Originally Posted by MomInFlux
: I admire those families where RU works, but it's not us. Though I generally think that RU works better when the kids are older
I used to think this, but ds is almost 15 and he still "chooses" to eat a lb of cheese at a time (he's lactose intolerant) and he still "chooses" to spend 12 hours straight playing video games, even while complaining that the game is boring and his eyes hurt.
I really dispute the whole "no child will choose to keep doing something that isn't good/healthy/appropriate, etc, if left to their own devices". People who say this never met my kid
Ds has Tourettes (as do I), and there are neurological differences between us and the larger population, but still, he's completely cognitively normal, there is absolutely nothing wrong with his decision making skills, he just will often "choose" not to choose, to take the easiest, funnest, tastiest way out. Left to his own devices he would never choose vegetables over sausage, cheese or chips, he would never choose to play outside over sitting on the couch watching video games.
And because of his "choices" he weighs over 300lbs and is starting to have trouble with his joints. And he still won't choose to exercise, and has asked me to make him exercise. Sticking by a theory that he would learn to choose what is good for him given enough time and space would be actively hurting him, it would be, in my opinion, in this particular case, child abuse to let him keep "choosing" his way into chronic disease and early death.
I'm finding that in the early teen years his capacity for reason has gone down and his impulsiveness waaaay up and I'm having to interpose myself into his decisions much more than I did when he was about, oh, 10, or imposing myself in different ways, not necessarily saying no right off the bat, but reminding him "didn't you tell me yesterday you wanted to go out for a run today?" or "didn't you tell me you wanted to save your money for a laptop instead of buying junk food?"
Another thing that has come up in the teen years with ds is that he has always been very, very happy to be a child, he's never been in any hurry to grow up and he's holding on to his childhood with both hands and both feet
He gets very exasperated with me when I try to discuss things with him. If he doesn't feel very strongly about something (and he's a very laid back kid, he doesn't feel very strongly about a whole lot of things outside of video games, politics and his friends) he just doesn't want to discuss it endlessly-which to him means more than 2 or 3 words.
He'll say things to me like "Just make a decision already, I don't care what we do" or "If you don't want to make the decision, just say that, but don't make it my job to make your decisions for you" or "Whatever, I'll do whatever you say, just tell me what you want." He very, very vocally does NOT want to be consulted on every family decision. He's fine being in the back seat, stretched out, listening to music and enjoying the ride