What all is Non-negotiable? - Page 7 - Mothering Forums

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#181 of 261 Old 02-05-2006, 02:07 PM
 
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just to jump in ... i find all this quite fascinating. but i can feel the pressure all day that maybe i am not being consensual enough and it is kind of making me crazy. maybe i should start a separate thread on this ....... the other day dd scratched herself, said NO to antispectic cream and i let it go. i thought it was minor and forgot about it. today i saw that it looked pretty ugly. i put on the cream while she screamed. i got a lecture from dh. and i wonder if i had not been reading this thread and trying so hard to minimize coercion whether i would have handled it better from the beginning...? i dont know. i think it is the first time i have coerced and she looked mighty defeated afterwards.

relaxed-unschooler mama to dd (2003). hoping for second one. love being a mama!!
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#182 of 261 Old 02-05-2006, 03:50 PM
 
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I do think privledge, eductaion, money, etc..... helps. But I also wanted to make clear that our family has made economic choices that most would think are insane in order to live consensually....and not just for dd's sake, but everyone's sake. Dh and I are capable of making a great deal of money. We have advanced degrees in two very high income fields. We knew for certain when we got married that if we had children one of us would stay home. And because we each could make a great deal of money, this was a feasible option. And that is what we started out doing. I quit my job the day after dd was born and dh continued to work. And while I really liked the arrangement, dh did not. He did not like missing out on our daily family life. It was not agreeable to him to continue on as is. I was also not agreeable to me to go back to work full time either. So despite the fact that everyone we know thinks we are nuts, dh quit his very high paying job to venture forth and start own photography business. The nature of his business allows him to have dd with him any time he or she wants. To compensate for some of the lost income, I took a part time job as a bartender. The tips are good, I only have to be out of the home two nights a week, and I enjoy the work. We are dirt poor right now which was a compromise....we currently make about 1/10th of what we were when dh was working. But we are finally at a mutually agreeable situation. AND, even though we do seem nuts we did think of the "what ifs" of the situation. If I were to die, become ill, or leave, dh can continue his business without needing to rely on school/daycare (unless dd chooses to go to those places). And if dh were to be out of the picture, I am able to live on my bartending income by increasing the shifts to four a week, all of which start roughly one hour before dd goes to sleep for the night. We have access to caregivers that not only agree with consensual living but are also some of dd's favorite people that she could spend that hour with.

However, I do acknowledge that it took a certain amount of privledge to even have the luxury of pondering creative parenting and employment opportunities.
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#183 of 261 Old 02-05-2006, 04:43 PM
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Interesting post Yooper!

Quote:
I do think privledge, eductaion, money, etc..... helps. But I also wanted to make clear that our family has made economic choices that most would think are insane in order to live consensually....and not just for dd's sake, but everyone's sake
We feel the same! I agree that it is completely possible to live consensually without privledge or a big income! We are living paycheck to paycheck for the most part, even though like you and your husband, we have the capacity to earn more -- My husband wanted to go back to school though to pursue a degree he actually cares about and I very much wanted to stay home with our daughter...so that is what we did. In addition, my husband is a guitar and bass instructor and although the money is very good depending on the number of students... my husband cut the number of students he teaches in order to spend more time with dd and I.

I imagine it would be more difficult in a single parent situation, however I just wanted to pipe in as well and say that you don't have to be wealthy.

We are privledged in the sense that we have things like running water, electricity, clothing, food etc... and for that I am thankful -- but it certainly doesn't take a 6 figure income or unlimited time together to live consensually. On paper we live under the poverty level (though it doesn't feel like it because we are frugal, creative, and love voluntary simplicity!)

...so I suppose when people pose the suggestion or arguement that one must be wealthy or have unlimited time and resources to live consensually, I am living proof that it is not the case. Yes, I am fortunate to be able to stay home with our daughter, but as yooper said, it was a conscious decision certainly not made by our financial status!

I am not at all attempting to get into a "stay at home, working mom" debate... I am just suggesting that even if one works outside the home or is single, or whatever, consensual living is still possible. Due to time constraints etc, (like you will get fired if you aren't at work on time etc) I can see where it may not be possible in EVERY situation, but you can always try...and impliment it in every situation you are able -- to me, that would help make the situations that may not be so negotiable in the moment, run more smoothly -- because it would seem that the child would realize that whenever able (way more times than not) you are willing to live consensually.
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#184 of 261 Old 02-05-2006, 06:35 PM
 
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FTR - I am WOHM and I strive to live concentually.

