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Choosing to live with not very much of anything. - Page 8

post #141 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by aspenleaves View Post
Hmmm, I am actually not a very compassionate person. I suppose it is on the list of virtues I would like to improve upon and incorporate more into my life, but I'm not at all sure this situation calls for compassion. As well, I don't feel sympathy is in order either. I think these parents have made very specific choices... albeit different than ones I would make, but sympathy isn't in my radar.

I'm not so sure my feelings were overtly 'negative', but even if they were I don't know why I shouldn't have them. That is why I posted, so I could gain clarity.
I bolded that part because that really gets to the heart of the matter. I am a mom of 4 who has been screamed at - really - in a store and at the library for homeschooling my children (we were out during the day! - sin of all sins) by people who don't know me, my family, or (obviously) anything about homeschooling. The idea that people can have a deep seated, negative reaction to a situation they don't even understand is something that...well, I can't understand. Why the reaction of "I don't like your choices so you must be wrong" seems to be the norm is very troubling to me. That's kind of what I'm picking up on here.

Just because they are your feelings, doesn't mean they are appropriate for this occasion. I admire the fact that you're able to be honest about your personality; knowing that about yourself though, take some time to think about why this is really bothering you because honestly, if I saw a family that was truly hungry, even if it was because of someone in the family not pulling their weight - which I'm not convinced is the case here - I would feel a desire to help, to reach out to them and at least let them know that I'm concerned. I'm not trying to attack you here (I give you a lot of credit for not taking offense at anything posted and actually thinking about what everyone said), but it seems like you have feelings that are so...uncaring, or maybe feeling a little superior, that it's stopping you from seeing the real issue.

If the behavior is the issue, address it. If the food is the issue, address that. But it seems like it's really their lifestyle that is getting to you and honestly, that's none of your business. No, you don't have to allow their children to run roughshod over you and your home, but like it or not we only have control over what goes on in our own homes. Do you think the children are in danger or unsafe? I don't get the impression that you do. If not, you have two choices: 1. reach out to them in friendship and see if they need help or 2. lay down some guidelines for when the kids are in your home and send them home if they don't respect the rules. I guess a third would be to stop having any contact with them if you honestly can't deal with it anymore.

Sometimes life doesn't go as planned and maybe this family is having a harder time affording the goodies that kids want on one income than they anticipated. But going through tough times as a child is not a terrible thing, nor is is deprivation.
post #142 of 155
I guess it can be said that there's a difference between allowing your kids snacks when they're hungry, and letting them graze unchecked. Not to mention that sometimes what a parent deems as an "appropriate" portion of food may be too much or not enough for a child.
post #143 of 155
I allow my daughter to "graze unchecked". Or get something to eat whenever she wants, anyway. She doesn't have to go through me - she knows where the food is. And she doesn't eat constantly, she eats healthy foods, and she's pretty slim, and very healthy.
post #144 of 155
Unchecked grazers here too. Dd does not even have to ask anyone. She knows where the food is and serves herself. I am less of a grazer now but was as a child. I had to keep snacks in my locker (against the rules) all through school because the 4 hours between breakfast and the lunch hour was WAY too long. I have been watching dd today out of curiosity. In addition to the full breakfast and lunch that I made and dd ate all of, she has served herself an apple, half a pomegranate, two carrots, a cheese stick, and a handful of almonds. She just asked me for a cup of cider. Our whole family is thin and grazing seems to agree with us. In fact, dh cannot go more than two hours or so without a snack. I do not buy or keep unhealthy foods in the house so anything dd chooses to eat is fine with me.
post #145 of 155
On the grazers. For some people children included it is best. For some people, like DH it is not best. He can't graze in a healthy manner because without a specific eating schedule he will either not feel hungry when he should (i.e. two days without eating because he's not hungry) or won't stop eating when he should (i.e. constantly feeling hungry even when he is full).

Quote:
Originally Posted by aspenleaves View Post
Hmmm, I am actually not a very compassionate person. I suppose it is on the list of virtues I would like to improve upon and incorporate more into my life, but I'm not at all sure this situation calls for compassion. As well, I don't feel sympathy is in order either. I think these parents have made very specific choices... albeit different than ones I would make, but sympathy isn't in my radar.

I'm not so sure my feelings were overtly 'negative', but even if they were I don't know why I shouldn't have them. That is why I posted, so I could gain clarity.
It isn't what you feel it's how you react to what you feel. Your feelings are based on your experiences. You came here expressed your concern and listened to the people that explained their views on the matter and from what I can see have accepted that those feelings may not be entirely warrented.

*Shrugs* Sounds human too me, and much better then the people who just get angry and call everyone UAV's when they are gived contradictory information.
post #146 of 155
I don't have an issue with people whose children don't graze. I'm just getting a weird vibe:

1. She just does things differently than you, and you shouldn't judge the different style of food availability. This does not constitute abuse or neglect. (I'm in this camp.)

and

2. Grazing is bad.

It seems like those are contradictory viewpoints, but maybe different groups of people have the two viewpoints.
post #147 of 155
Thread Starter 
I'm a little confused. Mamazee are you refering to something I wrote?
post #148 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
I don't have an issue with people whose children don't graze. I'm just getting a weird vibe:

1. She just does things differently than you, and you shouldn't judge the different style of food availability. This does not constitute abuse or neglect. (I'm in this camp.)

and

2. Grazing is bad.

It seems like those are contradictory viewpoints, but maybe different groups of people have the two viewpoints.
I didn't see anyone here saying that grazing is bad. The OP was concerned because her neighbor's children are not permitted to graze. Some other people, including me, said that children can be well-fed without grazing, so the OP probably doesn't need to worry in the absence of actual neglect signs. That's all.
post #149 of 155
ok, i think some people are reading "we don't graze" and misconstruing "we don't snack".

