Saturday, April 9, 2011

Day 24 - 30 Days of Truth

Day 24 - Make a playlist to someone, and explain why you chose all the songs. (Just post the titles and artists and letter)

I didn't forget yesterday - I've just been struggling over what to do with this day's blog. The topic is dumb (I literally felt like a pre-teen again making a mix tape when I read it). For those of you who don't remember mix tapes - or tapes in general anymore - a mix tape was the geriatric version of burning a cd for someone with a bunch of songs that have meaning for you/them/or of you being together...etc. I thought about posting video from Youtube that I liked; such as Glee's renditions of the True Colors and Over the Rainbow....
And then I found these really awesome fanmade videos that I thought would be pretty awesome to post because well that's the Booth and Bones Shipper in me....And that was going to be the post - real fluffy and light - nothing specific or really motivational or mind blowing.

But then I got on Facebook yesterday...and well truth be told I struggled whether or not to address what I had read on there. The status really did irritate me and originally I thought that it was pms but then I kept thinking about it and I kept going back to it. I read the comments and I kept thinking about it. The post made me feel bad (and I had nothing to do with it) because I do occasionally swear and for those who know J & I know that with his profession it's something that's heard frequently. People in his profession are actually taught/trained not to be sensitive to it. I don't swear (intentionally) around children, and I certainly don't go yelling it at the top of my lungs for anyone in the world to hear. I wondered if I wanted to go there on my blog - did I want to post someone else's status because it amazed me? Because it irked me? Would people think I was too critical of the poster and tell me that my opinion is lacking because I don't have children of my own yet? Some may say that I can't really have formed an opinion on this situation because I don't "know" what I would do yet. Would it open up a can of angry worms? Then I decided - screw it - this is my blog, these are my opinions and well tough donkeys if you don't agree. Post a comment - let me know - give me some feedback. I'm always willing to listen to an opposing position. So without further adieu - here we go. I have copied the status from Facebook - but I have blocked out any and all identifying factors because it's the right thing to do (and even if it wasn't I'm not that cruel/mean/insensitive to go blasting people's names and faces all over the internet!) In order to read each section please click on the picture - there are three in total.

Now I agree that the children were acting inappropriately and should have been spoken to because I would have done the exact same thing. Children need to learn that there is an appropriate way to act/talk in public - especially if they think that they'll get away with it because their parents aren't there.

Now people who know me (and J for that matter) know that we're not overly religious. We believe in God, we believe in Heaven and Hell, we believe in Saints...etc. The things that bother me with this post have nothing to do with the praying for the schools or the commenter who suggested homeschooling as the answer to "protect" the children. I will not attack someones beliefs because I do not wish mine to be attacked. That's another issue with this world that people have no qualms about attacking another's beliefs because they feel theirs to be superior. I do not believe that mine are superior over this posters (or those who commented) just different.

 The things that bother me are that:
 #1) You're the adult. You shouldn't be afraid or bothered to approach a group of children that are doing something in appropriate to correct them - unless there is an adult that is responsible for supervising them. It's called discipline/correcting/behavior modification (whatever you want to label it). That's what responsible adults do -- among other things they teach them respect and responsibility for themselves as well as respect for others. That's what our teachers do in the classroom, daycare providers or babysitters do when you're not around because that's how children learn right from wrong. Why do you think schools ask for adult volunteers when they go on field trips? To help keep the children engaged and attentive.

I agree that there is such thing as overexposure that can lead children to think that some things in life are the norm when they aren't. But again, that's why there are adults that are supposed to be regulating access and allowing a child to have a childhood. Children should never be able to dictate and usurp authority from an adult.

#2) Use it as a teaching experience for children! Yours or otherwise. The poster admits that her children didn't even acknowledge this situation. Children are not going to be able to be protected from everything. They can't be put in a bubble, you can't keep them locked up at home forever (well at least you shouldn't because that's unhealthy). At some point, somewhere, at sometime in their lives they are going to encounter something that you don't like/value. Use these things are educational experiences. "Son, I didn't like those words that man was using. That kind of language is unacceptable in our family." "Daughter, did you see how that woman was dressed? That's not how someone who respects herself (and/or her body - depending on the age in my opinion) dresses." 

#3) Don't blow stuff out of proportion. Kids are going to be kids and at a certain age they rebel. They push buttons, they try to blur boundaries. They're trying to form their own identities, figure out who and what kind of person their going to be. It's part of growing up! Don't you remember your parents telling you not to look in that box, say that word, poke your sibling -- what did it make you want to do more than ever? You wanted to look into that box, you wanted to say that word, you wanted to poke your sibling. By blowing something way out of proportion and making it a bigger deal that it really it you just drive the urge to find out why....

Now that being said - I have to say that I have seen a serious decline in responsibility these days - both in parents and in children (and how can you expect children to be responsible (and take responsibility for their actions) if their parents aren't/don't?). There are some people that definitely shouldn't be parents because they can't, whether because they're too young, or they're constantly struggling to make ends meet and then there are some who - and this is sad to say - just repeating the cycle that they know. I've seen people who just seem like they don't care and get defensive when you tell them that their child is tearing down a display of cookies (because their little angel could never be doing that). People really do need to be held responsible for their actions and those of their children. And yes at some point in a child's life - and I believe this point to be before they are actually a recognized adult (which is usually around age 18 in most modern parts of the world) they can be held accountable for their actions. Most children are taught right from wrong from the start (No! Don't touch the stove - it's hot!.....You need to wait in line until it's your turn....We need to pay for this/that/things before we can use/play/eat it...Yes, that's a good way to share...etc) and they are plenty old enough (I would say by age 14 for most things) to understand the consequences of their actions. The line my parents used to use with all of their kids was that when we weren't with them - we never knew who knew them. And think about it - did you know everyone who knew your parents? And I (and I'm sure my siblings did too) knew that if my parents heard about anything that wasn't kosher with them if wouldn't be a good thing.

One thing that my parents gave me growing up was their trust. I had their trust unconditionally until I lost it and once I lost it there was no guarantee that I was ever going to get it back (Their words not mine). I cherished that trust because I was allowed to do a lot of things, such as going away to Canada for a week with my boyfriend (who is now my husband J) and his family one summer, going to see midnight showings of movies with my friends, not having a set curfew...etc, because my parents trusted me to make the right choices. I still had to ask for permissions for things but the answer was rarely no unless my parents had a good reason (and I respected that).

The only thing you can do is raise your child and have faith that what you said/did/taught them stuck. They're going to do things that you don't like and hell, they may even choose a profession that you don't agree with. They're going to be their own person and yes you can guide, shape, influence those choices but for the most part (and this when they are older) you can't make those choices for them.

I guess I'll get down off my box now...

Random Fact: The first couple to appear in bed together on national television: Fred and Wilma Flinstone.