wow....I came here tonight looking for threads on what I was watching on TLC and here they are...had to search for this though...just wanted to see if anybody else was discussing all the Duggar TV...BOY, are you!!
I just got here...after watching '14 children' awhile back and now '16 children' and the new house episodes just tonight...my thoughts have been this
--How sad is it that those girls talk about the new house's kitchen and laundry and how great of a benefit it will be to their lives? I mean, having your kids help out and learn to cook and everything is wonderful...but...um, a more 'normal' sort of comment might have been about decorating their bedroom or something. (read, expected from a teenager...I note in the house episode, they DID get to do some cool decorating...)
--ONE girl has 'laundry jurisdiction.' I'm sorry, but that seems entirely UNFAIR...if I had to delegate, it would rotate somehow, and YES the BOYS would have to do it too. SOMEDAY they are going to HAVE TO know how to wash their clothes. (I did see the MOM getting up in the night to change the laundry in the rental house with the one washer and dryer...good for her. what about all day though?)
Same with the kitchen, you always see the 2-3 oldest GIRLS in the kitchen. Where are the boys? There are at least 2 who are old enough to cook a meal (one's a twin of the girl, and the oldest) and at least 2-3 others that are old enough to help do some things. I understand having too many people in a kitchen can be a problem, BUT...I would have the boys involved too, and probably up to 4 of my kids, 1-2 younger and 1-2 older, depending on what was going on, sometimes anyway, so that they can learn. Heck my EIGHTEEN MONTH OLD was shaking spices into the flour for the fried chicken tonight!! but then, *I* was supervising my 18 month old, not a 14 year old, so I think that makes a difference...with the kids supervising, I'd say probably nobody under 8.
--The buddy system. I can totally understand it for some things, like maybe outings, there's NO WAY two adults could keep track of that many little kids!! I can even see having a system at mealtimes where each older kid helps one younger sibling serve themselves, cut up meat, etc. because there's NO WAY Mom would ever get to eat if they had to wait for her. But ALL THE TIME? I'm sorry, but my favorite time of day with my son is sleepy-time, seriously, God forbid I ever have so many children I can't tuck each one in at night!! (Literally, and the longer I'm a parent, the more I see how birth control pills affect me, the more I understand wanting to avoid artificial contraception methods. BUT...that's why we have this ability to use charts and breastfeed...I personally plan on using both of those methods to the best of my ability thanks.
I understand some people might be fertile pretty fast even with full time nursing. I know even with just pumping and not as often as your typical baby probably eats, I didn't get AF back till I stopped when he was 6 months. I used the Pill for awhile after that, which I have since quit and am currently experiencing the reasons why I'll never go back on it.)
I DO think it's great to give your kids some responsibility. I think kids who grow up having some responsibility for younger siblings will have a better understanding of what responsibiility will go into being a parent. But NO WAY do I think *children* should be given the full adult responsibilities of parenting a child that they have not birthed or total charge of things like cooking and cleaning.
My mom was one of 6. They grew up very 'Little House' no running water, no electricity. Yeah, my mom had chores, one was dishes, another was gathering eggs, I'm sure she had to help with cleaning and laundry, but she worked alongside my grandmother on those things. THAT I agree with. Handing over total responsibility for daily meals, laundry, etc. to your child...no.
I think a lot of what the Duggars do is good, like seeing the entire family, girls too, working on the house, power tools and all. That's got to be an awesome feeling, living in a house YOU built. Giving them responsibility, yeah. It's just that I think they cross a line in the responsibility department.
*I* grew up ONE child....with brothers 20 years older than me. My parents had nobody else to worry about. I did things kind of as I felt like it when it came to laundry, cooking, I did have to clean my own room, but other than that, nothing. I will be doing things differently with my kids, as I want them to realize the work that goes into say, dinner. Laundry. I didn't appreciate anything my mom did till I was an adult, and I also didn't have really a clue about how to cook, do my own laundry, etc. I want them to not be clueless,
but there's a difference between that and requiring that my kids cook lunch every day if they want to eat...if they WANT to, great. But it won't be REQUIRED. And if I had say, a 10 year old and a baby, I might ask my older one to watch the baby so I could say, shower. But watch the 3 year old all day? Comfort him when he cries? Brush his teeth? Bathe him? no. Not even if they were 17 or 18 and still in my house would I ask that of them daily. Why? THEY didn't choose to have the child, I did! period.
ok so I just admitted I obviously don't have a clue about the inner workings of a family with even TWO children, but I have to say...if you've got so many you're too busy to parent them all, you've got to delegate caregiving, what does that say?
Not to mention...when I asked my then-provider OBGYN about what would be good child spacing, she recommended not trying till Z was a year old as that would give *ME* a chance to recover--not just physically, but stores of vitamins that were likely depleted, etc. And that then the children would be about 2 years apart. That's someone talking from knowing what effect the birth process has on a woman...not a question I've asked my midwife yet, but I can't imagine her answer would differ much. I can't imagine what having 16 children, including 2 twin pregnancies, in the last 18 years (oldest is 17) has done to HER. The children don't look like it's had any effect on them, but from what I have learned, typically, the baby will take what it needs from the mom first, leaving the mom to suffer the effects if she's low on nutrients, etc.
and I don't know, I'm not at all educated on the 'quiverfull' concept, I'm not even Christian....BUT...if you wean in order to be able to conceive sooner, isn't that also a way to manipulate things in the baby-making department? Just a thought. Seems to go against the concept IMO...Just a thought/