Mothering Forum banner
21 - 40 of 63 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
3,882 Posts
When I think of the village raising the child, I think it sounds lovely. I think of women who share chores while wearing their babies, share childcare, and will breastfeed other babies if necessary. However, this does not occur in our society, and because I chose an AP style, the village really isn't right outside my front door.
Dh and I are really going it alone here, because we have noone in our family to rely on who will respect and follow our parenting styles. I am slowly constructing our village from our wonderful and generous friends who live all over the place. But mostly, it's all on us, and let me tell ya, we are TIRED!!! But happy and attached
 

· Registered
Joined
·
2,050 Posts
I agree with PP about how our society isn't what is happening in our society at large.
I can say that after living in comunity with my children for a bit, (it was a spiritual community where people are committed to interpersonal relationships, spiritual practice, and permaculture) my kids received soooooooo much love. My daughter was always in one of her favorite peoples arms during meetings getting lots of love and my little guy started exploring life beyond mom.
I am in total agreeance about life away from community and villages being isolating if we don't make an effort to see people or arrange play groups.
I think the phrase means people need to pull together and support each other, especially families.
After being in community and having 3 meals prepared and cleaned up after daily, laundry done for all 30 people on Tuesdays, etc, I was convinced that moms and dads have too much to do by themselves. When I got home and had to do it all myself in isolation I was depressed.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
724 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by Jennifer3141
I don't expect everyone to match my parenting style EXACTLY. How utterly boring. Jen
ITA. I figure the risks outweigh the rewards of having lots of different people involved in my child's life. So grandma gives him lollipops and lets him watch Thomas videos and I don't...so what? He's not ruined for life. The important thing is that he knows grandma (or any other close friends/family) loves him. His world is bigger and better for it, IMO.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
4,331 Posts
The concept is lovely. In real life, I think it's harder to integrate.

Case in point- our back yard faces all the backyards of about 12 other houses, and in the middle of this circle is a common area/playground. We've got about 1/2 the moms who come out and play with their kids, and the other 1/2 who don't come out or keep track. So the parents that are out there, constantly have to watch the kids who's parents never bother to. Yeah, it takes a village in that sense...
 

· Registered
Joined
·
3,416 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by hhurd
ITA. I figure the risks outweigh the rewards of having lots of different people involved in my child's life. So grandma gives him lollipops and lets him watch Thomas videos and I don't...so what? He's not ruined for life. The important thing is that he knows grandma (or any other close friends/family) loves him. His world is bigger and better for it, IMO.
This is how I feel at this point. Of course I am going on kid no4 and I have mellowed a great deal in 9 years about stuff. I would be so grateful if my children had all their grandparents or even aunts and uncles to spoil them with sweets and tv, or take them places. Junk food and TV on occassion as you said will not ruin them. I've also noticed that the older of my two children have incorporated our values more and more as they go out in the world without prompting from me. Like my daughter will be at a friends and tell them that she is not allowed to watch something on TV or play with a certain type of toy. My son who is fixing to be 5 will tell his friends he is not allowed to play with toy guns with no prompting from me or his father.

I guess I am really happy with the way things are going where I live that I can trust "the village" to a certain extent. There has been a lot to learn from more of the mainstream crowd than I thought there was -- and one of those things was moderation. I don't think its wrong for our children to experience things from our pop culture or play with the newest toy or see the latest cartoon character on TV.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,570 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by archaeomom
When I think of the village raising the child, I think it sounds lovely. I think of women who share chores while wearing their babies, share childcare, and will breastfeed other babies if necessary. However, this does not occur in our society, and because I chose an AP style, the village really isn't right outside my front door.
Dh and I are really going it alone here, because we have noone in our family to rely on who will respect and follow our parenting styles. I am slowly constructing our village from our wonderful and generous friends who live all over the place. But mostly, it's all on us, and let me tell ya, we are TIRED!!! But happy and attached

*nodnod* exactly! going through the same thing here, trying to find "our village." my husband's family is 2 hours or more away, and i have no family, so i rely on the local AP group for advice and inspiration.

the concept of the village in The Continuum Concept is a great read. it's figuring out how to apply that to our modern lives that's hard. Willow truly blossoms every time she's around other children, i wish there was a daily playgroup! there's one mama with a young babiy on my street but i've seen her leaving the baby alone in the stroller on the front porch with a bottle, so i'm guessing "not crunchy"
although if i get a chance to talk to her, i will, maybe she's just as isolated as i am and would love to learn about AP stuff and join the local group. you never know!

one thing i've done with Willow since she was a week old is take her everywhere. i make sure she gets to see, smell and touch lots of things, i tell her all about the world, and let other people hold her and talk to her. she absolutely thrives on this, she is such a "people person!" she's fearless, and interested in everything. she's also a watcher, big-time, she loves to study everything. so while the "village" isn't helping me raise her per se, it does help me not feel isolated, and it helps her learn about the great big world.

