Why I've changed my mind about child reins
The pair someone gave me for my baby never saw the light of day - but now I can definitely see the bonuses
I've always thought of myself as a bit of a hippie parent, so when a friend passed on a pair of bright pink reins when my daughter was born and told me they'd "come in handy" when she got older, I nodded, smiled, and popped them at the back of a bottom drawer.
No way I'm putting my kids on a lead ?
Those particular reins never saw the light of day again - though there were a few occasions when I wish I'd had them.
There was the time we went to a kids festival with literally the WHOLE of London there and if you blinked you'd miss your daughter running in the opposite direction to give Mr Tumble a hug.
And then there were the occasions I'd be out with my daughter and my elderly mum, who'd walk slowly and hold my hand while my little girl would run ahead and I just couldn't possibly match the pace of both.
I've only got one child - so perhaps I figured reins aren't really that necessary in most instances.
But having asked the question about reins on Facebook to our MFM mums, and hearing how other mums have used them, I now totally get why they're so popular.
Mum Sarah-Louise W, who's currently pregnant, said she found reins "VERY helpful. My son runs off a lot when he's on the reins he's close to us and it means at 5 month pregnant I don't have to run after him".
Another, Samantha W, said: "Absolutely!! I am all for reins... Better that than my child running into danger."
Though she also notes: "My husband disagrees though and does not like the idea of using reins... He sees it like a dog leash! Guess we'll wait and see!"
And Karen H added:
"My son (almost 2) can wrestle his hand out of mine if needed and can be very fast when he wants to get away.
"He is happy to have his reins on most of the time (I think because he knows the alternative is to be strapped into the buggy!).
"Looping his reins round my wrist and holding his hand is what I find safest. I can't trust him not to run and he doesn't understand road safety yet. So yes, I'm definitely for reins (used them with my eldest too)."
So, all in all - for various reasons - it seems reins are well worth considering, especially if you have more than one child - and maybe I should have had second thoughts when I got given them the first time round.
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Though I will caveat this with thoughts from a mum of twins who advised they don't really work if your little ones decide to go in opposite directions.
Yep, I totally get that too ?
What do you think?
Did you find reins helpful or would you prefer not to use them? Tell us in the comments below or over on Facebook
Tara is mum to 1 daughter, Bodhi Rae, and has worked as Content Editor and Social Media Producer at MadeForMums since 2015
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