Honestly till few years back such topics didn’t had any meaning to me. But ever since I began taking my girl outdoors I started looking the outdoors with her perspective and seriously there are ample of basic rules that we mostly miss out. As the Mom of a threenager and an infant, I have some expectations from you my friend when you come to the same park or any public place that I’m also visiting with my family. Please do check if you are missing out something that heavily impacts mothers like me:
Stop littering around: Now this is the last thing one would expect from an educated and urban family but guess what it we so nicely litter everyday and everywhere around and then expect our kids to behave! Please don’t throw any garbage except in the dustbin and also constantly condition your kids, easy ; isn’t? It’s quite disturbing when my daughter touches down those dirty wrappers, empty cans and those dirty glasses!! Even if your kids throw something there is no harm in picking it up to the dustbin. This is something you regularly do at your home, right? And don’t put the excuse of non-availability of the dustbins, carry your stuff with you.
Park is for everyone: How is it like when your 1 year old is slowly trying to step up towards the slide and suddenly there is gush of young kids running, pushing and jumping all around your little one? Kids with their footballs or doing gymnasts over the slides and we constantly saving our little ones from getting squeezed! Isn’t this scary, but this actually happens everywhere. Sorry guys I don’t appreciate elder kids leaping on the slides meant for the young kids, there are endless times when my girl has got hurt with the biggie’s shoes, elbows, hands, pushed and even fell down. Even in some cases people assume that the park is only meant for their kids and kind of supreme access to the slides and would cry and shout for their turn as if its their legitimate right! Please follow the queue and respect.
I feel Parents must intervene here and guide their children. Even the teens have the rights to be on the slides but why not to create mutual respect for the common space that we all share together?
Don’t grab our stuff and just disappear: A month back my daughter drove her new cycle and parked in a corner in the park. Few minutes later, it was gone and then was found as broken from one corner. Of course it wasn’t a grave incident done by a 5 year old boy, but then her mature Mom completely refused to acknowledge this mistake and instead fumed at me as if I didn’t had any right to even say something. As a result she still makes a sloppy face whenever we have a face-off. So please if you ever take my stuff, first your should inform and secondly take care of my things and thirdly atleast keep me informed. At the end I bring stuff for my kids and their friends to play around.
Don’t corner my child alone: This is such a common scenario when other Guardians, Grandparents or parents or even maids will corner down small kids to scold or use loud voice at them and start preaching them about ‘ how to be a good child in 3 easy steps’. Guys you will always find me to complain if my child is making any mistake with your child so please talk to me. Don’t scold my child publicly unless she has done any grave crime!
Let’s be apologetic: Children can never learn the art of empathy in a day, you need to teach and let them lead by example. There is no harm in saying sorry when it’s needed to be said. Children are the most delicate gene, if they hurt or push each other, we need to pitch in and end everything at a jovial note but at the same time we have to communicate that it’s not nice to hurt and push and must say sorry. It won’t make a difference in a day but this is also our responsibility till they become aware.
Remember to return: Kids love to play with each other’s stuff and this is how they gradually learn to adjust and share. There are scenarios when even my daughter has brought back her friend’s toy to play in the house. But it’s important to inform the owner’s parents and take their approval first and return back a day after at max. Remember it’s their toy and not yours property so willingness is important.
I know it’s not possible for us to be constantly available with our kids in the park but we must be aware about how our kids behave in the park, so the substitute assigned must be communicated and a constant vigilant is necessary. All the kids are apple of someone’s eyes but the bullies or incidents arise out of our world only. For some outdoors is just a way to spend some time but for many it’s another opportunity to make their kids learn and nurture, so give value to the outdoors.
I would love to know more about your opinions and outdoor experiences, anything I should edit or add; do comment:)