I believe it's all in the intent - we all are challenged with something, be it single parenting, working outside of home, not being "financially stable", having multiple kids, etc., etc.,

I actually see that those challenges bring us closer together, and living consentually helps us all overcome those challenges.
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#185 of 261 Old 02-05-2006, 07:53 PM
 
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Thank you to all the consensual-living parents who wrote such great responses. I think I have been resisting believing that consensual living can work, because it is SO FAR from how I was raised...and I'm still not sure where on the continuum I fall, philosophically.

But it's great to see how this works in daily life, and it's inspiring.
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#186 of 261 Old 02-06-2006, 12:32 AM
 
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I got up to about page 5 and am still reading, but I wanted to say that I really liked what Maya and Sledg were saying. I have become so much different than how I was raised, and really try to respect my son's will and wishes on a lot of things. BUT I often feel there are times that he lacks the foresight or understanding on certain things as many pps have said..i.e. I was thinking about this last Thursday because that is when we have a certain Mom/Pop/Tot class. He often is busy playing after breakfast and says he doesn't want to go (he always does this, just as he always says he doesn't want to go home once we head home). He tends not to like transitions and just doesn't seem to understand that we can play cars all day, but this class only occurs once a week. I know he always loves it once we get there, and if we got there and he said he wanted to go home, we would go home. I do not force him to go physically or cajole him or threaten him. I simply keep getting us ready and we go. I don't stuff him crying in a stroller. On certain occasions when he protests more diligently, we don't go. I feel like it could be scary to a young toddler to feel that he has so much power, that the slightest resistence on his part can change the plans for the whole family. I think one can balance respecting a child's need for autonomy and need for guidance.
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#187 of 261 Old 02-06-2006, 12:12 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deva33mommy
I think there are many instances where a child could/would choose to do something they don't particularly want to do, for the good of the family. I don't see how coercing teaches empathy. I only know one other family that is consensual, and I know her kids sometimes *choose* to do things that wasn't their first choice, because it matters to someone else.
Speaking of puke earlier, and of kids doing things they don't particularly like for the good of the family, I want to share this story. My son is 4, and he is very sensitive to smells and gross things. He gags if he's nearby when his little sister poops in his potty seat, gags at dirty diapers, gags if someone is throwing up, gags is someone has a huge snotball running down their face. But, he has been known to wipe a sister's gunky nose and clean up a sister's puke-because he loves them and wants to help. So gagging all the way, and without being asked, he will grab a tissue and wipe the snot or, as he did recently, grab a paper towel and wipe up the puke. It always amazes me. I just had to share and brag.

So I think kids really do have the capacity to see another person in need, and to help that person even if it means doing something they don't like. Come to think of it, my kids do this rather often.
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#188 of 261 Old 02-06-2006, 12:22 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sledg
Speaking of puke earlier, and of kids doing things they don't particularly like for the good of the family, I want to share this story. My son is 4, and he is very sensitive to smells and gross things. He gags if he's nearby when his little sister poops in his potty seat, gags at dirty diapers, gags if someone is throwing up, gags is someone has a huge snotball running down their face. But, he has been known to wipe a sister's gunky nose and clean up a sister's puke-because he loves them and wants to help. So gagging all the way, and without being asked, he will grab a tissue and wipe the snot or, as he did recently, grab a paper towel and wipe up the puke. It always amazes me. I just had to share and brag.

So I think kids really do have the capacity to see another person in need, and to help that person even if it means doing something they don't like. Come to think of it, my kids do this rather often.
That is so SWEET!
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#189 of 261 Old 02-11-2006, 03:36 AM
 
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I've read and explored this issue for years and finally found words for my perceptions.

You could say there were things ds "had" to do, without a context of compromise. Yet the context of significance that TCS attached to the absence of mutual agreements, I can honestly did not exist here. I think what I finally saw was that TCS did not have a language for taking the larger context more seriously than the surface exchange. On a spiritual level we were such equals, and the journey founded on such mutual trust and respect, nothing is lost here if ds "has to" go along with something very important to me, or vice versa. The language of a common preference presumed that if one was told they "had to" then trust or autonomy was lost. But this was just never true here, ever. We use the language of "Have too", and we have even enjoyed it! Both selfishly and as the person along for the ride....

