Don’t Judge Me For Using A Child Leash To Keep My Kid Safe!

You know that agonizing feeling you get when you’re in a public place, and you can’t see your child? That sickening, anxious feeling, when it feels like your stomach just dropped to the floor?

I don’t have that feeling anymore, because…

I use a child leash to keep my child safe!

And I’m severely judged for it. Some people call me barbaric. They say things like:

Leashes are for animals, not children.

A leash is for parents who have no control over their children.

A child leash is for lazy parents who cannot pay attention to their children.

I would like to say this: The people who make snotty comments like that are parents with extremely well-behaved children who don’t put a toe out of place. They have children who have never pulled hands from their grasp and darted off somewhere. They’ve never needed to feel worried or anxious about their child.

Using A Child Leash To Keep My Kid Safe
Does this look like a kid who will happily hold your hand?

Does this look like a kid who will happily hold your hand? No. It doesn’t mean he is out of control or disobedient. He just wants to see stuff… by himself!

Or much more likely, the people who make these comments, are not parents. 

They don’t know anything about controlling strong-willed children. They don’t know that toddlers have no impulse control. They may not understand that if a toddler gets the urge to run across the road to see something they like, they are going to do that. The danger of oncoming traffic, or being separated from their parent, will not cross their mind. And I’m just talking about normal children. I can only imagine the difficult situation you would have with trying to keep a developmentally challenged child, safe.

To those who say that I’m barbaric for using a child leash, I’d like to simply say that I sleep very well at night. My children are all in their beds, sleeping peacefully. They are not in a hospital, or heaven forbid – in a morgue. I know exactly where they are, always. A child leash gives me that peace of mind. I’d rather have the assurance that my children are safe, than satisfy the judgemental onlookers who have never been parents, and don’t know what they’re talking about anyway.

I Don’t Care If You Call Me Barbaric For Using a Kid Leash In Crowded Places

When we are in crowded areas, my children are always within arm’s reach of me. I can see them all the time. There is no risk of me taking my eye off them for a second, and having a stranger snatch them.

Also, I have 5 children, and none of them are little angels who obediently stay by my side. No. They’re energetic and spirited and they’re eager to see everything, which means they’re normal. I’m okay with that, but until they’re old enough to walk freely by themselves, I balance things out with a child leash. It gives them the freedom to walk by themselves, and me the peace of mind that they’re always close – and safe.

I wouldn’t have it any other way.

If we’re walking in an airport, someone wants to go see the airplane through the window. Another wants to go to the candy store, while yet another is trying to sneak a lollypop out of the carry-on bag. I’d go crazy if I didn’t have a baby leash for the little ones.

I’m Not A Lazy Parent. I’m A Proactive Parent!

We do not use a kid leash because we are lazy parents. Not at all. My husband and I are proactive parents who are very involved in our children’s lives. But…

Prevention is Better Than Cure!

And don’t get me started on grocery stores! That can be another nightmare if you didn’t have a kid leash. I do not want to be the parent who has a screaming child in the cart. I also do not want to be the parent, whose child just flattened a display, or broke something. Our rule for our toddlers: if they’re going to be allowed to walk freely, they must be within arm’s reach. A child leash allows us that.

How Is A Child Leash Degrading My Child?

We try our best to control our children in a kind and respectful way. So when people say that using a kid leash is degrading to the children, I ask “huh?”

I’m not tugging or pulling my children – they are leading me! They are happy in their little toddler leashes – just one look will tell you that. It allows them the freedom to walk by themselves, instead of being cooped up in their strollers. It makes them feel like big kids and they prefer it to the strollers.

How is it degrading, when I’ve made sure that the child leash I use, is always comfortable, no matter the season or what we do. I know that there are child leashes that are nothing but a fancy rope that can cut into a child’s skin, but the one I use IS FANCY! It’s just broad enough to cover a toddler’s chest, so it won’t cut into their skin. It’s also light and breathable so as not to cause heat rashes.

A Baby Leash is a safety mechanism.

You strap your child into a car seat, right? In fact, it’s required by the law. You do so to keep your child safe.

You also strap your child into a high chair. You do so to also keep your child safe.

I put a child leash on my child to keep him/ her safe, and I’m judged severely because leashes are for animals.

Why is that?

I hate to sound like a crazy person and I know I’ll be judged for making this comparison, but please follow my logic for a second. I put my child in a high chair, I’m praised for being a responsible parent because I’m watching out for his/her safety. Why am I not being called barbaric for strapping my child in like a prisoner? Lunatic prisoners get strapped into chairs, right?

So, why is it okay to protect my child from harm by strapping him/her into a high chair and a car seat, but it’s not okay to leash my child for his/her own protection? Why is that considered barbaric and degrading?

Allow me to take it a step further.

Babies and toddlers get strapped into car seats because if they are not strapped in, they are likely to get out, climb over seats, and potentially cause accidents. With high chairs, we strap them in because they may otherwise fall out and hurt themselves. So, as their parents, we understand the dangers and we think ahead for them. Isn’t a child leash exactly that, too? We’re thinking ahead of the potential danger, for a child who does not understand that oncoming traffic is dangerous, that being separated from their parent may be catastrophic, etc.

I’m not a neurotic mom. I’m calm. I become less calm when you take my safety mechanisms away. I cannot keep my two eyes on all my children, at the same time. My husband and I are also tired and overworked, most of the time. We function on little sleep. So, if a child leash can keep our children safe AND help us relax just a little bit while we’re out  – I don’t see anything wrong with that.

And what do you say about this, huh?

People look at images like this, and they say that something is seriously wrong with the world. Really – what has the world come to when a dog is in a stroller, and a child is on a leash?

In my opinion, the dog should be on a leash but who knows – maybe he’s got 3 legs. Who am I to judge anyway. As for the child – I don’t know about other people’s children, but my twins are high energy, spirited children. I cannot keep them strapped into a stroller for long periods of time. But, I have a backup. It’s called a child leash. It fits into my purse and I can strap it onto the twins easily and effortlessly. Then, they have the freedom to walk but I have the peace of mind, knowing that they’re safe, and no one is going to take my children if I’m distracted.

What’s Next?

My family and I are planning an international trip in the next few weeks and my twins are still only 2. We always take the double stroller along but I cannot expect any normal child to stay in a stroller for more than an hour at a time. That’s why I always have my backup. It’s small enough to fit into my purse.

I know I’m going to get those looks but I cannot be bothered by them. Judge me all you want, but know this. I do not take risks with my children. Their safety is more important to me than your opinion.

Just one more thing – I’m no parenting expert. I’ve got 5 kids but still, I feel like I’m learning every day. But, I’ve heard plenty of experts say –  do what feels right. Don’t be bothered by the opinions of others. YOU’RE the parent. YOU make the call. YOU do what’s best for your child because YOU’RE the one who has to live with the decisions. If you decide a child leash is for you – great. If it’s not, that’s good too. But, you make the decision based on what feels right for you!