October 7, 2014

Mom of the Year….HA!

I sooooo don't have it together when it comes to parenting.

I can guarantee that there will be many that don't agree with me on a few of my "great parenting" skills.   But this is how we roll in our house.

First, I feel that my kids need to be independent.  That means they entertain themselves.  I am not here to meet their every need.  If they need to wipe their butt, THEY need to wipe their butt!  If they are thirsty, they know where the cups and water are.  They are arguing, THEY need to work it out!  They need to wake up, dress themselves, groom themselves and feed themselves.  I feel like there has been a transition into hyper parenting in the American culture. I'm not sure where it came from, and I don't think it's healthy.  It creates a sense of entitlement in adolescents and adulthood.  I feel like my job as a mother is to teach my children to ultimately become successful, loving and giving adults.  By allowing them this independence, I feel that they are learning that if they want something to happen, THEY need to make it happen.  And I feel that that is healthy!

This brings me to another touchy subject.  Now, before you freak out, you must know that I live in Europe and on a military instillation.   However, if I lived back in the states, I would probably do the same in the right area.  I let my kids play outside without me!  Yes without me!  My children, ages 10 and 5, play outside…OUTSIDE!  There are guidelines (many) and a means of immediate communication if need be.  But they play outside WITHOUT me!  And they are fine!

My son walks to and from school alone.  On days that I cannot walk Marley all the way, Miles is responsible for his little sister.  It's teaching him to take care of her.  NO, he is not parenting her, but he is learning that being an older brother has responsibilities.  Just this morning, I dropped them both off at the curb of the school, and Miles was responsible for waiting in the Kindergarten line with Marley until a teacher shows up.  I say that with pride.  He is learning responsibility.  Does it always go smooth?  No. But we are trying.

I think it's ridiculous seeing capable children his age, 10 years old, walked by their parent daily the whole 4 blocks to school.  I understand not all children are the same.  Marley is NOT as capable as Miles was at his age.  She is a different child.  But a 10 year old is capable of walking to alone to a school that is 4 blocks away…lol!

Here in Europe, there are children that navigate the public trains as early as maybe 7 years old!  Now we aren't taking it that far, but I'm trying to make a point.

Miles, age 10, is also learning to cook.  He can prepare pancakes and grilled cheese.  I'm not afraid to have him use a knife, he has been trained how to use one.  He also is in charge of all the dishes in our home.  Marley, age 5,  is slowly joining the ranks of independence.  Since she requires a bit more guidance, she helps with peeling carrots and potatoes, and her daily task of making her bed and cleaning her room.

Our American culture of parenting has become so protective and all about hyper parenting and I feel like it's creating a generation of entitled , self absorbed children that expect Mom to clean up there rooms and make their beds when they are in high school.  I wonder if this same hyper parenting is keeping these young adults at home until they are 30?  That is ridiculous!

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