I usually stay away from the these type of stories but what is amazing that the perpetrator of the following behavior is an M. D.
The background is this.
Mom has unruly child. Just learned to walk and is walking, no, running away from parents.
Mom's wonderful solution.
Put said child on a leash.
Yup, that is the startling confession of Claire McCarthy, M. frickin D.Unbelievable.
The essential confession of Dr. McCarthy is that she could not handle her daughter, Elsa, because she had two other children. And the poor doc was often left alone on weekends while the hubby worked.
Here is a thought.
If you know that this is going to be a problem, and you are a doctor and I think could fork out a little cash, would it not have been better to have Elsa stay home with a babysitter? Or the older children?
See, the leash on children is a lazy solution to a real problem. One that would take some extra time and patience.
But no, it appears that Doc. McCarthy had neither.
In a previous life, while going through college I worked at a department store no longer in existence. It was The Broadway and it eventually got bought out by Macy's. There were more than several occasions that I would see parents with children on a leash. Sometimes, I would not quietly utter to my fellow workers that I thought it was disgusting. The it dehumanizes the children. And also more than several times, it was whole families and all the kiddies were on a leash.
What really amazes me is that today, 2012, we talk about having off-leash parks for dogs. Yet this doctor justifies and asks for no judgement for putting a supposed unruly child on a leash.
No matter how one justifies it, it is wrong to put a child on a leash and parade said child around in public. As I wrote, it dehumanizes the child. It is something that we once did to fellow humans and it was called slavery. What makes this any more humane and or right?
Doc McCarthy thinks that it is wrong for me to judge her. No ma'am, it is not wrong. I read your article multiple times. And I still believe that it is always wrong to put a child on a leash. From what I get, it turned out to be a convenience for you. Not the child. Kind of like a pacifier. I get that. Though I do not like them either. It is not a form of dehumanization to put something in a child's mouth that may make them feel better. Often times, the child is crying due to teething.
Let me go back to the slavery analogy.
Why did the sellers put the slaves on leashes and worse, chains? Well for one, so that they would not get away. After all, they were someone's potential property.
What makes Doc McCarthy different from the slave owners?
I do not think all that much.
A more humane and loving solution would have been not to take her daughter in situations until she addressed the actual problem. Which is not so much a problem. It is natural for many children to explore. It is how parents deal with it that makes the difference.
And I think that Dr. McCarthy dealt with it totally wrong. And that it is immoral.
A leash on a child represents bad parenting and should be scorned. And one point Dr. McCarthy made is that many of those who would have been horrified to see a leashed child said nothing to her. I do not disagree. But what would have wanted them to say? "Hey, what the hell are you doing having this kid on a leash?" Or things much worse.
As a doctor, I think that she should know better. But this shows that for all the book learning, some people are not all that smart when it comes to showing a little common sense.
The point is do not treat children as animals. Do not put a leash on a child no matter what. It will be better for the child in the short run and you as a parent in the long run.