or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › Do you prefer a family Hierarchy or Consensuality? Updated!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Do you prefer a family Hierarchy or Consensuality? Updated! - Page 3

Poll Results: Family Dynamics: Hierarchy or Consensuality?

 
  • 2% (17)
    Definite hierarchy with rules, strict structure; decisions made on behalf of children.
  • 29% (176)
    Hierarchy with guidelines, routine, soft structure; most decisions made for children.
  • 9% (56)
    Consensual family; decisions round table, children are self determining; few or no rules.
  • 10% (61)
    Mostly Consensual; guidelines, choice where possible, highly structured
  • 45% (277)
    Combo; children know their place in hierarchy but have as much freedom as poss within that structure
  • 2% (18)
    I don't know what you are talking about.
605 Total Votes  
post #41 of 1044
One thing I've noticed about CL --speaking from an outsider's perspective--is that going over all of the endless minutia (the car ride example for instance) seems tiresome for everyone when you actually witness it. And in the deciding of all of the external details (hold a toy or not, music or not, what kind of music, what windows are down and how far down) in a way can seem to get in the way of the idea that often we can be content just because we decide to be content. And being in the throes of negotiation constantly just does not appeal to me at all. I used to spend a lot of time with a CL family and it often seemed like the constant negotiation made it so things never really got off the ground. And the kids seemed like they didn't really understand that it's your attitude that determines your experience most of the time-- not where you sit in the car and what tree you eat your picnic under.

**Not that there aren't some drawbacks to heirarchy structure as well. Just that we might look like a CL family most of the time but I don't consider that to be our ideal philosophically.***
post #42 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by Norasmomma View Post
Well I guess for me I just don't see it that way. Don't touch the stove-end of story. Obviously we don't see things the same, and that's fine you can parent with multiple choice and I can parent with options of times where multiple choice is appropriate and times where there is only one option. It doesn't really matter, for us this works. Whatever works for you that's fine.
I agree with don't touch the stove. Not saying to let them tuch the stove. There can still be multiple options : dont touch the stove but tell me how you wish you could. dont touch the stove but look at it. don't touch the stove, but play with a pretend stove instead. All in volve NOT touching the stove. there is more then one way to not touch the stove though. Dont touch the stove while standing on one foot. dont touch the stove while singing your ABCs. Be silly, be stern. you still have more then one way to STILL NOT touch it. I agree, whatever works for you, but even if YOU dont think there is more then one way not to touch the stove, your daughter is probably still using more then one way not to touch it. sometimes she may go play a game instead. sometimes she may complain. sometimes she may play with a toy kitchen. there are always more then one way to do (or not do) something. thats all im saying.
post #43 of 1044
too many choices overwhelm. that is an example. we usualy do two choices. we get things done very quickly. Come visit me if you think CL is time consuming. SOMETIMES it is, but in the long run that time invested pays off tenfold. then again, we aren't really CL, we are somewhere in between just more consensualish.

