Our oldest is six years old. He has never been left on his own in the house for more than thirty seconds. He is allowed to go to the house next door if he tells us about it ahead of time. How do you balance a kid’s need to assert their own identity, to grow and feel secure on their own, with parental fears about safety? I think the author is right, we’ve gone too far on the safety side. It takes a big leap of faith in your child (and yourself!) to start giving them the space that they need. Gaining independece also means they are growing up and that presents mixed feelings to a parent.