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#227888 - 05/10/07 02:43 AM DS and Walking to School (Also on SF Board)
ljnsy Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 857
Loc: NH
Okay, for anyone who doesn't know or doesn't remember, I am the CP of my DS who is 10 years old. His father has visitation with him EOW and 1 night per week for a few hours. His father has always been WAY over protective while I've been protective but not so over the top.

Here's my new irritation and I would like opinions as to whether you think I'm wrong about this.

I've recently moved to a neighborhood where there is no bus to take DS to school. The reason for this is because we live within walking distance to the school. DS has a lot of friends in this neighborhood because the house I am now renting was formerly rented by my mother and he was here every day after school.

Every morning, DS walks to school with 4 or more other kids. After school he walks home with the same kids and spends a couple of hours at one of his friends house until I get home from work. This has been going on since we moved here (about a month).

I didn't tell my X about it because I knew what his reaction would be. Well, he found out today and threw a fit...not to me but to DS. I'll get the fit later, I'm sure. X called his mother as soon as he found out, according to DS and asked her to pick him up from school every day. DS told me that X said to him "The ONLY people who take good care of you are me, Nana and Papa." Pffft!

Anyway, do any of you see anything wrong with my allowing DS to walk to and from school with his friends? I will NOT allow him to walk alone and there have been a couple of occasions when he was late meeting up with his friends so I just drove him there.
_________________________
"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go." -- Oscar Wilde

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#227889 - 05/10/07 03:12 AM Re: DS and Walking to School (Also on SF Board) [Re: ljnsy]
flyjump Offline
recently joined

Registered: 05/01/07
Posts: 20
Loc: New Mexico
My son is 10, he does walk to and from school (with his sister 8), but I would never allow him to play for a couple hours with neighborhood kids until I got home. On the days I cannot be home on time, he goes to after school care. Expensive, but I know where my son is, and who he is under the influence of.

You may consider calling child protective services to ask what age children are allowed to be home alone.

I will be interested in other responses as well. Maybe I am just the other end of the spectrum.

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#227890 - 05/10/07 03:14 AM Re: DS and Walking to School (Also on SF Board) [Re: flyjump]
flyjump Offline
recently joined

Registered: 05/01/07
Posts: 20
Loc: New Mexico
It would be different if that friends home had a reliable adult to watch over the boys.

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#227891 - 05/10/07 03:20 AM Re: DS and Walking to School (Also on SF Board) [Re: flyjump]
ljnsy Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 857
Loc: NH
"It would be different if that friends home had a reliable adult to watch over the boys."

---->There IS an adult there. I wouldn't let DS fend for himself for 2 hours.
_________________________
"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go." -- Oscar Wilde

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#227892 - 05/10/07 03:25 AM Re: DS and Walking to School (Also on SF Board) [Re: flyjump]
ljnsy Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 857
Loc: NH
I'd like to add that I HAVE left DS home alone or with a friend for 1/2 to 1 hour before. It is not against the law and it really depends on the maturity of the child. There are certain friends of his that are not allowed to be here with him if I am not here because I don't trust some of them, and I'm talking run to the store or up to my old place of residence to pick something up or drop something off to my SO.
_________________________
"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go." -- Oscar Wilde

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#227893 - 05/10/07 03:34 AM Re: DS and Walking to School (Also on SF Board) [Re: ljnsy]
themema Offline
recently joined

Registered: 05/09/07
Posts: 5
My son walks by himself the three blocks to/from school. He is 8 and in the second grade. This is the first year he walked by himself, I wanted to make sure he understood how to be safe, cross etc.

It really does depend on the area and child though. We live in a small town and the busy streets have crossing guards. Most children in this area were actually walking without parents before this. He was begging me to let him walk by himself. I also did an online check of offenders. Felt odd but I did feel better about letting him walk alone.

It doesn't sound like your ex handled this very well, but that aside his concerns may be legitimate. You might explain the walking situation to him, if there are cross guards, other children walking with him, neighborhood etc.
and let him know that you are willing to discuss any concerns he has, that you would rather discuss them then have it brought up in front of the child.

Beyond your ex's behavior the thing that stands out to me is your son's reaction. I may be hearing something that isn't there but it sounds like he is picking up on conflicts between you and your ex and informing on one or the other. Children don't necessarily want to bring more conflict into the relationship, but I think divorce makes them feel unloved, or confused, this is one way of reinforcing the love they receive maybe. They feel like they are helping Mom against Dad or vice versa. So though it may bother you when your husband acts this way, when speaking to your child about it, maybe put it such that while your do think your son is old enough to walk, the are is safe, etc., Dad is concerned because he loves him too.

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#227894 - 05/10/07 03:45 AM Re: DS and Walking to School (Also on SF Board) [Re: themema]
ljnsy Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 857
Loc: NH
"So though it may bother you when your husband acts this way, when speaking to your child about it, maybe put it such that while your do think your son is old enough to walk, the are is safe, etc., Dad is concerned because he loves him too."

DS is simply upset with his father because he doesn't want him to walk. He(DS) feels that his father is treating him like a baby. I did tell DS that even though his dad seems to be treating him that way, it is only because he does love him and worries that something will happen to him. I never talk badly to DS about his father but his father has plenty of bad things tosay to DS about me.
_________________________
"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go." -- Oscar Wilde

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#227895 - 05/10/07 04:10 AM Re: DS and Walking to School (Also on SF Board) [Re: ljnsy]
mommy2boys Offline
addict

Registered: 06/02/05
Posts: 497
Loc: Louisiana
As long as you feel your son is responsible to walk with friends and they understand about safety and not taking shotcuts, you are not out of line. Your X needs to understand that he NEVER walks by himself he walks with a group of other kids, he doesn't walk in inclimate weather, and he is not left alone at home afterschool, he is at a neighbors house with another adult present. If the school district thought it was an issue or a danger to the kids that live so close they would offer bus service, and would not have the walking option to kids his age. By having your son walking he is learning about responsibility and gaining a little independence which children need in order to productive adults.

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#227896 - 05/10/07 04:13 AM Re: DS and Walking to School (Also on SF Board) [Re: ljnsy]
BeckaLeigh Offline
Carpal \'Tunnel

Registered: 06/08/05
Posts: 6879
Loc: Texas
I personally dont see anything wrong with it. My DH walked to school, 5 city blocks, at 7yo. If dad doesnt like it, well, too bad, I would say.
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I tried being normal once. Worst five minutes of my life.

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#227897 - 05/10/07 04:18 AM Re: DS and Walking to School (Also on SF Board) [Re: mommy2boys]
ljnsy Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 857
Loc: NH
Thanks. DS is very proud of the fact that I trust him enough to do that. He is really bothered by the fact that his father is trying to take that responsibility away from him. It's sad really.
_________________________
"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go." -- Oscar Wilde

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