My son can get ready for school and out the door within 15 minutes including eating breakfast. He gets choices during this time. It doesnt slow us down at all.
post #44 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super Glue Mommy View Post
I agree with don't touch the stove. Not saying to let them tuch the stove. There can still be multiple options : dont touch the stove but tell me how you wish you could. dont touch the stove but look at it. don't touch the stove, but play with a pretend stove instead. All in volve NOT touching the stove. there is more then one way to not touch the stove though. Dont touch the stove while standing on one foot. dont touch the stove while singing your ABCs. Be silly, be stern. you still have more then one way to STILL NOT touch it. I agree, whatever works for you, but even if YOU dont think there is more then one way not to touch the stove, your daughter is probably still using more then one way not to touch it. sometimes she may go play a game instead. sometimes she may complain. sometimes she may play with a toy kitchen. there are always more then one way to do (or not do) something. thats all im saying.
You're still basically just distracting from touching the stove. Not all children can be distracted. This is where it became obvious that CL wasn't going to work for us. My dd is a tenacious little thing, and the older she gets the less I can distract her. She SO sees through that. I tried with the homework one time and she came back with Dr. Seuss. "I will not do my homework in a box, I will not do my homework with a fox." LOL. She just doesn't fall for distraction.
post #45 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
LOL. See my daughter won't be distracted from the real issue - homework vs. no homework. LOL. I wonder if that'll work for your child for much longer. If so, yay for you!
thats when you empathize! its not about distracting. I would probably address the homework versus no homework FIRST and then talk about the different ways they CAN do their homework. It can work for you too! Just look at how it can work, instead of resolving to the fact that it can't works on people of ALL ages - even my husband - and he's a hard one to crack! I never would have thought that CL would help my marriage as it has - I start leaning this way for my children, but in applying it to other adults in my life the results have been AMAZING. definitely not something that stops working, but something that evolves. I'm sure you will figure it out with your daughter and be able to say "yay for us"
post #46 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super Glue Mommy View Post
thats when you empathize! its not about distracting. I would probably address the homework versus no homework FIRST and then talk about the different ways they CAN do their homework. It can work for you too! Just look at how it can work, instead of resolving to the fact that it can't works on people of ALL ages - even my husband - and he's a hard one to crack! I never would have thought that CL would help my marriage as it has - I start leaning this way for my children, but in applying it to other adults in my life the results have been AMAZING. definitely not something that stops working, but something that evolves. I'm sure you will figure it out with your daughter and be able to say "yay for us"
My marriage is fabulous and I don't need any tips. And it isn't going to work with my daughter. She sees though the games and doesn't appreciate it. And I do empathize and don't get angry. But the homework is going to get done.
post #47 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super Glue Mommy View Post
There is more then one way to not touch the pellet stove though right? There is more then one way to hold your hand? There is more then one way for her to stay safe when a car comes by? No matter what is 'required'/necessary I find there is always multiple ways to carry out that necessity
See my older DS never fell for that stuff, because it is false freedom, and I think he just saw right through it, even at 2. He was the kind of child that no matter how many choices there were, he would come up with one that was completely unavailable. For example, choosing what was for lunch, there would be a number of different options, but he would want something we didn't have. Option C always. I am more on the consensual side, I have tried to be at least, and reading The Continuum Concept is what set me on an AP parenting path to begin with. But I can understand what the OP is saying, and looking back I feel like my older DS might have needed more structure and to know what is expected. In those tribal cultures, a child would have just eaten what was available, not expected the mom to run back out into the woods and gather a different kind of berry.

I actually think that some of the advice about giving kids choices is misleading, because it really is false. Like the care seat example, you are trying to make it "look like" they have a choice by letting them choose who buckles, what song to sing or to be silent, whether or not to have the window up or down, but really, in the end, it is still a fact that you are controlling the situation and manipulating them to go along with you and get in the car seat. I have totally done all of that, and have really believed in letting children direct their own lives, but I am seeing things now that looking back I feel like there is some value in children just knowing where they fit in to the world, and sometimes I wish I had done more of that. I'm just thinking out loud here.
post #48 of 1044
Combo, I guess. DH and I are definitely in charge of decision making, but we also try to take what the children want into account, and make that part of the decision making process. Our children are a huge priority in making decisions. For example, we both want to move in the next few years, and the reason we haven't done so is because we want ds1 to be able to graduate with the people he's known since kindergarten. Financially, it would probably make more sense to pack up now, while house prices are low, but we don't think it would be in ds1's best interests, and ds1 agrees.

I find out what dd and ds2 want to do, but I don't attempt to live consensually with them. DS2 has no impulse control. DD is extremely volatile, and is not open to negotiation of anything when she's in a mood. Living consensually seems to work for some people, but I honestly can't imagine trying to do that with such young children. DH and I live consensually (no "head of the household"), and we live consensually, to some extent, with ds1...but not with the little ones.
post #49 of 1044
I agree the home work should get done! Wasn't saying anything was wrong with your marriage I was speaking about how MINE improved, because it shows it works with any age. I'm not saying you need to play games with her either. I am sorry you feel defensive I wasnt attacking you I was trying to support you. It sounded like you enjoy a more consensual approach even if you aren't CL (like me I enjoy more consensual but I dont practice CL) and I was just trying to offer support because I know you can do it and I believe it works with anyone at any age. Sounds like you are handling it much the way I would, but even if you werent that is okay too. Please read what I am saying. I really get the impression you think I think the homework should be optional, and I wasnt saying that. It's important to you that the homework get done. You are part of the consensus so not doing the homework is NOT an okay option with you. I agree, but even if I didnt I am not a part of your families consensus. All I am saying is that there is always more then one way to do (or not do) something. More then one way to DO the homework.
post #50 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
LOL. See my daughter won't be distracted from the real issue - homework vs. no homework. LOL. I wonder if that'll work for your child for much longer. If so, yay for you!
LOL doesn't work for me anymore.
post #51 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by momofmine View Post
See my older DS never fell for that stuff, because it is false freedom, and I think he just saw right through it, even at 2. He was the kind of child that no matter how many choices there were, he would come up with one that was completely unavailable. For example, choosing what was for lunch, there would be a number of different options, but he would want something we didn't have. Option C always. I am more on the consensual side, I have tried to be at least, and reading The Continuum Concept is what set me on an AP parenting path to begin with. But I can understand what the OP is saying, and looking back I feel like my older DS might have needed more structure and to know what is expected. In those tribal cultures, a child would have just eaten what was available, not expected the mom to run back out into the woods and gather a different kind of berry.

