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Do you prefer a family Hierarchy or Consensuality? Updated! - Page 41

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 #801 of 1044
But how DOES one address a problem like Churndash's in the CL way? I mean, however CL one seeks to be, the fact is EVERYONE has to do things they don't want to sometimes. So if you work all the time to avoid teaching that artificially (by imposing your will on your child, which i do, i am not CL) how do you handle it when the universe pops up and forces something like this on te family?
post #802 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by sewchris2642 View Post
Then I reask my question: how do you apply CL with a child who never compromises, never accepts the options offered, wants what is not offered, doesn't see the fact that she can't have 2 mutually exclusive things, requires/needs down time away from the family but refuses to have that down time?
do you have my child
is the answer that CL is procress-based and not solution-based?
it's a journey all the way?

the sleep is a big one for us... how it's hard to be capable without it, yet hard to agree to that... it is what it is, we can only try
post #803 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoBecGo View Post
But how DOES one address a problem like Churndash's in the CL way? I mean, however CL one seeks to be, the fact is EVERYONE has to do things they don't want to sometimes. So if you work all the time to avoid teaching that artificially (by imposing your will on your child, which i do, i am not CL) how do you handle it when the universe pops up and forces something like this on te family?
By teaching it when it comes up. Life will inevitably bring you into a situation where you need to do something. Why make things all the more stressful by creating such sinarios?

For that specific problem, I'd probably work on adujsting the chang slowly instead of all at once. Like not calling the new house "The new house". If possible visit regularly and just call it home. I know it's rarely possible, but the first time I remember moving, my dad didn't have everything moved all at once. It was gradually, furniture, smaller things, until we moved to the new house with just us and a few boxes in the car.

Also, give her more control if you want her to feel more incontrol. Taking her house hunting is fine, but that's really not much control over the situation since she likely doesn't have a say in which house she finally moves to. She probably knows that too. Same with the room. Telling her how it will look doesn't offer control over the situation, its just another "this is how it will be".

Though honestly, none of us know churndash's dd, and that means we can only offer suggestions because we don't know what specifically will work.
post #804 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by riverscout View Post
What about when someone is trying to understand and help but the child rejects/fights the very thing he or she needs like sleep or food, especially sleep . That doesn't seem rational to me.
Then I might wonder what kind of coercion that person has experienced in the past that is making him act irrationally in that area....

dar
post #805 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dar View Post
Then I might wonder what kind of coercion that person has experienced in the past that is making him act irrationally in that area....

dar
I had a feeling after I posted the question that I probably shouldn't have asked because I figured that would be the answer. In my case with my kids that couldn't be farther from the truth though.
post #806 of 1044
Dr my DD definitely fought sleep from birth (she has less trouble with i now, though she recently told me she doesn't like to go to sleep because she's "not here anymore" - i think that until recently she didn't realise that she would definitely wake up and had real troubles letting go because of that). I didn't coerce her before birth surely? And what if a person IS being irrational because of prior coercion, how do you come to the point that they are rational again?

I seriously cannot imagine how CL could work for me. I suppose at this point i'm not willing to give up my own autonomy to give DD hers while simultaneously having a really hard life because i still have the same responsibilities. How do you handle it if your kid wats to go to the supermarket at bedtime (mine did this evening)? And if, when you're halfway round they decide to open and eat something you may or may not have intended to buy? Or if they then decide they want to go home, immediately, and not go trough the checkout at all, and then freak out because you didn't buy the things they wanted... And so on and so on. Every day DD wants to do or have so many things which are dangerous, unhealthy, unwise, unreasonable. HOw do you "let go" and trust that they're going to be rational when the evidence right in front of you is that they aren't?
post #807 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by MusicianDad View Post
By teaching it when it comes up. Life will inevitably bring you into a situation where you need to do something. Why make things all the more stressful by creating such sinarios?

For that specific problem, I'd probably work on adujsting the chang slowly instead of all at once. Like not calling the new house "The new house". If possible visit regularly and just call it home. I know it's rarely possible, but the first time I remember moving, my dad didn't have everything moved all at once. It was gradually, furniture, smaller things, until we moved to the new house with just us and a few boxes in the car.

Also, give her more control if you want her to feel more incontrol. Taking her house hunting is fine, but that's really not much control over the situation since she likely doesn't have a say in which house she finally moves to. She probably knows that too. Same with the room. Telling her how it will look doesn't offer control over the situation, its just another "this is how it will be".

Though honestly, none of us know churndash's dd, and that means we can only offer suggestions because we don't know what specifically will work.
I do want to give her (and my other two children) a say in where we will live. Obviously there have to be some parameters based on what I can afford, but if there were three houses to choose from in the same price range and size and my daughter preferred one I'd take that one!

So far she has refused to participate even in brainstorming sessions about what we want to look for in a house.

