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I've been thinking about this lately. We're an unschooling, vegetarian, atheistic, "left wing" lots-of-books-and-almost-no-tv family. I wonder sometimes if I'm raising my kids to be aliens in their own country. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/guilty.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="guilty"><br><br>
My 10 year old can cook you dinner, map out your road trip, and regale you with the plot of every novel he's ever read, but he couldn't identify a sports hero, tell you his favorite video game, or sing you a single current hit. He has no idea which clothes are "in," how Burger King compares to McDonalds, or which teams are playing in any given championship.<br><br>
I don't think we "shelter" our kids so much as just do things differently. But, there are so many "touchpoints" with mass culture that my kids have no clue about. Should I worry that they'll never be able to participate in talk around the water cooler? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><br><br>
How about you?
 

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I've thought about this too, but the thing is that there have always been many subcultures in the US ( my only frame of reference) and so not having things in common that are part of the common vernacular isn't that unusual.
 

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I was raised in a restricted environment, although conservative, not liberal. I didn't have a CLUE when I started high school, and it was very difficult for me.<br><br>
But then, that may have been due to the fact that I had the self-confidence of a spatially challenged wombat.
 

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we are extremely open with DD, maybe a little too open with her. we try not to shelter her from things but we also consider what is and isnt age approriate as well as how she handles said things. everything is fair game in our home in discussing with her.
 

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I think it is important to teach all children how to connect with a variety of people and make friends. For many, it's music or TV and whatnot, but it doesn't have to be and for your children it can be something else. I guess my way of answering your question is to make sure that your child develops the skills necessary to ensure he doesn't come across as aloof and uninterested in others, and that he knows how to, well, just hang with people of all walks of life, e.g., strike up conversations / connect with people / find commonalities. In college, grad school, and many jobs... these are critical skills for success in the U.S.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>ThreeBeans</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7891491"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I had the self-confidence of a spatially challenged wombat.</div>
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And those are the LEAST confident wombats, too! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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We don't put much restriction our oldest kid's access to media - but he is less interested than "mainstream" kids in pop culture, simply because he has access to a lot more in life than what is on MTV or in magazines. Without constant social pressure to conform, he has developed interests that are unique to him. I think it's more important to teach personal integrity, social consciousness, and compassion than it is to teach someone how to "pass" as "normal".
 

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I think of "sheltered" as meaning "over-protected and under-informed".<br><br>
Giving your kids information about the world that's simply <i>different</i> than what's popular, commonly understood, or politically "in" is NOT sheltering them, as long as they also are being taught how to interact with, accept, and get along with the other kids that don't share their interests.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>MamaWindmill</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7891938"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">And those are the LEAST confident wombats, too! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"></div>
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Of course <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/loveeyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Loveeyes">:<br><br><br>
****ATTN: NO WOMBATS WERE HARMED IN THE MAKING OF THE ABOVE POSTS***
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>ThreeBeans</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7892048"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Of course <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/loveeyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Loveeyes">:<br><br><br>
****ATTN: NO WOMBATS WERE HARMED IN THE MAKING OF THE ABOVE POSTS***</div>
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Can you say that with confidence? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/duck.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Duck">:
 

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yes, they do. and we prefer it that way.<br><br>
everyone has a different "reality", my children don't (especially as children) need to know about everything in the whole world.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">I think of "sheltered" as meaning "over-protected and under-informed".<br><br>
Giving your kids information about the world that's simply different than what's popular, commonly understood, or politically "in" is NOT sheltering them, as long as they also are being taught how to interact with, accept, and get along with the other kids that don't share their interests.</td>
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I do agree with this too. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
When I hear about people who for instance haven't met anyone with a CPS run-in, that seems foreign to me. As does anyone who has been told to nurse in the bathroom/not nurse in the mall/etc--I know nobody IRL who has experienced that.<br><br>
I personally find the "under a rock" thing offensive and uninformed.<br><br>
We don't have to choose to expose our children to pop culture or even mainstream culture. As long as we are helping them become well-rounded people who can contribute to society, who cares if they don't know popular things? Is it harming anybody that they don't watch TV, have gameboys, etc?
 