I actually think that some of the advice about giving kids choices is misleading, because it really is false. Like the care seat example, you are trying to make it "look like" they have a choice by letting them choose who buckles, what song to sing or to be silent, whether or not to have the window up or down, but really, in the end, it is still a fact that you are controlling the situation and manipulating them to go along with you and get in the car seat. I have totally done all of that, and have really believed in letting children direct their own lives, but I am seeing things now that looking back I feel like there is some value in children just knowing where they fit in to the world, and sometimes I wish I had done more of that. I'm just thinking out loud here.
I do not mislead. I make it clear that they DO NOT have a choice about whether or not they will ride in the car seat to the grocery store. And I empathize and if necessary handle a temper tantrum the way I handle any other temper tantrum. Once that is aside, then we look for ways to make the experience more enjoyable. give them the choices where there are choices available. I have asked me kids do you want "this or that" and they have at times wanted "the other" (something not in the house) And I empathize let them know its not in the house, (if I am willing to buy it the next week I will let them kinow I'm adding it to the grocery list and do so) and I empathize as much as I can but if they refuse to choose from the available options I would just let them know to let me know when they decide, or if they can think up another DOABLE option I have overlooked. I'm open to their ideas where applicable (talking about the example you gave here, because we've been there!) Perhaps I offered yogurt or cereal and they ask for pancakes. If I have pancakes and feel like making them, then that is doable. IF I dont have pancakes that is not doable. Or if I dont feel like making them. If they have a fit I empathize. If they say "how about oatmeal" and we have it and I feel like making it I will say "well that I CAN do!"

My kids definitely thrive on structure too. Especially my oldest son who has Autism. Just remember consensual means coming to a solution that works for EVERYONE. that INCLUDES you. sometimes you think there is no solution that works for everyone, but I find there always is, even if its just because someone is willing to compromise. coming to a consensus does not mean that another might not compromise to still be happy with the result.
post #52 of 1044
I've come to the I have to be stern mentality because my DD has put multiple dolls on the stove and melted them.

Holding her hand when a car goes by, that's just non-negotiable. She knows that-she can make decisions on how she wants to walk or run when there is not a car coming, that's fine, but when there's a car she needs to hold an adults hand.

I guess I just don't need to explain everything to her, she's 2.5 and redirection doesn't work for her. If she was a different child it may, believe me I have tried with giving her options and it's come down to the fact many times an option doesn't exist(or at least one she likes), so as her parent I have to make that decision for her to keep her safe. Not all decisions need to be explained for her to understand, there are times when she needs me to make the decision to keep her safe and she knows that, at least I believe she does.
post #53 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
You're still basically just distracting from touching the stove. Not all children can be distracted. This is where it became obvious that CL wasn't going to work for us. My dd is a tenacious little thing, and the older she gets the less I can distract her. She SO sees through that. I tried with the homework one time and she came back with Dr. Seuss. "I will not do my homework in a box, I will not do my homework with a fox." LOL. She just doesn't fall for distraction.

which is why you empathize. (not saying this is why you should empathize, im saying this is why you DO empathize - because you do, and I think you do a great job!) having more then one way to do something doesn't mean that the other person wont still be upset about the thing they CANT do. As I said, we've been there. I don't distract. whatever is off limits is off limits and im not denying that to them. but once we get past that, we can talk about what we can do. and at first it takes a lot of time and energy but with time it gets easier. I used to think things wouldn't work with my children either. It's about respect though, and it sounds like you realize that respect works at any age, that's why you respect that your daughter doesn't like distraction!

we established she DOES do her homework. you empathize., then what? she is doing it, you may give her some ideas of what she can do before, after, or during, but even if you don't she is probably still aware of those options. maybes sometimes she does it in her room and sometimes in the kitchen? maybe sometimes she listens to soft music? maybe she DOES do is the same way every time (I always did it in my room on the floor even though I had a desk with some music on but not headphones because I didnt like how they felt on my ears) BUT that was the choices I made. Homework had to be done, but I found a way I liked to do it. so maybe you dont say "you can do it this way or this way" but once she accepts that YES she DOES have to do it, she makes decisions about how to get it done. It's not like you say "you have to sit here at this desk, in this room, no music because you wont be able to concentrate" (which is usually projected when a parent does that because thats how THEY would be able to concentrate, but some peopel concentrate better with background noise)
post #54 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by Norasmomma View Post
I've come to the I have to be stern mentality because my DD has put multiple dolls on the stove and melted them.