I grumbled loudly when ds would insist I read him twenty million stories or else he would not fall asleep. I might scowl and pout if dh says he forgot something from the house and insists we must go back for it. Ds scowled and whined when I said the store closed in five minutes and he had sixty seconds to throw on coat and shoes. And it has never made a bit of difference between us. I really mean that.

Maybe it's because, we all get to say it. Or simply because, sometimes "have too" captures the person's truth in a moment with clarity and brevity~and we recognize it as a kind of truth, and trust in that. Beneath a surface of spontaneous grumbles and protests is the unspoken trust and confidence which reflects the REAL spirit and context of the exchange.

I suspect there are other people who walk away with the same impression of TCS. It took me awhile to put it into words, but I'm glad I did!

Mother is the word for God on the hearts and lips of all little children--William Makepeace Thackeray
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#190 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 03:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Another philosophical thread. Comments?

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#191 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 03:55 PM
 
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OMG. My poor DS must be an alien -- when he was 3 he used to set up binary requests - and then when each request was given him, he'd reject it and demand the other - back and forth - back and forth . . . . .

Example of real life situation. In bathroom at DS favorite sushi restaurant because DS wanted to go there (very consensual so far). DS says "I want to go potty" Mom: "OK - lets go potty" DS: "No. I want to wash hands" Mom: "OK - lets wash hand", DS: angrier now "No. I want to go potty". Repeat this back and forth and each time DS getting more and more upset.

Honestly - you all have exemplary children that these sort of lose-lose situations never seemed to be foisted on any of you . . . . .

TripMom . . . . . loving mom : to DS (7) and BBG (4.5)
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#192 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 04:02 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ambdkf
I think we learn about generosity by having a belief in the abundance of the universe. I can't imagine a child understanding generosity if they were not treated with generosity.
I couldn't disagree more. For example, lavishing a child with toys and gifts has never in the history of the universe had the effect you suggest.

TripMom . . . . . loving mom : to DS (7) and BBG (4.5)
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#193 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 04:07 PM
 
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Originally Posted by ambdkf
I seriously doubt a child has a burning desire to "run across a parking lot" they might, however, have a strong desire to run and you might happen to be in a parking lot. So, we would talk about what is happening in the parking lot and find a safe way to have the need met. Dh has never wanted to run across a parking lot either - but I would also explain to him that it might not be the best spot
This type of suggestion always leaves me My DC are apparently psychologically deft? At 19 months - heck, at 4 years - they do not follow the explanation you are suggesting. Maybe they don't have the patience or impulse control. Maybe they just don't want to listen. But detailed explanation of the "whys" in the world -- has ZERO effectiveness with the 19 month old - and more, but still limited effectiveness even at 4 years.

I guess my kids are hatched from an egg on this . . . . ????

TripMom . . . . . loving mom : to DS (7) and BBG (4.5)
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#194 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 04:14 PM
 
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Teeth brushing and riding in the car seat are the two big ones. He doesn't understand what will happen if he never brushes his teeth and I'm the one that will end up paying the dental bills. So I insist on that. Though I do try and make it as pleasant as possible and have only been met with resistance once.
He does have to wear a diaper if we go out but not in the house.
I will make him bathe if he manages to get a poopy diaper off all by himself. I have this fear of e Coli.
I guess if it's health/safety related, I try and be as accomodating as possible but in the end I'm going to insist. If it's going to have long term consequences I think I have to step in and guide him. And insist if it's necessary. If it's only going to affect the family for a few days/weeks then it isn't that big a deal.
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#195 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 04:15 PM
 
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Originally Posted by johub
Well I think it isnt so much as that we have no intention of using force, but that we see our way around it whenever possible. But arent hesitant to pull that trump card when we see that the situation come to it.
So we all may appear to be doing the same things at the beginning. Negotiating, making things fun, providing options and choices when availible. The difference comes in only if we have exhausted all options or time and we still have an uncooperative child, do you coerce or not. And it is in this final moment that we differ I believe. Although the tools we use up to that point may be very similar indeed.
:

I'm having this same discussion on another thread right now. Playful parenting, distracting, providing options -- these are tools that are not the unique purvue of the CL school of thought -- the defining moment for CL v. Non-CL is if the child still resists - do you coerce or not. e.g. if the child, against all attempts by the parent to compromise, etc. still does not want to get in the carseat -- do you stay home until child wants to go? or do you put child in carseat anyway?

