Parents who do things differently (no "sigh") - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 05:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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There is another mommy in DS's school who has 3 kids. The kids are all well-adjusted and she's a caring mommy.

However, there are certain things she does that really irks me:

She send the kids (even the 18 m.o.) to school with pure junk i.e. instead of normal applesauce, she sends berry berry swirl applesauce with lots of artificial colors, etc. (And that is hardly the worst). Her toddler guzzles bottle after bottle of apple juice all day. You get the idea.

Well, it's hardly surprising that with eating habits like that, all the kids have weight problems (the mom doesn't).

And today, I saw her loading up the baby into the car with a carseat that was clearly very old and was the kind with the pull-down bar - you know, the ones that meet minimum safety standards, but most experts don't consider these safe anymore? (I think it's called an overhead shield).

Am being too judgmental? What do you do?

I am thinking of gently speaking with the mother about the carseat, but I won't touch the kids diet with a 10-foot pole.
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#2 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 05:41 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Chavelamomela View Post
There is another mommy in DS's school who has 3 kids. The kids are all well-adjusted and she's a caring mommy.
If her kids are happy and well-adjusted and her carseat does meet safety standards what exactly, is the problem?

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#3 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 05:48 PM
 
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Am being too judgmental?

Yes, you are.
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#4 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 05:50 PM
 
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I wouldn't touch the diet issues. I learn best from other people when I see from their example, not from them trying to tell me how to do something. On the other hand, I think that you could safely mention that her carseat only meets the minimal standards and that there are better ones out there for just as little money (if there are). I actually quite like it when people tell me about good products that I can buy.

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#5 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 06:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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The annoying part is that when she sends junk to school, all the kids share and me (and all the other mommies) hate when our kids get such junk.

I guess this is just one of those things that we can't do anything about...
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#6 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 06:11 PM
 
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Am being too judgmental?
Put yourself in her shoes: if you found out that she was posting on the internet about what an uptight parent you are, would you mind? What if she said something like, "her kids are happy and well-adjusted, but she lets them sleep in her bed! And they never get to drink juice. With habits like that, it's hardly surprising that her kids aren't like the other kids at school."

Would that bother you?
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#7 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 06:12 PM
 
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Yeah too judgmental IMO.
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#8 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 06:16 PM
 
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Yeah, I think you'll have to leave that one alone. I don't use one now, but I really loved my pull down car seat when my 7 year old was a baby. Come to think of it, I have a friend that I saw put her daughter in one just yesterday. I would never, EVER, criticize her parenting because I know that she's good where it counts.

Just bite your tongue and improve your own parenting...there's got to be SOME room for improvement, right?

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#9 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 06:18 PM
 
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She probably thinks she *is* feeding her kids healthy stuff... you know, applesauce and juice, instead of twinkies and cokes.
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#10 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 06:21 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Chavelamomela View Post
There is another mommy in DS's school who has 3 kids. The kids are all well-adjusted and she's a caring mommy.

However, there are certain things she does that really irks me:

She send the kids (even the 18 m.o.) to school with pure junk i.e. instead of normal applesauce, she sends berry berry swirl applesauce with lots of artificial colors, etc. (And that is hardly the worst). Her toddler guzzles bottle after bottle of apple juice all day. You get the idea.

Well, it's hardly surprising that with eating habits like that, all the kids have weight problems (the mom doesn't).

And today, I saw her loading up the baby into the car with a carseat that was clearly very old and was the kind with the pull-down bar - you know, the ones that meet minimum safety standards, but most experts don't consider these safe anymore? (I think it's called an overhead shield).

Am being too judgmental? What do you do?

I am thinking of gently speaking with the mother about the carseat, but I won't touch the kids diet with a 10-foot pole.

In regards to the carseat, maybe she can't afford a better one?
As for the diet, I see your point, but why is the DC provider/teacher allowing food sharing to go on? This could be dangerous if dood allergies are present in any child and it simply isn't sanitary. Skip the mom and go straight to the teacher. Food, no matter how healthy, should not be shared among preschool friends.

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#11 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 06:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Put yourself in her shoes: if you found out that she was posting on the internet about what an uptight parent you are, would you mind? What if she said something like, "her kids are happy and well-adjusted, but she lets them sleep in her bed! And they never get to drink juice. With habits like that, it's hardly surprising that her kids aren't like the other kids at school."

Would that bother you?
nope.:

But I do see your point.

There are issues, and then there are ISSUES. This is not one.
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#12 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 06:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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In regards to the carseat, maybe she can't afford a better one?
As for the diet, I see your point, but why is the DC provider/teacher allowing food sharing to go on? This could be dangerous if dood allergies are present in any child and it simply isn't sanitary. Skip the mom and go straight to the teacher. Food, no matter how healthy, should not be shared among preschool friends.
I agree, but these kids are 2 y.o. They share - it's very hard to stop.

