The new parenting style is ultra paranoid.
Hold the phone.
Why would I even go there?? Here's a guy at a play area with his baby who told me he has a daughter at home. Should I automatically think he's a liar who has nefarious designs on my child? Have I been brainwashed by the media and its fear-mongering?
I'm not alone.
A friend of mine claims that to her, "every man is a potential predator until proven otherwise." Another says she won't let her kids sit on Santa's lap -- or ANY costumed character, for that matter, because she thinks only a pervert would take those jobs. What if she's right?!
There's a fine line between paranoia and common sense -- and, let's be fair, who has the time to run background checks on every adult our kids come in contact with?
The people I feel most sorry for in all of this are the men -- men who have a genuine, healthy fondness for children and even particularly for little girls (after all, women are allowed to have a preference as to their fave kid gender). Shouldn't a guy be able to play alone with a kid without getting the stink eye from every mom who walks by? Conversely, is every dude wearing a raincoat a flasher ... or worse?
Don't get me wrong. I am a protective mother up to a point. However, if the majority of child molesters are "people we know," then how are we supposed to keep our kids out of the clutches of our friends and neighbors?