Sunday, October 26, 2008

A new plan solves everything... right?

We have formulated a new plan regarding certain Pablo behaviors. I took a hard look at myself and saw that I am not parenting according to my philosophy. I am taking responsibility for not parenting him in the way that he needs, and I am changing. We made a chart and everything... if X behavior, then Y response. Because a plan fixes things, right? Right? Say yes now. I can wait.

Hmph. Just keep your chuckling down to a dull roar, ok?

Serously, it will help me to be more consistent and more present. It will help us as a parenting unit to respond as a team. And most of all, it will reaffirm our choice to be a family who believes in peaceful parenting (and who's interactions show it more of the time).

Recently an acquaintance without children commented about Pablo being "in charge" of our family and implied that we need to take charge. Such a sad, sad comment on how children and their needs are perceived. Why do people seem to see children as only acceptable if they are still and silent? What adult would suffer the expectations we put on children to be bossed around, ignored, etc? In seeing it from Pablo's side, I realized how much I had been falling into Nazi parenting mode in dealing with Pablo's regression. Believing in the need for power over rather than power with, creating force and fights where none need to be... nothing good in that.

How can our children grow to be who we want them to be if they cannot explore their feelings and impulses safely? Teaching repression and self-denial only creates screwed up adults. I am not interested in contributing to that, thanks, no matter how good it makes me look as a parent in the short term.

So even though I was hurt by the comment, I know it was made in ignorance. (I mean really, childless people have no concept of what it really means to be a parent 24-7.) I am grateful, though, because it challenged me to look at my parenting and get back to a space where I KNOW I am being the parent I want to be, regardless of Pablo's actions. Some people will not approve. But that's OK with me. Cause I have a chart. Made with love and compassion and understanding.

And it will help.

Because I won't be a power over parent, no matter how tempting it may be.


  1. Yes, I am an ignorant, straight, jewish, childess-by-choice, republican, doctor, only child, hispanic, mentally ill, sad, stupid, incapable of understanding or insight, rascist, overbearing, whatever other evil us vs. them category to list me as person. It isn't about power at all. It isn't about children who are seen an not heard. It is about raising children who will be able to function in the real world. In my comment I forgot the key word. Consistency. I might not have raised kids, but I have seen some people do a beautiful job of it--without violence, oppression, or intimidation. They do it with rules, consequences, and consistency. I guess I'm always "implying" things that I don't mean to imply. If you are happy with your drill sargeant son then fine.

  2. I thought about it. I realize what was so offensive about this post. You called me ignorant and sad because I do not share your beliefs and life experiences. That is what some friends called me when I chose Judaism. That is what my family said when I expressed my support for mixed race marriage. That is what devout conservatives said when I supported gay rights. Basically, by calling me ignorant and sad, you are using a language of hate to discount me as a person. You also discounted others you mean a lot more to you than do I. your children's God-Parents are childless, ignorant and sad.
    I understand that you do not want me in your community, but becareful who else you cast out.
    I am childless, but (pay attention) I am heavily involved in my nieces' and God-son's life AND I was a child myself. I have 33 years of experience to draw upon.
    Finally, the comment that started this war was that "your child runs your house" How is that any different than the comment that someone else posted on this blog that "He is my drill sergeant... screaming in your face until you break down"? Perhaps the truth hurts more when someone else says it. Ross, an outsider