7 Things My Mom Did When I Was Growing Up -- That Would Get Her Arrested Now

Say What!? 82

It seems that every generation is completely different from the generation before. Especially when it comes to how we raise kids. What might be routine now was unheard of then, and vice versa. It's just the way it was. I grew up with a mother -- and a culture -- that thought it was perfectly fine to do certain things that, how shall I say, would get her arrested now. My mother was 21 when she had me, so perhaps she wasn't quite ready for a child, but she did the best she could. And my upbringing made me who I am, and I'm happy about that.

But here are seven things my mom routinely did -- that might get her arrested now. (Sorry Mom!)

Cigarette runs to the liquor store. Nowadays, parents probably wouldn't dream of bringing their kid into a liquor store -- let alone letting him or her go into one alone. But I routinely ran for cigarettes for my mom at the local liquor store. I can still remember the owner's cute dog, who always lay by the door. I think I even picked her up a six-pack a few times.

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Going to bars. My mom spent some time working as a bartender -- so I came along! There were always other kids in the bar too. Patrons would pull up a chair for me so I could play pinball. I got pretty good, too, and could beat the adults. Yes, I drank Shirley Temples.

Being left alone. Every day it seems I read a story about a kid being left alone with tragic results. My mom also used to leave me alone -- and luckily the results were fine. Not that this makes it acceptable -- but no one really thought it was bad to leave their kids alone in that town, where everyone knew everyone and no one locked their doors. In fact, I often babysat for the younger kids in the neighborhood -- even though I wasn't a teen yet.

A boy babysitter. When I did have a babysitter, it was a local teen boy named Fred. No, he never molested me. Even when my friends and I insisted on posing for him in our bathing suits. I remember him laughing awkwardly and quickly leaving the room.

Riding bikes without a helmet. Standard. Never heard of a helmet. That goes for being in a car without a seatbelt too.

Running around town without an adult. My friends and I were always out by ourselves -- sometimes after dark. It was just that kind of place.

Naked pictures. It seems like at least half the pics of me as a kid were naked ones. My mom always said I hated putting on clothes. She has a picture of me and a friend -- both naked -- both around 5 years old in a garbage can where we were hiding, playing hide-and-seek. I can only imagine the jail sentence she'd be handed down if a pic of her kid and another kid naked in a garbage can got around. Yet it's one of my favorite photos. (I don't even dare post it!)

There's more where that came from, but I don't want the police barging down her door. Now, I'm not suggesting anyone do this stuff just because it was done then. Nor am I saying it should have even been done then. But today, I'm a very independent, responsible person who has moved to various cities by myself, and I appreciate my upbringing.

I mean, now there's an actual movement called "Free Range Kids" that advocates this kind of laissez-faire parenting (minus, perhaps, the trips to the liquor store). There are actual classes to teach parents how to let go more.

So ... thanks, Mom. I think.

Do you think my mom would be in jail today?

Image via Mike Baird/Flickr

behavior, girls, independence


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miche... micheledo

I really do think life was different then. People at the bar kne whow to treat a child with decency and respect. Nowadays, I think you would have immature kids trying to ply the child with alcohol - just because. There seems to be so little common decency and respect now.

Rosas... RosasMummy

5,6 and 7- things that still happen?

worki... workingmama86

my dad would take me and my sister to the bar all the time... and we always went in the liquor store so he can get a 6 pack. Also, we rode in the back of the truck.. hell one of his trucks didn't even have seatbelts. And I was always playing in the road, I knew to get out of the road when a car came... I walked to the store alone all the time... I would go take hikes in the woods behind my house alone all the time too... There's a lot my parents did that  I wouldn't do... 

Doomy234 Doomy234

These things were pretty common, I did most of these things as a kid as well. I never had a male babysitter, but I didnt ever have a babysitter at all. They either left me with my older sister, or left me alone. The rule was not to leave the house and lock the door. I was never hurt, maimed, molested, burned, kidnapped, or electrocuted.

dirti... dirtiekittie

it was a different time. i was just talking to my husband about that actually. i don't want my oldest left alone at home with her younger sister. they're 9 and 4. yet when i was her age, i was totally a 'latch key kid' who went home to an empty house every day. we just live in different times. 

LeeshaE LeeshaE

I have been pondering the whole right age to leave a child home alone myself I was left along at nine with my brother whose one year younger. My son is now 8 and I cannot even imagine leaving him alone for 15 minutes but we have started working on building his responsibility so he's ready when the time comes.

kjbug... kjbugsmom1517

II was totally expecting things like spanking or lockin ur kid in a room for punishment

nonmember avatar Monica

We were always left alone. I remember my brother watching us when he was like 14. He watched 5 kids which one was a baby. Just for an hr or so but still.

Also on post they have liquor so its not really a huge deal. Plus you can take kids into the Class 6 which is a liquor store on post. Its so nice not to have to find a babysitter just to run to get some booze. in the midwest you can buy liquor at walmart..

mrspease mrspease

Our parents trusted us more than we trust our kids. They automatically trusted us until we did something to make them believe that they shouldn't. Now, parents act like their kids have to earn their trust. Why do you think those kids grow up and have to have someone do everything for them? In their mind, their parents obviously didn't think they were competent enough to handle even the most minute detail so why would they think differently?

nonmember avatar nikki

mrspease, I completely agree with you!!

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