And there is a no-peanut rule.
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#13 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 06:27 PM
 
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Yes, IMHO you are being too judgmental. You say her children are happy and well adjusted, so I really dont think you have anything to criticize. She may be raising her kids differently from you, but we are all entitled to our own choices as far a childrearing so long as our children are happy, healthy and well-adjusted in the end.

About the carseat.. they do still make them like that, and while it wouldnt be your choice, as long as its not expired I dont think you have a right to criticize her.. Maybe money is an issue and it was given to her as a gift?

And about the food choices.. I can think of whole lot worse items she could be feeding her kids.. like kool-aid, ho-hos instead of applesauce and juice. They are her kids and be glad she's feeding them.. some kids arent even that fortunate.
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#14 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 06:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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And about the food choices.. I can think of whole lot worse items she could be feeding her kids.. like kool-aid, ho-hos instead of applesauce and juice. They are her kids and be glad she's feeding them.. some kids arent even that fortunate.
She gives them that too!

I was just using the applesauce as an example, because instead of buying normal regular applesauce, she buys the super-artificial kind.

...forget it.
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#15 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 07:05 PM
 
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I don't think there is anything you can do.

If she didn't have a carseat then I'd really be concerned.
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#16 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 07:14 PM
 
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If my son was being exposed to artificial colors, which affect his quality of life, at school, I would ask the school to change policy. I would provide them with some of the research on the food colorings and benzoate preservatives and help them write a letter to give to all parents about the necessity of keeping this stuff out of food sent to school that might be shared with other children.
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#17 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 07:15 PM
 
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Oh please. I think if you hadn't asked "Am I being too judgmental?" people would have been all over this thread agreeing with you. I'm sure most would also advise you not to say anything, definitely about the food, maybe on the carseat. I might think about telling the mom that the overhead shield seat is out of date, and did you know WalMart sells a good carseat called the Cosco Scenera for $40.

I think all of us can be judgmental in our own heads. It's only when we talk about it out loud (or post online) that it becomes a problem.
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#18 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 07:23 PM
 
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I think you are being to judgemental, but no more than I would be honestly.

I wouldn't say anything about it, but I would bring up in conversation how I love the fact that there are so many food options for kids now that we just didn't see as much a few years ago. Isn't it great that they have the natural organic applesauce in the little containers now, I love that I'm not feeding my kids extra sugar or fake colors. It isn't calling her out on it, but maybe educating her a little

And I judge other peoples parenting all the time, I think we all do. There is a difference between disapproving of the way that someone does something, and calling them out on it though.
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#19 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 08:19 PM
 
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Oh please. I think if you hadn't asked "Am I being too judgmental?" people would have been all over this thread agreeing with you.
I don't think so -- I've noticed a major trend that when people come here to tsk tsk about the way someone else is parenting, pretty much everyone steps in and calls out the OP on being judgemental.

You're right that most people here probably *don't* think that the best way to parent is to feed junk food and use cheap carseats, but that doesn't mean they have to join in on condemning someone else for doing so. I mean, what can people really say? "Oh, what a bad mom! I'm glad we're not like her!"

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#20 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 08:28 PM
 
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Ah, to worry about stuff like this....:

My 3.5 y.o. (who has a feeding disorder and autism, among other things...) eats that fruity applesauce. We're thrilled. We can mix his enzymes in it. It's something that's sort of got texture to it (as in not a smooth puree...which take up about 50% of his diet...) and he actually eats it! Willingly!

When you're dropping wads of cash...as in 5 digits...every year out of pocket to pay for stuff like therapy and weighted blankets, etc., you really don't sweat about stuff like "omg, is this applesauce organic and dye free?" Who cares. Bigger fish to fry, much more important stuff to worry about in the universe.

Priorities. Gotta love 'em.
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#21 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 10:06 PM
 
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Am being too judgmental? What do you do?
I am thinking of gently speaking with the mother about the carseat, but I won't touch the kids diet with a 10-foot pole.
Yes, I think you are. You can tell her about the out dated carseat if you must but that's about it IMO. The other things are simply judgmental.
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#22 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 10:10 PM
 
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Am being too judgmental?
Yes.

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#23 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 10:25 PM
 
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I would talk to the teacher about food sharing- I would be having an absolute fit if my kids were getting food dyes at school. My kids really react badly to that stuff. But I'd bring it up with the teachers, not with any of the parents sending in the junk.

I'm not sure how to ask about carseat safety. She could be using a very old, expired seat and not know any better, nor have resources to replace it. Or she could have a fairly new seat that's the old style. I know I went crazy looking for an inexpensive seat that didn't have the overhead shield when DS ws a baby. Kmart didn't carry any, Babies R Us didn't carry any, and I had to schlepp out to Walmart (quite far from my house) to get one. Of course, they had a bunch of convertible seats with the shield and only one without. That was only 5 years ago.

