Clearly this is a post that is in past tense, since the scenario has already happened. I have been racking my brain all day about what I witnessed this morning at the mall. I can't undo what has been done, but I am wondering, what would you do?
I had my very own mall rats at the indoor animal climbing play structure for over an hour.
They were completely enjoying themselves and were busy buzzing all over the place.
I was chatting it up with some other parents on the sidelines when we noticed a baby crawling out of the area and into the mall. This little girlie was no more than a year if that. She motored herself half way around the outside perimeter of the zone, yet no one went after her.
We were all OMG, who's baby is that? We split up from our chatty patty circle and one of us went to scoop up the girl while the rest of us asked questions of all the other parents. "We were all worried and scurrying around asking, "Is that your child?" You could hear the panic in our voices.
Seeing her crawl so far away, clearly unsupervised was really disturbing. Anyone could have snatched her up and ran off. We all know that malls are full of moms and perverts.
The baby was just outside Saks Fifth Avenue when one of us finally caught up with her. More than five minutes went by and no one had claimed the cutie. Then a panicked looking ten year old boy came over, grabbed the little one's hand, and shuffled her back into the tot lot. All the moms were aghast.
Just to put the area and ratio of space in perspective this is Natalie shown inside the play area.
You can see how far down the Mall it is to Saks Fifth Avenue. Can you believe that this baby just crawled away and got this far before the bad babysitting (brother?) noticed?
We could not believe someone would leave their baby in the charge of a ten year old boy, who clearly was not even paying attention. We thought perhaps the mom had a quick mall errand a few stores down but time went on and the boy was watching the baby girl. He was either completely ignoring her as she crawled down the mall, or he was acting inappropriately with her, like doing this:
After I filmed this I decided to confront the parent when they showed up to reclaim the kids. I planned to just let them know what I saw and make them aware. Obviously a concerned parent would have never left these two kids alone in the mall for so long, but regardless I wanted to spill the beans on the escape situation. That was just it though, no one ever showed up while I was there. I was there for AN HOUR!
ONE WHOLE HOUR.
The fellow moms and I were trying to determine what to do. I had to leave to pick up Argenida and I could not wait indefinitely for someone to show up. At the time I was leaving. We (as in the moms who were actually there) collectively decided to call mall security and alert them to the situation, and let them decide the appropriate course of action.
I am wondering what I could have done differently? This was not any of my business so to speak, yet it has tormented me all day. I have that motherly gene of panic and guilt, and this is a dilemma. Do any of you get put in these situations?
What do you do? How do you get over it in your own mind? Here it is 9:00 at night and 12 hours later I am still un-nerved. Gahhhhh!
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