There’s this newfound, well not really newfound, but – idea that kids should have some sort of freedoms …
Here’s one article that considers kids learning independence in a time where such notions raise feelings of anxiety. In fact, there’s at least an entire website devoted to the notion of what are being called “Free Range Kids.”
There’s been a progressive loss of the outside over the course of the last several generations …
I actually use this map in my talks about video games as a way of addressing the idea that kids are losing the ability to explore. If they cannot do so physically, then they can always find a way in the abstract realms of video games which seem to have become popular.
Kids and adults have lost a lot of roaming with each successive generation losing more due to anxiety. This anxiety can point at any number of fears such as strange people, strange places, whatever – justified and unjustified. Anxiety has a way of latching on to things and growing, not unlike a flame.
Sometimes, the fear that something immediately bad, however low the risk, seems to outweigh the idea that something problematic can occur gradually, however real the risk.
Danger is inherent to life. If there is an antidote to anxieties such as these, it is to recognize it, calculate it, feel it, and then take the risk knowing that the chance of danger will never reach zero.
What a lovely post. It is so true that the fears of a tiny possiblity so often overwhelm us — and of course part of the reason for that is that we HEAR about the .00001% things so much. I love that piece from England about kids losing the right to roam. Spread the word! And thanks for the shout out! Lenore Skenazy, the Free-Range Kids lady
Lenore Skenazy´s last blog post..Mothering vs. Smothering