Customer Review

109 of 122 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Agree With the Sentiment, Not a Huge Fan of the Style, September 3, 2009
This review is from: Free-Range Kids, Giving Our Children the Freedom We Had Without Going Nuts with Worry (Hardcover)
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Personally, I thought the author was cool when she let her kid ride the subway alone. It's hard for parents to let go, but we have to or we'll stunt our kids. I was a crime reporter for many years. I covered Polly Klaas -- I know first-hand out unsafe the world can be. So lock your doors, put your kids in car seats, be sensible and then move on. To try to control every aspect of your kids' world probably does steal a little of their childhood away from them.

But blogs turned into books often annoy me, because that witty-breezy-edgy voice begins to grate.

I think this is an OK book, probably one that a lot of parents need to read or will want to read. But for me, once the point was made, it was made. I'd have been happy reading this in a magazine article without dragging it out. It felt like a make-a-buck effort more than a necessary parenting tool.
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Comments

Tracked by 1 customer

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Showing 1-10 of 10 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 15, 2011 7:54:35 AM PDT
I haven't read this book, but have browsed her blog, and I in particular thought her to be nothing more than another person who is more like a religious fanatic. I am a semi helicopter mother, and I know what is best for my children, nobody else. I didn't like her tone against mothers like me. I have no problem with people who want to parent their children free range, and I am sure that, like me, they know what is best for their family and children. More importantly, she doesn't know everyones children. My son is not mature or responsible enough to ride a bus on his own. Children do not have adult brains, and young children, no matter how well you have versed them about predators still are easily manipulated and lured away. This is a fact and has been proven through experiments. We also know of parents who have lost their children, one recently, because they were not attentive or careful. I am in the camp of raise your children the best way you feel is right, your gut instinct is there for a purpose. There is no right or wrong way, it is the way that best suits your family.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 15, 2011 5:16:28 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 15, 2011 6:14:40 AM PST
Josette Kramer,

Your response to this book is the best advice. I agree with you 100% on that not all children are ready to take off on their own. My father raised a large family in New York City. He taught us to trust our instinct and stay away from anything and anyone that seemed suspicious. To say that he was tough and strict is an understatement, but he gave us enough freedom to gain experience and knowledge. We lived in NYC and were left on our own to take the subway before age 11 without adult supervision. With all this freedom, two of my sisters were still easily manipulated and, as expected, are scarred for life. Not all children are ready to fly alone on their own even for a few hours a day. I see many children in my neighborhood who are independent and whose parents give them more-than-needed independence. They walk in a daze, as expected of children. Very few children are awake enough to walk away from danger. Walking with my children to school (in three years), I have noticed two children, out of hundreds, who crossed the streets when a car/van seemed threatening to their safety. When parents started giving their children the freedom to walk to school, town, etc. on their own, they did not think about the type of children they had, but went along with the notion that children should be allowed to make decisions. As a mother of three, I allow my children to make decisions, when we travel to large cities, suburbs, etc., for the group and then correct them as needed.

I give my children enough freedom, but not the freedom to put themselves in harm's way.

Thank you

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 16, 2013 1:07:11 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 16, 2013 1:07:56 PM PST
Joe Z says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 16, 2013 11:10:27 PM PST
LOL. What are you talking about? Whatever I posted was ages ago and I don't even remember what I said. Why would you pity my children? They are wonderful. In fact we were just talking today how lucky we are to have such amazing children. We are so loved by them and everyone who knows them loves them. So you should take your pity elsewhere where it is needed. You raise your children how you feel is best for your family, and we raise ours how we feel is right for them. So far, we are doing great.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2013 5:49:13 PM PST
Mtooms says:
"I haven't read this book". That is probably where your review of this book should end.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2013 7:27:18 PM PST
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 12, 2014 11:53:25 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 12, 2014 11:54:35 AM PDT
Amazon Junky says:
She read the blog, I think her comment has merit. It's not like she's completely unfamiliar with this book or author. Personally I find it good to know the author has a tendency to shame or talk down about other parenting styles and promotes a one size fits all style. I find that flawed in and of itself, so what else is flawed about her methods now?

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 19, 2014 9:23:13 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 19, 2014 9:35:03 AM PDT
Law Geek says:
You may know your children best, but the author has done more research on crime rates and the probability of predators snatching your kids, has researched the psychology of modern parenting that prioritizes suspicion over trust, and has probably spent more time using this information to logically deduce what is the more rational behavior in most situations. Perhaps if you had read the book, or had done more than merely browse the blog, you would have caught that fact.

I'm sure that you do know your child better than anyone else does, but if you're grossly overestimating the number of predators lurking around every corner waiting to snatch up your child, can you really say you're fully equipped to calculate what is best for him? Isn't the ideal thing to do to add that knowledge of your child to the additional knowledge of what dangers are real and which are exaggereated, to make better choices?

Also, our parenting decisions are based not on a fully objective analysis of what is best for our kids, but rather built on a cultural framework that tends to favor helicopter parenting. Do we think that scheduling every day of their lives and supervising them every moment is best because that is our reasoned analysis, or because we live in a society that drums those values into our head? Without giving the opposite perspective a fair chance it is difficult to tell.

That being said, if your child isn't mature or responsible enough to be careful in traffic, then it sounds very reasonable to me that you don't let him ride the bus alone. There are very real dangers out there as well, especially when one is crossing the street or near traffic. I don't know your specific situation, and there could be countless good reasons for every one of your parenting decisions. I am only saying that you seem to be buying into the very same "stranger danger" myths that the book is designed to debunk, so you should not dismiss its point of view so quickly.

Posted on Jun 19, 2014 2:06:28 PM PDT
I find it really strange that people are up in everyone's business about the best way to raise children. The thing is, when you have children, you get to parent them the way you want and how you feel is in the best interest of your child. Mother's and women should stop bullying and enforcing their parenting styles upon others. It is getting ridiculous. If you want to parent the "free range" style then do it, if you want to be more cautious, then do it. As Dr. Seuss said "Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind".

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 22, 2014 9:58:19 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 22, 2014 10:08:02 PM PST
catmarilyn9 says:
My friends daughter is 11 years old now and she's knows how to ride a bus by herself to and from school on hers own and with hers friends or she's goes with hers olders brothers and sisters and on weekends she's take a bus and goes to the santa Monica pier on hers own to meets hers friends there at the santa Monica pier and they hang out together at the pier and she's also flies alone by herself she's will fly up to northern ca to visits with hers brothers and sisters who are going to college at uc Berkeley college her dad drop hers off at the airport and hers sisters pick hers up at the airport. She's been flying on hers own since she's was eight years old. The kids also go to summer camp every summer and they like the freedom of being away from there parents for a fews months of the summer and getting a break from them
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