If the seat is "clearly very old" then it may no longer be safe. Maybe you can ask the teachers at school if they could talk to her about carseat safety, or pass along information? There's probably no way to approach her directly without it coming across all wrong.

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#24 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 10:41 PM
 
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that sort of stuff bugs me. especially the poor nutrition. those car seats are surprisingly still on the market and meet all current safety standards. and I have met people who surprisingly were looking for them. But you have to remember that minimum safety standards are still safety standards and her car seat is as safe as it needs to be for her comfort. So long as it is installed and used properly and current it would be snotty to say that it just isn't good enough.

as for the food, the only time I would speak up is she started whining about how chubby her kids are. My neighbor whines about how her children inherited their chubbiness but really all they inherited is that they eat at fast food restaurents 40+ times a month (no exaggeration)! I would also talk to the school about not allowing kids to share. it is just too dangerous these days. Preferences aside. but also it might be worth it to remind the teachers that you choose your child's food carefully and would rather them not eat anything without your permission.

If you really feel you must do something to address the car seat thing could you maybe talk to the car seat safety people and to the school and schedule some sort of after school car seat safety check (hey its for everyone convenience right )

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#25 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 10:42 PM
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I would mention the carseat. That's an issue of child safety which I think every parent is concerned with, regardless of parenting style. As far as the food goes, as long as their are rules which keep their kids from sharing...well, the world is full of different people
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#26 of 235 Old 07-17-2007, 11:01 PM
 
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Lots of parents love the Over the head Shields. I told my mom i wanted one of those....needless to say I know better now. My DS rides in a Raidan. They are usually cheaper than 5 point models. My DS rode in one for nearly three years, and I am sorry but I would feel judged if someone told me I needed a better carseat..a link for carseat safety or other helpful info yes. ...but just saying its not good blah blah. That doesn't help.

I would much rather a child ride in a cheap over the head shield carseat than no carseat at all.

As for diet. LOTS of parents think, juice and kids items are healthy eating. Most parents don't blink an eye at the label. My own sister was like..Sprite has fruit juice in it..its okay to drink

Just a few thoughts
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#27 of 235 Old 07-18-2007, 10:50 AM
 
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Yes, I think you are being too judgemental.

If her carseats appear to be outdated, I would consider saying something. But as far as I know, they do still make overhead shield seats, so they could be just fine.

As far as the food goes ... well, I'd tell myself she probably thinks applesauce and apple juice are healthy because they are fruit, kwim?

It's really not your place to get involved, and while I can understand not wanting to expose your kid to artificial dyes, I'd take that up with the teacher.

Even at 2, they can keep the kids from sharing. My son went to a wonderful Waldorf preschool last year with 2-4 year olds and they all sat down at the table and I never saw food sharing going on. The teachers sweetly helped each kid eat their meal.. it's quite possible and I'd take that up with the teacher.

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#28 of 235 Old 07-18-2007, 01:32 PM
 
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If my son was being exposed to artificial colors, which affect his quality of life, at school, I would ask the school to change policy. I would provide them with some of the research on the food colorings and benzoate preservatives and help them write a letter to give to all parents about the necessity of keeping this stuff out of food sent to school that might be shared with other children.
I would teach my son not to share food that other children bring to school.
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#29 of 235 Old 07-18-2007, 11:03 PM
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If her carseats appear to be outdated, I would consider saying something. But as far as I know, they do still make overhead shield seats, so they could be just fine.

.
They still make them. They aren't 'just fine'.
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#30 of 235 Old 07-19-2007, 12:19 AM
 
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Ah, to worry about stuff like this....:

My 3.5 y.o. (who has a feeding disorder and autism, among other things...) eats that fruity applesauce. We're thrilled. We can mix his enzymes in it. It's something that's sort of got texture to it (as in not a smooth puree...which take up about 50% of his diet...) and he actually eats it! Willingly!

When you're dropping wads of cash...as in 5 digits...every year out of pocket to pay for stuff like therapy and weighted blankets, etc., you really don't sweat about stuff like "omg, is this applesauce organic and dye free?" Who cares. Bigger fish to fry, much more important stuff to worry about in the universe.

Priorities. Gotta love 'em.
Dude. Word.

Every time I see someone post "OMG junk food!" or "Oh noes I saw a kid eating cookies and white pasta!" I cringe a little.

I feed my kid apple juice, because she will drink it. If I thought she would happily eat bright blue Barney applesauce with candy sprinkles, I would buy 2 packages. Maybe your kid will drink organic goat's milk and eat sprouted bread sandwiches. Lucky you..

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