Poll: "Child"/ "Family"/ or "Parent"-centered households - Mothering Forums

View Poll Results: Which best describes your house?
I consider my home to be "child-centered" 9 100.00%
I consider my home to be "family-cenetered" 49 100.00%
I consider my home to be "parent-centered" 2 33.33%
I grew up in a child-centered house 3 50.00%
I grew up in a family centered house 20 100.00%
I grew up in a parent-centered house 31 100.00%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 6. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-18-2013, 05:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house?  

 

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did?  What kept you from identifying with another term?

 

Would other people describe your house the same way?  (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".)

 

What are the good things you like about doing it this way?

 

What are the drawbacks?  

 

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects?  

 

Do you have any regrets?

 

Why did you start living this way?  Philosophy?  Personality?  Response to immediate needs?  Rebelling against how your parents did it?

 

Is this different from how you grew up?

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate?  Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house?

 

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?  

 

Do you know how other people view your children?

 

 

I'm excited to hear your responses, and look forward to the conversation, but please

 

Keep it sweet! blowkiss.gif


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Old 02-18-2013, 06:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house?  Child centered, mostly.

 

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did?  What kept you from identifying with another term?  I give the girls, 6 and 8, loads of freedom, and I have a high tolerance for any chaos that ensues, but I have a line in the sand where the description stops.    I don't even consider myself a Consensual Living household, and dh and I really have the final say about a lot of things, but again, we give the girls a lot of leeway to decide many things for themselves.

 

However, I hesitate to consider it "family-centered" because I don't require chores or regular cleaning up after games and although I declare bedtime, the arrangement is very much child-centered: we are still sharing the bed in large part to their desire to have me stay there.

 

Would other people describe your house the same way?  (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".)  I think not, but I think my friends and family think I  am more child-centered than we really are.  Must be the carpeting of toys!

 

What are the good things you like about doing it this way?  Both my girls excel at keeping themselves busy.  They have freedom to make games of any size, for the most part, and stretch those games over several days.  They have open access to all kinds of things around the house, and I feel that gives them a sense of ownership I never had growing up.

 

What are the drawbacks?  I feel like they haven't outgrown their little-kid expectations of parents doing things for them, like fixing them breakfast and cleaning up after themselves.  The latter is my fault, I admit, as I was (and am) not the best at cleaning up right behind myself.  And honestly, I don't stress over it most of the time, but sometimes it is truly overwhelming.  I have my spaces, though, and I take care of those--um, well-- oh nevermind. Nothing stays chaotic for a terribly long time.   And if I can find my tax documents in a flash, I don't really care, when it comes down to it.

 

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects?  We work daily on what others would call a "sense of entitlement".  We haven't resolved the issues, but they are not strangers to what others will eventually expect of them.

 

Do you have any regrets?  Mmmmm..... not really.  I even wish that in some respects I had been more child-centered when my  oldest was an infant.  Somehow I think I could have sidestepped some bedtime issues, but I can't be positive that doing things differently would have changed anything.  Anyway, I am more child-centered now than when we first became parents.

 

Why did you start living this way?  Philosophy?  Personality?  Response to immediate needs?  Rebelling against how your parents did it?  Mainly response to needs, but with a large dose of Personality, and a peppering of Philosophy.  orngtongue.gif

 

Is this different from how you grew up?  Mostly.  My parents were heavily parent-centered, typical of their generation.

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate?  Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house?  It's hard to hear friends do things I consider to be "parent-centered", but not really.  And they probably see it as "family-centered anyhow.  I'm just a pushover, I guess.

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?  Absolutely.  Though, leaving they would likely be vocal about not going back!  But that's never happened.

 

Do you know how other people view your children?  One sister thinks I'm a bit nuts, the other might, too, but she's no slouch in that department herself!  Mostly, everyone thinks my girls are the sweetest things on the planet.  I'm glad only I have to deal with them when the mood is sour.

 

 


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Old 02-18-2013, 07:45 PM
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house?   I voted that we'd be family centered.

 

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did? What kept you from identifying with another term?  I don't indentify with child centered, because I  correct my children, they have expected behaviors, and there are plenty of times I say something along the lines of "I don't expect you to like it, but you need to do it anyway."

I don't identify with parent-centered, because there are many things that happen because of, and for the benefit or pleasure of  the children.   I do identify with family centered, because I protect family time, we do most of what we do as a family, and decisions that must be made are made based upon the impact on the family first, individuals second.

 

Would other people describe your house the same way? (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".)  I have no idea how others would describe us.

 

What are the good things you like about doing it this way?  It makes sense for us, and is what feels comfortable.

 

What are the drawbacks?   Potential drawbacks could be, although I never complained, that I won't leave an infant in the care of others overnight.

 

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects? 

 

Do you have any regrets? No

 

Why did you start living this way? Philosophy? Personality? Response to immediate needs? Rebelling against how your parents did it?  It's just how we parent.

 

Is this different from how you grew up?   Yes, to a degree. My parents we fairly parent centered, in that we did their stuff, when they wanted to.  And I don't feel this way is necessarily wrong. ANd who knows-- ask my mom how she parented, and she may claim family centered.  Ask my kids, they may tell a different story than I do, given 20 years to think back on it.   It's about perception. I have the perception that I had to fit into my parents' lives, and while they made room for us, what we wanted was a bit of an inconvenience. My parents didn't go to my sister or my events: sports, 4-H, that sort of thing. We hitched rides with friends and did ok. She's a bit more bitter than I am about the whole thing.

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate? Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house?  An arguement could be made that my sister's house (see above) is child centered, in that all family activities are really bouncing back and forth from one kid event to another. BUt there's a back story there, and the 'child-centeredness' doesn't really extend to other areas of life.

 

There is another family I know, who would be considered child centered. I admit to being offended when he offered no thanks for birthday gifts, despite being old enough to recognize the niceties of that social interaction. In that family situation, I believe there is too much care and concern for his feelings, and not enough for the hurt feelings caused by his  teasing, ignoring, and rude behaviors.

