Dear Amy: My granddaughter is six years old.
Her parents want her to grow up independent.
This manifests itself in many freedoms and responsibilities, some of which I think she is very young.
I never said anything to parents about this aspect of parenting, but recently I witnessed two instances where I felt their approach was too lax.
In one case, they allowed her to descend a slippery marble spiral staircase with inadequate handrails – alone.
She ended up falling, but luckily she wasn’t seriously injured.
The other incident occurred at a restaurant when she needed to use the restroom. Instead of accompanying her, they told her, “You know where it is, go ahead.”
The bathroom was a single room with a women’s stall next to a men’s stall. An external door closed off the room with the two cabins inside.
I didn’t say anything, but I went with my granddaughter and stood outside her tent.
(When I was six, I was molested in a park, so I know how quickly and easily molesters can act.)
Should I speak with parents about my concern that they accompany her to public restrooms until she is older?
Or am I being overprotective?
– Worried grandma
Dear concerned: Considering you were assaulted at the age of six – do you care if you are considered overprotective?
I agree with someone else escorting such a young child to a public restroom and then standing outside the door until the child is done.
Overall, any parent’s goal should be for their children to be smart, intelligent, independent, and possess general common sense. The way children become this way is when parents allow and encourage them to take some risks (ride the bike even if it’s still a little wobbly, jump off the trampoline, shake hands with a new person) and learn through the years. your children. experiences.
A slippery marble staircase? Risky.
A solo visit to the bathroom in a busy restaurant? I would call that lazy. And even though the risk of aggression may be remote, an important lesson for kindergartners to learn is that it’s important for parents to know where they are at all times, especially if they’re in a public place.
If you haven’t already told these parents about your childhood experience, you should tell them now.
Dear Amy: My brother and his wife divorced after 25 years of marriage. She has been a part of our family for over 25 years and continues to be invited to family gatherings such as holidays and special occasions. She is the mother of our two adult nephews and, of course, the mother of my parents’ two grandchildren.
My sister is the one who organizes the holiday parties and keeps inviting our ex-sister-in-law.
We love our brothers’ new bride and consider her a new member of the family.
My brother said that if she continues to invite our ex-SIL to family gatherings, he will not invite our sister to his wedding.
We tell him that our ex-SIL will always be a part of the family and we don’t want to cut her out of our lives. We love her very much and still consider her family. He may have divorced her, but we haven’t.
Should we do as he asks and stop inviting our SIL to family events? They get along for the most part and my feeling is that he might be sensitive to how his fiance feels about his ex still being in the picture.
– Divorced from SIL
Dear Divorced: Your brother’s ultimatum is out of whack. His marriage has no bearing on your family’s ongoing relationship with his ex.
Given how he feels, a proportionate response would be for him to say that if his ex is included in family events, he and his new wife won’t attend.
I assure you that the vast majority of people do not want to spend special occasions with their new and ex-spouse.
Your family doesn’t have to exclude your ex-sister-in-law from your life, but you may need to make choices at times.
Dear Amy: As for On Time, whose friend was always late, years ago I had a friend who started showing up late for our golf times.
After the third time, we decided not to wait and started without him. Coincidentally, this was the last time he was late.
– Problem solved
Dear Resolved: This was a consequence, not a coincidence. Good job!
(You can email Amy Dickinson at firstname.lastname@example.org or send a letter to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy or Facebook.)
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