Guilty of basically all of them (except the village part - as a former teacher, I often walked that slippery slope of trying to discipline kids without setting the parents off so I am very careful to respect how DD's teachers run their classroom). I am aware that I am far from the perfect parent, and DH and I have been working harder lately on setting stricter rules with DD and following through with them. The sippy cup thing is a huge downfall of mine, especially in the mornings. I just want to get the kids fed and dressed and going for the day, so I try to avoid drama. So if DD starts to get worked up over which cup/plate/bowl I give her, or the clothes she is going to wear, I often give in. But she definitely needs some stricter lessons in sharing and in compromising - which means I need to give in a lot less.
I read a similar article not too long ago about how kids used to be raised in comparison with modern parenting. I think that there are some things that have evolved for the better, but there are some basic fundamentals that do get neglected in a society that is all about instant gratification. The electronics thing is a funny one, because I know a lot of adults who can't make it through dinner without being on their phones. So how are we supposed to expect kids to sit through a meal without anything to entertain them? I am totally guilty of being attached to my phone, and I have been working very hard to put it down more often so my kids don't always see me carrying it around and checking it. The parents need to set the example (in this instance) for kids to learn patience and how to entertain themselves. I remember going to dinner with my sister and her kids, and a friend of hers met us with her daughter. The friend's daughter was right between my sister's oldest 2 kids in age, so they were excited to see her. She literally played on her Nintendo DS the ENTIRE meal! She didn't even put it down to eat. It was so sad to see because my niece and nephew were trying to talk to her and engage her, but she just sat there and played, and the mom made no attempt to have her put it away. Had the daughter been out with the mom and just the mom's friends and been the only kid, I might have excused it because it's no fun to be the only kid with a bunch of adults (she was about 9 at the time). But when there are other kids to talk to and interact with, there is absolutely no place for the game to be at the dinner table!
There is not much in that article I agree with
1. It isn't really a fear of our children, it's about choosing one's battles. To use Mira as an example, she has her own cup for drinking her milk. It IS a big deal to her to drink from it (it's smaller, and easier for her to manage without spilling). When someone that doesn't know gives her the milk in a different cup, and if she asks (nicely) to drink from hers, I absolutely accommodate her. Not because I'm afraid of her, but because it isn't a battle worth fighting, to me. I don't gain anything but a kid who gets upset, milk, that goes un-drunk, being late to school with a cranky kid who doesn't really want to work any more because she got upset over whatever power trip her parent is on. My choice is to put my foot down about things that matter, not over trivial stuff, and 'because I said so'. In the long run, it won't make any difference to anyone which cup she drank from.
2. I agree with setting heightened expectations. I agree with your child trying to meet or exceed those expectations. I disagree with considering it a failure when your 3 year old doesn't do a particularly great job with things that are somewhat beyond her age. Some things have to be caught, some things come easier for some kids than others, and there is no harm in letting your kids fail while they attempt to master those things that are hard for them. Mira is not a kind hearted, generous child. Self control is HARD for her. She is working on it. I expect she will be working on it when is is 40, but would hopefully have made progress by then.
3. I don't necessarily have a problem with other people chiding my child. That's as far as I will let them "correct" my child, because they don't know her. They don't know her. They don't know if she's acting up because she's hungry, or tired, or needs a nap, or something hurts, or if she is sick. I do. Just because I don't correct her to someone else's satisfaction right here and now does not mean that we don't talk about it, or that problems are going ignored. I cut her slack based on circumstances (what good does it do to punish a sick kid who isn't acting particularly well?), but we also talk a great deal, especially around bed time, about things that happened during the day, and what she needs to work on.
4. I think that parents need to teach kids basic manners. That includes not using electronic devices at say, dinner. I disagree that it is a "short cut" to soothe a toddler that might have fallen down and hurt themselves, or to have a baby that would be happy hanging out in a jumperoo, instead of screaming while they learn to "self-soothe" (AKA ignored). It is important for kids to learn patience. It is also important for kids to learn that you have their back, that you aren't going to arbitrarily subject them to angst on the basis of something they may not even be neurologically capable of doing.
5. I don't know what needs to be said about a "nanny" that thinks that a thirsty child shouldn't be given water. Maybe she never gets thirsty in the middle of the night, but I know I do, and no amount of being ignored is going to make that better. Sure, it shouldn't be a habit, but the kid isn't going to be nominated for 'Spoiled Brat of the Year' if the parent gave them a glass of water in the middle of the night because they are thirsty. It is important to teach your child the value of 'No'. It is equally important for the parent to not wield a 'No' because of whatever power trip that might be on.
