Allowing DD (10) and friend (9) to roam ship?

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Forum' started by Topscot, May 26, 2013.

  1. momof2minnies

    momof2minnies DIS Veteran

    Feb 7, 2004
    No you guys miss understood-I meant no way at the age the OP was talking about not 19 and 21-HaHa!!!!!

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  3. Bonniec

    Bonniec DIS Veteran

    Aug 22, 2011
    This is simply a curiosity to understand a different opinion and I don't mean it as a judgement, just genuine curiosity.

    Those of you who will let them roam the ship at 8-12 years old all say things like "if they are mature enough", "they call immediately on the wave phone when changing locations"', "they check in at certain times". Do you not worry about situations like what just happened with the 11 year old or do you think it's too rare to happen? Just trying to understand the mindset because checking in with you wouldn't stop those situations from happening.

    The more I read this thread the more dangerous I think cruise ships can be because clearly, people let heir guard down. What better place for a child molester to work?

    On another note, I agree with the curmudgeon, lol. Add me to that list too because I would be annoyed at watched unsupervised kids acting up on the ship. I just don't get why vacation means to stop watching what they do.

    Maybe I'm just too overprotective. Apparently DCL thinks it's okay or they wouldn't allow check out privileges or encourage parents to send kids to the MDRs unsupervised. But it just leaves me scratching my head.

    Sent from my iPad using DISBoards
  4. maria-fan-22

    maria-fan-22 DIS Veteran

    Jun 17, 2010
    Speaking as someone who just came out of the child year(I'm 19) I would say it is a case by case basis at ages 9-10. You know your child, if you think they can handle situations, then let them roam free. If they have a habit of getting into sticky situations, then put them on a shorter leash. My first cruise was when I was 9 and I was allowed to roam free, but I could handle it and my parents knew that. (my 11 year old brother went with me almost everywhere though) I was the kid who memorised the fire escape plan of everywhere I went and memorised the ship layout weeks before the cruise. Only you know your child well enough to know what rules to give them.

    With that said, speaking as a child you was given a shorter leash later on, give your child the freedom they can handle, not what makes you comfortable, but what they can handle. If you give them too much, they could get into some trouble, if you give them too little, they can go a little crazy(like cabin fever).

    I would give them the freedom they can handle, if they are good kids and don't get into trouble, let them lose, if they tend to get lost or get into trouble, keep them closer. Only you know how much freedom your child can handle. However, it's best to start out short and let the leash out, then to slowly bring it in. pirate:
  5. flyersfan1129

    flyersfan1129 Mouseketeer

    Aug 8, 2010
    This may be DCL policy, but it was not OUR policy with our 11 year old son last year on the Fantasy. Unless it was an ORGANIZED outing, he was NOT to leave the tween club without notifying us, and then one of us would meet him. He had made some friends of the same age, and their parents had made the same rule, so we were OK if he was with one of them, and one of their parents met up with them. I have no doubt in my son; he is a very mature 11 and has had the fear of God put into him about "stranger danger", but it is not him I worry about. We had a sex offender move into our neighborhood over the STRENUOUS objections of all who live in our only takes a minute.
  6. flateacher

    flateacher Mouseketeer

    Jul 11, 2011
    It is not my daughter or her judgement I don't trust... It is the other people on board.

    When we cruised in March she was 11 1/2 and I did NOT let her sign out from the club/lab. She did not go to Edge. IF she did she would not be allowed to leave without me picking her up. I understand she could just walk out - but MY rules would be to wait for me.

    If for no other reason than for what just came to light about the incident on the Dream.... no amount of teaching, coaching or explaining how to handle herself could save her from that situation... her knowing karate or to "Scream fire" isn't going to help her either.... that child (on the Dream) was touched before she knew what hit her (poor thing)....:worried:
  7. luv2sleep

    luv2sleep DIS Veteran

    Aug 15, 2011
    Agreed. Love this idea and I'm going to implement it when the time comes. I also agree with the pps. You can give them all kinds of rules about when to call, what to shout, where to run, but that poor 11 year old girl was trapped in an elevator with that creep. Nothing she could do. If she had not been alone he wouldn't have fine that to her. The ship is a closed environment. Pedophiles could be watching to see which kids are free to roam, where they go, whet decks, hallways, and rooms they come from. Since you tend to see the same people over and over again on a ship, kids roaming alone without adult supervision make easy targets. It's not that, at the appropriate age, I wouldn't trust my kid. I just don't trust everyone else.
  8. Tower

    Tower DIS Veteran

    Apr 23, 2008
    On the Magic last November, DS was 11 and DD was 9. DD was disappointed that there were not many other DD9's in the lab so we gave her sign out priveledges to be with her brother on some activities. She ended up spending a lot of time with us as she's quite aware of the dangers of being alone and enjoys spending time with her parents. Loved walking the jogging track with us etc.
    DS11 also enjoyed being able to come in and out.

