine. And to Mom, that must have been so scary!! Its true you just look down for a minute and your kid is out of your sight. Yes, its that sinking feeling you get in the pit of your stomach.

Well I am glad both stories ended happy!

Anonymous said...

last summer we were at Sesame Place and a little boy about two wandered alone into the store. And, actually, I told the clerk to keep him in sight while I went to look for his parents - but I was afraid to pick him up myself for fear of being accused of trying to snatch him.

I saw a woman looking around in the open area not too far away and ran over to ask if she'd lost a little boy. She was indeed the mom - so happy ending.

erics mom said...

The store should have been prepared for emergencies and called security ASAP. Who just hands over a child to a stranger? I mean you never know. Its not like losing your purse.

Anonymous said...

My scary "losing your child moment":

My husband and I had some business at the County Courthouse to attend to. We brought along our 2 y.o. son. The place was very busy and as we stepped out of the elevator a bunch of people were coming in. I lost hold of my sons hand and the elevator took off with him. I started freaking out. I should have stood to watch what floor it went to, but at that moment was too hysterical to think.
I ran over to the first police officer I saw (thank God the building was full of them!), and he spoke to another officer that actually worked there handling Security. He said, "Don't worry, your son can't get out of the building, ma'am." It didn't calm me too much and I darted for the stairs and started peeking on every floor for my son (I think there was 5 floors?) ...
On the 3rd floor I could hear my son crying through the elevator, and he was one floor up!!
The Security officer got on his walkie-talkie and told them to grab my son, and we ran up to the next floor.
As I ran over towards the elevator, the first officer I spoke to had my son by the hand and I grabbed him up, crying and kissing him all over. I was shaking so bad! Then I thought: "Oh my God, they are going to take my son away from me!"
Both officers (and several more that had been helping to look for my son) - said they were glad he was safe and to calm down, everything is alright.

We left out of there quickly ... and it took quite awhile for my nerves to calm down ... but I gave my son lots of extra hugs & kisses that night before tucking him into bed.