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Critique this scenario, please - Page 6

post #101 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by mumto2 View Post

IME, when the expectation for being aware of the needs of all family members is clear, it becomes second nature.
ITA with this.

Quote:
When the mighty individual rules, we have all the world wide problems of poverty and third world debt...... but thats a whole 'nother issue.
Yes. This is my problem with some of the approaches here... the strong focus on individualism.
post #102 of 175
Quote:
It just isn't OK for one to have in abundance and one to be without.
There is something here which resonates with me too.

I agree with all of those who have said there is something fundamentally "off" to me when one person is incapable of sharing their abundance with those nearest and dearest to them. I value the ability to share abundance. I want ds to internalize this value. That is important to me as a mother. I do not value the choice to hoard abundance. Would I punish a child for making that choice? No.

But I think there is a difference between approaching these instances as teachable moments, in which I actively work to help my child overcome their internal barrier towards sharing vs. viewing the choice to hoard abundance as intrinsically acceptable.

I saw a movie years ago called "Children of Heaven", about a sister and brother in India who, to spare each other the shame of going shoeless, worked out an elaborate plan to share a single pair of shoes.

When I think about the concept of sharing abundance, I feel like the arguments against sharing abundance are based on a value system somehow different than my own.

The common denominator in terms of GD would be that punishment is not the answer.
post #103 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by WuWei View Post
I believe in an abundant Universe and that there is plenty to share. Therefore, it isn't necessary to force sharing, imo, because there are unlimited possibilities for meeting needs.
Well. But if you have one piece of cheese, two hungry kiddos, and a mama who needs to finish the groceries, that theory isn't gonna work, IMO. Or if you have three children, one trainset, and one child who wants ALLA the train cars.

Idealistically, that's a great philosophy. But it's not always that practical, IMO.

I mean, don't you people sometimes lose your ? I can't imagine being willing to go out of my way over every little incident. I timed my kiddo the other day: she had three tantrums inside of five minutes. Didn't want the red shoes on, didn't want the dog to come in the car, the dog was stepping on her backpack.

I would absolutely freaking lose it if I didn't feel like sometimes I could just say, "Enough."
post #104 of 175
I was off giving a final exam to a bunch of unhappy freshman Do not get me started on how far teaching college strays from my ideals of respectful treatment.

I am wondering if it is because we are talking about cheese that it is hard for us as adults to see how taking it and divying it up without permission is OK. What if the boy had won a $50 gift certificate to Toys R Us? Would he be required to split it 50/50 with sister?

Just a hypothetical to toss into the ring......

Another thought..... Look at the situation. In the end, sister got some. Brother not only had some of his food taken without permission but was also shamed. Does anyone actually think that is a "teaching moment"? Do you think he sat there and thought "Oh yes, mommy is right, sister was sad, I am glad mommy made me share, and I will remember always to do so in the future"? But replay the situation. Mommy asks if he will share. He says no. Mommy asks him to think of solutions to the problem that sister is sad. Or mommy gets another snack for sister. Brother probably still does not leave the situation thinking "oh yes, I shall share forever more". But he does see empathy from his mother to his sister. Respect for his decisions. Problem solving. And a solution that works for everyone. I still do not think this is suppose to be some big lesson. But I see the first scenario as being detrimental to the "goal" of raising a model citizen while scenario two is at the very least neutral and perhaps a rung in the modelling/learning ladder.

I also see a lot on here that it seems like too much trouble to handle the situation respectfully to all parties. I read all of the mechanics of either finding a box of food within reach or perhaps having to hunt the entire store down to find something, stand in line, pay for it, then go back to shopping...... Obviously there is a perception difference in how much effort this really is for the parent. I can say as one person that does do this day in and out with a 3 yo, it is not that hard. It really is not. And it is not even that I have an especially well-behaved child. I spend a lot of time with other kids, many raised very differently than I am raising my dd. Once they see that I will treat them respectfully, our interactions are simple. For some kids, it really does boil down to someone listening when they say the cheese is REALLY important to them.