i think i'm just lucky i haven't run into anyone offline that's said or done something i'd take offense to (i.e. asking if the sling is smothering her, etc.) i'm wondering if that's because i'm in a multicultural area? Willow gets spoken to in Polish, Spanish, some Carribean dialects, and Chinese. i get compliments on how colorful our Maya wrap is, and lots of "she looks cozy!" Willow's "best friend" is a waitress at a buffet who's madly in love with her and teaches her "ni hao ma!" every time she sees her *grin* i think if i were stuck in a WASP-ish middle class neighborhood, it would be more difficult to have slinging seen as the norm, kwim? so i guess i do live in a decent "village"
 

· Registered
Joined
·
20,366 Posts
: I am trying to surround myself with people I would feel comfortable having a village with......it's hard though...

 

· Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
I guess I don't worry so much about whether someone parents like I do, I care about whethr they respect me and care about my child. I think it's sad that it is hard for so many to find a core group of people that they can trust. I can't picture anyone in my family or group of friends going against my wishes for my child. It's probably because I have this trustworthy group of folks that I don't sweat the small stuff: more or less tv, different discipline methods, etc. I was in and out of people's houses as a kid, and I think it gave me good perspective. If I didn't have my "village", I would feel lonely, stressed and embattled, but that may be because I was raised in one.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
8,518 Posts
Having lived in rural Swaziland for a short time, I have seen true village mentality firsthand. You have the head grandma and grandpa(or great) leading the village pretty much. But they would have little villages set up with each family. It was very cool.

I think it is sad that our world is in such a chaotic state that we really can't trust our villages sometimes
 

· Registered
Joined
·
718 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by mollykatsmom
I guess I don't worry so much about whether someone parents like I do, I care about whethr they respect me and care about my child. I think it's sad that it is hard for so many to find a core group of people that they can trust. I can't picture anyone in my family or group of friends going against my wishes for my child.
Well, not everyone has parents, ILs, siblings, siblings-in-law, and other relatives who are trustworthy with our children or even have basic respect for us as the parents. Some of our parents deliberately go against our wishes b/c they think they know better than we do, etc. Lots of posters here have children with serious food allergies, and their relatives dismiss the allergy as being not real. I would never leave a food-allergic child with a relative who didn't "believe" in allergies, etc.

It's great that you have family who respect you and care about your child. Some of us have close relatives who don't respect us and care more about their own egos than about our children.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
2,550 Posts
I guess I don't feel that I have to trust the entire village that dd comes into contact with. Mainly b/c just b/c they're in the village it doesn't mean I have to leave dd alone with them. I think I sort of view it as family first and that can mean anyone who I would trust to leave dd with and you are an integral very close part of her life and then village would be society at large that she might come into contact with in various ways. You never know when you may have a brief encouter with someone that may end up influencing your life greatly.

My family doesn't agree on everything 100% but I wouldn't want that. I want dd to get exposed to myriad points of view in addition to mine. The biggest think I want to instill her is the ability to think about other views, question her own and come to her own conclusions. I think that's what makes views and beliefs stronger rather than sheltering them and only exposing them to one view point. That's the Jesuit teacher I dealt with talking.

All of that said, my sister will never be within the family category b/c she's desperate to but my 21 month old on a motorcycle. She can just be part of village that provides an example to dd of what not to do. :LOL
 

· Registered
Joined
·
4,207 Posts
I grew up in a "village." I wish I could give that to my children. But I haven't found one yet. I'm already having major problems reaching out when it comes to my kids. I enrolled them in gymnastics and they were glad when I stopped bringing them. I enrolled them in dance class and one of the parents verbally accosted my son for crying too loud and then said I needed a Nanny 911 intervention. I enrolled my son in pre-school and they wish I would stop bringing him so they don't have to ask me to withdraw him because, as the director told my husband on the phone "whenever Skanda is here, someone gets hurt." (Either that's not true, or they've been lying to me when I pick him up.)
I guess MDC is my village. It's where I come to for help.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
3,385 Posts
I would be lost and probably seriously depressed without my "village".

I'm with the few posters here that are open to lots of people being a part of my dd's life, even if we don't share the exact same values and even if they let their own kids play video games or eat junk food or have toy guns. DD is very clear on how I feel about those things and how our household works, but she also knows other people make different choices and that its not our place to judge. So while I am and always will be my dd's primary adult type person in her life, she and we spend a lot of time with many different kinds of families. We exchange child care, eat meals together, hang out at the beach and park together for hours on end, etc... Just in general we spend a lot of time with members of our "village".

