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What age can kids bike/roam the neighborhood?

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  • What age can kids bike/roam the neighborhood?

    For miles and hours on end without supervision? And does gender matter? I say 12. My wife is reluctant. My in laws are in full panic attack mode.

  • #2
    This isn't the 90ss. We did back then, but it's become a very different world.

    Closed neighborhood or in at least 3 kids is our minimum. That along with the smartphone enabled alarm and tracking system . 12 at the very earliest IMHO

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    • #3
      Same block at age 5, 3 blocks at 8, anywhere reasonable at age 12. Don't stunt your kids by locking them down, that's more dangerous to them than letting them roam free.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by StarTrekDoc View Post
        This isn't the 90ss. We did back then, but it's become a very different world.

        Closed neighborhood or in at least 3 kids is our minimum. That along with the smartphone enabled alarm and tracking system . 12 at the very earliest IMHO
        Different how? Different parenting attitudes, sure. Not more dangerous. If anything, it's safer for children than it used to be.

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        • #5
          33.

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          • #6
            We're basically the opposite of helicopter parents. Free range parenting I think it's called now. It's just the way it was when we grew up. We get mad at our 6 year old if she doesn't check in before heading off to friends' houses after school.

            12? A 12 year old is allowed to fly across the country on their own.

            Now if anyone has advice to get our 15 year old out of her room and into the neighborhood I'd appreciate that.
            Helping those who wear the white coat get a fair shake on Wall Street since 2011

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            • #7
              Totally agree that the safety factor is not really any different now. It’s societal views on parenting. But that aside, the neighborhood matters a lot too. My quiet suburban Palo Alto childhood neighborhood vs my kids’ semi-urban Seattle neighborhood not an apples to apples comparison.

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              • #8
                My 7 year old has a ton of friends in the neighborhood. They bike from house to house and collect kids. They all stay within a 1/4 mile in backyards and a neighborhood playground.

                We tell him to come home at a specific time or when he is done. It wouldn't be hard for me to find him if I had too.

                He knows to be careful on the neighborhood streets and to not go out on the main road.

                No phone or tracking device.

                My twins are 5 and I do not give them that freedom yet. Maybe next summer. But they can play on our dead end street.

                My 3 year old is instructed to stay in the yard when he is out without an adult but he is a runner so he is never without one of us and we just pretend he is but we watch from the door.

                I think it is important for them to become independent.


                ​​​​​​

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                • #9
                  Younger they are out and about, the better. I was working (with a work permit, part time) at the local hardware store at 12/13ish, and the grocery store around 14/15ish. Walked or rode my bike to work, Blockbuster (when that existed), and the bank to deposit my pay.

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                  • #10
                    Probably depends on the area. I know when we moved to our current house my oldest was 9 and he roamed the neighborhood with the other kids day and night.

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                    • #11


                      Now if anyone has advice to get our 15 year old out of her room and into the neighborhood I'd appreciate that.[/QUOTE]

                      Take away the screens 😁

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by dayman View Post

                        Different how? Different parenting attitudes, sure. Not more dangerous. If anything, it's safer for children than it used to be.
                        Yeah, definitely this. IIRC, most stats show that things are actually safer now than when most of us were growing up.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by The White Coat Investor View Post
                          We're basically the opposite of helicopter parents. Free range parenting I think it's called now. It's just the way it was when we grew up. We get mad at our 6 year old if she doesn't check in before heading off to friends' houses after school.

                          12? A 12 year old is allowed to fly across the country on their own.

                          Now if anyone has advice to get our 15 year old out of her room and into the neighborhood I'd appreciate that.
                          I'd love to do or have done this. The problem is that you have to live in a neighborhood that's conducive to it. We're in a plenty safe area. But no other families with kids their ages. There is no practical way for them to hang out with friends unless they get a ride. They're not great bike riders yet and even if they were closest friends would be a long ride away on some high traffic roads.

                          I guess they could ride buses. But I don't even do that.

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                          • #14
                            i think the neighborhood informs this quite a bit as well. we live a pretty busy through street and have a high amount of sidewalk traffic for our area.

                            i would say gender probably matters a little bit? tough for me to say as we are not at that age with our kids?

                            there does seem to be me to be a calculus between safety and fun that my parents in the 90s just didn't do very well.

                            for example if i had a 10 year old who wanted to go up the street to play, it would take me 60 seconds sitting there listening to a podcast on my porch to verify that s/he made it there without issue. is the chance high that they are going to be swept into a van and abducted? absolutely not but the verification is painless.

                            when i was with my dad i had an extreme free range childhood but i don't think it was either well-planned or optimal for safety. in a lot of ways i think it was just blind luck that i was never seriously hurt. not super nostalgic for it to be honest b/c even at the time i remember kind of thinking "am i really allowed to do this? this doesn't seem right."

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by wideopenspaces View Post

                              Now if anyone has advice to get our 15 year old out of her room and into the neighborhood I'd appreciate that.
                              Take away the screens 😁 [/QUOTE]

                              Last time I checked, you had the authority to do that😎. Dr. Laura listener here, though.
                              Our passion is protecting clients and others from predatory and ignorant advisors. Fox & Co CPAs, Fox & Co Wealth Mgmt. 270-247-6087

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