 

two of my cousins grew up in a child-centered home. Both are now adults, with successful professional careers. She is very pleasant.  He struggles with social interactions, but I don't think that has anything to do with how he was parented.

 

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?  I think so. 

 

Do you know how other people view your children?  I've been told by many people how delightful and well behaved they are. We've been complimented many times in resturants, where grey haired ladies come up and tell me how plesantly surprised they were by their behavior. My mother assures me that when they visit for overnights that even all three are easy to care for.  If we leave them for a few hours in the care of my MIL, and upon returning ask her if they were good, she says "they're always good." Babysitters like them.

 

 

***  I think in all things, we need to remember that the ultimate goal of parenting is having well adjusted adults that still want to visit for dinner. There are many ways to that goal. There isn't one right answer.


Twin boys (2/05) and little sister (10/07)
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Old 02-18-2013, 07:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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***  I think in all things, we need to remember that the ultimate goal of parenting is having well adjusted adults that still want to visit for dinner. There are many ways to that goal. There isn't one right answer.

I like that!


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Old 02-18-2013, 08:17 PM
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house? I voted family-centred but feel in-betweeny (see next answer)

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did? What kept you from identifying with another term? I think we are heading towards family-centredness as our kids get older but we're probably quite child-centred at the moment as we do tend to structure activities around their intrinsic routines and we don't require a huge amount of effort in the way of chores from our 2.75yo. That is slowly increasing in what I feel is an age appropriate way and I would like them to do more as they get older, mainly so that when they have their own homes they will know how to care for them and themselves

Would other people describe your house the same way? (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".) I wonder if people may see us as quite child-centred but I guess we sort of are (see above)

What are the good things you like about doing it this way? reduces conflict, allows us all to have most of our needs met most of the time

What are the drawbacks? none particularly, so far

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects?

Do you have any regrets? no

Why did you start living this way? Philosophy? Personality? Response to immediate needs? Rebelling against how your parents did it? a mixture of all those things I guess, except the rebelling part. I try to follow continuum concept philosophy in many ways. I describe us as having the children at the centre of the activity but not the centre of attention.

Is this different from how you grew up? not really I don't think. I voted family-centred for that too but it was probably more a combo of all three

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate? Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house? no one we see often is vastly different to us. One family is a bit stricter with discipline, does time-outs for their toddler etc that we don't do but no-one at completely the opposite end of the spectrum

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations? yes, so far

Do you know how other people view your children? not really. Other people at our mothers group and church etc tell me she's lovely and comment on her confidence but I don't really know what they think overall

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Old 02-18-2013, 09:53 PM
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house?  

 

Family Centered

 

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did?  What kept you from identifying with another term?

 

Would other people describe your house the same way?  (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".)

 

I think a lot of people see us as "kid centered" because we spend a great deal of time with out kids, and very little away from them. We also make major decisions based in part on what is best for our kids.

 

But we also take care of ourselves and our relationship.

 

What are the good things you like about doing it this way?

 

We really try to do the best things we can for our children, and we feel good about that. I think everybody in my family has space to be themselves and have their needs met.

 

What are the drawbacks?  

 

It's messy. I think that being parent centered would be more clear, more cut and dry, and I kinda like cut and dry!  Being child centered would avoid some of the  setting boundaries, requiring to help around the house, etc. with my kids, and I don't really enjoy those things (even though the end result is nicer to live with).

 

We are living in a middle state -- trying to find a balance, and that's an ongoing process.

 

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects?  

 

Take some time out and try to think about the situation in a different way. We talk things to death.

 

Do you have any regrets?

 

yes -- if I could start all over again with parenting, I would do some things differently. I've made mistakes. None the less, every thing I've done, I've done from love. My kids feel that love, and both seem contented and secure in the knowledge that they are unconditionally loved.

 

Why did you start living this way?  Philosophy?  Personality?  Response to immediate needs?  Rebelling against how your parents did it?

 

I started out as a parent being totally child centered, but had to change because I was depressed and overwhelmed, and my marriage was in the toilet.

 

Is this different from how you grew up?

 

Extremely love.gif

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate?  Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house?

 

My friends are aiming in the same general direction, but with variations. I have dropped friends over how they treated their kids. I just can't be around people who aren't basically nice to their children.

 

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?  

 

yes -- but they are older. Those differences are much more challenging for small children than teens. 

 

Do you know how other people view your children?

 

people tell me my children are well behaved and polite, and very bright. I think its a little unfair, though, because my kids are both quiet. I think that "quiet" often gets labeled as "good." I suspect that's really more about their personalities than how I've raised them! 

 

 

other thought -- I wonder if there is a natural morphing from "child centered" to "family centered" as kids get older. In a way, I can see that as healthy. Babies and little kids need to have their needs met right now, but as children get older, become teens, etc., they really need to learn how to help and that it isn't always about them.


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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Old 02-19-2013, 06:01 AM
 
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other thought -- I wonder if there is a natural morphing from "child centered" to "family centered" as kids get older. In a way, I can see that as healthy. Babies and little kids need to have their needs met right now, but as children get older, become teens, etc., they really need to learn how to help and that it isn't always about them.

I think that has been the case for us. We take a continuum concept/fourth trimester-type approach to the first six months of life so our babies are almost constantly on our bodies. While we aren't always giving them direct attention it is quite demanding and does require us to modify our activities somewhat. So that probably falls under the definition of child-centred.

Then as they grow and become more independent they start to take a more active role in household activities and develop their own interests and we are more able to pursue our interests again which feels more family-centred.

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Old 02-19-2013, 06:18 AM
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house? We're probably between child-centered and family-centered. I'm not sure just where we'd fit, and I don't find that there's a conflict between our needs and their needs, so it's hard to say.

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did? What kept you from identifying with another term? As said, I haven't found a conflict where I had to choose between the two. I guess maybe we're both more than in between.

