I can add seeing an older toddler in a stroller to the list of the things I used to judge parents about before I actually became one. Then I had a child in the city – and I realized sometimes you just really need to get things done. Has anyone ever stopped to consider that? Sometimes parents need to walk faster than a child’s pace and actually accomplish something.
The Daily Mail ran an article today titled, The four-year-olds who are still pushed around in prams, and the defiant mothers who can’t see ANYTHING wrong with it. It’s basically an article filled with moms explaining that they need to get some errands done, complete with a bunch of statistics about childhood obesity to effectively shame them for wanting to finish their shopping in under three hours. How dare they! Seriously? Have you ever taken a walk with a three-year-old? It requires epic patience – patience that you give them most of the day. But sometimes, things need to get done. Some people rely on their strollers to transport their children to and from these errands. There is nothing wrong with this.
“I’m probably a bit lazy but I use the buggy most days to make things as easy as possible for myself,” confesses Jayne, from Rickmansworth in Hertfordshire. “We drive to Oscar’s school – he would be horrified to be seen turning up in a buggy in front of his friends – but I wouldn’t consider going shopping without it. Something that takes me 20 minutes with him in a pushchair will take 40 minutes if I don’t use it.”
Here’s another amazing quote:
Jayne Warner sighs with frustration as her little boy refuses yet again to get into his buggy. ‘No! I want to walk,’ cries Oscar, shaking his head. It’s the last thing his 26-year-old mother needs. She’s facing a busy day and is anxious to get around the shopping centre as quickly as possible.
‘If you get in the buggy,’ she cajoles, I’ll give you a biscuit.’
Oscar relents and is wheeled to the supermarket, munching on a chocolate chip cookie.
Oh no! She’s shoving cookies into his mouth while “cajoling” him into the stroller. And she’s frustrated. All the little boy wants to do is walk, poor thing! Give me a break. I think he’ll survive a shopping trip in a stroller.
The writer goes on to mention that Britain is in the throes of a childhood obesity epidemic and quotes a doctor who thinks riding in strollers irreparably damages your child:
Psychologist Sally Goddard Blythe has warned that it can jeopardise brain and speech development.
‘Infants need opportunity for free movement and exploration,’ says Mrs Goddard Blythe, director of the Institute for Neuro-Physiological Psychology, in Chester.
‘Social interaction also helps physical development – for example, eye contact, singing and talking. That is not happening if a child is in a forward-facing buggy.’
Did you hear that, moms? Make sure you never stop singing or taking to your kids and pushing them in a stroller is bad. Very bad. Just block out an extra few hours to run your errands so everyone stops judging you.