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Old 12-24-2011, 09:37 AM
 
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Originally Posted by somebodynew View Post
Here is one that cannot engender controversy! My 11 yo is going on a trip with G'ma. I live in New England (smallish states compared to say Montana...) He needs to get from us to one state over on a Wednesday evening. I have to work the next day.

Would you send an 11 yo boy on bus alone? I am worried that he won't get off the bus. If he is engrossed in his DS or a book, he is lost to the world.

DH says get him a phone and have it alarm at about the scheduled arrival time.

Thoughts?
It's not even that long a trip if it's through one small state to another.

Like others, I think it depends on your 11 year old. And of course how many bus changes and if you believe your child is up to it.

One state over doesn't seem like a big deal to me.
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Old 12-24-2011, 11:23 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Hopes View Post
I think it's because it's so annoying that people fail to see the risks in their own back yards. It just sounds so closed minded to not acknowledge the incredible dangers that are already there. AS IF a child is at more risk during one 3 hour bus ride than all the hours and hours spent with family members.

Since parents think family members are safe, parents aren't really watching their children closely. Their guard is down. But keeping them away from strangers makes them feel like they're doing something to protect them. But my goodness, molesters molest chldren while the parents are in the next room. Mom could be in the kitchen preparing dinner and Uncle Henry could be on the living room sofa molesting Johnny. It happens! Just like that! But God forgid Johnny go on a bus ride because there are strangers there.

It's ironic because I sound like the liberal who isn't aware of the risks. So not true. I've always kept myself keenly aware of family members, friends, etc. Not that I didn't trust them. But I understand the statistics prove that trusting and thinking you know someone doesn't mean anything. So, in essence, I'm the over protective one here.


When you find a source with the ratio for all children who ride buses unsupervised, let us know. I feel confident that ratio the ratio will still show it's statistically safer to ride the bus than be with nonstrangers.

Nobody is saying it's completely safe. We just saying that your own extended families aren't really much safer, maybe even more unsafe. Think that's not true? Well, that's why children get molested by family members. Everyone thinks, not my relatives. Since their guard is down, they aren't supervising their kids much more closely than if they were riding a bus by themselves. 1 in 3 girls and 1 in 6 boys are sexually abused by the age of 18. They're not all riding the bus with strangers. Most of those are family members. 1 in 3 and 1 in 6. Think of how common that is. Just visualize the houses on your own street and count how many houses those statistics stand for. Yet people think NOT HERE and isolate their children in the very environment that they are most at risk.
Every time you hear about something bad happening, you always seem to hear "I never thought this could happen to me," or "Things like this don't happen here." It can happen anywhere, anytime, to any person. I don't think reasonable precautions are out of the question.

MOST people are not lurking around waiting to catch a child alone so they can molest them. But there ARE some out there, and I wouldn't want to risk it. In some situations, yes, I would let an 11 year old ride a bus alone for a few hours, if I knew that he was careful, alert, and cautious of his surroundings. But the OP described her 11 year old as a boy who would be absorbed in his DS or a book, possibly missing his stop. Meaning he likely would not be paying attention to who was sitting near him, or cue in to a creepy vibe from someone. I wouldn't let him go alone if it was my son.
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Old 12-24-2011, 11:28 AM
 
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Originally Posted by cc0789 View Post
I wouldn't think of doing this either. I don't think I would even take a bus by myself. Have you seen the demographic that takes this bus?
I can assure you there are whack-jobs flying first class. They're just better dressed then the whack-jobs on the bus.
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Old 12-24-2011, 12:37 PM
 
Location: Western Washington
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Originally Posted by DewDropInn View Post
I can assure you there are whack-jobs flying first class. They're just better dressed then the whack-jobs on the bus.
Wow, and here's the really amazing part...The "first class" whack-jobs are more likely to persuade a kid to trust them. After all, aren't most children conditioned to be wary of dirty, unshaven, bloodshot eyed folks, and encouraged to trust clean shaven, smiling, well-dressed sorts?
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Old 12-24-2011, 10:04 PM
 
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Originally Posted by AnnaNomus View Post
Every time you hear about something bad happening, you always seem to hear "I never thought this could happen to me," or "Things like this don't happen here." It can happen anywhere, anytime, to any person. I don't think reasonable precautions are out of the question.
.
Yes, I'll take comfort in knowing when I hear about something happening, I'm often wondering what the hell the parents were thinking (off the top of my head, letting a six year old play video games by themselves at the mall while mom shops, children being allowed to sleepover at coaches homes, 8 year old walking home alone in NY, children dying in fire after being left alone, high schooler being allowed to hook up with random guys by chaperones on a school trip, girl getting abducted from her bed my some homeless wacko the parents had picked up off the streets to do odd jobs around the house). There are very few cases on the news that don't involve questionable choices by an adult.
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Old 12-24-2011, 10:26 PM
 
Location: Western Washington
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Originally Posted by AnnaNomus View Post
Every time you hear about something bad happening, you always seem to hear "I never thought this could happen to me," or "Things like this don't happen here." It can happen anywhere, anytime, to any person. I don't think reasonable precautions are out of the question.