Would other people describe your house the same way? (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".) I'm sure my parents see us as child centered. Most people probably see us as family centered or child centered but I imagine it varies from person to person.

What are the good things you like about doing it this way? We spend almost all of our time together as a family, and we enjoy being together.

What are the drawbacks? I can't go watch Skyfall as easily as I might in another situation.

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects? n/a. I don't see any problems.

Do you have any regrets? No.

Why did you start living this way? Philosophy? Personality? Response to immediate needs? Rebelling against how your parents did it? We had read about attachment parenting and wanted to practice that, and we found we didn't want to be separated from our kids when they were very young, and now we still find we prefer to be with them.

Is this different from how you grew up? My parents were very parent-centered and in fact my mom warned me against being child centered before I had kids. "It's the job of the children to adapt to the parents, not vice versa" she said. I just totally disagree with that. We chose to have them. They didn't choose to be born to us. And we're adults and can more easily adapt.

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate? Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house? Some but it hasn't been a problem. Only once when I had someone watch my older one when she was a baby and we went out. I am much more picky about who watches my kids now.

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations? Yes, they're very flexible.

Do you know how other people view your children? I don't know anyone who dislikes being around my kids. I get a lot of compliments. My parents told me they're surprised how good my kids are because they assumed they'd be brats based on how we raise them (no spanking, more child-centered than they are.)
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Old 02-19-2013, 07:17 AM
 
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other thought -- I wonder if there is a natural morphing from "child centered" to "family centered" as kids get older. In a way, I can see that as healthy. Babies and little kids need to have their needs met right now, but as children get older, become teens, etc., they really need to learn how to help and that it isn't always about them.

 

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I think that has been the case for us. We take a continuum concept/fourth trimester-type approach to the first six months of life so our babies are almost constantly on our bodies. While we aren't always giving them direct attention it is quite demanding and does require us to modify our activities somewhat. So that probably falls under the definition of child-centred.

Then as they grow and become more independent they start to take a more active role in household activities and develop their own interests and we are more able to pursue our interests again which feels more family-centred.

 

This is true for my family, too. with infants, the "rules" are very different, but then they have to be. So with the understanding that as infants, the house is much more child-centered to their needs, but it morphs into family centered as the infant grows.


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Old 02-19-2013, 07:58 AM
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house?  

 

Family

 

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did?  What kept you from identifying with another term?

 

Family centered does not seem like an in-between term to me, it sound like a different one - more where the wants and needs of most of the family members are considered.

 

Would other people describe your house the same way?  (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".)  They would probably consider it child centred.  I can see how it would like that way from the outside looking in - and they might mistake being a flexible and easy going approach to being child centred, but it can be hard to know what goes on inside a home.    

 

What are the good things you like about doing it this way?

I think it promotes empowerment as well as a sense of ownership.  It can be spontaneous and fun.  I think it promotes a good extra-curriculaur/home balance.  No one gets run ragged on a nasty schedule as no ones wants are held as paramount.

 

What are the drawbacks?  

 

We can be in negotiations trying to reach a consensus on things for a while.  It can eat up a fair bit of time, and it is hard to please 5 people, so we end up with a scenario where everyone is a little displeased, or one group is clearly on the winning side.  Sometimes this can be negated by saying "we will do xyz" next time - but still.  

 

 

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects?  

 

I bury a big hole in the sand….just kidding. 

 

Do you have any regrets?

On being family centred?  Not really.  I wish that we all kept a cleaner/ more organised house.  Maybe if I could have gotten my act together on that before I had kids or in their early years, and then been drill parent parent centred about the whole thing we would have our act together on it.  

 

 

Why did you start living this way?  Philosophy?  Personality?  Response to immediate needs?  Rebelling against how your parents did it?

Philosophy and personality.

 

Is this different from how you grew up?

Yes - I come from a more parent centred household.  It was not bad, though.  At all. My parents were kind, reasonable people.   It had some downfalls (particularly when it came to finding a voice on things that were important to me) which is why I have gone another route.  

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate?  Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house?

I won't lie - some behaviour of some people causes me to look at them as if they have 2 heads.  If their kids are doing well, though, I move on and don't judge.  When the kids seems to be struggling or hurting due to living in a household that is too child centred or parent centred, iIdo judge a bit.  I judge more if it is an ongoing issue the parents refuse to look at, than a blip.

 

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?  

Yes.  They behave well in public and adapt well to more rules - they always have. i don't think they think a rule at another place they spend very little time at is worth getting their knickers in a knot over. Sometimes they let me know afterwards though that so and so is a little dizzy.gif

 

Do you know how other people view your children?

As knowledgable, sweet and friendly.  Which they are.  They are not always as sweet as the rest of the world believes, but that is a different story.  for example: We went on a hike about 2 summers ago.  DH and I are slow, so we fell quite behind.  We ran into 2 separate groups of people on the trail who went out of their way to tell us what lovely children we have  love.gif  When we finally caught up to our kids they were being anything but lovely.  They were being difficult and in-fighting (that family yelling on a hill in Vermont 2 years ago?  Yeah, that was us)

 

 

I'm excited to hear your responses, and look forward to the conversation, but please

 

Keep it sweet! blowkiss.gif


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Old 02-19-2013, 08:21 AM
 
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It's really encouraging to read the previous replies and see so many more seasoned mothers, many of whom I've gotten to admire from reading around the boards, on the same page with me in regards to parenting and home life.  It makes me feel as if I might not make a complete hash of this tiny human I've got. 

 

 

 

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What sounds like the closest description to your house?  

 

I selected "family-centered".

 

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did?  What kept you from identifying with another term?

 

At this point, with only a single 17 month old on our hands, being child-centered is a very close second, or is maybe really how we actually are right now, but our over-reaching parenting philosophy is for a family-centered home.

 

Would other people describe your house the same way?  (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".)

 

I can certainly see some friends describing me as very child-centered, and other friends describing me as only family-centered.  I think that would depend more on how they are raising their own children.