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#196 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 04:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by TripMom
This type of suggestion always leaves me My DC are apparently psychologically deft? At 19 months - heck, at 4 years - they do not follow the explanation you are suggesting. Maybe they don't have the patience or impulse control. Maybe they just don't want to listen. But detailed explanation of the "whys" in the world -- has ZERO effectiveness with the 19 month old - and more, but still limited effectiveness even at 4 years.

I guess my kids are hatched from an egg on this . . . . ????
My experience has been that our son has learned to use judgement by having an opportunity to do so, rather than being expected "to listen" and obey. He listens to his own mind, I don't expect him "to mind" mine. We work to find solutions which meet his patience level, impulse control and needs for safety.

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#197 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 04:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by ambdkf:
I think we learn about generosity by having a belief in the abundance of the universe. I can't imagine a child understanding generosity if they were not treated with generosity.

TripMom:
Quote:
I couldn't disagree more. For example, lavishing a child with toys and gifts has never in the history of the universe had the effect you suggest.
I consider generosity and abundance from the universe in non-material things: freedom, autonomy, health, respect, intellect, ability, friendship, community, love, etc.

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#198 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 04:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TripMom
:

I'm having this same discussion on another thread right now. Playful parenting, distracting, providing options -- these are tools that are not the unique purvue of the CL school of thought -- the defining moment for CL v. Non-CL is if the child still resists - do you coerce or not. e.g. if the child, against all attempts by the parent to compromise, etc. still does not want to get in the carseat -- do you stay home until child wants to go? or do you put child in carseat anyway?
I do not force the carseat or going. We create solutions which work for both of us. I don't force my way. This is not what I want our child to see modelled.

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#199 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 04:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by ambdkf:
I think we learn about generosity by having a belief in the abundance of the universe. I can't imagine a child understanding generosity if they were not treated with generosity.


TripMom:
Quote:
I couldn't disagree more. For example, lavishing a child with toys and gifts has never in the history of the universe had the effect you suggest.


What exactly does that look like, not to treat a human being with generosity?

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#200 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 04:58 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scubamama
Originally Posted by ambdkf:
I think we learn about generosity by having a belief in the abundance of the universe. I can't imagine a child understanding generosity if they were not treated with generosity.

TripMom:

I consider generosity and abundance from the universe in non-material things: freedom, autonomy, health, respect, intellect, ability, friendship, community, love, etc.

Pat


ITA!! That's the exact distinction.

Material things are very often a cover for the lack of what scubamama said. It's not real generosity. In fact, can be the polar opposite.

I know, my mother is a hyper-consumer...
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#201 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 05:30 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TripMom
This type of suggestion always leaves me My DC are apparently psychologically deft? At 19 months - heck, at 4 years - they do not follow the explanation you are suggesting. Maybe they don't have the patience or impulse control. Maybe they just don't want to listen. But detailed explanation of the "whys" in the world -- has ZERO effectiveness with the 19 month old - and more, but still limited effectiveness even at 4 years.

I guess my kids are hatched from an egg on this . . . . ????
You know, I don't remember if it was on this old thread or another old one, but I chimed in that my kid was apparently unable to have discussions and make decisions like this, too.....He would just stare at me like, "what the heck are you talking about, I don't care if you want/need to cook dinner, I want to stay outside forever" - this was when he was about 16 months or so. He is now 2-1/2 and just really starting to "get it" and be able to negotiate things with me; but even now it's me offering various suggestions of what we can do, and him picking one, and if he can't decide, then I decide...he doesn't come up with his own solutions yet...and many times he is just happier with less choices and me just letting him know what's gonna happen next. SO, I really, truthfully, honestly believe that MUCH of this has to do with a child's temperament as much as anything else. Since we as adults are all so different, I have to believe that children are all different too, and while discussing and negotiating things might work early on with some children, it didn't with my son. We'll have to see what happens with my daughter....I'll be interested to see if she's more receptive or less receptive to discussions and negotiations at a young age or not.

