or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › Curious about 'control' as it relates to parenting
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Curious about 'control' as it relates to parenting - Page 2

post #21 of 117
I have control issues.

In my head I *think* I wouldlike a utopian existance with my kids where we each respect eachothers individual needs and wants

but

When I am activley parenting I tend to think things like:

"When I say JUMP, you say HOW HIGH!"

Seriously. control is a huge issue for me. Because I dont practice what I preach! (And honetly cant find a practical way to do so.)

Can you say "internal struggle all the time?"
post #22 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by secretresistance View Post
Is that sort of thing currently considered mainstream? It strikes me as a completely horrifying and powerless way to grow up. I would really hope that most parents would feel that such authoritarianism is harmful.

No. That makes mainstream sound like it equals bad parentling. It isn't mainstream to spank. All of my freinds are mainstream, and I am 60 % mainstream and 40% AP and I have never spanked, or used punishment. My friends parent the way I do. I think most parents just do what comes naturally to them unless they make a consious decision to change how they were raised.
post #23 of 117
Sorry, redundant post.
post #24 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by queenjane View Post
Its not.
I think it is better, and here's why.

We live in an *intensely* consumerist culture that has an absolutely grotesque view of what is meaningful and beautiful in the human person. And this culture is unprecedented in its intrusiveness, the way it targets children and saturates every part of their day from the time they put on their undies and eat breakfast to the time they read bedtime stories. Consumer culture and the building of brand loyalty from cradle to grave are very difficult to combat in children, whose consciences and abilities to discern truth from fantasy are not fully developed.

I am my child's first line of defense. If my child is to stand a chance of growing into a loving and peaceful person, and into a discriminating and critical consumer I must protect her from the effects of our culture while she is still young.

Call it controlling to refuse to allow lead-painted toys into our house, I don't care. This is my kin we're talking about. And I won't be guilted into being a more "laid-back" or "mainstream" mom who surrenders her children early on to the god of consumerism.

In my view "mainstream" consumerist parents control their kids in order to encourage the traits of efficient consumerism or to help them become more successful consumers. That's not my goal. As an attachment parent, I want my children to run to people, not things when the chips are down. But to get there in this particular cultural context at this moment in time, I have to help them run the gauntlet, every day, of an aggressive child-focused marketing that tells them every day that attachment is less valuable than consumption.

Let-them-eat-twinkies-with-love only works if the child is mature enough to understand the messages she is receiving, or if there isn't someone there giving those messages. It's not the twinkie to which I object, it's the message that goes with the twinkie.
post #25 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagomom View Post
Let-them-eat-twinkies-with-love only works if the child is mature enough to understand the messages she is receiving, or if there isn't someone there giving those messages. It's not the twinkie to which I object, it's the message that goes with the twinkie.
So the twinkie's fine, as long as the child isn't exposed to any untrue messages about it? Am I understanding you right?
post #26 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagomom View Post
Iit targets children and saturates every part of their day from the time they put on their undies and eat breakfast to the time they read bedtime stories. Consumer culture and the building of brand loyalty from cradle to grave are very difficult to combat in children, whose consciences and abilities to discern truth from fantasy are not fully developed.

*THREAD DRIFT*
Sorry.

The other day I saw that the movie Jungle Book came out when I was a small child. I don't remember it coming out. My Mother never took me to see it. She never took me, because they didn't sell three isles of "jungle Book" themed toys in K-Mart. It wasn't marketed like movies are now.

The only TV marketed items we had were lunch boxes, and Peanuts Sweatshirts. (oh, and Mrs Beasley) <--Loved that doll!

They did market cereal, P-nut butter, Tennis shoes and other food items. Then we had the Sears Catolog and Commercials at Christmas.

But, how else would I have KNOWN I wanted a Baby Tender Love if I hadn't seen it on TV between Rudolf The Red Nosed Reindeer, and Frosty the Snowman?

I don't even remember when commercialism started to get out of control. Maybe Star Wars? That's the first I remember.
post #27 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by mammal_mama View Post
So the twinkie's fine, as long as the child isn't exposed to any untrue messages about it? Am I understanding you right?
Obviously good nutrition is important. To the extent that it would interfere with getting what my kid needs to function decently and grow (and no, she doesn't yet know enough about fats, carbs, and proteins to make that decision on her own) I would restrict them. But my kids do have snacks, including sugary "bad for you" ones.

Worse to me than the sugar or food colorings themselves though is the ad messages designed to create brand loyalty and shape my kids' views of themselves, their food, and their world, ie "you need this to feel good", "this is 'fun' and brussel sprouts are 'icky'", "eat these to fit in!", etc.

I mean it's become so pervasive we now have medical "specialists" warning parents not to avoid feeding their kids garbage because their kids will feel "different."