She gets up, has breakfast, midmorning a snack, lunch, midafternoon a snack, dinner and occasionally (she rarely asks for it) a supper snack. Grazing to me is eating every 30-40mins throughout the day, and no that doesn't allow for normal hunger signals to get through, and FOR MY FAMILY isn't a healthy way to eat. I doubt anyone who restricts grazing is asking a tiny child to go 4 or more hours between meals without eating a snack. I can only say that i have seen many children who graze through the day and none of them were ever hungry enough to try the foods they didn't lke the look of (which is pretty much everything for some cautious 2 year olds!). If you have a child that eats every 30mins and still would rather have a raw carrot or celery stick than another yogurt or another cheese stick then good for you! I don't have a kid like that, i have a kid who if allowed to eat every 30mins would go for the same "safe" foods all day, which would not give her a balanced diet at all. Unfortunately for me, my kid will only try new foods and eat all her veggies when they are seasoned with a bit of hunger.
post #150 of 155
I don't see what this family is doing as bad either....but if the SAHP is home while the kids are in school then I wonder why they don't work PT or work from home. You mentioned they earned six figures in the past. That part is odd to me. If my kids were all in school I'd be terribly bored if I didn't at least work at home, which I do now and I homeschool my kids
post #151 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by darcytrue View Post
I don't see what this family is doing as bad either....but if the SAHP is home while the kids are in school then I wonder why they don't work PT or work from home. You mentioned they earned six figures in the past. That part is odd to me. If my kids were all in school I'd be terribly bored if I didn't at least work at home, which I do now and I homeschool my kids
Do we know for sure they don't work from home? The level of simplicity the OP describes could very easily be voluntary, despite a large income, rather than because of a small income.
post #152 of 155
Just because the kids are in school does not mean that there is a ton of free time.

Around here schools start at crazy staggered times. With 3 kids I could see someone spending 2 hours in the morning and then again in the afternoon getting kids back and forth from school. Add after school activities and it quickly becomes a full time job!

Maybe the SAHP volunteers at the school. Maybe the SAHP is working on a novel. Maybe there is an underling medical reason to not work, you can't just look or talk to a neighbor and really know. Some of the odd behavior of the neighbor could be explained by something like this. Or maybe they hate working and love being at home and available. Not everyone has a need to be busy all of the time.

It all comes back to different choices and different lifestyles.
post #153 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by lolar2 View Post
I didn't see anyone here saying that grazing is bad. The OP was concerned because her neighbor's children are not permitted to graze. Some other people, including me, said that children can be well-fed without grazing, so the OP probably doesn't need to worry in the absence of actual neglect signs. That's all.
There were a couple of people who said that grazing is bad, they don't get why people allow it, and that it leads to obesity. It's a long thread, and not a lot of people seemed to feel that way. And like I said, there might be two different groups of people saying those two apparently contradictory things.
post #154 of 155
I read *most* of the posts...

I don't believe that a simple lifestyle amounts to deprivation, but that does not mean that children see it that way. But even if the children feel or act deprived, that doesn't necessarily mean that they are. Example: I too grew up without much of anything in the way of toys, foods I found interesting, nice house, etc. My parents probably could have made more money, but it was not their driver. I felt pretty deprived and jealous all the time. I remember yelling at my mom one Christmas because my friend got new skis and I didn't and I DIDN'T EVEN SKI, lol! I also don't necessarily think it leads to the desire for a more material life in the future. I always thought I would be the opposite of my parents as an adult, but I actually wound up the same. I don't know how that happened, but I'm glad.
post #155 of 155
*haven't read through the whole thread*

I recently re-read the first book in the Little house on the Prairie series and I'm reminded of how much we have and don't need! Those little girls had only a few dresses, a couple of toys (Laura only has a corn cob with clothes for the first half of the book), very little "extras" and kind of bare-bones food. But they had everything a child could ever possibly need. They had loving parents, a warm bed, room to run and explore, each other's company, and good food to grow on.

They got SUPER excited when Pa brought home fabric so Ma could make them each a new dress. They were excited to see and taste white sugar. They spent the evenings watching Pa make bullets so he could hunt the next day. They helped with the chores. They pretended to have tea parties under their favorite tree with nothing more than their dolls.

Imagine if you took Laura and Mary and stuck them in a modern American's house. Would they not go running around trying to see everything and touch everything? Would they not gobble up every bit of food they've never tried or don't get on a regular basis? Would they not ooh and aah over the 20+ outfits today's kids seem to need?

That is not neglect and certainly nothing to be ashamed of. I'm actually trying very hard to get AWAY from all of the materialistic stuff. I'm weeding out a lot of the junk toys and replacing them with books and toys that are educational and/or conducive to open-ended play. I don't have cable or internet, or even a computer (I use my mom's or DBF's when I need a little "me" time). My children are not deprived in the least, nor was I, and I was raised without many extras too.
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