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seeking like-minded parents, feeling on the fringe - Page 2

post #21 of 31
I've been in and out of this thread and time and fatigue have not permitted any useful contribution, nor have I read every post in detail (which I will as my life with Dd permits). I have a few disjointed and semi-coherent things to offer. If I wait for Dd to stop teething before I write, I may have to wait awhile. Here goes...

I do want to comment on the cumulus effects (haha, a weather joke). I too, spent months giving Dd almost undivided one on one attention. I then read the Continuum Concept, and realized that she could get as much out of doing things around the house with me as out of my specifically amusing her. I'm not sure that's the exact message of the book but it was the message I took from it in the weary state in which I read.

I stopped spending so much one on one playtime, and made my business around the house (and office, which is downstairs from our apartment) much of Dd's play.

I admit I made a pretty abrupt change in our routine, but Dd quickly adapted to the change and enjoyed being more in the swing of things, than being the swing of things.

Now she loves helping around the house and going to the office. That she does not expect to be the center of attention means that we can visit Dh when he's working there.

I was sensitive to this because my mother did not involve me in anything much of the work of the house. As a child she thought my job was play and school. So I'm a bit of a spoiled princess myself. Aside from wanting Dd to have a sense of being part of a family, rather than it's center, I wanted her to have a sense of pleasure in the daily acts of living.

As for the discussion of correction, my mother brought me up with great emphasis on "getting things right." She spends 3 mornings a week with Dd while I work, and one day I came up from work a little early and found her trying to "teach" Dd to do the circle sorter "right."

Again I thought of what I would have liked different about my childhood, and how that need to get things right preempted enjoyment or discovery sometimes.

So I asked my mother to stop doing the circle sorter as a demonstration, and to see what Dd would do on her own. Dd immediately went from watching, to playing with the parts. I explained to my mother that I wanted her to first and foremost have fun, and I also wanted her to understand the thing, not memorize it. The other day, Dd brought me the pieces one by one, and then "got them all right." All on her own, with great glee.

My final comment is on the expression of positivity vs. negativity. My Dh compliments me on this - usually instead of saying Don't do this, I find something to say that Dd should do. Like instead of "don't pull on my ear," I stroke her ear lightly and say "gentle." I think I managed to learn this technique back when I used to train people at work, and I was good at telling people what to do.:LOL
post #22 of 31
Hello to everyone who posted on this thread,

Thank you all for giving me a fresh start for the week. I have a 4yo and twins babies, 14mos. My days are filled with moments of horror. I sometimes can't believe what comes out of my mouth because my heart is definately not saying the same thing. I am inspired and affirmed for the week in my parenting.

Thank you a thousand times for all the posts!!
post #23 of 31
Thread Starter 
hi curious -- we've read the continuum concept too, and have tried it with our daughter with interesting, but limited, success. i want to revisit the topic when i have more than 2 free minutes and run our experiences by you...

hi cakes -- so glad to hear you are feeling inspired! i hope you feel good about your week to come...

to all who posted, i'm wondering whether to watch this thread unfold and/or fade away, or to try and construct something a little more formal, a la lee's wonderful manifesting circle in the personal growth forum. perhaps starting a new thread each week and inviting everyone to post a specific parenting situation they resolved creatively or a conflict they wanted to handle differently. although at the moment, that seems way too ambitious.

happy thanksgiving and serene holiday preparations to all...
post #24 of 31
post #25 of 31
That's a great idea to give this structure, sueami--and what a great addition this is to MDC!

I don't necessarily have a conflict/solution to discuss, just a couple of things I've been focusing on, one of which is establishing a sense of rhythm in our days/weeks/months, etc. I'm finding much happiness for both of us in creating daily rhythms together. It's been enabling me to be fully present with her, which can be a challenge for me from time to time, and I feel connected and productive in my sometimes nebulous world of mothering.

The other thing I'm focusing on is difficult to explain. I guess it could best be described in Taoist terms--sitting still and doing nothing. Non-reaction, even when it gets bumpy. For example, she's in situations where she is learning about sharing, and rather than launch a whole intensive instruction on sharing with her my intuition tells me not to. I feel instinctively my role is to validate her feelings, but I should pretty much let her work it out for herself. Like she will pass through the developmental hurdle quickly on her own. And I'm learning how to do that as we go along, which is interesting. I'm discovering what works best--for us talking about something after the fact is working well--she's more attentive and focused than when we're in the moment of something happening. So I'm quite happy about that! Well, it ended up that I did have a conflict/solution after all :LOL. Have a great Thanksgiving everyone, and thanks again sueami for starting this thread!
post #26 of 31
I love the idea of a new thread each week with specific problems/solutions being offered by everyone.

It would be a shame to see the thread fade away with nothing to replace it.

In my real life interactions with other parents and children lately I'm feeling very saddened by mainstream parenting practices. My son's playmates are becoming sadder and meaner, as their parents coerce and distance themselves from their children. It feels like a haven to have a place like this.
post #27 of 31
Thread Starter 
okay, hurray! i was hoping others would be interested in making this a weekly thread. i was just afraid you'd think it was too much effort to come up with posts every week.

susan123, the main reason i started this thread was a mom's support group i belong to. we started a few months ago working through "raising your spirited child" but it's been increasingly difficult for me to sit through the meetings offering emotional support to parents who i'm convinced are creating the crises and trauma they are experiencing with their children through their parenting practices. as the group has been structured, it's not always appropriate for me to interject with an alternative parenting strategy, we're just supposed to do reflective listening. which i'm not that good at and this is a good oppty for me to practice, but it's still difficult and i started thinking how much more helpful a thread like this would be for me, both to get concrete parenting ideas that work with my philosophy and to generally bask in the knowledge that there are other moms and dads out there treating their children with respect and creative, thoughtful parenting.

lee and mamaoui, yea! i'm glad this is what you are interested in! let's see how it goes, mamaoui, and maybe we can trade off weeks. i actually don't think it will take any more of the thread initiator's time than anyone else's (unlike lee's manifesting circle! one of the reasons i haven't joined in, lee, is that it looks like such a mammoth undertaking for you and i haven't felt a strong enough need to manifest something to want to add to your burden.)
what should we call the post? fringe parenting isn't exactly descriptive. anyone have any ideas?
post #28 of 31
I've been lurking on this thread for a while, and I don't have much to add, but to say that i am interested in weekly sort of thing you are talking about.

I have a vision in my head of the type of parent I'd like to be which is similar to the philosophy you describe, but I find I am far from that type of parent, and dd isn't even challenging me yet! I am interested in sitting back and listening you.

I just don't feel very wise most days.
post #29 of 31
Um.... Did I kill this thread?
post #30 of 31
Originally posted by grumo
Um.... Did I kill this thread?
That's weird, I was thinking of quoting that, but didn't do it, then there it is...hmm...very bizarre...
ANYWAY~I think a weekly thread would be great, inspiring, and would give us a weekly support for everyday parenting...I will try to participate as much as possible...
and no Grumo, you did not kill this thread!
post #31 of 31
Thread Starter 

i got derailed by the holiday...

i've been trying to get to the computer all weekend. the kids have, as always, more energy than i do. glad you all are keeping the thread alive.
why don't i start a new thread, link added below, and see where that goes? i wish i were more awake to post a more coherent parenting high and low of the week, but i'll do my best...

edited to add this link:
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