 

What are the good things you like about doing it this way?

 

Our current focus and methods seem pretty natural and "right" to us.  We also perceive lots of flexibility in how we can tackle problems.  There are some guidelines we try to stay within, but overall, there isn't a lot for us to "fail" at right now, as long as we're focusing on everyone being fairly content and cared for, so that's nice.

 

What are the drawbacks?  

 

This is more a downside of attachment parenting than child or family focused living, and of course this will end shortly enough, but good grief am I touched out.  Also, I've lost a few friends due to my lack of interest in sacrificing time with my child when she needs me for another activity with them, or my lack of interest in subjecting myself and Little Miss to an activity that will upset her or be a completely negative experience for her. 

 

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects?  

 

Little Miss is more important to me than those friends were.  So I was left with very little to deal with, there.  On the touching front, I encourage her to accept care from others, try to remember to take care of myself, and remind myself that this stage will end before I'm ready anyway.

 

Do you have any regrets?

 

I do wish I'd been aware of the concept of a "4th trimester" and acquainted myself with attachment parenting before Little Miss came along.  I was completely unprepared for her and her touch-needs as a newborn.  I felt like a failure.

 

Why did you start living this way?  Philosophy?  Personality?  Response to immediate needs?  Rebelling against how your parents did it?

 

Little Miss required 24-hour touch as a newborn, until she was closing in on 2 months old.  At two months, I could set her down for about an hour at a time, in a swing, provided she was sleepy.  I wore her.  We co-slept.  I sat on the couch and held her while she looked around and explored and played.  I had already helped to raise more than a couple kids by the time she came along, so I was aware of attachment parenting as a concept, but I didn't buy any books or do any reading because I figured I already knew all the basics, and anything else would get sorted out as we went along.  She needed me more than I have ever seen any baby need any mother prior.  So, because hearing her cry made me physically sick, we just went with what she needed.

 

Is this different from how you grew up?

 

biglaugh.gif

 

 

Yes.

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate?  Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house?

 

Yes, I have family and friends who live in parent-centered homes, and frankly, I don't see them being any less loving or devoted based on that.  I have friends who live in child-centered homes that seem to be completely "missing the point", despite their devotion.  It's really not up to me to say how another person parents.  I have taken a note from a family member who uses corporal punishment, is authoritarian and has a parent-centered home, and to very good results.

 

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?  

 

The only issue on which I am not flexible is the spanking issue.  Little Miss will not be spanked, not at home and not at someone else's home.  Otherwise, I expect her to discover what's expected of her, and either do her best or don't, but if she chooses don't, I expect her to be prepared to accept the consequences.  Much like life.

 

Do you know how other people view your children?

 

The feedback I really treasured was from a friend who was also a child-care professional, and she described Little Miss as quite confident (despite the fact that Little Miss was feeling pretty shy the whole time we were with said friend), and attributed that to my quick response to her needs, even if my response was to tell her that her need would not be met at this moment.

People seem to find Little Miss to be physically attractive and calm.  "Cool" or "chill" is something I hear a lot.  I'd agree.  She's one cool customer, that one.  She's already got a side-eye that would wilt daisies.

 

 


lovestory.gif   And on 09/23/2011, we were three;  husband, daughter, and me!

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Old 02-19-2013, 09:02 AM - Thread Starter
 
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other thought -- I wonder if there is a natural morphing from "child centered" to "family centered" as kids get older. In a way, I can see that as healthy. Babies and little kids need to have their needs met right now, but as children get older, become teens, etc., they really need to learn how to help and that it isn't always about them.

As we become more family-centered in expectations as the girls get older, we are becoming less rigid in restrictions.  We have pretty much dropped their restrictions on TV, and we are in conversation with them about ditching bedtimes (dd1 barely needs 5 minutes more sleep than I do, but she can be a tyrant of the TV, and I've told her that this is one of the big things keeping us from agreeing to what she is asking for.)  

 

I think I would have been much more family-centered from the get-go, though, if I hadn't encountered a child like dd1.  She vehemently and persistently resisted so much of what we expect toddlers to learn-- sharing, apologizing, eating at family meals, picking up, whatever-- that it forced me to rethink and find novel ways to address them.  That lead us to become more child-centered than we had set out to be, and I think it worked beautifully in so many ways.  It was not merely an avoidance of conflict, for me it was reexamining the issues in a compassionate way.  DD1 can still be amazingly stubborn, but as she gets older--she is 8-- I am finding I can just say, "hey, you can't do this" and she listens.  

 

So, as they get older, we are teaching them how to balance other's needs themselves, instead of having the balance enforced from the top down, as it has been all these years.


"Let me see you stripped down to the bone. Let me hear you speaking just for me."
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:12 AM
 
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As we become more family-centered in expectations as the girls get older, we are becoming less rigid in restrictions.  We have pretty much dropped their restrictions on TV, and we are in conversation with them about ditching bedtimes (dd1 barely needs 5 minutes more sleep than I do, but she can be a tyrant of the TV, and I've told her that this is one of the big things keeping us from agreeing to what she is asking for.)  

 

 

My oldest can go to bed at any time and does not turn into a grouch over it (although I think it may have subtle effects on other things). My middle is a nightmare in attitude if she does not get enough sleep, and my youngest tends to get ill if she is underslept.

 

Had all my kids been like my first I would have abandoned bedtimes by age 9 or so.  As it was I held on until 12 (my 10 yr old still has a bedtime).   This aspect of our parenting was definitely in response to child need.

 

I am eternally grateful to the universe that it was my first born who did the best on less sleep.  This way we were able to make bedtimes based on age.  There would have been he!! to pay if DD was born first, but needed a bedtime, and younger DS was allowed to stay up as he didn't need one.  