    We had a whiteboard in our room, rules of no room visiting and 2-way radio communication. Wave phones were not really an option for us as we found them too quiet to pay attention to and we didn't want to constantly be holding them/checking them. The Magic being a smaller ship allowed us to commmunicate pretty well with everyone that way. They worked great at the ports too!
  9. abdmom

    abdmom DIS Veteran

    Apr 6, 2008
    Hi Topscot!! :yay::dance3:

    No. Way. Would I let a pair of 10 year old and 9 year old girls out of my sight on a cruise ship.

    I may let them be in a stateroom on their own, but that's it.

    Watch this clickorlando

    Read this Orlando Sentinel article

    Ships are more dangerous than riding a bike to school.
  10. auntie

    auntie <font color=darkorchid>It's a really lovely way to

    Jan 7, 2003
    I quite agree. while a parent never stops worrying, the clock can't be stopped. The best thing parents can do is to provide their children with the skills that will enable them to manuver through life (let alone a cruise ship) without mom and dad supervising their every move.
    I have a 21 year old, and he doesn't want to vacation with us either. Having lived through this twice before, (he has older siblings) we are not offended. It's natural, and it means we are doing our job. They do come back around and we often take family vacations with our kids and their spouses.
    (and we all have separate accomodations and our own space!) It works for us. :thumbsup2

    In regards to a 9 and 10 year old, I'm not sure I'd want them going to a pool alone. I also doubt my kids at that age would want to be in a kids club. However, that's probably just us. I do think that a bit older (ages 12/13) would probably be the age I'd feel comfortable letting them go off on their own a bit for short periods of time. (especially if they were together and had a way to keep in touch, like the wave phones)
  11. disney1990

    disney1990 <font color=royalblue>Wow, it make my heart skip a

    Aug 24, 1999
    Every parent, I think, worries about even their adult children. When our adult DD leaves to drive home (1-1/2 hours) late at night, she usually send me a text message when she arrives - "home" it says.

    When we were on the ship, on occasion, we allowed our granddaughters (then 11 and 13) to sign out of the club to go to the show or to the MDR for dinner on the nights that we were at Palo. They knew the rules and stayed together.
  12. jsolar

    jsolar Mouseketeer

    Apr 17, 2009
    My son was 9 when I let him 'roam' along with another (usually older) child. That being said, he is allowed to leave me and go to a specific place on the ship. He can't just wander around. The only caveat is he must contact me every half hour or so. Also, when I call him, he must answer. If not, he loses the privilege.
    It has always worked for us.
  13. Topscot

    Topscot Mouseketeer

    Sep 14, 2009
    Hi Abdmom! :yay::yay: I have read the article. I don't think that age is going to change the risk of something like this happening on board. Look at what happened to that 16 year old. That being said, it was never my intention to allow my DD to wander by herself. She would only be allowed to go from one area to another with her friend, never leaving each other's side.

    This is exactly what I was trying to ask about. I wouldn't be decks away from my DD. Probably on the same deck, just wanted to know the best way of keeping in touch if she is not within eyesight. People on this thread seem to think that I was intending to allow her to wander at all times of the day and night by herself, go to the MDR by herself. Never was my intention.
  14. kfamilylovesdisney

    kfamilylovesdisney Wonder 05/2008 Wonder 05/2009

    Jul 24, 2008
    I do not like that Disney doesn't require the tweens in Edge to be signed in and out. I think they are too young to be able to come and go as they please. It makes me more anxious while trying to enjoy vacation. When my children were younger we were more at ease knowing they were signed in to the kids clubs.

    That being said, I will have one in Vibe (DD15) and two in Edge (DS13 and DS11) this cruise. My older two children are not allowed to leave the club without contacting us first and we must know exactly where they are going, with whom, and for how long AND we may not allow it depending on the circumstances and time of day/night. My 11 year old is not to leave the club at all. If my 11 year old leaves Edge (and we will spot check) he will be put into the kids club and will not have permission to sign himself in and out. He said he does not want to go to the kids club because on our last cruise when he was 9 there were mostly little kids an no one his age. I'm OK with him going to Edge IF he stays in the club and calls us to come get him if he wants to leave.

    None of my children are to go near any of the pools without me or DH supervising them.

    Lastly, DH and I personally escort our children to and from the club. Especially our DD who likes to stay there late. We do not want her walking back from the club on the ship alone at 1 AM at night.

