Are you a Cotton Wool mum?

As your kids start to get bigger, one of the challenges you face as a parent is how much freedom to give them. Do you let them walk to school/the shops on their own, for example, or do you insist on trailing behind them everywhere they go? And of course the summer holidays pose their own set of freedom issues, as your children may want to start exploring their environment with their friends.

I'm definitely a Cotton Wool mum – although I do recognise you have to give some freedom if your children are to learn independence. But other mums are much more relaxed – I often see kids as young as five playing on the green near our home with their older brothers and sisters, not much older than 12, and sometimes until dusk. It's not something I'd feel comfortable with.

I'd love to know your views – do leave your comments below. And for tips on how to keep your kids safe, both inside and outside the home, visit Kidscape and Child Alert.

written by Liz Jarvis