Defending our Children

Defending our Children

A familiar scene. Tired mother returns from work. Picks up two-year-old from day-care center. Arrives home to find eight-year-old and ten-year-old locked in mortal combat. Separates them and screams at everyone. Goes in kitchen to start supper. Two-year-old whines. Fight continues in living room. She’s at the end of her rope.

Change of scene. Rushing to the phone, she dials 911-PARENTS, and within minutes a brightly colored Parentmobile turns into the driveway. Out jump five para-parents, equipment ready. Storybook in hand, one scoops up the two-year-old. Two more target the living room, where one peels off to help the ten-year-old with homework, and the other engages the eight year-old in a discussion of her favorite television shows. The fourth enters the kitchen, ready to fix dinner, while the fifth runs the bubble bath and leads the mother off for a back rub. Pure fantasy, but when parent advocate Patty Wipfler tells the story, her audiences clearly wish otherwise.

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Lima