This is a comment by Lars Fischer on the post “My Fourth Father’s Day“.
“I am with you on the sinking feeling when you see your kid fall, but I believe it really is important not to be overprotective. One of the best pieces of advice I ever had is that parents must interfere if there’s a risk of permanent injury (life, mobility), but otherwise let children explore and test themselves. Kids need to develop an understanding of their body and be physically comfortable—and you’re not going to learn to keep your balance unless you’re allowed to go right up to the edge (and then some).
“Some day you kid will be too old for you to be there to catch her every time. By then you have to hope she has learned good judgement and can make safe decisions for herself—and that won’t happen if you make all the decisions for her now. You only develop trust in yourself if you’re allowed to try. Remember, the bad things that can happen to a 12 year old that has not learned to appreciate the laws of physics is way worse than what’s likely to happen to your 4 year old old the slide.
“I know it sounds harsh, but sometimes it’s better to allow your kids to fall down. It’s a learning experience.”
Photo credit: Flickr / limaoscarjuliet