Quote:
“Even if it shows some increase in hyperactivity, is it clinically significant and does it impact the child’s life?” said Dr. Thomas Spencer, a specialist in Pediatric Psychopharmacology at Massachusetts General Hospital.

“Is it powerful enough that you want to ostracize your kid? It is very socially impacting if children can’t eat the things that their friends do.”
Something is wrong with that.
post #28 of 117
Where do I sign up to get a robot child that falls in line and does whatever is socially acceptable so that he doesnt get made fun of?



Why are parents signing up for this?

(My dh would be VERY concerned about his son getting made fun of....while I feel like its a good thing to be exposed to as long as you are given the tools to be self confident.)
post #29 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagomom View Post
And I won't be guilted into being a more "laid-back" or "mainstream" mom who surrenders her children early on to the god of consumerism.
Well IMO sometimes a Twinkie is just a Twinkie That's okay, I can agree to disagree. Actually we don't eat Twinkies and I really never did. Homemade chocolate chip cookies, yes. My husband grew up on Tastykakes (yum) and I grew up on Drake's FWIW.

But my point is that I'm not guilting anyone. I respect other people's choices. I don't think controlling people are good to live with but that doesn't mean that everyone should eat Twinkies. Everyone has to find their own way.
post #30 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagomom View Post
Let-them-eat-twinkies-with-love only works if the child is mature enough to understand the messages she is receiving, or if there isn't someone there giving those messages. It's not the twinkie to which I object, it's the message that goes with the twinkie.
I guess I just don't see why you can't have both - why you can't be a moderate, thoughtful consumer of a little bit of everything, and give your kids the message that *some* consumption is OK, it's *excess* consumption that's the problem. Kids are pretty savvy. For instance, I never tell my kids that McDonalds food is great for your body. In fact, I tell them that fast food isn't so hot for your body, but as long as you eat healthy most of the time that sometimes eating junky food is OK. But I'm also the mom that requests they take the toys out of happy meals - yeah, I always get the stink eye from the cashier when I request that. Heck, my 3-yo has been known to say when we do have a cookie or whatever that, "cookies are only OK as a treat" because I've taught him the difference between the food that's good for us and that we eat every day, and the treats and fast food we get. I don't think that you have to completely reject the whole thing to teach your kid to be a critically thinking consumer. Teaching moderation in consumption has very little to do with your attachment to your child, IMO.

I mean, don't get me wrong - reject mainstream consumerism completely if you want, totally your choice - but please don't imply that anyone that sometimes in 'the machine' is a slave to it and unattached to their kids. I'm plenty critical of a lot that goes on, and I make sure I inform my kids in age-appropriate terms. We're a very securely attached family who happens to sometimes enjoy indulging in the trappings of mainstream consumerism while not beign completely sucked in.

I see your point when parents *aren't* guiding their children to be thoughtful consumers, but then the problem lies in the family dynamic and not in the consumption itself.
post #31 of 117
Lest anyone think I'm making fun of parents who are crunchier than me -- I want to say I never meant to come across that way, or to hurt anyone.

My comments on crunchiness have been more directed toward the idea I've sometimes heard expressed, that ANYone who isn't crunchy in the same way as the poster, is doing Bad Things to her children --

such as a poster on a message board who wondered, "What's the point of breastfeeding your kids, if you're going to turn around and give them french fries? Why bother with natural parenting at all, if you're not doing it 100%?"
post #32 of 117
Crunchyness should be on a spectrum.

Wow, I might make that my sig.
post #33 of 117
A controlling parent is a controlling parent whether it's wearing a Bratz T-shirt made in China or an organic cotton, fair trade T-shirt. Kids need guidance in order to learn how to function in life. A little control is a good thing. Excessive control is damaging, no matter how crunchy or mainstream you are.

If your children are afraid to walk out the front door, or be "different" because they might be made fun of, or feel guilty about eating a french fry, or just being human, it's not your LIFESTYLE or VALUES that's the problem. It's your method of delivery. (You being general you.)

So yes, I agree. Controlling another person just because it's your way or the highway, is controlling a person, no matter what shirt you're wearing.

I particularly liked this quote:

Quote:
Kids who's parents make the global issue more important than the needs and desires of their own child right in front of them.
That's my biggest issue.

Just my two dollars.
post #34 of 117
Meg Murry wrote:
Quote:
I have not only earned the right to make major decisions because of my forty years' worth of life on this planet and the experiences that go with it, but I have earned the obligation to make those decisions by my choice to be a parent.
There is a difference between authoritaTIVE parenting and authoritaRIAN parenting. It's a distinction commonly made by developmental psychologists. Authoritative parenting is using your wisdom and experience to lovingly guide your child, confidently expecting that your child will follow your guidance most of the time because you know you are worthy of his trust. Authoritarian parenting is demanding that your child comply immediately and unquestioningly with your every instruction, relying on that obedience for your sense of control. See the difference? (Why they couldn't have found two less-similar terms for these two very different styles is beyond me!)

