Modeling common sense is also an important aspect of a parent's role in a child's life.
I was at my friend's house with my two children aged two and six. My friend's dog big my two year old daughter in the face, totally unprovoked, just below her eye. My daughter's face was at his level and he just lunged out and bit her.
I left my son with my friend while I took my daughter to the hospital. When I returned, I was absolutely shocked and appalled to see the dog who bit my daughter still wandering around inside the house with my son (and her son, I might add).
I said, 'Betsy - why didn't you put the dog outside?!' snatching my son up and ushering him behind me before the dog could get to him too.
'He's never bitten anyone before,' she said and then 'It's cold and rainy outside.'
What the HELL!
I took my kids and left. She continued inviting me over to her house, but I just couldn't go. At first I made excuses, but finally I said, 'As long as you have that dog - I can't come to your house,' and told her the truth. Not only would I not bring my kids there, but I wasn't going either. I don't like dogs who are unpredictable and bite people. I wouldn't like people who are unpredictable and throw children to the floor in fits of pique either.
What if the next time he snaps with the next person that person hits his head and fractures his skull and dies? I can't tell you how many people I've met in prison who are in prison for many years for having thrown the wrong punch or shoved someone who fell and hit his head on something and died.
I called DHS on a mother I was working with on parenting skills when one time, right in front of me in a fit of rage she threw her one year old son on the bed and he bounced off the mattress and struck his head on the wall.
I'd never seen her do it before and I thought to myself, 'Give her a break - everyone snaps sometimes, but as a mandated reporter - I had to do it.
I didn't WANT to do it - I didn't ENJOY doing it - in fact I HATED doing it - but I had to ask myself, 'How will you feel if she does it again and the next time the little boy breaks his neck?'
Odessakit - I think you're making the right decision.
I had to do it, and I think you do too.