It might seem like a lot of work to take a child that is normally driven by parentally-imposed consequences to plunge into the world of mutual agreement. But once everyone is used to that dynamic, it is really not that hard or time consuming. I wager to bet, less time consuming than making sure you catch every "wrong" to be sure a consequence is meeted out. But aside from time-consuming (or not), it is pleasant. My days with my dd are good. I enjoy them. Almost the entire day. Every day. There are no struggles. No power plays. No sneaking. No hiding. She has empathy for me and my needs because she has always been shown respect for hers, even when they might seem trivial to an adult like me.
post #105 of 175
Quote:
Does anyone actually think that is a "teaching moment"?
Hi, since I used the term "teachable moment" in the post above yours, I don't know if this refers to me?

I think there are many ways to teach the value of sharing, and to diminish the presence of selfishness, without shaming.
post #106 of 175
You people type fast

As I said before, I do not think it is OK to hoard things. I value sharing. Very much so. But if that decision to share is imposed without consent, the child is not internalizing the idea of sharing IMO. Just because the child is not made to share at that one moment does not mean all is lost for that child forever in valuing the principles of sharing.
post #107 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by heartmama View Post
Hi, since I used the term "teachable moment" in the post above yours, I don't know if this refers to me?

I think there are many ways to teach the value of sharing, and to diminish the presence of selfishness, without shaming.
No, that was not directed at you, I just type slow. It was actually directs that the OP situation.
post #108 of 175
What I am hearing is Mom (an individual) makes "right". What we practice is living in community seeking solutions together.

Pat
post #109 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by WuWei View Post
What I am hearing is Mom (an individual) makes "right". What we practice is living in community seeking solutions together.

Pat
Okay. I get this. In theory, and often in practice.

But, don't you get *tired*? I can only do so much. Sometimes I'm just trying to get the shopping done, kwim? Or, leave the park/beach/children's museum. Or whatever. I don't have the energy or the patience to stop and work thru every little thing.
post #110 of 175
Quote:
What I am hearing is Mom (an individual) makes "right". What we practice is living in community seeking solutions together.
Again, not sure which person you hear that from. This thread is moving fast.

However that was not what I was saying. I think "Sharing makes right". When I communicate that it feels like I am communicating in the same way that I would say "Hitting hurts" or "Playing in the street is dangerous". It is definitely not about me as an individual needing to be right. These are "the basics" of living together, surviving, thriving.
post #111 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by thismama View Post
Well. But if you have one piece of cheese, two hungry kiddos, and a mama who needs to finish the groceries, that theory isn't gonna work, IMO. Or if you have three children, one trainset, and one child who wants ALLA the train cars.

Idealistically, that's a great philosophy. But it's not always that practical, IMO.

I mean, don't you people sometimes lose your ? I can't imagine being willing to go out of my way over every little incident. I timed my kiddo the other day: she had three tantrums inside of five minutes. Didn't want the red shoes on, didn't want the dog to come in the car, the dog was stepping on her backpack.

I would absolutely freaking lose it if I didn't feel like sometimes I could just say, "Enough."
Yep, I have lost it a few times. I do get frustrated. I am human. There have been a few times when I have caught myself saying "just put the freaking shoes on!" or "yes you are tired, time to go to bed NOW". I really hate it when something like that happens early in the day because it usually causes the entire day to snowball out of control. I learned pretty early on to "stop, drop, and roll". Sounds funny. But that is what I say in my head. I need to stop being disrespectful, drop whatever annoying thing we are bickering over, and roll the conversation on to what the real issue is (is someone hungry, am I in too big of a hurry, everyone feel well, and MOST OF ALL, does dd feel like I am listening to her?) That is like a "reprogram button". A few times, we actually got our PJs back on, got back in bed, and started the whole day over. On a few of those wayward days, dd has turned into this tantrumming monster that I do not recognize. In fact, I can trace almost every tantrummy day back to some outside pressure of mine that causes me to be short and impatient. Looking at those days, yes I can see how it would seem impossible to try and be cooperative towards each other. Luckily they are rare for me so I know something is off and we can usually correct it before it becomes a whole headache of a day for everyone.
post #112 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by thismama View Post
Okay. I get this. In theory, and often in practice.

