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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been think alot lately on how our culture pushes babies and young children to be independant to soon. Why is that do you think?<br>
I think about a thread in babywearing forum and how in Africa they aren't buying strollers because it "pushes the baby away from you". And that got me thinking about it again.<br>
I think about a lot of people in my family who love their children yet put them in cribs and strollers, don't choose to nurse OR nurse only as food not as lovey. They pop pacifiers in their mouths and give them blankets and toys to hold instead of mom or dad. Then when the child should be given space to explore and some independance they freak out and try to reign them in. They have it all backwards.<br>
Hold them close when they are little, let them know you are their for them THEN when they are ready they can go away from you.<br>
Your thoughts...<br><br>
H
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/clap.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="clap"><br><br>
I think you hit the nail on the head.<br><br>
-Angela
 

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Another <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/clap.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="clap">
 

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I agree too... I think one of the things that people in my life seem to get backwards is that they think by practicing AP and everything that goes along with it, I am going to create a MORE dependant child. I completely disagree. I know there have been limited studies, but to me it is common sense. If we teach our children through our love and creation of a strong, secure attachment from a very early age that they are safe, loved, secure and that they can trust us always -- I feel that facilitates a wonderful environment for when they do have a want/need for independence, whether at 3, 13, or 23, that they will be secure enough in themselves that they will reach even further than they would if they are doubtful of the love, trust, and security of the people who are supposed to love them the most, their parents.
 

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I was raised AP/NFL and have to agree with pp and the OP. I feel like I am a part of the world, even the universe, not just on my own, one little person. A lot has to do with having that center of unconditional love, acceptance, and safety.<br>
I see the same in my siblings, as well. We are all fearless in our interactions with life and the people we meet. We also have a very strong inner sense and know that we can trust that inner sense when it yells DANGER! and know that if we drop everything and run, we will not be made fun of, kwim?<br><br>
My own children are fearless. At times it scares me, but they also have shown an excellent inner sense that they listen to and will seek safety immediately.<br>
People ask how I can let them leave with other people and fly all over the country, and someday the world. I know they are safe and will keep themselves safe. They have never taken off, run off. They always let an adult know where they are and what they will be doing. They are extremely independant and could never be called insecure, kwim?<br>
I know it is not just their personality, but the fact that we have such a strong bond that was created through my parenting and never pushing them away, but also, never forcing them to be close. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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i think its because our predominbant culture (assuming you are in the u.s.) values independence so so highly. i mean, its our cornerstone, right-The Declaration of *Independence*. i just think many people are too simplistic in their ideas of childrearing: ie- 'i value indepence, therefore i will force it upon my little baby so he can live up to my values'. of course, pretty much everyone here at mdc realizes it is not so simple as point a to point b, but that is maybe more complex than the general populus cares to make it. i remember a long time back in tao, there was a thread with a link to an iq test, and everybody, i mean everybody, here scored high. so either the test was rigged, people were lying, or we are just an above average intelligence bunch. (i believe the latter). i do think some of the nuances of ap leading to independent adults might be asking a lot of people- i learned in child development classes once that it is in adolesence that humans fine tune their abstract thinking abilities, and it was ackowlwdged, in an honest and not derogatory way, that many many average people just plain old never complete that stage of development.<br><br>
oh my, its been a long day. do i sound nuts? i feel a little strange. maybe i have just stated the obvious?<br><br>
anyway, i also think one of the subtle differences is most of the apers i know arent like die hard independence valuers exactly- more they see everyone as interconnected, and value a balance between the individual being who he/she is, and how that individual functions in relationships- i mean we want our kids to be happy, loved and loving- not islands. even if by being an island they could become a millionare. i just think an apers idea of *success* for her offspring has more to do with overall emotional wellbeing, where so many people seem to think that if you can achieve academically and go on to do well financially, then that is success.<br><br>
as for the reining kids in as they get older, well, i dont know. i havent really noticed too much of this. how do you mean?<br><br>
i just had a small glass of wine, and feel odd as i am absolutely exhausted, so wether what i said really has anything to do with anything or not, i am going to post because i just did all this work typing it out, and i trust you all to forgive tomorrow if i sound drunk. :LOL <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Here is an example: my SIL (a good loving mother) nursed both her kids (but not for cuddles and lovey, just for food. Does that make since?) both kids slept in cribs in other rooms fropm her because they needed to "learn" to sleep on their own (even at 2 months old). She wasn't being mean, just a matter of fact (to her anyway), they needed to learn to "fend for themselves" even as babies. NOW that they are older and need the space she freaks out is really controlling and doesn't understand why they don't seem to need her. Well that is what she wanted. She wanted kids who didn't need her for anything. They don't cuddle, they don't ask for help, they are total "islands" even though they are 5 and 7.<br>
I have a niece whose kids are like that too. It isn't that my family is a bunch of "non baby lovers" they just want them to deal with life and not depend on anyone, yet they don't want them to have any freedom when they need it.<br><br>
H
 