Quite honestly, based on this article, I wouldn't hire this person to watch my child. She seems to think that kids are miniature adults, and should be ignored instead of having their basic needs (there isn't one more basic than thirst, or a hug when you're hurting), and that's just not my style of parenting.
Last edited by Suja; 07-08-2014 at 11:12 AM.
Nice article, thanks for sharing. This is just how I've always handled issues in my kids' behavior. I've seen the same with most other parents my age (30s).
I'm pretty much in line with Suja's responses.
I would go a bit further on the loss of the village, though. I think the difficulty with the village mentality is that we, as adults, do not have a village mentality. There are some things that are very important to me, that are not as important to others and vica versa so it makes this village parenting concept harder. There have been times when others have corrected my children's behavior for something that I don't find to be a problem and I was a little annoyed with it because I'm obviously not choosing to make that an issue in my house ... BUT, I flipped it around and thought that perhaps if others have an issue with it I should revisit it. Didn't really change my parenting, but I did realize that once my kids are "out in the world" (which for me is Kindergarten for my 5.5 year old next month) he will be exposed to the behavior expectations of LOTS of other people and should learn how to take appropriate direction from other adults. I can always discuss with my child that our family doesn't particularly care if he picks his nose, but obviously his teacher does and he should respect the teacher's wishes and authority. I don't think 5/6 is too young to learn that there are things you do in private and things you do in public.
I think there is a fine art to respecting other's feelings/views on topics and teaching your children to do the same, even if they aren't a priority for your family. I think this is where a lot of parents fail with that whole treating your kid like your friend ... In one of those instances I could choose to get all pissy about it and go off like "That's a stupid thing to get upset about, you just pick your nose whenever you need to pick your nose baby." That's the response you'd give a peer, not a child. For a child it would be better to say "Nose picking isn't a big issue in our family, but it sounds like it's a big issue in Teacher X's classroom, so you should learn to only pick your nose at home and in private places like in the bathroom." So it acknowledges why it's not a big deal at home but it is at school and should be respected. It's hard to learn those boundaries, but they are SOOOOO important.
I do think its in a balancing act too. I do agree with the nanny on some of these things. I don't believe a children has to be cuddled so to speak every single time they bump their rear on the playground it depends on their age and level of which they are hurt. If Sophia or Cody for instance trips on the grass or soft surface I will ask "Hey are you OK"? Typically they will brush off their legs and be like "Yeah I'm fine". If they are crying and in obvious distress of course I am going to give them a hug and respect their feelings and usually they will go back out there and play without me saying anything. The cup thing I just set out a cup for dinner time or give them one to have around the house with water. My kids haven't made a big fuss about which cup they have. I usually give them a different one and rotate them each day so they can't be hung up on it. I don't find anything wrong with saying "Just use what I gave you". From the time both kids were about 1 and even though they couldn't talk to address the manners issue I have taught them what I feel like is the best example. Since birth I've always modeled "please" and "thank you" to James and James thanks me even if its something little so they heard it as infants. At age 1-1.5 I taught them both even if they couldn't say "please" and "thank you" the signs for "please" and "thank you. I don't feel like I am asking very much. If they hurt someone even if its on accident they do say they are "sorry". I didn't always have the best role models for my mother so I looked towards my father as a role model for me. I remember him teaching us these things and honestly, its really stuck with me. Its been a habit stuck into my brain so I've taught the habit to my children. Like the nanny I have a very hard time believing that this simple things can be taught. Some things I am more flexible on are: food and potty training to a point. I did sort of have to push Cody a bit but, he wanted to go to an actually Pre-School so... bad and the schools around here simply do not accommodate for diapering after age 2 which is ludicrous. Some preschools start at age 2.5. He was 3 when he wanted to go but, it wasn't until he was 4 when he finally was able to go. The dinner thing we've had both TV in our kitchen via Netflix on the computer and now that we have moved things around we do not. My kids eat better without TV when they watch TV they don't want to eat now, that's not the same for every child. The village thing- I do not have much support other than DH when I do make choices like educational choices I was recently heavily criticized however, I am praise a lot for my kid's behavior and I hate to say its all because of James and I nobody else. We don't have much help besides his parents and even they are amazed of "wow your kids have manners, not like so and so's kids". I guess my strict ways are doing something right. . I think we've lost our "village" because we (society) don't want to be judged we don't want to hear other's opinions. I was at my Grandparent's house on my dad's side and there was a couple of times my grandma asked the kids not to do something, it wasn't anything major and it didn't bother me. She was faster at this time than I to see everything. I appreciate her for helping. Now, I had a situation of James telling his cousin's child "I don't want to have to smack a bottom" which he wouldn't have spanked other person's child for real. His cousin was like "Welp, hear that O- I would enjoy every minute of your butt being spanked". We only, only, only, spank when our children as a very last restore and James should NOT have even said anything but, we don't want to. Its not an enjoyable experience obviously however, James' cousin was flat out tired of her son being a brat and she wanted someone else in charge. I don't want to be that someone else and James doesn't either he was so tired of her not being the parent because we we at their home. We feel like they need to take control of their children at their home. The thirty / basic need thing is iffy and I say that because its a 5-10 minute walk to the next fountain yes, they can wait. I do allow however, cups of water in their rooms at night. My son is almost 6 he can get out of bed on his own to put up his cup of water off of his shelve and put it back. He has the ability to walk to the bathroom to pee later in the night and go back to bed when he is done he doesn't need me for getting an extra cup. I keep a sippy cup in Sophia's crib for that too with water only. It also doesn't hurt the kids really older than 5 to help themselves on a small scale. We live in a 3 bedroom 1 story has that has 1050 sq feet its not like we live in 3 story mansion where the water is so... far away too. Its also very much common sense to bring some stinking water to the zoo. We haven't totally lost the village in terms of schooling. My teachers at least in school were afraid to tell parents if their child is not acting right and still don't have a problem saying so. I think its depends on where you live too. The cry it out thing too varies greatly. A six month year old baby fussing for 5-10 minutes isn't a big deal but while doing something very important like calling an insurance place or putting the food on the table, using the bathroom, a brand new NB fussing is much, much, different. I wouldn't let purposefully a NB cry it out.