But, don't you get *tired*? I can only do so much. Sometimes I'm just trying to get the shopping done, kwim? Or, leave the park/beach/children's museum. Or whatever. I don't have the energy or the patience to stop and work thru every little thing.
I'll just quote Yopper, because we have enjoyed the same experience as she: "It might seem like a lot of work to take a child that is normally driven by parentally-imposed consequences to plunge into the world of mutual agreement. But once everyone is used to that dynamic, it is really not that hard or time consuming. I wager to bet, less time consuming than making sure you catch every "wrong" to be sure a consequence is meeted out. But aside from time-consuming (or not), it is pleasant. My days with my dd are good. I enjoy them. Almost the entire day. Every day. There are no struggles. No power plays. No sneaking. No hiding. She has empathy for me and my needs because she has always been shown respect for hers, even when they might seem trivial to an adult like me."

I'd say we have on average one or two seeming conflicts a week and we work those out to mutual satisfaction. And I have a sensory seeking, food intolerant, boisterous 5.5 y/o. He is an incredible negotiator and actively participates in creating solutions which meet my/our concerns, objectives, or obstacles, AND his own.

Pat
post #113 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by WuWei View Post

[/B]I'd say we have on average one or two seeming conflicts a week and we work those out to mutual satisfaction. And I have a sensory seeking, food intolerant, boisterous 5.5 y/o. He is an incredible negotiator and actively participates in creating solutions which meet my/our concerns, objectives, or obstacles, AND his own.

Pat
It is about the same here. 1-2 notable conflicts in which we have to do some real thinking to find a solution. This with a 3 yo that sleeps about 8 hours per 24 hour period MAX, with two working parents that require her to be dragged in situations most people would never attempt (like my office hours or dh's paying photo shoots).
post #114 of 175
Signing off until tomorrow. Dd and I need to go to bed
post #115 of 175
On the partnership thing. Dh is my partner. Completely equal. He still chooses to be a pill* sometimes and the best way to handle it is to say "you're being a Pill!" and laugh it off.

Things like "you counted to 30 wrong" are definitely pillish behavior.


*Pill:1. one who behaves in an annoying fashion for the express purpose of entertaining themselves at another's expense. 2. one who pretends to be obstinate to elicit a reaction. 3. one who exhibits joking behavior with an air of seriousness while ignoring the frustration of their companion.

ETA: which are all very "three" things to do. Note also that Pills as pillish as they may be are still loved, just not taken personally.
post #116 of 175
Quote:
I don't have the energy or the patience to stop and work thru every little thing.
This is one of the things that ds has helped me to learn. By being present, I don't need "patience", just Awareness of what we are experiencing *in that moment*. When I feel tired, rushed, or impatient, it is generally because I am focused on the *next* moments, rather than the present one. Children have a gift for bringing adults back into the present. They live fully in the *now*. When I pause and trust that the now is mine to experience too, some of the pressure to hurry and "Move it!" is released.

This helps me to have peace in the *now*, and that changes our interaction and energy toward cooperation significantly. Then I have the presence of mind to be creative, instead of struggling and thus meeting resistance.

Pat
post #117 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post
Things like "you counted to 30 wrong" are definitely pillish behavior.
Now, in her defence, I got the sense my 3 year old was just buying time at the bookstore. But yeah, I so see what you are saying!
post #118 of 175
Okay, Yooper and WuWei, what you both say sounds intriguing. Only a few conflicts per week? Almost entirely enjoyable days with a toddler? I can't quite imagine it! I mean, I *enjoy* my daughter immensely (of course - she is amazing!), but I would say there are usually many, many moments in each day when I do not enjoy what is going on between us.

How do you do this? What do you call this thing? Is this 'consensual living?' And... how do you not go batsh!t crazy?

Like, you want to leave the beach, you climb the hill to the car. You are kind of a physically lazy mama, who definitely does not love climbing. (This happened to me this summer, I brought it up here). Toddler runs *back down* the hill to the water, won't come back when called. What do you do?

Kiddo asks for some expensive-ish kind of food, you get it. They decide they don't want it. You suggest they may want it later, they say no they won't. You cannot eat it yourself. What do you do? (I personally threatened that if she didn't eat the veggie burger, she wasn't getting the apple juice, and gave a little mini-lecture about what expensive means).

You pour the child a cup of milk. They pour it all over the carpet, on purpose. And refuse to help clean it up. What do you do?

