Children need autonomy – Oak Park | #childsafety | #kids | #chldern | #parents | #schoolsafey

We’re writing in response to “Playing in the park” by Marnie Rourke [Viewpoints, Oct. 11]. We have no doubt the author had the best intentions when she asked the young girl at the park to show her where her parent was, but we take issue with the general message of her op-ed.

Modern parents and caregivers are raising children in a society obsessed with absolute safety (the era of the ubiquitous “helicopter parent”). As mothers of young children ourselves, we understand the desperate feeling of worry that seems to go hand-in-hand with loving your child. But we also recognize how detrimental this type of parenting can be.

More and more children and teens are suffering from crippling mental health problems. According to a 2021 report published by the CDC, 40% of adolescents feel sad or hopeless most of the time and 10% have attempted suicide — a dramatic increase since 2011.


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