A dad of quintuplets has sparked major backlash online after he posted a video on Instagram of himself taking his 5-year-old quintuplets on a walk using a leash. While the leashes were used for safety to assure none of the kids wandered off, many people slammed 31-year-old Jordan Driskell for his parenting decision, reminding him that his kids are “humans not dogs.”
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- Driskell thought he was having a normal day out. He took his five young kids — Zoey, Hollyn, Asher, Gavin, and Dakota — out for a walk using the leashes to make sure they all stayed together. He had no idea the internet would pick up on the video and go so nuts over it.
- His kids are known for running off. Because they’re only five, Driskell’s children don’t have a great sense of danger and like to “run off and explore” because of their “curiosity.” He told Today that he and his wife, Briana, use the leashes for their “peace of mind and sanity.” He said that the 5-seater stroller the couple owns is too cumbersome and the kids would rather walk places themselves. “It was just too bulky and ridiculous to take anywhere. The other thing is, they want to walk when we go somewhere crowded,” he explained. “A leash gives them the opportunity to do that – but we’re still in control. They love it.”
- Driskell insists his kids actually love the leashes. He said that they happily put them on and that wearing them “allows them to do fun stuff as a family without being stressed.” For anyone with multiple young children, this likely makes plenty of sense, right?
- An argument broke out in the comments section about Driskell’s decision. There were plenty of people who voiced their support for the leashes, with one person remarking: “With five kids you need that. Responsible parenting right there.” Another added: “I have nothing but respect for you, sir.” A third shared: “Considering my two-year-old tried to bolt into the street, yeah, we use leashes now too.” However, not everyone was a fan. “Are you gonna train them to pull a sleigh next? Which one has the red nose? Are any of them rescues?” one commenter quipped. Another advised: “Don’t have so many kids!” “Those kid are way too old to be walked on a leash like a damn dog,” someone else insisted.
- Professionals aren’t entirely sold on the idea of leashing children either. Benjamin Hoffman a pediatrician who chairs the injury prevention counsel at the American Academy of Pediatrics told Good Housekeeping that leashing children presents a serious risk of falling. “As a pediatrician, I’m not happy to see children leashed like pets. As the father of three, I am well aware of how quick, impulsive, and unpredictable kids can be,” he said. “But from an injury standpoint, I would worry about entanglement or choking – we know the risks of other loose cords, like on window blinds. I’ve personally witnessed parents pull back forcefully on a leash, resulting in a fall, often backward. I worry about injuries to head and limbs in that scenario. As a pediatrician, I would never recommend them. I would rather see a child in a stroller than on a leash.” However, another pediatrician named Deborah Gilboa disagrees, describing the leashes as “creative problem solving.” She continued: “The alternative would be just staying at home. It’s a great system for a parent with a neurodiverse child or a child who hasn’t nailed all their listening skills.”
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