Having been raised by authoritative parents, I think that that style tends to produce children who have a comfortable sense of their own authority. A person who is confident that she deserves respect has no problem respecting others and taking their opinions into account when making decisions. Her sense of control is not dependent on being 100% in charge of every detail.
post #35 of 117
: :

what an interesting thread
post #36 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by chinaKat View Post
I don't know how "mainstream" it is but that's how I was brought up. I would never EVER have dared to just say "NO!" to a parental demand, I would have been spanked immediately.
As was I. Slapped across the mouth or spanked, whatever. Of course, I'm in my 30s now, so maybe there is a shift in parenting styles now and that sort of thing doesn't happen as much anymore?
post #37 of 117
Great post, Meg Murry.

I'm comfortable with controlling some parts of my daughter's life, as long as it's about what's best for her, or all of us as a family. She's just entering into toddler-dom, you know?

What I don't like about what we might call more "mainstream" control, is that it usually seems to be mostly about the parent, or obedience for obediences' sake. Not into that.
post #38 of 117
Quote:
I guess I just don't see why you can't have both - why you can't be a moderate, thoughtful consumer of a little bit of everything, and give your kids the message that *some* consumption is OK, it's *excess* consumption that's the problem. Kids are pretty savvy. For instance, I never tell my kids that McDonalds food is great for your body. In fact, I tell them that fast food isn't so hot for your body, but as long as you eat healthy most of the time that sometimes eating junky food is OK. But I'm also the mom that requests they take the toys out of happy meals - yeah, I always get the stink eye from the cashier when I request that.
There's a difference between "consuming" and "consumerism". Consumerism presents itself as the satisfaction of needs but in fact it exists to create needs. For example, if you buy a car to take the kids to school, you are consuming. If you buy a car in order to "feed your soul", you are engaging in consumerism. Getting a happy meal toy to play with is consuming. Getting a happy meal toy because you have two and there are six in the series in consumerism.

If someone were to ask me to look back over the last five years and tell them what were the biggest money wasters, a small number of things would be things that I brought that turned out to be bad quality but that I couldn't return. The vast majority of things would be things that I thought I wanted (and therefore needed) and it turned out that I didn't.

Children have enough judgement to be able to consume, which is to say that they have strong opinions about what they like. But they are weak when it comes to judgeing needs or answering the question "what do I want". This is because it takes a lot of experience to ask oneself the question "why do I want this?" Presumably, the parent, having years of experiences learned (frequently) the hard way, can look into the future better than a child can and see the outcome of the purchase better. This is why children need parents to guide them.

It's really hard enough for adults to tell the difference between consumption and consumerism. If it wasn't hard, the only thing you would find at a garage sale would be children's clothes.
post #39 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagomom View Post
I think it is better, and here's why.

We live in an *intensely* consumerist culture that has an absolutely grotesque view of what is meaningful and beautiful in the human person. And this culture is unprecedented in its intrusiveness, the way it targets children and saturates every part of their day from the time they put on their undies and eat breakfast to the time they read bedtime stories. Consumer culture and the building of brand loyalty from cradle to grave are very difficult to combat in children, whose consciences and abilities to discern truth from fantasy are not fully developed.

I am my child's first line of defense. If my child is to stand a chance of growing into a loving and peaceful person, and into a discriminating and critical consumer I must protect her from the effects of our culture while she is still young.

Call it controlling to refuse to allow lead-painted toys into our house, I don't care. This is my kin we're talking about. And I won't be guilted into being a more "laid-back" or "mainstream" mom who surrenders her children early on to the god of consumerism.

In my view "mainstream" consumerist parents control their kids in order to encourage the traits of efficient consumerism or to help them become more successful consumers. That's not my goal. As an attachment parent, I want my children to run to people, not things when the chips are down. But to get there in this particular cultural context at this moment in time, I have to help them run the gauntlet, every day, of an aggressive child-focused marketing that tells them every day that attachment is less valuable than consumption.

Let-them-eat-twinkies-with-love only works if the child is mature enough to understand the messages she is receiving, or if there isn't someone there giving those messages. It's not the twinkie to which I object, it's the message that goes with the twinkie.
:
Um, is it okay if I also object to the Twinkie?
post #40 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by Meg Murry. View Post
:
Um, is it okay if I also object to the Twinkie?
I'll take it if you dont want it. :
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Parenting
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › Curious about 'control' as it relates to parenting