Meaningful Parenting- Do I want an obedient child? Part 2
|I am no puppet|
So what I am trying to achieve by this? It's simple. I am trying to raise my child just the way he would be as an adult. I am trying to teach him the same things in different ways according to his age. By asking him to comply now, how can I expect him not to comply and give in to peer pressure later? Am I teaching him to conform to what the powerful parents say? The peers turn out very powerful and influential during teenage years. Won’t he comply there to say yes to drugs or unsafe sexual practices? I am trying to teach him that it doesn't matter if someone is older, bigger, better or powerful, you always have the right to ask the questions... in school, in college, at the workplace, and in life. And why not. ‘In doubt, ask’ is what is preached. So why to discourage him now? He should know how to voice his thoughts, his feelings, his opinions. If his non-compliance, asking questions, asking uncomfortable questions is labeled disobedience and I try to enforce it with punishment, spanking, and verbal abuse, I am only setting him for failure later in life. What am I teaching him? He is a sensitive child who has grand emotions, but I am his first teacher to help him navigate through his emotions rather than label them as ...'gosh, he is sensitive.' So are all of us. It's just that the ‘WHAT”differs. What brings out the delicate side of us differs. I don't mind emotions; I don't mind sensitivity, I don't mind frustrations taken out in inappropriate ways. He didn't come out of the womb worldly wise. I am there with him. I will teach him appropriate ways to handle emotions and deal with people.
Above all, I don't want him to learn that people who are younger to him by age, people who are less powerful than him in strength, might, intellect or any other aspect, should be controlled and he can choose coercion to ensure they comply with him the way he wants. Parents have always done this because they are mightier than the tiny child who is weak and fragile. It’s great to have obedient children. It helps you a lot when you are racing through their toddler, preschool years along with the demands of your own life. It’s a blessing when you are running late for an appointment, and your child dashes straight in his car seat without question asked as to where he is going. But is that what you want once they become adults? Think for a moment- If you as a parent, out of your love for compliance and fear of disobedience, keep ignoring what your child says, do not make him and his thoughts and opinions heard, valued and respected, and make your voice 'THE RULE', I wonder what kind of obedience it is? Non-Compliance( the so-called disobedience) doesn’t compromise on manners, respect, and politeness.It’s an art to be learned by us. An obedient child to me is not a mindlessly complying ‘YES MAN.' And if he is, I am better off with a disobedient child.
To read Part 1 of the series- 'Do I want an obedient child?' please click on http://www.fourcloverlife.com/2017/04/meaningful-parenting-i-dont-want_8.html
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