LAUREL, Md. — An Imperfect Union brings together two people on opposite sides of an issue to work on a project in their community. Watch full episodes on Facebook Watch every Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET.
Are parents today overprotective? If you google parenting, you will be flooded with labels and advice on child rearing. Which is the correct or the best way? Do those even exist?
An Imperfect Union tackles the parenting question by asking two moms, one of whom is famous for her parenting style, to debate the question: are parents today overprotective?
People call Danielle Meitiv a free-range mom.
A few years ago, the Meitivs let their kids: a 10-year-old son and 6-year-old daughter, walk home from the playground in Silver Spring, Md.
“They were walking in a semi urban area and then some people kind of freaked out because we just don't see that now,” Meitiv said. “They were picked up by the police and held by Child Protective Services and the whole story went viral because we fought back.”
“I think we have this collective amnesia and we forget that overwhelmingly today's parents grew up that way,” she added. “But somehow we think today it's too dangerous or I don't know children have evolved in some way and they just can't do what every kid in from pretty much all of human time and still all over the world still does.”
Julie Krieger grew up in a small town and had a conservative upbringing.
“My husband and I wanted to expose our children to the world with age appropriate activities in a safe environment and with us there. spending time with family was very important to us. Our church, our faith,” she said.
“I would not actually consider letting my kids walk by themselves if they were 7, 8, 9-years-old,” Krieger added. “I would not do that. When the kids were small, we were always there. We felt that was the safest for them. There are so many things that kids can encounter. There are people who may want to approach them with drugs, with alcohol, vaping is on the rise. People may approach them with inappropriate websites. I feel like it's my job to be there to protect them when they're very young.”
The two women meet at a local library to volunteer and discuss their different approaches.
“We're here to talk about parenting,” Krieger said.
“Well we let our kids go to the playground by themselves, the playground right by our house,” Meitiv said. “Which got us in trouble with the police and CPS.”
“Oh ok, I think I read about you,” Krieger answered.
“I'm that mom,” said Meitiv.
“You're that mom,” Krieger laughed.
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