Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Child Leashes

Whoa, bring on the controversy! Or maybe not! =)

This was the topic of discussion on our local radio station yesterday during the drive home show here in Edmonton. The 2 hosts were inviting people to call in with their views in support for or against the practice of using restraining harnesses on a child.

Have you seen them? The little thingy that looks like your child is on a leash so they don't run off. Sometimes the child is hooked up in a nifty looking little backpack type harness, and other times, it really does look like a leash, the child has something around their wrist which is attached to your wrist.

Have you used one?

I did have one in my possession with my oldest child. I never did actually use it, but at times I was tempted. I don't think I ever had it on my person when I was thinking about it though. My big boy was a wanderer. He'd just bolt without warning - Fast! Didn't matter when, didn't matter where, he was just so busy & full of energy that the details weren't concerning, but WE were concerned!! At times it was scary!

The male host of the show made a few statements which I thought were very ignorant. As follows; "What happened to good old fashioned parenting? When I was little, my parents taught me not to run off, so I didn't." and later; "Why don't parents just teach their children to stick close?" and then; "This is for those parents who choose easy methods."

Unenlightened man with no kids of his own!! Sounds like I did before I had children.

Of course he had many people call in and comment how right he was and how utterly ridiculous parents looked and that truly it was some form of deranged child abuse.

And then a few moms called & told the host a) you're not a parent, so shut-up on something you know nothing about and b) don't knock it until you have multiples of the same age or even multi aged children who are young and take off. It is a safety concern.

I think I understand both sides of the fence. On the one hand, the fellow was out of line with some of his statements. Totally from a perspective of never having walked in the shoes. I don't like how radio hosts will start a discussion, then totally knock down anyone who doesn't agree with them. That's not called discussion.

On the other hand, I have seen people use it like a leash. Like they are leading their child, giving it a yank if the kid doesn't move fast enough. Might as well be a puppy.

Have you seen these? What do you think?


  1. I have a fanny pack waist thing with a elastic strap that goes to my wrist but also have never used it (paid a dollar at a garage sale for it). I used to store it in the bottom of the stroller incase the little guy decided he wanted out and some freedom.
    I remember being put in one (the old leather fully body leash) by my Aunt that looked after me while my parents worked. She had two children of her own at the time and it worked for her. I do remember being embarrassed to be in it or to even be seen with my cousins if they were put in it. This alone was enough to make me behave. Now a days they have fancy cool looking ones that the kids think are fun and probably even a game of some sort.
    I feel that you gotta do what works for you......so for someone who doesn't even have kids to vent his opinion, well he shouldn't even get air time for this. If it saves a life why not.

  2. we used a leash with Aiden... he would take off at any given time and it was just not safe. Now I know it was his Autism but at the time I just knew I didn't want him to get run over by a car. We didn't need it with my other two kids. I think it is no different than parents who walk around with a death grip on their kids arm/hand/wrist. Not all kids will stay put. I really think people shouldn't be so judgmental. People were harsh to me about it. But it was just one of the many things people were harsh about when it came to my parenting skills. Gotta love it :)