Don’t Tell, Ask
I recently read an article about communications between generations. The upshot being that each succeeding generation is raised in a manner that reflects their parent generation’s beliefs in child rearing, not the manner in which they, the parent generation, was raised. Or, people raise their own children how they believe children should be raised, not how they were raised.
Myself, I was raised in a time when spanking your children was not only acceptable, it was damn near required, or expected. If your kids misbehaved, you spanked them. If you were a kid and you acted really badly, first you were warned, “I’m gonna clobber you!” And, you continued to act out, you got clobbered.
Today, if you hit your kid, you can get arrested – or worse, Child Protection Services will come and take your kid away from you.
Now during the time period when my wife and I raised our children, we are now grandparents, you could smack your kids, but it was frowned on. We were actually advised by the Child Rearing books of the time, to smack them on their bottoms. Never hit them on the head or anything, but a bottom slap was good for them. My wife and I never did that, we just yelled – which we are now told was wrong, or worse than hitting them.
It seems whatever parents do, once their children are grown, that was wrong. Young parents always seem to know more than their parents about raising kids. Is this true?
The article I mentioned at the start of this blog, says we now need to ask the younger generation to do things, we aren’t supposed to tell them to do things anymore. We have to ask them … ? What are the current parents teaching their children with this asking thing? Don’t spank, don’t swat, don’t yell, don’t tell – ask??? Who’re the parents in this scenario? Why not just give the kids some big knives? Don’t want to do something? Stab the person telling you to do it, or worse. I mean, after all, whose place is it to tell you to do anything?
You’re a young person with no fucking concept of how the world actually works, but you got rights! Right! Somehow, somewhere there has to be some kind of logic, some kind of middle ground. I can’t be certain, but right now, right here in this country, you could spank your kids and claim it was on religious grounds and that’d be totally fine. Well, as long it was Christian religious grounds. Maybe that’s a stretch, but it wouldn’t surprise me.
To me a big part of it is we now have too many people running around on the government’s dime who seem to be calling the shots. I admit to be a left-leaning voter, but sometimes I do believe these Protection Agencies get a bit out of line. Mostly we have too many people whose sole purpose for being employed is to remain employed and if they have to spend their days jumping in puddles to splash on other people, well … that bothers me.
How does a parent discipline a child when all they are permitted to do anymore is talk to the kid? A kid of an age where they simply have no context by which to understand many concepts of right or wrong behavior? How do you do that? How do you make it stick – get it into their heads and long-term memory that whacking the family dog with a stick is wrong – or similar actions. Or throwing their bowl of oatmeal on the floor because they want fruity-dooty-marshmellow-crisp-crunch. Stuff like that.
“Okay, you’re gonna get a time-out.” Give me a fucking break. After raising six children, I can say without a tiny doubt that does not work. It doesn’t work with adults, where do we get the idea it’s going to work with kids. A guy gets caught drunk and speeding through town. The law doesn’t say, “Okay, now you’re gonna get a time-out.” We have all seen it on TV – half the time the guy gets pulled out of the car and beat with a baton and then he gets hauled off to jail.
So the guy goes to jail, serves his time, goes to AA and stops drinking and joins a church choir and then his little kids throws a steaming hot bowl of oatmeal in his face. He’s supposed to say, “Oh oh oh! It’s a time-out for you young man.” Hmmm … Does that seem real to you?
So I am not justifying hitting the kid. But taking down the box of fruity-dooty-marshmellow-crisp-crunch and pouring it down the garbage disposal right in front of the kid, that might work. Then making sure that all the kid gets for breakfast for a week is oatmeal. Maybe lunch and dinner too. Or he goes hungry – but Child Protection would bust you for that too.
To wrap up this blog, the only thing I can come up with is to just not have children. I mean what else is there? Anything you do is gonna be wrong, even illegal, in the eyes of somebody and some of those people are gonna wreck your life if you do the wrong thing. Yup. Best to avoid the whole issue.
Thanks for reading.