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Old 02-19-2013, 09:28 AM
 
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Family centered. Some others see us as child centered which I do not agree with because I do have rules, although they many not be plentiful. I expect a certain level of respect in the household among everyone. I need to treat my children with respect but the same goes for them them, they need to respect me as a parent and their brothers and sisters. That doesn't mean they can not disagree with me and they do, often! But they need to come and present their case not do it by throwing a hissy fit. Others see the sacrifices we make for our kids, the multiple schools because each kid goes where is the best fit for them so we have combos of public, private, and a soon to be charter school. The extreme schedule we keep for our sports obsessed child. And they think that my children run the household. I see it as having different priorities. Babies and toddlers are entirely different creatures and are not lumped into how I parent older children who can and should wait 5 minutes for something if I am busy.. The 1 year old gets immediate attention because well, he is one! 

 

 

This is not how I grew up. I never got a vote in anything, my entire life revolved around what my dad wanted to do which was never anything child related. And hence the reason I am willing to make sacrifices. My children are flexible when visiting other households with more rules, and I can adapt our household to be more in line with others if the need arrives. Media is one of those issues that come to mind. We are quite liberal with what music, shows, curse words, etc.. our children are exposed to, but we don't feel the need to expose others to it if they have a different way of life. 

 

 

If it is anything I have learned over all these years, is that there is often is no black and white right and wrong.. Everything changes, could be year to year, could be child to child. There are some things that I am not interested in doing personally, but someone isn't an awful parent just because they spank. We do know other families who parent differently then we do. Some of it doesn't bother me, other people I consider border line abusive and will go out of my way to avoid those people. I don't lump parent centered families into that. Some of my kid's friends have very parent centered households. It can be a little odd trying to tiptoe around their lifestyle sometimes but it's fine. It's good education for my kids about how everyone is different. 

 

 

How I fell into this? I remember feeling a child and desperately wanting do some things that would be considered reasonable but I knew better then to even ask because it wasn't even worth it. I never would of been allowed to do it. Taking a dance class as a child would of fallen into that. Dance wasn't productive, and my dad would of never spent money on such a thing. It was his way or the highway, no one else was allowed any input. I remember always feeling worthless and that my opinion never mattered. A five year old should not be in charge of a important decision but deciding what is for dinner tonight is fine. What to wear regardless of what it looks like or matches. My 10 year old decided to change schools this year. I acted as a sounding board but was careful not to influence her. This was one decision she was old enough to own after we addressed all the positives and negatives to ensure that she was accurately looking at the entire picture. Kids need to make bad decisions sometimes in a loving environment to pick them up when they fall to prepare them for making very important ones later when we aren't always there. 

 

This hits very close to home for me because I have four children. One is on the autism spectrum, one struggles with some mental health issues, another has chronic health problems that will plague her for the rest of her life. I won't always be there to make sure that medication gets taken or that safe decisions are made. And they always won't be. We all know that. But I will help them get the best head start that I possible can to be safely independent and then eventually, the rest is up to them. 


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Old 02-19-2013, 09:41 AM
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house?
Family-centered

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did? What kept you from identifying with another term?
I think family-centered fits well as we take all our needs into account and try to make it work for everyone. And some days we are more child-centered when DD needs more love and sometimes more parent-centered when DH or I have something important going on, but really I think that overall makes us family-centered.

Would other people describe your house the same way? (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".)
I don't know, I think most would describe us that way. I do know sometimes my Mom thinks we are too child-centered about certain things, but that is because she didn't have an child intense in the same way that DD is, I know and remember her making allowances for my sister's food adversions for example and my brother's need of very little sleep.

What are the good things you like about doing it this way?
It works well because it is flexible allowing give and take where needed. I can still be authoritative when I have to (safety issues, important deadlines, etc.) without having to feel like I need to be authoritative all the time.

What are the drawbacks?
It is more work for me than a parent-centered approach would be, but I think it is worth it. It can also be confusing occasionally to outsiders that I am "inconsistent" appearing to them.

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects?
Drawbacks are that sometimes it is hard to communicate our style to others who are caring for her. Most people "get" parent-centered or child-centered even if they don't agree, a more balanced approach can often be hard for them to understand.

Do you have any regrets?
Not about being family-centered, sometimes I screw up for sure and regret when that happens.

Why did you start living this way? Philosophy? Personality? Response to immediate needs? Rebelling against how your parents did it?
I mostly follow the P.E.T (Parenting Effectiveness Training) approach which is all about trying to come to win-win solutions for all sides. This is very similar to what my parents did on their own and it makes sense to me, reading the P.E.T. book really helped clarify it for me.

Is this different from how you grew up?
We try to be a bit more sympathetic/empathetic with DD than my parents were, but overall it is very similar for me. For DH he was parented very lightly for the most part, so it is more different for him, but I think the overall philosophy isn't that different.

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate? Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house?
So far it hasn't been an issue with friends/family that parent differently. Most seem to be going for a balanced approach too anyway.

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?
My DD is pretty good, but she's also an intense 3-year-old, so pretty good for that isn't really that great TBH smile.gif

Do you know how other people view your children?
Most people think DD is cute, smart, stubborn & intense, not sure beyond that, some might think she is a tad spoiled and honestly she probably is sometimes as she is still an only, but not for too much longer!

Katie trekkie.gif - Married to Mike 06/02/01, Mom to Sydney Anne born 11/21/09 and Alice Maeryn & Oliver Thomas born 04/24/13  hug.gif 

 

 

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Old 02-19-2013, 10:00 AM
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house?  Family centred, although as with others I would say we were Child Centred for most of the first year.

 

 

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did?  What kept you from identifying with another term?

 

 

Would other people describe your house the same way?  (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".)  Some friends/family who are very parent centred would probably consider us child centred.

 

What are the good things you like about doing it this way? Just seems to make sense!  No one is more important than anyone else in our family.  I would say that we do try to focus our attention on DS, and plan weekends, evenings around him (DH and I both work full time), but if something has to get done that isn't "fun" but is grown-up stuff that has to happen, it still happens.  We are happy, DS is happy, and we feel we are supporting DS to grow up to be a happy, confident, independent, compassionate adult who still wants to have dinner with us (love this btw, and totally agree Red Pajama).