I also have realized that while I think it's great for people to be happy with situations in daily life, I also have recently come to the conclusion that I don't want daily events like going grocery shopping, or leaving the park, or not being able to wear a certain shirt because it's in the laundry, or "having" to sit in the car seat to be such a big deal to my kid that we have to negotiate solutions to make us all happy...and that yes, you can be upset that we have to leave the park, or you can't wear a certain shirt, or bummed that we have to go grocery shopping or whatever, but that in the grand scheme of things it's not really that big a deal and you can deal and get over it and move on and have a great day at whatever thing we "had to" go do, because we have fun (and find fun) with each other no matter where we are or what we are doing. We just enjoy beign together. I guess I subscribe to the "Life's too short to sweat the small stuff....and it's almost ALL small stuff." philosophy of life.

I also have to say that I personally believe that while a person might not "want" to do something at a particular moment in time, they might realize once they're into it that it's not so bad and it's not a big deal, and even if it still wasn't what they wanted to do, it wasn't so bad and even maybe "good" that they did it...BUT, I don't think that many children have that kind of foresight or ability to recognize this, and I believe that it's my job to help my children come to understand this...and I do it by talking to them and empathizing, but ultimately just getting on with things and making the best of the situation if we can't quickly come to an agreement.

I understand that when a child is routinely controlled and forced to do things they don't want to, and basically taught (by parents not ever asking or considering their opinions or feelings) that their desires don't matter, that it can make them resentful and dig their heels in and get into power struggles over everything...but I have found in my relationship with my son that because I DO invite his opinions and feelings to be expressed and valued, and DO let him make decisions about things, that when times come up that we "have to" do something he doesn't want to at that particular moment in time, that he is able to express his displeasure, I validate and accept it, offer alternatives as much as I can, and then we move on.

NOW, a HUGE disclaimer on this is that I'm talking about the daily things in life that we all do, you know, the grind - groceries, laundry, meals, cleaning, etc. - I am NOT talking about standing up for yourself when someone infringes on your safety (emotional or physical) or on something that could potentially impact you beyond a minor inconvenience. AND, I think it is possible in your guiding and teaching your child to help them learn the difference. I think it's entirely possible to raise a child to be laid back and easygoing on "small stuff", but willing to stand up for what's 'right' on "big stuff". That's how I am, and how I'm striving to raise my son.


Clearly, this is just my very humble opinion....so take it or leave it!

Heather, WAHM to DS (01/04)DD (06/06). Wed to DH(09/97)
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#202 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 05:47 PM
 
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Only a few "non negotiables" are....
(my kid is in jr high)

Do homework. <--That is our biggest issue

Shower.

Call me when you get there. (friends, mall etc)

Get out of bed every morning with enough time to get ready, EAT breakfast, and make the bus on time. <--Our other big issue. This one drives me batty.

At this age, these are the only things I find myself TELLING her to do. SHe is improving on most of these issues, except homework. I still have to say "Did you do your homework?" Otherwise, she will do it at 10:00 p.m

The funny thing is, I don't yell, I don't punish. I let life punish her, then I ask her "Well, if you had done that project earlier, would it have turned out better?" Usually she wishes she had worked harder.

I would say that I expect all As & Bs on her report card...and I do. But, she LOVES LOVES LOVES her good grades, that I don't have to say anything.
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#203 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 07:29 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scubamama
I do not force the carseat or going. We create solutions which work for both of us. I don't force my way. This is not what I want our child to see modelled.

Pat
DS #1 needs to be picked up at preschool. DD#2 doesn't want to get in carseat to pick him up. No other adult home. Nobody else available to pick up DS #1. Whats the solution that works for everyone?

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#204 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 07:32 PM
 
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Originally Posted by scubamama
My experience has been that our son has learned to use judgement by having an opportunity to do so, rather than being expected "to listen" and obey. He listens to his own mind, I don't expect him "to mind" mine. We work to find solutions which meet his patience level, impulse control and needs for safety.

Pat
That is what I'm saying . . . . I must be extremely unique in that my kids are seemingly unable to function at such an enlightened level. Funny? I'm around a lot of his playmates, classmates, neighbor kids the same age -- and he doesn't seem so different than they are . . . . but in comparison to the children of many posters on this board . . . . he seems positively psychologically delayed.

