|Originally posted by irishprincess71
Since when has teaching manners become a control issue? Do you also consider requiring a child to say please, thank you or your welcome also control and not merely being polite and mannerly?
Well, I'm not either of the above but, personally, yes I do. Of course, I also believe that if you model these behaviors they will most likely sink in. Both my husband and myself are always openly polite to one another, to everyone around us (with the occasional slip, of course, when we're zoned out or really irritated - quite human) and also to our own son (something many parents overlook, IMO) and, as a result, ds has been saying please, thank you, and you're welcome (also excuse me and 'bless you' for sneezes) for better than a year (he is now 2.5). We have never expected it of him or forced him to say those things, he has just picked it up because we treat it as par for the course, appropriate, routine behavior. Of course, I don't foster the illusion that he will necessarily always be this polite. I certainly hope
we will, but if not then we will address his lack of 'manners' when the time comes that he is consistently failing in them. It will be addressed in a respectful manner, however, because I want the choice to behave respectfully toward others to come from within him.
|Children do not automatically become polite at a certain age; they must be taught it and asking to be excused from the table could be considered politeness to those around them.
I disagree. Children learn to do what is modeled for them. The problem lies in the fact that many parents practice the "Do as I say, not as I do" method of parenting. How many parents have you heard asking if they
can be excused from the table? Not many, I'll wager. That's why it's control - it's authoritarian. The message it conveys is "I am in charge of whether or not you may leave the table - you must ask me for permission before you move." If it was about *manners*, then parents should ask, too, because we should all be polite to one another, regardless of age. Likewise, I rarely hear parents say please, thank you, excuse me, etc. to their children and often not even to others around them. But those same parents are notably horrified when their children do not grace others with those practices.
|Manners by definition is "the socially correct way of acting, etiquette" "the prevailing systems or modes of social conduct of a specific society."
I have a problem with there being a separate set of manners for children. If we don't practice it ourselves, we should not expect it of our children (and sometimes not even then - they are
children, after all - not mini-adults). IMO, that is hypocritical and smacks of control.
To everyone: Thank you for your thoughts - you all are awesome! And MamaintheBoonies, I agree with whoever it was who wrote that you
are a rockin' mama - that must be so heartwrenching for you. I only hope I can handle any similar situations with such compassion and grace