I just can't imagine living the way you say you live. I can't imagine my kid acting like your kids act, I can't imagine not going completely off my nut and feeling like my kid controlled me if I had to do a major detour like going off on a cheese hunt coz she wouldn't share with a sibling or friend.

Gimme some insight! How do you keep your sanity?
post #119 of 175
Thread Starter 
OP here. Thank you all for a great discussion. You have all given me (and everyone else reading this thread) a lot to think about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper
In the end, sister got some. Brother not only had some of his food taken without permission but was also shamed. Does anyone actually think that is a "teaching moment"? Do you think he sat there and thought "Oh yes, mommy is right, sister was sad, I am glad mommy made me share, and I will remember always to do so in the future"? But replay the situation. Mommy asks if he will share. He says no. Mommy asks him to think of solutions to the problem that sister is sad. Or mommy gets another snack for sister. Brother probably still does not leave the situation thinking "oh yes, I shall share forever more". But he does see empathy from his mother to his sister. Respect for his decisions. Problem solving. And a solution that works for everyone. I still do not think this is suppose to be some big lesson. But I see the first scenario as being detrimental to the "goal" of raising a model citizen while scenario two is at the very least neutral and perhaps a rung in the modelling/learning ladder.
This is my problem with it, exactly. I am not above imposing my will on the kids, if I feel it is necessary. But in this particular case, I do not think it was helpful in teaching DS the value of sharing. If anything, it created resentment between all of us.

However, I am torn. One one hand, like thismama said, I am worried that if I don't make DS step outside his own head sometimes, he just won't do it on his own and will become self-centered. Also, I don't see anything wrong with telling him he is being an ass, if he is being one - not in so many words, of course. If I had gotten another piece of cheese or gotten DD another snack, what message would that have sent DS? Yes, I would have been respecting his feelings about not wanting to share the cheese. I also would have been telling him that not wanting to share the cheese is OK, and I'm not sure I want to tell him that. I don't think his not wanting to share the cheese is OK, really.

It's like the Buddhist idea of no possessions. On one hand, I can understand the idea of not being able to truly share something unless you truly possess it. How can one truly possess something if someone else is forcing them to give it up. It's not possible. But, on the other hand, I am uncomfortable with him truly possessing something and choosing not to give it up, especially when his giving it up would really help someone else out. I know this is a little hypocritical, but there it is.

OK, one other thing. This has been a great discussion, and I know I opened myself up to criticism by posting this, and I wanted criticism, even. But this whole "ripping the cheese out of his hand with no warning" thing is a little hurtful. In conversations like these, I know people tend to polarize the issue, but the whole reason I posted it in the first place was because I felt like there was a lot of gray area to explore and talk about. Clearly if I had ripped the cheese from his hand without warning, that would be wrong, no matter what.

AND, one last thing - Yooper and WuWei, you have both made excellent points and I have learned a lot from both of you. You help us all stay on the path. But I must say, it is a LOT easier to negotiate, discuss, compromise, etc. when you only have one child. It is much harder to meet the needs of two small children. And that is my excuse.
post #120 of 175
I tend to agree with Thismama. Of course, I've never claimed to be all that gentle. I'm certainly not an authoritarian, either. I guess I'm slightly authoritative. I try to let my kids make as many choices as possible for themselves, but I do "make" them do certain things.

Am I an impatient mama? Definitely. It's something I try to curtail, but I think my time as a military mama reinforced that behavior some. When you're in a job where you can receive disciplinary action for being 30 seconds late for formation, you tend to get impatient with a 4yo who is being a pill for
whatever reason.

Were these children truly hungry? Would they have missed the cheese if nobody had offered them any? A lot of the posters on this thread keep mentionoing the "hungry children." I'll bet both kids would have been just fine if nobody had waved cheese under their noses.

If it was the last piece of cheese in the world, I guess I would have made the older child share if I had been in that situation. But since the deli had more cheese, I would have simply asked if the toddler could have a piece. Personally, I really wouldn't care if the deli worker thought I was greedy. By offering one child cheese and ignoring the other, the deli worker created an unpleasant situation.

Or..... I would have just pulled a snack out of my purse or the diaper bag. Do people really take small children on errands without snacks? ::shudders::
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