What an emotionally draining week. Problems at school, problems at work, and oh the news this week has been diabolical.

First the Collie murder then the murder of little 8-year-old Sofia who was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Goes to the loo and is murdered. Just like that.

How many of us have sent our 8-year-olds off to the loo at a public shopping centre – why I did just last week – and she got lost, or lost me – on her way back. And I got the security guards to search for her. It could have been my girl. It doesn’t bear thinking about.

(Bizarrely enough the shopping centre I lost my girl in was Innaloo.)

What was interesting was that the information lady I spoke to advised against putting out a loudspeaker announcement in case that alerted would be n’er-do-wells that my angel was unattended and lost. Instead she advised security guards through their headsets to look out for her. We found her safe and sound a few minutes later.

Will I be sending her off to the loos by herself in future? Probably not.

But at the same time I don’t want to wrap my kids in cotton wool. They need to learn independence and win the self possession that comes with that experience. What kind of childhood is it when you don’t have any freedom?