 

 

What are the drawbacks?   Some days it would be really nice to just do what I want to do.

 

 

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects?  At this early stage, no problems, generally.

 

 

Do you have any regrets? At this stage, no regrets.  If things aren't working, we will change as the need arises.

 

 

Why did you start living this way?  Philosophy?  Personality?  Response to immediate needs?  Rebelling against how your parents did it?  I've just been guided by what feels right for my son and my family.  DS is/was fairly "high needs" so focusing on his needs while also respecting the needs of the family as a whole has just worked for us.  It's also important to me to teach him to consider others, and I feel we've done that too (as much as you can with a 30 month old!). 

 

 

Is this different from how you grew up? Yes and no.  My parents were family centred (when my mom was home, she really focused her attention on us.  Sunday dinner was sacred "family time", our feelings were usually considered, my parents both always treated us as part of the decision making team (but maybe with less voting rights) , but my mom had her own business and is/was a work-aholic.  So she considered her long hours of work and time away as part of being "family centred" because in her mind it was all for her "family".  I would have rather just had her around than have a new bike or skiing lessons.  I am making career/job decisions specifically in reaction to not having her around very much when I was young.  I want to be there for DS.

 

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate?  Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house? Yes, it does grate.  Especially when they complain about how "bad" their child is and the situation has attachment issues written all over it.  It is hard not to suggest some alternatives, but at the same time I try to respect their choices because I would not/do not appreciate being told to "just let him cry" or "what?  You are still BFing your 2 year old???"

  

 

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?  Hasn't really been an issue yet, although it is a bit of an issue at DSs new dayhome which I am discovering is much more rigid with rules/expectations than we are at home. 

 

 

Do you know how other people view your children? I've had friends comment on how "cool" he is, and people comment on his good manners.  DH and I really just focus on teaching manners and desirable behaviours by modeling them at home and this seems to have worked really well.  I rarely remind DS to say thank-you when he forgets, but he usually does not forget.  People have also commented on his empathy.  He is very concerned about others, if they are hurt, sad, etc. and will run over to give a hug to the crying child.  He is generally very good at sharing, etc.  Maybe this is just his personality, but I like to think a bit of it is parenting (maybe not though!)

 

 

 

I'm excited to hear your responses, and look forward to the conversation, but please

 

Keep it sweet! blowkiss.gif


N, wife to my goofball K partners.gif and mamma to my EC grad D (July 2010) and my new little love S (May 2013).  Exploring the uncharted territory of tandem nursing with my two boys.

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Old 02-19-2013, 10:01 AM
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house?  Completely family centered with a big dose of "child-led". But I guess my definition would encase all of the terms at the same time. We focus on time as a family, the kids have been included in our lives since day one. They have their spaces in the house, they are asked to keep them clean at times and at other times we've been knee deep in a horrible toy mess. But while it's everyone's house and they have their space, mom and dad also pay for it so sometimes it needs to be clean and when they draw on the walls that is certainly a no-no! I can respect that others feel comfortable with that but if we want to sell that means a large part of my time is drawn away from family time to paint. We let the kids lead us as to when the right time for them to do something is, *as long as it's benefiting everyone in the family*. They chose when to stop breastfeeding, and for the most part set their bedtimes/wake up times, they chose when they were ready for the potty. But I for the life of me have a hard time sleeping with anyone in the room, including my husband. The children would not benefit from me being so tired (health issues worsen when I'm tired) so they either slept in the bassinet or in their own room from quite little, my oldest never minded, my second would have loved to cosleep, I did a bit for the first 6 months. Maybe this was more Parent centered but I believe it made me a better parent and allowed me to have more time to spend with the children which in the long run benefits them and our goal of being together as a family.

 

Would other people describe your house the same way? I think some people would see us as child centered, other people as parent centered. I believe to be family centered we do have time when we are child focused and times when we are parent focused. Just like our children sometimes need our 100% undivided attention, sometimes mom and dad need time together or alone to be well with each other & ourselves. Only when we are well with each other & ourselves are we able to give the children the best of ourselves :)

 

What are the good things you like about doing it this way? I feel like for the most part we all get what we need, sometimes we are disappointed and sometimes we have to struggle through things we don't love. But I think the trials and disappointments make us stronger people.

 

What are the drawbacks?  Guilt (finding the balance of how much my body can handle with my health issues) and judgement. I feel if we are 100% child focused we are judged that are children are too spoiled. If we are too parent centered then we are judged that the kids are acting out because they don't have enough time with us...

 

Do you have any regrets? Only that I was so sick for so long without a diagnosis. My kids are awesome, but my oldest had to be more independent earlier that I wanted. Of course that makes for a really awesome balance now as she's still into big time play with her younger sister but can make breakfast for both of them and her lunch for school (although she still needs a little guidance in balanced meal prep ;) ) I really really really love how our family works and takes everyone's needs into account.

 

Why did you start living this way?  Philosophy?  Personality?  Response to immediate needs?  Rebelling against how your parents did it? A bit of everything. It just worked. 

 

Is this different from how you grew up? Yes. My parents were very parent focused, DH's were very child focused (to a detriment to both his parents mental and physical health and to his borthers, and his to an extent)

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate? Yes and I feel it really impacts their child(ren). However not my child(ren) not my choice. While it bugs me I try and ignore it.

 

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?  Yes

 

Do you know how other people view your children? For the most part they consider them good kids, but they are still kids so they all have their quirks :)


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Old 02-20-2013, 04:54 AM
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house?  

 

Right now, I consider our house to be child-centered.

 

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did?  What kept you from identifying with another term?

 

I didn't vote, because I consider that being child-centered is temporary, and we move more and more towards "adult-centered" as the kids grow older. (The term parent-centered still implies that you identify yourself as a parent first.)

For example, when the kids were babies and toddlers, me and dh didn't even sleep in the same bed, so we can all get some rest and the kids can nurse through the night. We took turns staying home with them; this meant one of us not working, or working opposite shifts, so we practically didn't see each other the whole week.

