Dad Sense

Irresponsible Parents Abound at Mall Play Areas
Interactive DAD Magazine

What is going on at the mall play areas?

The bigger the play area, the bigger the problems. Or so it seems.

Almost every mall has got one these days. Fun, soft and kid friendly, these play areas offer children a chance to blow off steam.

Kids run around, scream, jump, tumble. It’s a whole lot of fun. Usually.
Sometimes it leads to shoving and pushing.

And that’s when I have a problem with it. Parents are to blame for it.

Remember, it’s small children who are playing in these play areas. Which means it’s parents who are to be held accountable for this misbehavior.

I think many parents feel this play time for their children is an apportunity for them to kick back and relax. Yet common sense would tell you that kicking up your feet when your children and interacting with dozens of other children is maybe the worst time to led your guard down.

Especially in today’s world, where children can be abducted.

My 3-year-old daughter is always within eyeshot. And usually within arms reach whenever we go to the play area. But I’m amazed at how hands-off many parents are.

I remember one recent visit. I was helping my daughter climb up one of the contraptions. Up walks a little girl. She motions for me to lift her up.

I feel very uncomfortable doing this. This girl is a stranger. I don’t feel like I should be going into the personal space of a strange child. But my daughter encourages me to help her up. It was a public place and I gave her a boost.

I thought for sure up would walk a parent thanking me for my helping hand. Or maybe the parent would be upset that I helped up the child. Certainly someone would walk up saying something to me.
Nobody walked up.

I give my daughter a second boost. The newly found friend wanted a boost, too.
I give the child a lift up again.

Still no parent.

I pick up my child and walk away.

There’s usually a mix of both moms and dads at the play areas I frequent. And there are many responsible parents who make certain their children are well behaved and well watched for safety purposes.

But why aren’t all parents keeping a close eye on their kids?

I haven’t heard about any serious trampling incident, or any child disappearing from a play area. But both are realistic outcomes, unless all parents become more hands-on. LawrenceDad SenseDad Sense Irresponsible Parents Abound at Mall Play Areas By Glenn Lawrence Interactive DAD Magazine What is going on at the mall play areas? The bigger the play area, the...Parenting Advice| Family Fun Activities for Kids