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I completely agree with you <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I recently read Gordon Neufeld's <i>Hold On To Your Kids</i>... twice. Indeed, this resonates with me, wholeheartedly. To paraphrase, "Our influence on our children is only as good as our attachment with them."<br><br>
I too see parents all the time pushing their young children to be independent way beyond their years only to be completed baffled (frustrated, disgusted) with them when their children aren't so tuned into them, or have much of a care of what they may have to offer in any given situation. Neufeld would call the practice of pushing our children too early (and relentlessly!) into social situations, and the thought that its necessary and good for the child, "courting the competition." For all the convenience it may give parents early on to have little ones who are content to stay away all day, sleep alone, deal with social situations alone, etc., it certainly gives them cause for alarm later on when they need for their children to listen to them and understand things like the importance of being true to themselves (rather than conform for sake of fitting in), making mature decisions about peers and life, the dangers of sex, drugs, etc. and they haven't any sort of life line communication with their kids. I love my mom, I do. But... I grew up in this very fashion and I must say that I am incredibly resentful of the fact that my mom spent a lot of energy pushing me to be independent at a time when I truly needed to be dependent on her, and then only to turn around in my teen years (and well beyond to the present), to have her constantly worrying me and my brothers and sisters, making negative comments about decisions we may or may not make simply because she fears we might be making a mistake. kwim?<br><br>
One Neufeld quote I really love (and remind myself of when things get "clingy") is this: "In order to create independence, we much first invite dependence." Natural and true maturation comes from having the attachment needs met. When kids aren't having to spend effort in that regard, they are free to live, grow and mature naturally. OTOH, when they have to work at just having a close attachement with a parent(s), their emotional energy is mispent and often, like we've observed many times, people get "stuck in immaturity" never having had the opportunity to truly mature, but instead being pushed into false maturity way too early.<br><br>
Okay, stepping off soapbox but needless to say, OP (and others), I hear you and am with you! I think about this a ton and it breaks my heart to see it and also to think back on my own experiences. Its good that their are those of us willing to break the cycle and try as hard as we can to get back to living (and maturing) naturally. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
The best,<br>
Em
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Embee</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I recently read Gordon Neufeld's <i>Hold On To Your Kids</i>... twice. Indeed, this resonates with me, wholeheartedly. To paraphrase, "Our influence on our children is only as good as our attachment with them."<br><br>
I too see parents all the time pushing their young children to be independent way beyond their years only to be completed baffled (frustrated, disgusted) with them when their children aren't so tuned into them, or have much of a care of what they may have to offer in any given situation. Neufeld would call the practice of pushing our children too early (and relentlessly!) into social situations, and the thought that its necessary and good for the child, "courting the competition." For all the convenience it may give parents early on to have little ones who are content to stay away all day, sleep alone, deal with social situations alone, etc., it certainly gives them cause for alarm later on when they need for their children to listen to them and understand things like the importance of being true to themselves (rather than conform for sake of fitting in), making mature decisions about peers and life, the dangers of sex, drugs, etc. and they haven't any sort of life line communication with their kids. I love my mom, I do. But... I grew up in this very fashion and I must say that I am incredibly resentful of the fact that my mom spent a lot of energy pushing me to be independent at a time when I truly needed to be dependent on her, and then only to turn around in my teen years (and well beyond to the present), to have her constantly worrying me and my brothers and sisters, making negative comments about decisions we may or may not make simply because she fears we might be making a mistake. kwim?<br><br>
One Neufeld quote I really love (and remind myself of when things get "clingy") is this: "In order to create independence, we much first invite dependence." Natural and true maturation comes from having the attachment needs met. When kids aren't having to spend effort in that regard, they are free to live, grow and mature naturally. OTOH, when they have to work at just having a close attachement with a parent(s), their emotional energy is mispent and often, like we've observed many times, people get "stuck in immaturity" never having had the opportunity to truly mature, but instead being pushed into false maturity way too early.<br><br>
Okay, stepping off soapbox but needless to say, OP (and others), I hear you and am with you! I think about this a ton and it breaks my heart to see it and also to think back on my own experiences. Its good that their are those of us willing to break the cycle and try as hard as we can to get back to living (and maturing) naturally. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
The best,<br>
Em</div>
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</tr></table></div>
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I'm reading this book now, and it's the first thing I thought of when I saw this post. I just read that quote too today, and it really stuck with me. I totally agree w/everyone so far <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

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This thread is hitting a nerve because I am considering withdrawing ds, a young 4, from preK because he isn't willing to seperate (probably because the school is not very warm and fuzzy). The school head actually gave me a list of therapists. I'm still not sure if it was meant for ds or me, lol. It's a good thing she doesn't know he still nurses and co-sleeps.
 
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