Last edited by mom2CodySophia0811; 07-08-2014 at 01:10 PM.
I also disagree with most of it. I honestly can't stand any article that talks about "today's parenting" as being the downfall of the world. As if the adults making decisions today are so perfect because of some awesome parenting of yesteryear? I think I'd like to raise mine completely differently as a matter of fact. Maybe they can pioneers of change. We are moving forward. I see selfish impatient arseholes everywhere. So it's certainly not some up and coming thing.
I will always parent my children with compassion and respect. You know what? I like a certain coffee mug in the morning. I will request it if someone else is getting my coffee. When I'm hungry I eat. When I'm thirsty I drink. I'll provide that same freedom to my children until they are old enough to do it themselves. I try to respond to my children in the same manner I would respond to my friend if she was visiting my home. Children don't learn patience by being made to wait. They learn patience from caregivers who are patient.
And finally, I sent my kids into the village. The village drove them in her car without car seats, gave them blowpops for being quiet all day in the classroom, told them to shut up on the bus. No thanks, village!
This nanny wouldn't last a day in my house.
I mostly agree with Suja & Bridget.
I like my drinks in certain cups too and as an adult i have the freedom to choose the cup I want. If DH pours me a drink in a different one I can change it myself. If I ask him to change it and he refuses I can still choose to do it myself. Kids can't and that is something that I think these "what all you parents are doing wrong" articles are overlooking. They are applying a lot of older child mentality to younger kids. As my kids get older I can see how they mature and can do things for themselves and when I am not the one doing everything for them they like to do things in their own way....like we all do. I like a certain blanket and pillow, I eat when hungry, I like to use a certain bowl for pasta, etc. There really is nothing wrong with that. Now with 3 kids I know that I can not always accommodate what they need and that is where exercising their patience has to set in. And there are times that if DD2 wants the princess cup and there is not one clean I will not clean one if I am not able to and she will have to accept the other cup. But I usually try to accommodate her. She is close to the age where if I say, "I you really want the princess cup please wash it yourself and change the cup" then she can choose if she wants to. I recently moved a lot of their cups and bowls to a cabinet that they can reach and we are trying to teach them to serve themselves now. They can't know unless we SHOW them .
The electronics thing does bother me and like PP mentioned my kids have been disappointed when their cousins have had their faces glued to ipads the entire time they were together instead of playing with them. My kids sometimes just watch the game over their shoulder It makes me sad. These same kids have a very hard time interacting properly with other kids so I wonder if it's a chicken/egg thing.....do they naturally have social issues so the electronics help or do they not know how to interact because of their reliance on electronics? All I know is that I make a huge effort to make sure my children know how to behave in public, in restaurants and we almost never bring electronics to restaurants. Doctor's appts are another story. I don't see much wrong with that....I bring my own kindle to the doctor. That is not a place where you are supposed to be "social" so I think different rules apply.
As far as being coddled when hurt, I think EVERYONE children and adults deserve attention and sympathy when sad or injured.
I do agree the village is gone but I don't think it would be such a big deal if more people actually took responsibility for their own children and paid attention to what they were doing when out. The village doesn't mean, "sit and pretend you are childless and let other people deal with your kids for an entire BBQ". It means "if I see your kid while I am watching mine I will keep an eye on your kid too" but someone else's child should not be anyone else's responsibility but theirs.
