How to explain Veterans/soldiers and things of that nature? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 11 Old 11-10-2010, 09:19 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm having a hard time explaining what a Veteran or soldier is to my 4 year old DD without getting into too many details of war/injury and things of that nature.  She is very, very inquisitive and the more details, the better!  We recently put some money in a jar for Veterans and received a poppy, and also DH is volunteering to assist Veterans to go out on a goose hunt tomorrow.  I need help explaining these very special people to my daughter!  She wants answers!


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#2 of 11 Old 11-11-2010, 07:28 AM
 
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We have been telling our son that Remembrance Day was for Remembering those we have lost.  He understands this as we often talk of his Great-Grannie, who passed away last fall.  We do not go into great details of war etc....we will give it another year or so.  We wear poppies and talk of remembrance.  He is not asking questions further so I think for us this is all the detail we need.


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#3 of 11 Old 11-11-2010, 02:44 PM
 
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In the US it's called "Veteran's Day" so it's not simply "remembrance".

 

I told my inquisitive kids at that age that Veteran's are people who served in the military to help protect our country. Veteran's Day is a day to honor those people for their service because they often had to do difficult things and be away from their families.

 

If they asked about war, I was honest and said that wars are times when grown-ups fight with weapons and sometimes kill each other. It's not what I would like to happen, but if it does happen, I'm glad there are people who make it their job to help protect us from war.

 


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#4 of 11 Old 11-11-2010, 05:57 PM
 
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I've just told DS that vets are people who served the country to protect us.  DS knows that GP and Uncle X are vets.

 

I would have a harder time explaining a goose hunt.  Poor geese.


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#5 of 11 Old 11-12-2010, 06:38 AM
 
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My kids are slightly obsessed with the military right now, so it's pretty easy to explain that veterans are people who've served in the military and helped protect our country.  Knowing lots of military (present and former) helped alot.

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#6 of 11 Old 11-15-2010, 06:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnS6 View Post

 

I told my inquisitive kids at that age that Veteran's are people who served in the military to help protect our country. Veteran's Day is a day to honor those people for their service because they often had to do difficult things and be away from their families.

 

 



That's a great way to put it!

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by eepster View Post

 

I would have a harder time explaining a goose hunt.  Poor geese.



I'm sorry you feel that way.  As meat-eaters, we feel blessed to know where are food comes from and that it lived a happy life in the wild and did not suffer.


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#7 of 11 Old 11-22-2010, 10:39 PM
 
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I think this is a great question to pose. I've struggled too -- how to explain what a soldier is? My son (5) has a very vague idea and I have a hard time filling in the details with what war is.  I wanted him to begin to be aware on Veterans Day as well.  Also -- interesting so similar to original post -- ours is a hunting household. Guns are used with huge respect for bringing home food, from the wild. They get this 100%. But a soldier with a gun? To hurt someone else? War? It is so strange and counter-intuitive.  I tried to explain soldier's role in a helping capacity, so many things they do to build roads, schools, help keep other people safe, etc... 

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#8 of 11 Old 11-23-2010, 08:39 AM
 
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We have never sugarcoated war or death.  It is a part of life.  None of us would be here without war and all of us will die one day.  It is hard to explain the "Why?" in relation to war.  We have told them that people are oppressed and fight for their freedoms.  They understand that if someone attacks your country soldiers will do everything in their power to protect you and find those that did the harm.

 

DH is a veteran and will be deploying again next fall.  We didn't push the boys towards military.  DH never talks about his deployment with them.  He doesn't tell them about his training.  On their own, they have become very interested in all things military and currently plan on being fighter pilots when they grow up.


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#9 of 11 Old 11-23-2010, 10:27 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnS6 View Post

".

 

I told my inquisitive kids at that age that Veteran's are people who served in the military to help protect our country. Veteran's Day is a day to honor those people for their service because they often had to do difficult things and be away from their families.

 

If they asked about war, I was honest and said that wars are times when grown-ups fight with weapons and sometimes kill each other. It's not what I would like to happen, but if it does happen, I'm glad there are people who make it their job to help protect us from war.

 



This.  The kids know daddy is a veteran, but they never knew him as a soldier. 


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#10 of 11 Old 11-23-2010, 07:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Really wonderful responses everyone, thank you so very much.  The subject hasn't come up yet, but I'm prepared for it when it does.  thumb.gif


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#11 of 11 Old 11-23-2010, 08:14 PM
 
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Linzie, my DD is very close in age to yours (actually both my kids are very close in age to yours!).  This past Remembrance Day/Veterans Day, we had the ceremony on TV in the background, and DD asked about it.  I told her that today was about remembering people who have worked very hard to protect us, and our country.  I also told her that some of those people worked so hard keeping us safe, that they died.  I did not try to explain the military, or war, to her yet as I'm not entirely sure how to explain it to her at this age.  We have absolutely zero direct connection (as far as she knows) to the military so it will be a confusing concept to grasp I'm sure.  Maybe in Canada, with it being called Remembrance Day here, it's easier as we don't have to explain what a Veteran is just yet.


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