MOST people are not lurking around waiting to catch a child alone so they can molest them. But there ARE some out there, and I wouldn't want to risk it. In some situations, yes, I would let an 11 year old ride a bus alone for a few hours, if I knew that he was careful, alert, and cautious of his surroundings. But the OP described her 11 year old as a boy who would be absorbed in his DS or a book, possibly missing his stop. Meaning he likely would not be paying attention to who was sitting near him, or cue in to a creepy vibe from someone. I wouldn't let him go alone if it was my son.
Anna, the difference is, the majority of the parents DO think it could happen to them or their child. They DO believe that it can happen "here". It's those who DON'T think those things, who make the sick/evil people happy and successful. Some of us, DO know that family members molest.
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Old 12-24-2011, 10:55 PM
 
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Originally Posted by beachmel View Post
Anna, the difference is, the majority of the parents DO think it could happen to them or their child. They DO believe that it can happen "here". It's those who DON'T think those things, who make the sick/evil people happy and successful. Some of us, DO know that family members molest.
Exactly. Just because you don't let your kid play outside in lightning doesn't mean you don't also make them wear seat belts and try to drive safely. I don't care that the chances of a car accident are higher than getting struck by lightning, I can't eliminate the chances of a car accident, but I do my best to reduce it. I can eliminate the chance of getting struck by lightning by not exposing my children to it.
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Old 12-24-2011, 11:18 PM
 
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When I was 11 years old I rode the bus from Boston to NY and I was fine (this was many years ago!). However, when I was 14, I was on a regular bus (one town to the next) and a man grabbed my knee. I sensed something was wrong before he grabbed my knee because his knee kept getting closer and closer to me, but I did not know for sure until he grabbed my knee.

I was sitting in the inside seat next to the window. I am not sure if he got up or I did, I think he did, however, I remember trying to get the nerve to get up. I also remember being surprised how strong his grip was because he looked like an old man to me.

Then in my 30's I was on a commuter train (seat next to the window again) and a man was acting funny. Similar type of behavior although he did not get to the point where he touchd me. This time I picked up my cell phone and pretended to call a friend on the train (my phone did not have a camera). He got up to leave and I was wondering if it was my imagination that something was funny but then he turned around and waved with a very creepy smile (there is also one more sign that something was wrong that I need to leave out of story!).

So, I feel like the creeps who bothered me may have taken the bus and train just to find women to bother, and/or it seems like it would be less likely on a long trip as they could not just get off at a stop neccesarily. However, when I was 14, part of what I remember, was that I did not want to get up because I might offend the man. When I was older, I trusted my intuition sooner and I was more comfortable trying to do something.

I think I would probably not let my 11 year old take a bus alone because of judgement concerns more than anything else. However, if the bus had a program where the child sits in front and the driver keeps an eye, I might (aisle seat though!!!).

Last edited by Reneeme; 12-24-2011 at 11:25 PM.. Reason: error
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Old 12-25-2011, 08:33 AM
 
Location: Western Washington
8,004 posts, read 9,698,516 times
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Originally Posted by cc0789 View Post
Exactly. Just because you don't let your kid play outside in lightning doesn't mean you don't also make them wear seat belts and try to drive safely. I don't care that the chances of a car accident are higher than getting struck by lightning, I can't eliminate the chances of a car accident, but I do my best to reduce it. I can eliminate the chance of getting struck by lightning by not exposing my children to it.
Yes, exactly! Personally, I'm not a gambler....not at all and the last thing I would EVER gamble on is the safety and well-being of one of my children. If there is a 1:100,000 chance that a child could be harmed or killed, in any given situation, why wouldn't a parent do everything in their power to see to it that THEIR child does not become that ONE! Yes, our children COULD be that 1:100,000, if we don't do everything we can to protect them.
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Old 12-25-2011, 12:00 PM
 
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Me, sorry, but no way.

Yes, he could sit right by the driver, be told not to talk to strangers, and 99% of the time everything would be fine. It is that 1%, that would kill me.

I am pretty liberal with my kids being independent. At age 12 my daughter was riding a city bus home, alone. I sent my son to basketball camp at age 10.

It is up to you, is your child mature? Will he listen to you?
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