Now we claimed our bed back as dd is getting closer to weaning. She just started daycare this week and we can move on with our careers.

Our week-ends are very busy now driving ds to his activities, but again, this is temporary too.

In a couple of years, I want to send them spend their summer vacation with their grandparents, so me and dh can have a couple of months just for ourselves :)

 

Would other people describe your house the same way?  (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".)

 

I think other people would describe us as child-centered as well.

 

What are the good things you like about doing it this way?

 

I like that I get to fully enjoy my kids' babyhood and childhood and be there every step of the way. My biggest satisfaction is that I have no regrets looking back.

 

What are the drawbacks?  

 

I can't see any drawbacks, other than being tired sometimes, but I guess that as a parent, it's part of the job description, regardless if you are child-centered or not.

 

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects?  

 

We don't really have any serious problems. The kids are misbehaving sometimes, and we are losing our cool, but we are all human beings and at the end of the day if we can say I'm sorry and strive to do better, all's good.

 

Do you have any regrets?

 

I think I answered this question, see above :)

 

Why did you start living this way?  Philosophy?  Personality?  Response to immediate needs?  Rebelling against how your parents did it?

 

As a response to immediate needs first, and personality second. When I had my ds I had no clue how to care for a baby and luckily no family around to influence me, so I did what was instinctive.

 

Is this different from how you grew up?

 

Very different. I had an absentee father and a mom who was mostly unstable. They were very permissive, bordering on neglectful.

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate?  Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house?

 

I don't know anyone who does things completely the opposite way, but I have friends and family who do things differently. Sometimes I watch and learn from them, sometimes (if I don't agree) I mention how we do things, but if the kids seem happy and the parents have their best interest at heart, this is all that matters.

 

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?  

 

You mean discipline-wise? No, I don't, and I'm not flexible either. No one interferes in the way I parent (except dh, of course).

 

Do you know how other people view your children?

 

Yes, I never hear but positive things especially about ds who has more independent interactions with people. His teachers, instructors, neighbours, grandparents, girls at school :) they are all appreciative of him.


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Old 02-23-2013, 01:23 PM
 
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I chose parent-centered for both. I grew up in a VERY formal, strict parent-centered home. Our current home is much more casual, fun, creative. Myself, I consider it family-centered. But I think on this forum we would be considered parent-centered. I think when the kids were infants we were child-centered. I think one has to be. When they were toddlers probably the same. Now our kids are 6 and 8. We make a lot of family decisions, but DH and I have the final say, so that really has to qualify as parent-centered. I think when they are teens we will have to change again.

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Old 03-05-2013, 11:07 AM
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house?

 

I've tried to make my home very child-centered.

 

Would other people describe your house the same way?

 

Nope, everyone I know thinks I'm TOO child-centered.

 

What are the good things you like about doing it this way?

 

Children's needs should come first.  Not that I spoil my kids, but if the children are happy and their needs are taken care of, especially the younger kids, then everyone's more happy.

 

What are the drawbacks?

 

Less parental freedom, sometimes need to limit activities, etc, because it's harder on the little ones.

 

Do you have any regrets?

 

I should probably be more family oriented and work more with everyone's needs- even the little ones should learn patience and sharing.

 

Why did you start living this way?  Philosophy?  Personality?  Response to immediate needs?  Rebelling against how your parents did it?

 

I grew up in a "do as I say, not as I do" and "when I say jump, you say how high" kind of family.  My Mother believed in controlling every single aspect of my daily life, even down to what I would wear and how I would put my hair, until I was in my teens.

 

Is this different from how you grew up?

 

I wanted my kids to be kids, not living dolls.

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate?  Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house?

 

My fiance is more parent oriented, though not as bad as my Mom was, thank God!  Of course, that was his upbringning.  I'm more along "change the environment to fit the two year old's needs" and he's more "tell the two year old not to touch the nicknacks or maybe we should put him in a playpen".  We're working on a compromise- more family oriented- before we marry.  

 

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?

 

My younger son's only two, so there's a limit to his flexibility in any situation.  My older son is 17 and he actually tells me he prefers my fiance's parenting style, just not if it was towards him.

 

Do you know how other people view your children?

 

My little one also has sensory issues and is possibly on the spectrum, so his quirks are very often attributed to me being to "soft" on him.


I pray for the day Family Court recognizes that CHILDREN have rights, parents only have PRIVILEGES.  Only then, will I know my child is safe.
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by kblackstone444 View Post

 

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate?  Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house?

 

My fiance is more parent oriented, though not as bad as my Mom was, thank God!  Of course, that was his upbringning.  I'm more along "change the environment to fit the two year old's needs" and he's more "tell the two year old not to touch the nicknacks or maybe we should put him in a playpen".  We're working on a compromise- more family oriented- before we marry.  

 

Oooooh!  There's a question that was missed!  

 

What about spouses/partners?  Do they have different styles?

 

 

 

 

And I keep thinking about this comment from kathymuggle:

Quote:
Family centered does not seem like an in-between term to me, it sound like a different one - more where the wants and needs of most of the family members are considered.

 


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Old 03-12-2013, 10:09 PM
 
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I'm keeping it short because my only child is 6 months old - we're definitely still figuring things out! But I'm interested to read other responses.

 

I chose "family-centered" more because that is my ideal. In reality, we are pretty child-centric at the moment simply because we have a difficult and young baby who requires a lot of time. As he is getting older and (in some ways) less demanding, we are working to reclaim some parent-space for ourselves. In my mind, "family-centered" means that the majority of decisions are based on what is best for the family as a unit, and it's not a parents-vs-kids situation. Neither is more important, and neither is UNimportant. Just due to the nature of adults vs kids, I expect that my husband and I will make more sacrifices to benefit the children than vice versa, but I do expect that our child(ren) will ultimately end up spending less time with us/getting less stuff/etc. than they might want because we have needs, too. Like the fact that I am already planning a trip to Disneyworld next year for my birthday without my son, because I want some time alone with my husband, and I've never been and want to go and have fun. I think family-centered living is all about balance, and balance is NOT going to mean equal time/means split between parents and kids. It does mean that neither side should feel like they are always "losing", or even like we are on different sides.