    I'm getting stressed just thinking about the logistics. When Disney allows kids this much freedom at younger ages (then most would normally have at a resort hotel) the kids expect it too (and I am not comfortable with it).
  15. wwwosie

    wwwosie Mom by Day - Disney Freak by Night

    Jun 20, 2007
    The waiter who molested the little girl must have a few brain cells missing, anyone could have witnessed what he did. This is the first time I have seen the video and didn't realize it was the cameras outside the elevators that caught him. Not defending Disney or the perpetrator, but this is an isolated incident, and, if you stop to think about it, it could have happened to a young or even old adult. We need to be vigilant for sure but we can't let an isolated incident make us fear everything. My main problem with some "free roaming" kids is the lack of respect for other people or public areas. But again, not all kids misbehave.
  16. SapphireMind

    SapphireMind Mouseketeer

    Mar 24, 2013
    Your child is far more likely to molested by a family member or friend than by a stranger. You cannot prevent all bad things from happening to your child, no matter what you do. You can teach them to try and prevent putting themselves in potentially perilous situations, and you can deal with fallout when it happens, but you can't keep them in a bubble either. Well you could I guess, but it wouldn't be good for them either.

    Reasonable precautions are reasonable. Every family is going to decide what they think is reasonable and what their child can handle. Some parents will think others are crazy, but in the end, it is their family, not yours. When I was 12, I was allowed to roam freely in the condo complex where we vacationed and literally stay out all night and sleep during the day. (very fair skin and lots of sun didn't mesh well) my parents trusted me not to go to the ocean. They trusted me by the pool and with the friends I met. Tons of bad things could have happened. Likely? not really.

    There are people who get molested by doctors. I'm not going to stop seeing doctors. There are people who get molested by teachers. I'm not going to stop sending them to school. On and on. That's my philosophy, ymmv
  17. shmoogrrrl

    shmoogrrrl Tigger Goddess

    May 18, 2000
    I said earlier that I would let my daughter, who will be 12 when we sail, go places with her 12 year old friend who will also be on the cruise. Specific places, not wondering aimlessly. From the room to the Edge, from Edge to the movie theater, from our room to the soda station and back to the room, etc....

    The fact is, things like what happened to that girl happen everywhere, yet I don't lock my daughter in the house when we are at home. I let my daughter walk to school with friends (I admit that I do drive her if her friends aren't walking for some reason), she goes to the playground after school with her friends, and she walks home with them. So, from my standpoint, she and her friend walking to the club, or to grab a drink at the drink fountain isn't much of a difference. The distance is closer, even. There is NOTHING that you can do, short of keeping your child in your sight 24/7, to be sure that it never happens to them.

    Now, with the swimming, I'm with people who don't let their kids go to the pool alone. I don't let her go without one of us at home, even though she is old enough this year (10 at our pool), so I certainly wouldn't let her do it on the ship. One of us will always be there for that.
  18. Ofinn

    Ofinn DIS Veteran

    Feb 18, 2013
    You will get a lot of different answers(obviously). Everyone has different parenting styles. I don't consider it being a "lax parent" because you are comfortable giving your child some freedom and personal responsibility. I feel perfectly comfortable allowing my 9 and 10 year old to do self check in. They know they have to go straight back to the room. I also don't have a problem with them going to the movies, getting ice cream or riding the aqua duck by themselves. I think you have to go with whatever you feel comfortable with. I would not let other parents opinions alter the way you raise your children.
  19. MrsScooby

    MrsScooby DIS Veteran

    May 27, 2002
    I think your question came at a sensitive time, right after the thread about the 11 year old child being cornered and touched in the elevator. But to be honest, any time there is a question about what is ok for kids to wear or do there always seems to be a rather heated discussion about what is appropriate. Obviously, all parents have different levels of comfort and different ideas of what is right for their kids (or all kids in some cases)...the problem is when judgmental comments are made...

    I think there is a big difference between letting your 9/10 year old walk to a specific destination by themselves and letting them wander around the ship with no restrictions. You are not doing anything wrong:thumbsup2
    Some people are just not able to relax and enjoy their vacation if their 17 and under child is not constantly being watched by a parent or Club CM and others are ok with giving certain freedoms depending upon the child and age:confused3
    To each their own.

    Pretty much my views as well.
  20. Ofinn

    Ofinn DIS Veteran

    Feb 18, 2013
    I think you might be a tad bit over protective. Like a pp poster said. Most molestations and kidnappings are done by people that know the child. I am way more cautious around neighbors, teachers, coaches, and friends than I am among strangers.

    Kids that become unruly when unsupervised probably act the same way when supervised. Parenting issue. Kids should know how to behave without the parents hovering over them.

    Your kid probably has a better chance of getting struck by lightning at WDW than they do of getting molested by a stranger on a DCL cruise. So yes I think what happened is an extremely rare event.
  21. luv2sleep

    luv2sleep DIS Veteran

    Aug 15, 2011
    I don't see how one parent can tell another that they are being over protective. When it's all said and done a parent has to be comfortable and feel that they've done whatever they can to keep them safe. Everyone do what you are comfortable with. If you are comfortable letting your 8 year old sign in and sign out do it. If you aren't comfortable with your 16 year old leaving the clubs or roaming the ship without you then don't let them. I'm an 'overprotective' parent and could care less how anyone feels about that. I won't criticize anyone who does something different though. Live and let live.

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