Not only am I not named, but the honor goes to a woman named Lenore Skenazy. So I read to see what Lenore’s deal is, only to find – She’s MY NEW HERO! Lenore has coined the phase Free Range Parenting and actively blogs about it. Her quote – which I love – is that society’s current over protective form of parenting creates “Hothouse, mama-tied, danger-hallucinating joy extinguishers”. I think Jamie Lee Curtis said it better in Freaky Friday - she called them “Fun Suckers”. Reading Lenore’s philosophy sets me free. It turns out that I am not a bad mother, I am just the antithesis of the helicopter parent. By telling my kids to figure it out themselves because Mama Ssays So, I was actually empowering them. SWEET! Wait until I show up at a PTA meeting armed with that !!!! Even the hard core room mothers have to respect Time Magazine. This article “The Growing Backlash Against Over-Parenting” chronicles the rise of the Free Range Parenting movement. If the article were shorter, I would consider tattooing it on myself. I’ll suffice to link the article here and hope you enjoy it as much as I did. http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1940697-4,00.html
Lenore was trotted out as “America’s worst Mom ” on the Today Show 2 years ago for letting her 9 year old ride the NYC subway alone – mind you, they they live in that city. Jeez, I should be able to get a spot on 60 minutes for putting my kids on planes by themselves, sending them to college interviews alone, and making them ride their bikes to swimming lessons then day camp. I mean, come on, they have always made it back alive and they can definitely navigate their way in world – with our without me.
Where do you fall? Helicopter Parent? Tiger Mom? Free Range Parent? Or a combo platter of all three? Me,? I am happy to discard the “bad mommy” title for a new badge, I am a proud member of the Free Range Parenters. Mama Says So!