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Old 03-17-2013, 10:11 PM
 
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What sounds like the closest description to your house?  like others said today it is family centered. but when dd was younger of course it was child centered. 

 

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did?  What kept you from identifying with another term?

however for us family centered means sometimes child centered, sometimes mommy centered (single parent here). as dd has grown i have gotten more of my needs met. but now that dd is hitting puberty i find it is kinda going back more towards child centered than mommy centered. esp. when she is having a hard day. i feel in our house we switch roles. somedays dd is the child and i am the mother. other times its me who is beign taken cared of when i am exhausted. both of us having hormone issues - mine menopause and dd puberty - has made us empathise each others situation. we both cant seem to help being a b**** sometimes. now that dd is going through the emotional aspect of puberty she understands how i feel sometimes too. 

 

Would other people describe your house the same way?  (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".)

AH. most people think i do way too much child centered. that i spoil dd too much. my house should be a parent centered house. 

 

What are the good things you like about doing it this way?

dunno about good or bad. switching between parent centered and child centered keeps harmony, peace and love in our house. 

 

What are the drawbacks?  

 

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects?  

no problems because our lifestyle evolved. i never thought of ok from tomorrow on it will be a family centered household. what really happened was that being a single mom i could not handle not getting my time. 

 

Do you have any regrets?

nope!!! though i wont really have them till dd is an adult and tells me of what her experience of childhood was, and how different it is from my memory. 

 

Why did you start living this way?  Philosophy?  Personality?  Response to immediate needs?  Rebelling against how your parents did it?

it really began with response to immediate need. dd was high needs and she taught me how to be her mother. i wanted to be her mother, not a mother. i have always loved children. i am fascinated with dd and i always try to write an instructions manual. just my curiosity towards this squirmy thing is what made me parent the way i do. plus as an anthropology student and seeing child rearing all around teh world it is so important to have a family centered hh. 

 

Is this different from how you grew up?

yes. mainly parent centered in my house but not in a v. drastic way. parents had last say, but they did try to be family centered. 

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate?  Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house?

ugh. it GRATES. coz its dd's dad's place. and it does a number on her when it isnt family centered. 

 

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?  

yes absolutely. in fact dd has known since a toddler that every house has their own rules. 

 

Do you know how other people view your children?

yes i do. some think she is the cat's miaow. some think she is way too opinionated and should behave like a child. overall they do think she is well mannered and very respectful. and yes i do think living in two different households has definitely helped being able to stay open to others points of view. 


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Old 03-21-2013, 10:59 AM
 
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Originally Posted by SweetSilver View Post

What sounds like the closest description to your house?  Family Centered, I think.  Although, after reading some descriptions, I'm not sure?  To me this means we work together as a family to solve problems.  We take the children's feelings into account when making decisions but in the same token, they need to respect our needs and feelings as well.  We all need chores around the house and admit we all have problems keeping our rooms clean or picking up our stuff from around the house.  To me being family centered means that sometimes the wants of the parents trumps the wants of the child and vice versa but we have all discussed it and are all on the same page about it.  As you can probably tell... we discuss and talk about things a LOT in our household. 

 

If you feel in-between-y, why did you choose the description you did?  What kept you from identifying with another term?  Chose it because it implied that everyone worked together to achieve a common goal- whether it be keeping the house clean or choosing the movie to watch.

 

Would other people describe your house the same way?  (For example, you might consider yourself "family-centered", whereas your zero-rules friend might see it as "parent centered".)  Some people would say I was more child centered, I think.  Especially when the kids were younger. 

 

What are the good things you like about doing it this way?  I like how much we talk together.  I like that I feel like we're "in this together" if we have a problem or need to find common ground on something.  I like that parents aren't always right in our house, if that makes any sense.  But it doesn't mean I never get tired and say to them "Look, please just do this because I'm feeling too tired to argue with you today!"

 

What are the drawbacks?  I have trouble pursuing my own things sometimes because I will miss my family.  I do, however, go out regularly with my husband for dinners, dancing, etc.

 

If you attribute problems to your lifestyle, how do you deal with the negative aspects?  There is what some people would call "an attitude" or "backtalk".  My son especially, and it's probably the age, will roll his eyes or get sarcastic.  I ignore a lot of stuff other parents might see as a problem.

 

Do you have any regrets?  Since I fell into this naturally and it feels instinctive to me, I don't think I would have regrets. 

 

Why did you start living this way?  Philosophy?  Personality?  Response to immediate needs?  Rebelling against how your parents did it?  Attachment parenting, unconditional parenting, How to Talk... all those books really just felt right to me.  They validated what I already felt about parenting in general.  As my children got past the baby stage, we went from more child centered to more family centered. 

 

Is this different from how you grew up? 

 

Do you have a friend who lives the "opposite" way, and if so, does it grate?  Or are you OK with it as long as it isn't *your* house?  If it grated on me, I probably wouldn't go there in the first place but I'm pretty laid back.  I don't punish my children- we definitely follow a more natural consequences route (or logical if I'm unwilling to deal with natural consequences- like I'd rather help an unwilling child with homework everyday than let them fail if their teacher tells me they're struggling in a class).  but I get frustrated when a child's friend is grounded for the weekend or is being punished in a way that prevents them from seeing my kids because it ends up punishing my child as well. 

 

Do you consider your children to be flexible when they visit households with different expectations?  Yes.  I will probably hear about it later, though.  whistling.gif

 

Do you know how other people view your children?  I have been told I have polite, adaptable, easy going children.  I think I do, too! I think personality plays a role in this as well as parenting style, though. 

 

 

I'm excited to hear your responses, and look forward to the conversation, but please

 

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