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Yes, so far. Of course my oldest is only 7, so that could change. As far as I'm concerned there's nothing wrong with living under a rock, but if they want to be more social, mainstream, whatever, that's fine too.
 

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We let the kids watch tv (I hate commerical tv, but they watch PBS and some Nickelodean), ds watches sports with dh, we live in a big city, and don't hide anything from the kids. Yet it would seem to many that my almost 6yo does kind of live under a rock. I think he just has a different perspective than many, I don't know. I've often commented to dh that other kids his age just seem so much more, savvy or something. If he's wearing a baseball shirt someone will ask him what his favorite team is, and he just stares at them like they're not speaking English.
 

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I think at some point, the kids drag the parents out from under said rock, kicking and screaming. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
My folks were hardcore Christian homeschooling-to-avoid-teh-evilution-and-immorality sorts, but even I've seen music videos and gone clubbing and had plenty of premarital sex.<br><br>
Even though, as it turns out, nightclubs really mostly suck. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
And those middle-school years were dreadfully hard-- where the family wasn't enough anymore, but the peers were just too much to handle. I hadn't learned how to connect with people so different from me, and they surely had no idea what to make of me.<br><br>
But, hey, on the up side, someday your kids can regale their coworkers with tales of their weird, wacky childhood! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> Now that's always good for a laugh. And the coworkers will have bizarro-world tales of their own, I'm sure.
 

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If you were to listen to my kids, they'd have you believe we live under a rock. On the moon. Or maybe Mars. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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My perspective on this is influenced by the fact that in some ways, I was raised "under a rock." I was not homeschooled or excessively sheltered, but my parents were very different from the mainstream and never made any attempt to help us fit in. In some ways, I think it's a positive thing; I read all the time and rarely watched TV, for instance. When I did watch TV, it was the news and my parents' shows (Dr. Who and M*A*S*H <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">), not kids' shows.<br><br>
But ... I REALLY didn't fit in at school. It was the '80s, and I wore homemade clothes and thrift store clothes. I had never heard a Michael Jackson song or seen a music video. I never had a Cabbage Patch doll or played with Barbie or My Little Pony. When I hit adolescence, my mother couldn't give me any advice on makeup to hide my awful acne, because she hadn't worn makeup in 20 years. I had no clue how to dress or act to fit in with my peers. I was a social pariah.<br><br>
I don't want my kids to grow up like that. I'm not saying I want them glued to the TV all day and demanding the latest toys, but I want them to at least see a few episodes of the popular shows and play with a couple of the cool new toys. They don't have to wear the most sought-after brands, but I want to help them at least develop a sense of style that will let them choose how much to fit in with the crowd.<br><br>
In short, I don't want to force them to fit in with the mainstream, but I want to give them the ability to fit in if that's what they choose.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>pookel</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7893381"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">M When I hit adolescence, my mother couldn't give me any advice on makeup to hide my awful acne, because she hadn't worn makeup in 20 years. I had no clue how to dress or act to fit in with my peers. I was a social pariah.<br><br><br>
In short, I don't want to force them to fit in with the mainstream, but I want to give them the ability to fit in if that's what they choose.</div>
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Yeah, I think that's a good way to look at it. And wow, that thing about the makeup is straight out of my life! eek! I remember trying to use cornstarch as a concealer! And my grandma sent me to my first day of sixth grade in 1990 in a giant-floral-print culotte-dress. Homemade, of course. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
Sometimes I think it's easy for parents to rationalize about how it "doesn't matter" if their kid just completely has no idea how to fit in... but man, it really is a painful experience without a lot of redeeming value.<br><br>
Unless being able to tell hilarious stories of playground humiliation 15 years later counts as "value." <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment">
 

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Being stuck under a rock when you don't want to be there is no fun, but of course there are lots of stories from the other side, too, of kids being pushed into being "normal"...
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Brigianna</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7893424"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Being stuck under a rock when you don't want to be there is no fun, but of course there are lots of stories from the other side, too, of kids being pushed into being "normal"...</div>
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Well, that basically goes without saying on MDC, doesn't it? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 
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