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Child leashes, what are your thoughts?

10 answers
I have another question. My daughter is 17 months old and "like most kids I'm sure" is very independent. The problem is, she does not want to hold my hand in public areas nor when walking by an area with a lot of cars. She practically rips my hand from her's and throws a tantrum when I insist on us holding hands. To solve that problem I usually just pick her up and not let her walk if she refuses to hold my hand. I tell her walking around is a priveledge and if she doesn't listen to mommy she has to sit in her stroller, which I know she hates. But I hate always having to take the stroller with me eveywhere I go, and I'd rather use a different method. I have seen a lot of parents use leashes on their kids though. However I'm not quite sure how I feel about that. On one hand it's an easy way to keep a child close and safe when they insist on being so independent. But on the other hand a lot of parents are against it and think it's cruel and unusual punishment for kids. My mom used one with me but now is TOTALLY against it. What do you mom's think? I'm not trying to pick a fight or a big debate here nor do I want to offend anyone, but I do need to keep my daughter close and safe in what is sometimes a very dangerous world, and being a first time mom I'm not always sure what the best method is. Who here is in favor of leashes and why? And for those of you who are against leashes and have a independent child, what do you do?

answers (10)

I always thought they were a little silly, with a child who was never a darter I never had much to worry about. Once we started going to Disney World on a regular basis, it has become a crucial item. Juggling 2 toddlers, a sit N stand stroller (that you have to fold up when riding the train to the actual park) and the many, many items that come with 2 toddlers it became a security measure. It isn't cruel, your not dragging them, using a choke collor or embarrising them (if they are an appropriate age to use a harness.) As parents it's our job to make the tough desicions that keep our children safe, but my daughter loves it. I purchased the ones that are backpacks and I let her choose the one she wanted (a dog). She puts a toy or snack in the pack and loves it. She hated having to hold my hand so it works out for every one.
I have a leash for my son, but I rarely use it.  I got it when he was a year old and just learned to walk.  (He's 18 months now.)  He's a darter - there one minute, gone the next, and while he's getting better at holding my hand, I don't always trust him not to dash out in front of traffic. The reason I don't use the leash more is because I've found that we're rarely in situations when the leash is more useful than the stroller.  The leash isn't useful when we're at the park, because he's too busy climbing the slide and playing in the sandbox and swinging on the swings to race off.  The leash isn't useful at the mall, because he'd rather push his stroller than walk around anyway.  Any other time he's out with me, he's either in a cart, or in a place where he CAN play, without having me hover.  Really, the only time the leash is useful is in a museum - and even then, I'm not overly fond of it.  Don't get me wrong - I LOVE the idea of leashing my toddler.  It's not cruel; it's keeping him safe.  (He hates me brushing his hair, too, but no one's calling me cruel for insisting on it.)  I just haven't figured out how to use one successfully.  Maybe when he's older and really doesn't want to sit in the stroller anymore.  For now, it mostly sits in the car, forgotten.
i made a cute one for my daughter that looks like a backpack. she picked out the fabric (purple with skull and cross bones), and made the straps criss-cross over her mine. you could also use a long scarf instead. that has worked for me on many occasions. i fully believe in using a leash if you have a darter. you can't expect an 18 month old to hold your hand. i always carry my daughter (21 months) until we get into the store. i use the leash mostly at my husbands tattoo shop, and the doctors office. i have had some women say things like, "your child is not a dog, she's a child. let her run around and have fun!" the way i look at it is simple. i have control over where my child goes, and shes is always within arms length of me. atleast she's not running amok like all the other brats i see, with their parents chasing after them screaming, "no no no!" i could care less what people think when i put it on my daughter. that's what works for our family. infact, my kid loves it too. she's been wearing it since she was able to walk at 9 months.
I am kinda against leashes, and kinda not. I think that its just a matter of what other people think to me, but Im starting to get over that. There are times, it seems like there is no other way. You may get dirty looks, but the thing is, atleast you know in your mind that you are doing what you can to keep your child safe, while at the same time, giving her her own freedom. Which can be nice for mommy too :) so your not dealing with tantrums.
Thank you for your input Moms, I think tomorrow a leash is something else I'm going to purchase. The fact that I know I'm not the only one who thinks a leash is sometimes nessecary does make make me feel a lot better. Thanks again. :-)
they sell them at walmart for around $12-14
if it keeps a hyperactive, impulsive child safe---go for it & do not let other's negative comments affect your good judgement  regarding YOUR situation & YOUR family
I have one and I have used it on my first child (2 1/2-3 yrs then) when we lived in the city and she hated holding my hand but now she is old enough to understand that she needs to stay close and her sister (29 months now) I will just tell her that if she has to hold my hand or we are not going anywhere. If she tries to throw a fit then I just let her, she is only making herself look silly and I am not teaching her that I am going to hold her each time she isn't happy. I don't see a need in my life for a leash but that doesn't mean that others can't or that later I will not.
I bought one for my oldest son when he was about 17/18 months old.  He was really skilled and wiggling his little hand out of mine when we were out in public.  One afternoon he pulled his hand away in a fabric store and started running from me between the racks of fabric.  It was pretty nerve-wracking for me because his little head was lower than the fabric rolls and I was afraid I was going to lose track of him!  I bouth his backpack harness the very next day! We used ours more like a training tool though.  When he wore the harness, he still had to hold my hand.  The harness was just back-up in case he managed to slip his hand free again :)  After a couple of months practicing hand-holding with the harness, he was doing really well and we decided to try it going harness-free again.  We never had to go back to the harness after that.  Even though we only used it for a short period of time, I still feel like it was a worth while purchase.  I was glad to pay the $15 to have some safety insurance while my son was learning the proper way to hold his mommy's hand :)
Use a baby carrier. They have baby carriers that can hold large babies and toddlers without putting a lot of strain on your back and back pack styles. They are very content to be carried and be able see things from an adult's perspective. This way, your child is not able to run off, get into things, and they aren't being walked like a dog!

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