TripMom . . . . . loving mom : to DS (7) and BBG (4.5)
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#205 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 07:35 PM
 
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Originally Posted by ambdkf:
I think we learn about generosity by having a belief in the abundance of the universe. I can't imagine a child understanding generosity if they were not treated with generosity.


TripMom:



What exactly does that look like, not to treat a human being with generosity?

Pat
I'm more curious about the opposite. If the child wants every toy in the store, or every piece of candy at the market -- do they get it? Or does their good judgment tell them that too many toys are not necessary and too much candy isn't good for them? Not at my house . . . . .

TripMom . . . . . loving mom : to DS (7) and BBG (4.5)
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#206 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 09:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by TripMom
OMG. My poor DS must be an alien -- when he was 3 he used to set up binary requests - and then when each request was given him, he'd reject it and demand the other - back and forth - back and forth . . . . .

Example of real life situation. In bathroom at DS favorite sushi restaurant because DS wanted to go there (very consensual so far). DS says "I want to go potty" Mom: "OK - lets go potty" DS: "No. I want to wash hands" Mom: "OK - lets wash hand", DS: angrier now "No. I want to go potty". Repeat this back and forth and each time DS getting more and more upset.

Honestly - you all have exemplary children that these sort of lose-lose situations never seemed to be foisted on any of you . . . . .
You aren't the only one. My almost 3 yo DD just started this. It is really starting to drive me nuts. I don't know what to do! : I exsasperate myself trying to come to a point where she is satisfied and she just isn't.

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#207 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 09:41 PM
 
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Originally Posted by The4OfUs
You know, I don't remember if it was on this old thread or another old one, but I chimed in that my kid was apparently unable to have discussions and make decisions like this, too.....He would just stare at me like, "what the heck are you talking about, I don't care if you want/need to cook dinner, I want to stay outside forever" - this was when he was about 16 months or so. He is now 2-1/2 and just really starting to "get it" and be able to negotiate things with me; but even now it's me offering various suggestions of what we can do, and him picking one, and if he can't decide, then I decide...he doesn't come up with his own solutions yet...and many times he is just happier with less choices and me just letting him know what's gonna happen next. SO, I really, truthfully, honestly believe that MUCH of this has to do with a child's temperament as much as anything else. Since we as adults are all so different, I have to believe that children are all different too, and while discussing and negotiating things might work early on with some children, it didn't with my son. We'll have to see what happens with my daughter....I'll be interested to see if she's more receptive or less receptive to discussions and negotiations at a young age or not.

I also have realized that while I think it's great for people to be happy with situations in daily life, I also have recently come to the conclusion that I don't want daily events like going grocery shopping, or leaving the park, or not being able to wear a certain shirt because it's in the laundry, or "having" to sit in the car seat to be such a big deal to my kid that we have to negotiate solutions to make us all happy...and that yes, you can be upset that we have to leave the park, or you can't wear a certain shirt, or bummed that we have to go grocery shopping or whatever, but that in the grand scheme of things it's not really that big a deal and you can deal and get over it and move on and have a great day at whatever thing we "had to" go do, because we have fun (and find fun) with each other no matter where we are or what we are doing. We just enjoy beign together. I guess I subscribe to the "Life's too short to sweat the small stuff....and it's almost ALL small stuff." philosophy of life.

I also have to say that I personally believe that while a person might not "want" to do something at a particular moment in time, they might realize once they're into it that it's not so bad and it's not a big deal, and even if it still wasn't what they wanted to do, it wasn't so bad and even maybe "good" that they did it...BUT, I don't think that many children have that kind of foresight or ability to recognize this, and I believe that it's my job to help my children come to understand this...and I do it by talking to them and empathizing, but ultimately just getting on with things and making the best of the situation if we can't quickly come to an agreement.

I understand that when a child is routinely controlled and forced to do things they don't want to, and basically taught (by parents not ever asking or considering their opinions or feelings) that their desires don't matter, that it can make them resentful and dig their heels in and get into power struggles over everything...but I have found in my relationship with my son that because I DO invite his opinions and feelings to be expressed and valued, and DO let him make decisions about things, that when times come up that we "have to" do something he doesn't want to at that particular moment in time, that he is able to express his displeasure, I validate and accept it, offer alternatives as much as I can, and then we move on.