ETA: I find that a lot of these 'modern day parenting sucks' articles promote disrespectful attitudes toward children, like they are lesser beings. The most important thing for me is that my children feel like they matter - their wants, needs, feelings, etc. As Bridget mentioned, you would treat a guest in your home that way, why not your own child?
Last edited by macksmom; 07-08-2014 at 05:12 PM.
I discount any article I read where one mother (or nanny?) is making broad general statements about how other parents are doing everything wrong. All children are different. Family cultures vary. There is no one right way or all encompassing wrong way to raise a child. These women that send out these blog pieces, or whatever, or just perpetuating the judgemental crap that I hope my kids never catch on to. It's not nice. It's not supportive. It's based on nothing but her opinion! Blech.
I know plenty of rude, selfish and impatient adults. Some of them even older, supposedly raised in the good ol' days of parenting. like my mother I know somewhat how she was raised, and she wasnt entitled, she was from that seen (or maybe not even seen) but not heard generation, which it sounds like this nanny is urging us to go back to. Everything done on the parents terms without any considerations for the child.
like suja said, its not a fear of the child, its picking the battles wisely. if my 2yr old wants a pink cup instead of blue, it would take me about 15 extra seconds to get a new cup and put the other in the dw. If i refuse it might be 15mins (or longer now, as she's having a hard time calming down and recovering from being upset lately).
I do agree kids need structure and boundaries, to learn "no" and patience and how to handle disappointment. I believe you can do that without treating children like they are lesser beings. Im sure im not doing perfectly (some days i hardly feel like im adequate) but i am doing what i feel is best for my family.
Someone said on FB today, or maybe yesterday "I've seen the village, and i dont want it raising my child". i agree!
I read this article a few times going back to it I don't see how this article is talking about treating a child less than a human. . Its old fashioned in some ways but, not outright mean.
I agree with Suja, totally. I read this article and , especially because this nanny is not actually a parent, from what I understand.
The only thing I remotely resonated with was a loss of the village, but I envision the village very differently than the author of the article does.
I feel the same way with all "Kids these days" or "parents these days" articles. We live in vastly different times than we or our parents were raised in. We are in uncharted territory. We know more about child development and have more brain-altering technology around us than ever. And we don't live near our extended families anymore, generally, which I think is HUGE. We are flying without a safety net, and I think we should all give each other lots of slack and support.
Last edited by mom2CodySophia0811; 07-08-2014 at 07:22 PM.
Last edited by mom2CodySophia0811; 07-08-2014 at 07:58 PM.
No one said that you did. The woman who wrote the article gave off a very clear "I don't take sh!t from my kids" vibe. Like it's her against them.
I think it's fine for her to have a rule that the kids take the cup she gives them if she feels that is an important lesson for them. We all make those decisions for own family every day. What is NOT fine, however (with me anyway) is to attack other moms for doing things differently and make ludicrous claims as to how their children are going to be entitled brats. That is shallow and plain ignorant of her. There are too many factors, more than we can conceive, that determine how a person will "turn out". Much we don't even control.
I don't recall anyone saying "less than human". In my response I mentioned "lesser beings" in which I meant "treating them like they matter less, their wants/needs matter less, like they are property, without respect". In my opinion, when a person disregards someone's feelings it's disrespectful. Disregarding a child's desire to use a green cup instead of a red one just because 'you are the parent and you decide which cup they drink out of' is disrespectful. If you just simply cannot accommodate that request at that time it's understandable, but just because you don't feel like it or the child needs to deal or needs to learn that you are boss (general you not anyone specific) is not necessary IMO. That is what I felt like this nanny was implying in this piece.
FWIW I have 2 kids who can express desires for certain things (DD3 isn't really there yet). DD1 could not care less what cup she drinks from. DD2 TOTALLY does. So really it has little to do with how I parent and more personality which is all the more reason I try to accommodate her when possible. For some reason it's very important to her. It's not an arena where I need to show her that I have power over her and all her desires. But what is more upsetting about the attitude the nanny has is that I feel she does not look at the child as someone who has wants/needs/desires that are valid. I highly doubt any of us are AFRAID to say no to our kids. We can predict what response no will get and choose to fight that battle or not. I do it every.single.day with DD3 who is the only one of my kids who has experienced the "terrible twos" phase. The minute I say no to her I get a whole production. I know it will happen. If I can avoid it I will but sometimes it has to happen and I save that for extreme cases like safety and other vital matters. A cup? Well no I am not going through all that over a cup (just an example, she doesn't currently care). I can assure you she will not spend her life being a demanding crazy lady. She has her whole life to learn these lessons and it's better received on a more mature brain in my experience.
I don't know, man. Sometimes I'm scared of my 3 year old!