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Do you often cringe at other's parenting?

post #1 of 111
Thread Starter 
Esp. when you overhear them talking to or disciplining their kids?

I don't say anything but it often makes me cringe when I hear the things some parents say to their little kids.

For instance, the other day a mom was trying to get her daughter's hair brushed and said "People will laugh at you if you don't let me brush your hair!"

I just find it so sad when I hear things like that.
post #2 of 111
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paeta16 View Post
Esp. when you overhear them talking to or disciplining their kids?

I don't say anything but it often makes me cringe when I hear the things some parents say to their little kids.

For instance, the other day a mom was trying to get her daughter's hair brushed and said "People will laugh at you if you don't let me brush your hair!"

I just find it so sad when I hear things like that.
I've had my less than stellar parenting moments myself, so, no, I don't cringe when I hear a parent say things I disagree with. No doubt if that same parent could overhear me 24/7 she would hear stuff that would make her want to cringe too.
post #3 of 111
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paeta16 View Post
Esp. when you overhear them talking to or disciplining their kids?

I don't say anything but it often makes me cringe when I hear the things some parents say to their little kids.
Yes, I cringe sometimes, and sometimes I want to cry and my heart breaks when I hear children being belittled or spanked. I sadly admit also, though, that I cringe at my *own* past parenting and even current parenting sometimes, too. I try not to think of myself as any better than any other parent because we all make mistakes and have to learn and grow. My hope is that when we know better we do better.
post #4 of 111
Sort of. I guess I will echo the PP in a way.

The other day I saw an adult demanding that a child with autism look her in the face while talking. The adult's voice was very gentle and it seemed very likely that she was doing something she believed to be correct and beneficial.

Now, I believe she is mistaken and to me it seemed that the child was increasingly distant and discouraged as the conversation progressed...but I know I can't really know. The part of me that is presumptuous enough to judge the situation feels sorrow for both parties. Then I go on to recall times that I've made demands of children without truly understanding what made them tick. I wonder how many mistakes I've made. When I see something that I view as unfortunate, my own errors--past and present--leap to the forefront of my mind. This is no decision of mine... I can't really help it. But I'm grateful for these thoughts. I see them as a kind of intellectual growing pain. I know I'm becoming a new person all the time... and hopefully so is everybody else.

I guess what I feel, more than sadness, is wistfulness. I wish we could all know what's best and then be free to make clear decisions based on that knowledge.

I don't feel hopeless about it though. I think we are living in an amazing time of change, and so many more people are trying to parent their children with authenticity and respect than even a generation or two ago. Our collective view of how to raise children is evolving quickly--and I believe it is improving.
post #5 of 111
Oh, my God! This is so me also, but I'm the opposite of you in one aspect. My trouble is that I can't keep my mouth shut. I just tell them like it is because I feel like if I don't say something, I've just allowed an unjust act to continue, and i feel like I'm less than human when I allow an injustice to go on, such as allowing a parent to punk their child and take advantage because the child is too small or too scared to stand up to them. I don't mind my own business, at all.

How i intervene deeply depends on the situation. Sometimes, if it is not too bad, I'll ask the parent if i can help them in any way. There ave been times when a mom is sceaming at a toddler to shut the f--- up, I've said, "My, i see things are going rough right now." Then, I will offer the child a drink or toy--I carry a bag of trick to use at any time to calm upset children on the bus or wherever because some parents are not considerate of them and drag them all over the place at their leisure and without giving them naps and stuff--and i'll give it to the child. Then, I'll talk to the parent about how they feel and what I'd do and tell them I enjoy talking to them. If I see a parent beating the snot out of a child, i'll say, "Stop! What are you doing?! JCool it! You are going to kill the kid! Calm down!" And this is only when it gets really bad. Sometimes, I've called the police.

I feel that it is my job to intervene because I do not like emotional or physical abuse. I don't like parents hitting their kids, yelling at them, or putting them down or controling/forcing them to eat and do things they do not want to. And when they try to make kids fit a mold in society, such as telling boys to shut up, toughen up, and stop that darn crying, I get hot with anger. Boys can cry like anyone else. And they wonder why so many men become abusers.

I also dislike babywise people who insist on being rigid with their babes, such as a strict regimented feeding schedule and strict baby training as if to say they were on the same level as the dogs I have here and can do things when commanded. Please don't get me started on people's parenting. I can go on for hours, even days and years.

For awhile, i thought I was alone here on this forum. I thought I was the crazy one. But, i feel good that others are in the same boat. I feel better. Thanks for posting this topic. Thanks so much. I'm not alone anymore.
post #6 of 111
I try not to judge. I'm a completely different parent now than I was with my oldest child, and I continue to re-evaluate my parenting and learn new and more effective ways of handling various parenting situations.

We're all learning - and sadly, we're all stuck with on the job training as we figure things out!
post #7 of 111
We all have our moments, so no, I seldom cringe. I mentally cringe when I see parents smack a child, or threaten or belittle them. I also cringe when I see super permisive parenting, though I have probably had those moment myself, too.
post #8 of 111
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paeta16 View Post
For instance, the other day a mom was trying to get her daughter's hair brushed and said "People will laugh at you if you don't let me brush your hair!"

I just find it so sad when I hear things like that.
Why? I mean... this example in particular... maybe it was a bit harshly phrased, but I think its appropriate to let your child know that other people may recognize that their hair isn't brushed. I wouldn't say "people will laugh at you", but I have said, as one of the reasons to brush your hair (along with the fact that brushing will keep your hair healthy & comfortable), is that it looks nice and helps to present a good impression.

