One of your worst nightmares occurs – your two children, who are supposed to be home at 6:30 p.m., are nowhere to be found. As is your practice, you have let the 10 and 6-year olds go to the neighborhood park, all by themselves, with no supervision.
You and your spouse are among the fairly new group of adults who practice free-range parenting. That is, your children are pretty much free to come and go as they please, within reason and without an adult. The children even wear badges identifying themselves as free-range children so that other adults or police will not think that they have been abandoned or are lost.
The problem with this is that there is so much evil in our streets, and young and innocent children have no idea what is lurking to prey on them. So, why in the world would anyone choose free-range as a parenting method?
We’ve discussed the highly educated Maryland couple, who last December were cited for leaving their two children to fend for themselves. Danielle and Alexander Meitiv want their children to experience a childhood of exploration just as they did as youngsters. The problem is, the world has changed. The Meitiv’s are learning this the hard way; thankfully their children have not yet been harmed.
Just last week Maryland’s child protective services picked up the two children for the second time, after finding them in public unattended. The boy, who is 10-years old and his little sister, who is 6, were found playing alone in a park. They were picked up by child services after a phone call from a bystander.
Danielle Meitiv says she and her husband were driving around looking for the children when they didn’t arrive home by 6:30. The parents were finally called by authorities at around 8:30 Sunday night to let them know that they children were safe.
They were able to pick up the two children a few hours later after signing a “safety plan” stating that the children would never again be left unattended.
The Meitivs say that the only danger their children have faced is from authorities taking them into custody. But we have to ask the Meitivs – what if it had been a child predator instead of the police?
Do you think authorities in this case have overstepped their boundaries?