The Bus Freaks Me Out

Do you guys put your kids on the bus? There’s a crazy pick up line at school, so I put my daughter on the bus last year. But instead of having her ride to our neighborhood, I had her ride to my friend’s neighborhood and I picked her up there. I’m sure that’s probably against some rules, but my friend’s son was the only other kid at the stop, and no one cared.

I just felt better about her having a friend on the bus and also it was just a 5-minute ride, the second stop. Towards the end of last year our friends moved and I continued to stay the course for fear changing it mid year might mean my daughter would forget and not be where she was supposed to be.

So now it’s a new school year and if she rides to our neighborhood, it’s a 16 minute ride. She’s 6, almost 7, and totally wants to ride the bus. But I don’t want her to be exposed to older elementary school kids, unsupervised every day for all that time. If I pick her up at school, she’s in the gym with a bunch of kids for potentially an hour, but at least that’s supervised. And while she waits that hour, I wait that hour in line with Charlie, burning gas and time. Not that I have anywhere to be, but this is just one of those lesser of evils kind of situations.

I could still pick her up at that other bus stop, but my friend is no longer there. And while I have plenty of friends in that neighborhood I could call in a jam, the thought of me not being able to get there and her  being alone in another neighborhood just makes me sick to my stomach.

As of right now I have her coming to our neighborhood tomorrow, but I am tempted to send her with a note to change it and just do the pick up line.

Thoughts? Perspectives?


Thanks, I read everyone’s comments and decided to go with the pick up line yesterday. And it SUCKED!  I sat in the pick up line at least 30 minutes after seeing the five-minute bus go by. So, by the time I got my daughter, she was really irritated.

She was frustrated, and I was frustrated. In the end, the best course of action for the time being is, in fact, the short bus ride (not the short bus). I am planning to do that for a while until people get established in carpools and the pick up line calms down. Then I will likely switch over to the pick-up line. So, I am taking your advice, just not yet. Thanks for your input, Girls!


11 Responses to The Bus Freaks Me Out

  1. Brooke August 14, 2011 at 9:27 pm #


    On a positive note, she currently likes the riding the bus & that is definitely a good sign! :)
    However, from my perspective (elem. school counselor – 7 yrs.), the bus environment is prone to bullying and a variety of other problems. The obvious reason being the lack of supervision on the bus, in addition to the lack of training provided to bus drivers on how to handle behavior & bullying issues on the bus.

    • Heather August 16, 2011 at 9:48 pm #

      Thanks, Brooke. That’s good information to have. The lack of supervision really makes me nervous. One good thing, the ride is actually really short and the kids all come from nice families. It’s not like the bus goes on to a rough neighborhood. Does that make a difference…or not so much?

  2. Jennifer August 14, 2011 at 11:15 pm #

    Wish I had words of wisdom and experience for you, but all I can say is that the bus freaks me out too. Hurray for Molly that she enjoys it, but she can get those kicks on the occasional school field trip. To me, it seems there is just too much opportunity for the bad stuff to happen on the bus. As an alternative to the line-waiting, could you just park a couple of blocks away and walk over to pick her up?

    • Heather August 16, 2011 at 9:45 pm #

      Well, we talked on the phone, so you know what happened. Hope all goes well with the karate kid.

  3. Sarah August 15, 2011 at 9:48 am #

    Sounds like your mama-gut is telling you to avoid the bus. Mine has told me the same thing. Our guts agree. And you should go with your gut. I also hate the carpool line, but that’s what a smart phone and the internet is for, right? or knitting, or reading a book…

    • Heather August 16, 2011 at 9:44 pm #

      God Bless the smart phone. Good point, Sarah. I can always entertain myself with that. I actually took a bunch of paperwork from the house yesterday and worked on it. So the time was productive, but I am not a patient individual (unfortunately for my kids, and probably everyone else in my life).

  4. ravyn August 15, 2011 at 2:46 pm #

    Trust your instincts. It sounds to me like the gym is not such a bad thing for an hour. There is plenty of time for her to ride the bus as she gets older. In a year or so she will be more able to tell where she is if she should get off at the wrong stop and she will be more able to handle the older kids unsupervised.

    • Heather August 16, 2011 at 9:36 pm #

      I was TOTALLY thinking about this issue last night and thinking about you and your life in Palestine and thinking how lame and trivial this must sound to you. Looking forward to the feature. Still working on it. Will email you and give you a heads up when I have a run date. Talk to you soon!

  5. Kathy Alred August 15, 2011 at 9:19 pm #

    Well, I was waiting to see what other comments you had before I gave you my take. After working in a school system for 20 years I would not put my child on a bus unless it was absolutely necessary and they were old enough to speak up for themselves. They learn too much of the wrong “stuff”. I always dread the 3:00 phone calls to the office from parents with complaints of what happened to their child on the bus going home. The driver has all that they can handle just driving and with no other adult riding it is a perfect time for misbehaving.

    • Heather August 16, 2011 at 9:33 pm #

      Thanks so much for your feedback. I am so lucky to have readers in the know.


  1. Milkshakes, Losers and Idiots | - August 26, 2011

    [...] Cue the six-year-old’s crying fit. My sweet, calm little girl who pretty much always keeps her cool had a nuclear meltdown. During her fit she yelled the word, “LOSER!”  She called me a loser! I didn’t even know she knew that word. She said she heard it on the bus. [...]

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