I also wanted to note that if you are craving that type of community, you have to really put forth effort to cultivate it. I am very bold and brave about introducing myself to families at the park or at dd's childcare, etc.. and if I feel any type of a connection really making a point to make plans, exchange phone numbers, etc..
 

· Registered
Joined
·
3,882 Posts
The reason we cannot trust our family to be our village right now, is because they are all of the opinion that babies need to be left to cry, and that I respond too much to ds's needs. He is only 7 1/2 months. I am hoping when he gets older that I will not be too worried about a can of soda or tv watching. But right now, it is VERY important to me that my parenting choices are respected. I also worry about solids. I want it done my way, and don't need my IL's slipping him something I haven't introduced yet because they think I am being ridiculous.
I have forged friendships with other Mama's who do have different parenting styles than I do, and I would trust them to respect my wishes.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
2,118 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by OnTheFence
This is how I feel at this point. Of course I am going on kid no4 and I have mellowed a great deal in 9 years about stuff.
The process can be cathartic and humbling, huh? What golden wisdom there is in *Time*.

Quote:

Originally Posted by OnTheFence
There has been a lot to learn from more of the mainstream crowd than I thought there was -- and one of those things was moderation. I don't think its wrong for our children to experience things from our pop culture or play with the newest toy or see the latest cartoon character on TV.

You are a smart lady.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
13,743 Posts
I'm a big, big believer in the concept of it taking a village to raise a child. I grew up in a tiny village in the middle of nowhere, literally a mile down the road from No Place. There were three houses, two pubs and a brewery. Everyone knew me for miles around. When I needed help, there was someone there for me- when I wanted a chat, I had people to turn to. I learnt all kinds of cool stuff from the people living around me.
Then I moved south, 300 miles from home, went to uni, and later had the children. And it is so hard trying to do this without the support I had and my parents had when I was a girl- I don't have the skills my boys want to learn, and one person by themself cannot, I don't think, be resource enough for two bright, intelligent children. So, I packed my bags and moved up north.
In a year, I was back again- things hadn't worked out for us. Our new village hadn't welcomed us, the amount of time spent stuck in a car was driving everybody mad, and my mother- well, that's another story. Down here, there was Steve, now my husband, and a few sister-friends.
And this is what I have. I have a husband. I have a few sister-friends, whose children are by-and-large much older than my two- but they've been there, done that, and when I need to stress about some minor detail of parenting, they can tell me that it's normal, shut up, you're worrying about nothing, your kids are fine. We have neighbours who are using my boys as helpers in their garden, mucking out chickens, building sheds- and the boys are thriving on it. They get contact with a generation they wouldn't otherwise know, a strong adult role model in their life, and I get two happy, healthy little boys back in return. We have a kick-ass childcare worker (again male, but inspiring...) and a friend's grandfather- and it's cool, and it works. I only know one person I'd trust to nurse my baby, and she's out of her baby years now- but I know that nobody would dream of giving my kids formula without my permission. They love them- and me- too much. The same with solids, and smacking, and all the other stuff- in fact, I think our "village" generally is much better at GD than I am, or ever will be. It's what comes of experience- you learn which issues to let go of. I don't spend any time around people who don't respect my children, outside of school, and as a result we're generally pretty happy.
Oh- I should say that I only have two other friends my own age with kids, and only one close by- she's trying with the AP thing, but gets scared sometimes. Most of my mates are childless, and so treat my boys like the truly inspiring young men they are.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
335 Posts
My friend's mom is a nurse who did a study on Hmong women who live in the US - she found they have a greater incidence of postpartum depression because they are no longer in the "village" structure they had in their traditional society and are much more isolated, both in the american culture and from their families. Very interesting...

Anyway, for me it's more of a "chosen village" - I wouldn't be able to do this without my mom's almost constant help. I let selected other people - my sister, dad, aunts, and a close friend or two - help with the baby. I think it's important for my dd to be exposed to people of differing worldviews and cultures throughout her life, but I wouldn't let people I didn't know well actually "parent" my child or take care of her - and I wouldn't let certain family members whose parenting style I don't agree with look after her for long. But I do try, even though she's only 2.5 mo., to expose her to a variety of experiences as long as she feels safe, comfortable and not too overwhelmed.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
893 Posts
Huh..maybe it's my more rural background..but a Village??? I'm not understanding. Hmm..my parents both grew up on farms where the nearest neighbor was MILES away. So did my brother and I. We saw family on holidays. We went to "town" only when necessary to pick up something. Our family was/is our village.

Think of the pioneers/homesteaders. They built their soddies by themselves and were grateful for a "neighbor" to drop by every month or so. In the winter, no one..you were on your own.
 
21 - 40 of 63 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top