Karyn Bryant: Last night my husband and I were invited to our friend's house to hang out. Our daughter loves her two kids, so spending time together is always fun. Our little ones ran around, giggled and fought gently over toys as we chatted and snacked in the back yard. As the sun set, another pal from the neighborhood came by -- a nice little girl welcomed by all of us. But, the thing is, she came alone. And she's three.
In some places (Mayberry, perhaps?) a 3-year-old walking out the front door and crossing the street at dusk without supervision may not be a big deal. But in my mind, and in Los Angeles, it most certainly is. My husband freaked! He couldn't believe what he was seeing. And he nearly choked when my friend told him that this was a regular occurrence. "Sometimes," she said, "it's an hour or more before someone comes looking for her."
I know the little girl's parents and they are nice people, but apparently quite often they don't even realize that their kid has left the house! WTH???? How is that even possible? I understand that munchkins want to explore and may succeed in escaping once or twice, but there is no way my daughter could be out of earshot for more than a few minutes without me checking up on her. And what about this angle: maybe they do know she's gone, and they are consciously foisting her upon my friend.
I don't think we need to call CPS, but there is definitely a problem here. I can't even decide what's more bothersome. Is it the lax parenting? The babysitting that my friend has to do for free and without warning? Or the fact that the kid could get hurt (or worse) while strolling around? Yikes.
|Karyn Bryant is a television personality who's hosted shows on networks such as CNN, TNT, VH1, and MTV. She's currently a reporter for Showtime Championship Boxing and CBS' Saturday Night Fights, and "the EVP/Director of MMAheat.com, an online destination for fans of MMA and pop culture." She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and daughter.|