By Marie Claire Dorking, Yahoo Life UK
Kate Hudson has inadvertently sparked a debate about how old is too old for children to be using a pushchair.
The "Truth Be Told" star, 43, shared a sweet snapshot of her pushing her daughter, Rani, three, in a stroller around New York.
"Someone’s becoming a little city gal," Hudson captured the mother/daughter selfie.
The "How To Lose A Guy in 10 Days" star looked summer-ready in jeans, a cream-coloured tank top and trendy socks and sandals (that's a whole other debate going on in the comments!).
Meanwhile Rani wore rainbow-print leggings dotted with stars, a pink tulle shirt and gold sandals, and seemed to be genuinely happy hanging out with her mom.
While the majority of fans commented how lovely it was to see the pair enjoying a sunny day in the city, describing the images as “adorable,” some social media users suggested Rani was too big to be pushed in a stroller.
"Is she not a little too big for a stroller?" one user posed.
"Can't she walk?" another asked.
"She looks too big for a stroller," another user commented.
But others stepped in to defend Hudson, who is also mum to Ryder Robinson, 18 (with Chris Robinson) and Bingham Hawn Bellamy, 10 (with Matt Bellamy).
"I kept ours as long as I could," one parent commented. "Their little legs get tired."
"Safety first! Never too big if you're in a city," another agreed.
"She's 3! They have little legs and can only walk so far. Big days out in crowds and a stroller makes life 100% easier & safer. My 3 yr old gives up after 500m and wants to be carried."
"She’s only three," another fan defended. "Strollers these days are made for young kids as well and can hold up to sixty five pounds. Get a life and focus on your own."
Other fans had pre-empted the judgy comments from the "stroller police."
"I knew, immediately, that some people would comment on the stroller," one user wrote. "Strollers/ pushchairs are invaluable in a city, especially if it’s a hot day. @katehudson and any mother can tell you is that you do what ever suits your child and you. You do whatever makes your lives easier. She’s a loving mother of three for crying out loud; she knows what she’s doing."
"Hey stroller/pushchair police. Not your kid, not your day out, not any of your business. Jog on," one fan commented.
How old is too old for a pushchair?
The topic of quitting the buggy has been a subject of debate for many years and it will likely continue to be so.
But there are no set guidelines as to when your child should be stroller-free, therefore, as with many childhood milestones it comes down to being the decision of the parents, based on personal knowledge of their own child and their individual needs.
“All children are different, so the time each one will stop using a pushchair is different too," explains Cathy Ranson, editor at ChannelMum.com.
"Some little ones walk earlier and are desperate to be on their own two feet, while others take a little longer."
Ranson believes three certainly isn’t too late to be using one.
"There are lots of reasons why a child that age may not want to walk everywhere," she continues. "Perhaps they were born prematurely, have a muscular condition or hypermobility – or maybe they are just tired!"
Therefore, there really is no reason to judge.
“Just like talking, eating solids, coming out of nappies and every other milestone, your child will get there at the time which is right for them, so ignore any cruel comments and concentrate on supporting your own family.”
Azeeta Nielsen, doula and NCT teacher, agrees the decision about whether to give up a buggy should fall to the individual family.
"Some children resist the pushchair early on and want more independence from walking or using scooters to get around," she says. "Whereas others may want a little longer and feel secure in a pushchair.
"As long as there is a healthy balance between movement and sitting, it is not a debatable topic but an individual choice for each family."
Nielsen says parents living in cities may particularly find pushchairs helpful for providing a safe mode of transport for children when getting around busy roads and streets.
"Children will naturally grow out of a stroller the bigger they get, the stronger they get and the more independent they become and, as mentioned, this will be different for everyone."
Some pushchairs do have weight restrictions, however, so it is worth checking out the manufacturing information for your specific stroller to know its maximum weight.
In the meantime, let's cut Hudson and all the other parents some slack.
Maybe Rani was tired after a long day, maybe her mom was worried she might run off into a busy road, or maybe she's just using the pushchair as an extra means to stay fit. Whatever the reason, let's just let parents decide when their children do and don't need to ride in a pushchair.
Now back to those socks and sandals...