NOW, a HUGE disclaimer on this is that I'm talking about the daily things in life that we all do, you know, the grind - groceries, laundry, meals, cleaning, etc. - I am NOT talking about standing up for yourself when someone infringes on your safety (emotional or physical) or on something that could potentially impact you beyond a minor inconvenience. AND, I think it is possible in your guiding and teaching your child to help them learn the difference. I think it's entirely possible to raise a child to be laid back and easygoing on "small stuff", but willing to stand up for what's 'right' on "big stuff". That's how I am, and how I'm striving to raise my son.


Clearly, this is just my very humble opinion....so take it or leave it!
I agree with what you have written! This is how I want to parent. Although I do think that consensual living provides GREAT tools, *for me* it does not seem desirable to apply them to every interaction. And, I recognize that this is a philosophical difference I have from CL proponents but IMO it is also about the personalities involved - some families will find it fairly easy and satisfactory to live completely consensually, and for others it is not a natural (or desirable) way to live ALL of the time.
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#208 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 09:44 PM
 
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This thread is cracking me up.

I remember when my kids were in public school and I'd have to get them to school and then commute 30 miles to work. I had to be there at a certain time. Getting out of bed, dressing, getting into the car, seatbelts. All not neg. If I would have had to go through this LONG dialog with each child every morning about everything they HAD to do they wouldn't have had to worry about a bed, clothes or a car seat cause I would have lost my job cause I was late everyday and they wouldn't have any of those things!!! I support many aspects of GD but some of this is ridiculous. I think it would be interesting to look at each parent on here and look at # of kids, age of kids, WOHM vs WAHM, single vs partners in parenting, and see how the responses vary according to the above. The bottom line is I and my child have 24 hours in every day. In every day I have shit to get done and they do to. I cannot spend 18 hours a day discussing, weighing out the issues, etc. In some things they have choices and some they don't. In some things I have choices and some things I don't. And we all have to deal with it.
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#209 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 09:59 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mommaof3boz
This thread is cracking me up.

I remember when my kids were in public school and I'd have to get them to school and then commute 30 miles to work. I had to be there at a certain time. Getting out of bed, dressing, getting into the car, seatbelts. All not neg. If I would have had to go through this LONG dialog with each child every morning about everything they HAD to do they wouldn't have had to worry about a bed, clothes or a car seat cause I would have lost my job cause I was late everyday and they wouldn't have any of those things!!! I support many aspects of GD but some of this is ridiculous. I think it would be interesting to look at each parent on here and look at # of kids, age of kids, WOHM vs WAHM, single vs partners in parenting, and see how the responses vary according to the above. The bottom line is I and my child have 24 hours in every day. In every day I have shit to get done and they do to. I cannot spend 18 hours a day discussing, weighing out the issues, etc. In some things they have choices and some they don't. In some things I have choices and some things I don't. And we all have to deal with it.
I totally agree. The kids are part of the family, and need to respect me the way I am respecting them....sometimes that means getting your tiny butt out of bed.
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#210 of 261 Old 07-26-2006, 11:01 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mommaof3boz
This thread is cracking me up.
<snip>
I cannot spend 18 hours a day discussing, weighing out the issues, etc. In some things they have choices and some they don't. In some things I have choices and some things I don't. And we all have to deal with it.
While I am not a strictly consensual parent by any means, I think that the spirit and intent of negotiation, mutual respect, and give and take are the key thing that people are trying to communicate and embrace here...as opposed to the "tough luck kid, the world sucks sometimes, deal with it" vibe present in this last part of your post. I think *this* is where the consensual mamas and consensual discussions have really helped me out, in my empathy and validation, and seeking alternatives (but not having to always be mutually happy, that's where I diverge). I used to be more in the "tough luck" crowd, but the mamas here have helped me realize that I don't have to be that way. Even though I don't always work to find agreeable solutions for my child(ren - I will with DD too, but she's only a month old right now), I always validate and accept DS's feelings and disagreements with me. I think that this has been helpful instead of giving the "oh well, suck it up" kind of response to him, because he sees that not only is it OK to be disappointed about things or not want to do them and that's OK to feel that way, but that I will help him work through the emotions and come out on the other side and we will just get through whatever we "have" to do and make the best of it.

Heather, WAHM to DS (01/04)DD (06/06). Wed to DH(09/97)
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