I don't cringe at others' parenting unless its something really egregious. It's just too presumptious to do otherwise, IMO.
post #9 of 111
Quote:
Originally Posted by choli View Post
I've had my less than stellar parenting moments myself, so, no, I don't cringe when I hear a parent say things I disagree with. No doubt if that same parent could overhear me 24/7 she would hear stuff that would make her want to cringe too.
Exactly.
post #10 of 111
Not often. I'm usually too busy cringing at my own parenting to worry about the way others do things.
post #11 of 111
I usually only cringe when I see people hitting their kids in public. But today, I cringed at something far less than that. This mom and her kid (maybe 10 years old?) were in a waiting room and the mom kept yelling at her kid to do his homework. He said he couldn't figure it out and needed help so the mom told him "just do it...make something up". So the kid did and the mom said "that answer is wrong. Fix it". The kid asked why it was wrong and the mom said "it just is. Now fix it" and the kid started crying that he couldn't figure out the right answer. She just kept telling him to do it, and never helped him. I cringed at that because the poor kid just wanted help.
post #12 of 111
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deer Hunter View Post
There ave been times when a mom is sceaming at a toddler to shut the f--- up, I've said, "My, i see things are going rough right now." Then, I will offer the child a drink or toy--I carry a bag of trick to use at any time to calm upset children on the bus or wherever because some parents are not considerate of them and drag them all over the place at their leisure and without giving them naps and stuff--and i'll give it to the child.
PLEASE tell me you ask the parent before offering something. What if the child is allergic? Or even if what you offer is contrary to what the parents want? How would many of us feel if some random stranger offered our children things we wouldn't consider letting them eat? I don't have any problem with intervening to stop a child being mistreated, but at the point where you touch a child or offer them something, I think that crosses the line.
post #13 of 111
Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post
Not often. I'm usually too busy cringing at my own parenting to worry about the way others do things.
same here.
post #14 of 111
i cringe at abuse (physical and emotional) and threats of abuse. I think these things should resignate negatively with us.
post #15 of 111
I do, but then again, I cringed at some of the things I said to my kids earlier tonight while trying to get their jammies on, so I try to keep some perspective about the whole thing.
post #16 of 111
i do.

the mom across the street often tells her children to, "shut the f up before i f you up".

every time she does this i cringe. they also spank their 1 yo and tell the 5 yo a lot of damaging stuff.

i think it's pretty bad and i feel terrible for the kids. i still applaud the fact that she brushes their teeth twice a day and all 4 kids are always in clean clothes and i try to remember the times i've gotten frustrated with my own and yelled.

i'm not perfect by any means but when i hear hurtful mean things directed at children it hurts.
post #17 of 111
I cringe sometimes when I hear something that reminds me of myself and I realize what I sound like. I very rarely hear things that make me cringe because they are totally awful, thank goodness.
post #18 of 111
Quote:
Originally Posted by lumom View Post
Yes, I cringe sometimes, and sometimes I want to cry and my heart breaks when I hear children being belittled or spanked. I sadly admit also, though, that I cringe at my *own* past parenting and even current parenting sometimes, too. I try not to think of myself as any better than any other parent because we all make mistakes and have to learn and grow. My hope is that when we know better we do better.
This is me as well. I am far from perfect, but of course I cringe at things I disagree with - such as spanking and belittling. I know a woman who often calls her son 'stupid' and her daughter a 'horrible little girl'. I am also big on emotion, so when I hear a baby or child crying and being ignored and called 'naughty and manipulative' because of it - it breaks my heart. There are other things too of course...like putting a 4 month old in a forward facing car seat and two year olds in boosters...but hey... I keep my judgments in my head.

I dont have the book as I have lent it out, but somewhere at the begining of 'Unconditional Parenting' - Kohn says something like: If you go to the playground and have a good listen, its just depressing. Very true.

Of course, I have to remember that I was in the dark as well at one point and still have my moments - I am raising myself as well (thank God for Aldort!)... But what really takes the biscuit is having a friend interested and willing to read such books like Kohn and Aldort - borrowing them from you and then just reporting back to you that they are just stupid. Knowing better and doing better just went out the window. Maybe they were not coninvinced ...I am still confused though how anyone can read those such books and continue to spank/belittle/etc...
post #19 of 111
I do cringe but as others have said often at my own parenting too - when I've had really hard days I've said things and immediately wished I could take it back.

Even when something makes me cringe I try very hard not to judge, because I dont know what that child is like all the time, or whats been going on. I have a good friend with a daughter with a lot of issues. We took the children out for the day and her DD does this high pitched scream when she's unhappy or even excited as she's unable to talk yet. She was doing it most of the day, and then was really bad in the train on the way home. My friend was calm, gentle and understanding throughout the day. She kept it together on the train with everyone staring and shaking their heads. Finally when we got off the train she snapped and said "Would you just shut up!?" Her face immediately went bright red and I could see she was near to tears. NO way would I judge her as she has to handle that day in day out with no support as she's a single mum and she does a better job than I could.

Oh and if I was having a difficult day with my DS and he was in the middle of a meltdown in the supermarket and I was trying to handle it and someone came up and gave him a toy or a drink I would be quite annoyed at someone reinforcing that behaviour. I know it's meant to be helpful, but wouldnt help me or my DS.
post #20 of 111
oh god yes i cringe.
i cringe unapologetically.

the library is the worst place here, i saw one year old twins being slapped and yelled at. they werent even doing anything except trying to play with my youngest dd.

ive had less than stellar moments in public myself but i welcome others to cringe and notice theyre less than stellar parenting moments. i wouldnt want others making excuses for me and by extension my less than stellar behaviours.

admitting it is a problem is the first step to making sure we dont do these things.
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