I will stop talking about the "new" house though. I agree she is probably reacting emotionally to that word.
post #808 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dar View Post
Then I might wonder what kind of coercion that person has experienced in the past that is making him act irrationally in that area....

dar

But it is the overfatigue itself causing the irrational behavior. The overfatigue feeds irrationally resisting sleep. The sleep problems were from birth forward (while we were certainly attempting only to follow her lead).

That is sort of what my point is; I believe fatigue itself can cause irrational behavior (and mental illness, for sure).
post #809 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by MusicianDad View Post
By teaching it when it comes up. Life will inevitably bring you into a situation where you need to do something. Why make things all the more stressful by creating such sinarios?

But, again, it isn't about creating scenarios....it is about whether or not there are indeed "musts" in life, and how that interacts with CL. Churndash just presented a real life situation that seems to have an unavoidable must, but I'd like to hear the CL perspective.
post #810 of 1044
Also, some of us started our parenting-journeys first, and became CL later -- so we can recognize how previous coercion may be at the root of some of our kids' irrational behavior and unwillingness to brainstorm for mutually-agreeable solutions, but recognizing how it's "all our fault" doesn't always help us with how to get through this current difficult moment.

And guilt tends to negatively-affect my own rationality, anyway.

I do see my past role in creating some of our current difficulties -- but rather than focusing on blame and guilt, I just try not to kick myself too hard when I'm not able to persuade one of my kids to brainstorm with me for other solutions, but don't feel able to just totally do it her way, either. I just try to be as consensual as I can, and try to be proactive about not letting things escalate to that point in the future.
post #811 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by sunnmama View Post
No, I wasn't clear. I think everyone is the way you describe here. What I am saying is that it has not been my reality that a person thinking irrationally (due to mental illness, for example) can be brought to a rational place to make self-determining decisions. (unless suicide is an acceptable self-determined decision).

I was suicidal. I never really wanted to kill myself. There was an underlying need. If I really wanted to kill myself, there would have been no way for my mom to stop me. I could have self determined to kill myself even though my mother was not the kind to let me be self determining.
post #812 of 1044
There is no way to happiness, happiness is the way

CL I feel is about both process and solution. I find that to be about life in general. If you are too focused on xyz outcome it prevents you from living in the now. I find when I practice CL I am not going into it with any end solutions in mind.
post #813 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by sunnmama View Post
But, again, it isn't about creating scenarios....it is about whether or not there are indeed "musts" in life, and how that interacts with CL. Churndash just presented a real life situation that seems to have an unavoidable must, but I'd like to hear the CL perspective.
Except that if you create a 'must' out of what isn't really a 'must' then you are creating senarios. Why not use real musts to teach that sometime you have to just deal with it instead of asking a child to deal with something when you and they both know that what is presented as a must is really just an I'd rather not give you options.

I do feel that one job of mine as a parent is to teach my children to tell the difference between an arbitrary rule with no justification and something that is done for a good reason. We do that by having some rules that are non-negotiable, all of which involve safety, and having the rest of it as debateable.
post #814 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by churndash View Post
.

Well, obviously, she's going to have to. Moving day is fast approaching and I don't want her to be miserable.
I wouldn't think in terms of preventing her from being miserable. I mean, of course as a mother you don't want your child to be miserable, but she's her own person and those are her own feelings, and so not under your sphere of control.

I would sympathize, talk about how much you'll miss the house, talk about how much having to move sucks... just help her grieve. Maybe there are some special good-bye things she'd like to do, like write a secret message to the future somewhere (I recommend the undersides of window sills). Maybe she'd like to take some bits and pieces of the house with her - a snippet of carpet, maybe, or a paint scraping? Maybe pictures of the house, inside and out?

I wouldn't expect her input on the new house, unless she indicates that she wants to contribute to the search. You'll look for a house you think she'll like, and she knows that.

I don't see this as you coercing her... this is something happening to both of you - all of you - and all you can do is be there for her. You can't solve it...

dar
post #815 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super Glue Mommy View Post
I was suicidal. I never really wanted to kill myself. There was an underlying need. .
Right, of course. I agree.

I am arguing that it is not always possible to bring the irrational thinker (the overtired child, the suicidal adult) to a place of rational thought (so that they can choose sleep--it might just happen out of sheer exhaustion, or so that they choose life or medication--they might in fact complete the suicide, or continue to live in depression).

And that point is in response to this: "both are still able to be brought to a rational place and make self determined decisions. " --SGM

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
post #816 of 1044
Thread Starter 
Summary:


There are no musts and must nots.

There are always consensual solutions.

Compromise is a lose-lose option.

All wants can be met all the time.

If you have enough trust and faith in your children, they don't do irrational things or act in selfish ways and impose their will on another.



If you raise your children consensually, they do not do irrational things or act in selfish ways or impose their will on another.


We always have choices.