Holding her hand when a car goes by, that's just non-negotiable. She knows that-she can make decisions on how she wants to walk or run when there is not a car coming, that's fine, but when there's a car she needs to hold an adults hand.

I guess I just don't need to explain everything to her, she's 2.5 and redirection doesn't work for her. If she was a different child it may, believe me I have tried with giving her options and it's come down to the fact many times an option doesn't exist(or at least one she likes), so as her parent I have to make that decision for her to keep her safe. Not all decisions need to be explained for her to understand, there are times when she needs me to make the decision to keep her safe and she knows that, at least I believe she does.
I agree with all the rules you have in place. Sorry you are taking it as disagreement. I am just saying there is more then one way to do or not do something (and that doesnt mean to do it when you are not okay with doing it or not do it when you need it to be done). And frankly, they may not like ANY of those ways and its not about distraction - actually I am VERY against distracting a child from their emotions. I think they need to be allowed to have them and fully express them and we don't even get started on autonomy until "the storm has passed"
post #55 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super Glue Mommy View Post
thats when you empathize! its not about distracting. I would probably address the homework versus no homework FIRST and then talk about the different ways they CAN do their homework. It can work for you too! Just look at how it can work, instead of resolving to the fact that it can't works on people of ALL ages - even my husband - and he's a hard one to crack! I never would have thought that CL would help my marriage as it has - I start leaning this way for my children, but in applying it to other adults in my life the results have been AMAZING. definitely not something that stops working, but something that evolves. I'm sure you will figure it out with your daughter and be able to say "yay for us"
I empathize and I am sure mamazee does too..correct me if I'm wrong, mamazee? I do the whole "I understand honey, you really do have too much homework for a nine-year-old thing. You can do______for a while and then do it later." If she is in a good mood she MIGHT say yes but usually she will not be happy. I agree..it IS easier when they are not in school.
post #56 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
My marriage is fabulous and I don't need any tips. And it isn't going to work with my daughter. She sees though the games and doesn't appreciate it. And I do empathize and don't get angry. But the homework is going to get done.
you are my hero
post #57 of 1044
I know mamazee empathizes! thats what im saying - that what she is doing is really no different then what im doing!

I agree as well, it IS easier when they are not in school!
post #58 of 1044
There are things in my home that are NOT up for negotiation and I will not sit there and listen to a child try to negotiate their way out of something.

However, there are MANY things that we can ngotiate and we discuss many things and many aspects of their lives.

It is pick and choose and it is MY choice to pick and choose. That is the benefit of being the mom and being the adult in the home.

I do notice I am getting stricter as time goes by, my kids are older then some of the kids in question here and frankly, my 12 year old needs to learn to shut up sometimes (said in the nicest way possible). He is getting way too big for his britches and it is becoming or going to become a major problem in school. We as the parents are working hard on getting him to learn to STOP, THINK, LISTEN and APPROACH in a proper and repsectful way, even if that means he has to wait an extended period of time. This is valuable in school, work, and home. Very different then trying to just distract a young child, I am having to teach him to be a young adult that isn't going to be causing problems for himself with this mouth and his idea that he can talk his way out of anything or talk people into getting what he wants.

Honestly, I do regret some of the negotiation as a YOUNG child because it gave him a false sense that he always had the right to have a say so, when in reality, he doesn't. Not when it comes to the real world.

Oh and I voted for a hierarchy, but really, I like the dictatorship idea
post #59 of 1044
Benevolent dictatorship, here. Dh and I are firmly in charge, but the kids have a great deal of freedom inside the structure we've put in place. We're very happy as we are.
post #60 of 1044
Thats well put Llyra. Reminds me of what Alfie Kohn says in Unconditional Parenting:

Reasonable structures are imposed when necessary, in a flexible manner, without undue restrictiveness, and when possible, with the participation of the child.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Parenting
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › Do you prefer a family Hierarchy or Consensuality? Updated!