With accurate information, only the individual is capable of making decisions regarding what is right for him. No one is better at making those decisions than the individual.
post #817 of 1044
Compromise goes on every day though. HOw do CL-raised individuals cope when they DO meet those who would impose their will. i.e. a policeman enorcing an arbitrary law (like a parking law when there's actually nothing dangerous about the parking it's just not allowed) or a schoofriend who takes a toy, or a boss who is power-mad but nonetheless in charge of a department?

Do CL kids manage to negotiate in non-CL situations where there IS hierarchy?
post #818 of 1044
Can you explain to me how a simple thing might be in CL?

Like two minutes ago i went to get an apple. DD saw it and asked for it. It's the only one, i can't go out for more right this second. I said it was the only one and said we could share and cut it in half. DD cried because she wanted the whole apple but then relented and is now munching happily. In CL who would have gotten the apple?
post #819 of 1044
Thread Starter 
To discuss each point, I'll go in order as best I can.

There are no musts and must nots.
One cannot deny the existence of “must” without also denying the existence of “needs”. By their very definition, needs are things that must be met. That would be like saying “necessities are not necessary” or "I don't need to meet my needs". If you can afford to not meet them, then they aren't needs to begin with.

So I find it interesting that of all the philosophies, CL is most based in meeting needs yet at the same time the only one denying must. In fact, the words need and must are interchangeable. "I need to brush my teeth now" is the same as "I must brush my teeth now".

It sounds a little too much like word aversion more than evidence based opinion. These are contradictions that cannot be remedied with "Well it works for me" responses.

Provisos are recommended for this slippery slope. Something perhaps like:

(proviso 1) To maintain life:
You must have access to a food source.
You must eat.
You must drink or eat wet foods.
You must get sunshine.
You must sleep.
You must go to the toilet.
You must be protected from predators and environmental elements.

(proviso 2) To maintain the barest of health:
You must have access to nutrient dense food, not just food.
You must have a minimum of social interaction.
(note, an infant's life span is considerably shorter without touch than an adults)
You must move your body.


And so on until you reach the point of choice. And this list is only that which is scientifically proven. There are endless things we must do if we extend that list to include one's own belief system that are not biologically based (ie, areas not so easily proven by science) such as:

you must learn from your mistakes, or risk their repetition;

you must make choices; choosing nothing is still a choice;

you must reap the consequences of your actions or inaction.


Once we have a choice to engage in a behaviour or not, we are free from “must” and “need”. Much like Maslow's hierarchy of needs, most of us can live without those things toward the upper end of the pyramid, but it is still debatable as to whether they are needs that must be met. For joy in life, perhaps they become needs that must be met... but to merely survive they are not factors at all.

No such thing as must? Why is there so much fear of that which must be done? Is it based on some kind of childhood deprivation of liberty that we are trying to exact here? How many different ways can we use semantics to avoid saying out loud that something has to get done? "I don't have to eat, I WANT to eat"... I dunno, sounds a bit like denial. I felt a bit like that when I was nine months pregnant... "I WANT to push this baby out... I want to give birth..." when the reality was it doesn't matter what I tell myself, when I'm heavily pregnant, the baby must come out! Is a well meaning CL mama going to tell me that there is no such thing as must in that situation? How do they expect to help me get away with that... stand at my vagina and push the baby back in? More importantly, what are we trying to achieve when we say it?

What does a CL mama tell her daughter if she is pregnant and due any minute and says "but mama, you told me I don't have to do anything I don't want to... well, I don't want to give birth!" I would probably try to avoid saying, "well hon, you don't actually have a choice" but that pretty much sums it up.

Within the above proviso lists, there is room for choice, ie within “you must eat” there are endless choices about what to eat, or about how to feel about the fact that you must eat. But unlike the frustrating car seat example where people respond with “but you don't need to drive, so the seat belt is not necessary”, at least in this example, there IS NO CHOICE to not eat. Unless you consider death an option, but I covered that with the provisos.

I shall briefly acknowledge that I didn't overlook the response to the statement “we must breathe” many pages back. If you missed it, the response was “we don't have to breathe, the body breathes for us, if you try to stop breathing, your body will force you to breathe” (the body is not very consensual, is it? ). Interesting take on it, and in some small way, sleeping falls into that category because the body can take over and force – however! you die quicker from lack of sleep than you do from lack of food. Scientific fact.

I get the idealistic premise of "there is no such thing as must or must not", I really do. I also believe that for some people death is a valid choice. I am assuming we are all life affirming and reasonable in this discussion and that "choice" would only be used in desperation, because who is going to teach that to their child? I assume consensual living does NOT expect the ultimate sacrifice is part of anyone's list of options on a given family day.
post #820 of 1044
Thread Starter 
Don't have time to do the others just now. But a quick question... do those of us practicing consensual living in our families also have to embrace or even believe or respect those premises i listed? Are they seen as necessary to being consensual? Can I foster my child's blossoming self determination and autonomy without all of that?
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