Lisa Vanderburg

3 years ago · 2 min. reading time · visibility ~10 ·

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What to do with the children?

Reading Donna Wood's recent offering Guns / Mentality, she asks what's wrong with us rather than the the seemingly endless arsenal of weaponry a person can lay his hands on. It's a good question: What's wrong with US?  Following that, I read Pascal Derrien's delightful journey of childhood Dawn on Wheels. I both felt soothed and a little envious at that!

With our first grandchild 18 months old, it'll be a different struggle for parents than we had; our kids were 8 & 9 when we had our first computer, and didn't have a cell until the end of high-school. Thank God, I think...

With the gobsmacking list of ever-growing apps and social media threatening to steal your child's attention, how do you keep them safe? Can you keep them safe? There's helpful 'guides' like this everywhere; tutoring parents on what's wholesome or not for your child.

The problem is how to say no, not at what do you say no, no? Dunno.....

Seems to me we're beginning to see the true evil of the internet and all it's minions. Kids (anything from 0 to 18...older if you're American) are curious. It is their nature, and it's how they learn the world. Like Pascal said in the very first paragraph of his buzz;

It was the same ritual everyday and I was welcoming the monotonous procedure with a feeling made of excitement, routine and bliss. I perhaps cannot find the right words but what I can say is that it was overwhelmingly more powerful and intense than anything else I had gone thru before. Its hard to describe the mindfulness state and enjoyment I was experiencing daily. I can remember clearly all my senses not being indifferent to the natural surroundings. 
Pascal Darrien
Not only are our children under peer and adult pressure, but institutional pressure of academia (or is it the school's onus to get their quota?). Pascal Derrien, in comment to 
Donna's Gun/Mentality buzz, points at the US system of education, and he has very valid points! 

But what of the pressure of parents? They don't let their kids go scampering 'round the countryside on adventures like Pascal did.  They don't have the time. Middle-class parents (particularly American) - ya know, the one's that are meant to produce our next 'Presidents and Pioneers' have taken steps to orchestrate their kids' fun times with a heinous schedule of soft-ball to gymnastics to football etc. It's understandable how they got there - to keep kids safe from predators, but it's backfired IMHO; they've become imprisoned by our fear and now, by the wonts of social media. So we keep them busy instead...too busy. There's no time, between homework and the mandatory after-school run of fun, for the children to just be...kids.

We've all seen the soccer-Moms & Dads; the ones who will - often unknowingly - impose their own desires and ambitions on their kids. This coaching is not good; certainly not healthy. Now if you're teaching your kid fly-fishing, that's wonderful because you're spending quality time chatting, laughing, fishing, messing about, messin' up - that's the old normal.

For all the wonders of the World Wide Web, it's often a killer and a barren place for childhood. As adults, we've tried and failed to curtail or control this entity. If we say 'no', they'll just go to a friend. We know that. Good God, if I'd had Facebook as a child, you wouldn't be reading my rant! For kids, knowledge is best discovered, not handed out like treats and poison. So what are you going to do about childhood? Will it be lost? Love to hear your take.

What to do with the children?http://www.abc.net.au


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🐝 Fatima G. Williams

3 years ago #18

#20
Thank you Lisa Vanderburg for the kind words :) I hope so :)

Lisa Vanderburg

3 years ago #17

#19
See, now; you would find a way - I have every faith! You are going to be the most wonderful and exotic of grandmothers, lovely ...store up your memories, add a little wonderful spice and let ferment for a couple of decades - you will be the best for your babies!!

🐝 Fatima G. Williams

3 years ago #16

You make some great points here Lisa Vanderburg Let children be children. I remember climbing guava trees but with apartment houses, there are no more trees to climb. Children have to go to the park, parents who are tired after a day's work, have no time for all the out time. You grandkids are blessed to have you.

Lisa Vanderburg

3 years ago #15

#17
Ever-helpful.

Lisa Vanderburg

3 years ago #14

#15
hahaha...clever man!!

Harvey Lloyd

3 years ago #13

#13
Names are easy, pace, not so much. When all six are present i play out pretty quick. They are all great kids with two of them entering the age of infinite wisdom, teenagers. Luckily i have learned to use my phone with voice to text so i can gather around them and collect this vast wisdom.

Lisa Vanderburg

3 years ago #12

#11
I'm turning the big 6 this year; I reckon I have 10 years in which to make mischief with grandbabies. You's still a chicken :) Okay. on grand-parenting; I'm getting ready to leap tall fences to steal bananas, dig a hole to China, get that pesky beastie from under the bed and time-travel with the nippers. Any advise will be most appreciated...lol. Fargo & Donna Wood; I'm impressed at your internet providers!

Lisa Vanderburg

3 years ago #11

#12
Thank you Harvey Lloyd for a-calling, I am grateful for any advise coming from you! You have identified the challenge very well; if children don't understand their choices, how are they to choose? With 6 grandkiddies, how on earth do you keep up with their names? :)

Harvey Lloyd

3 years ago #10

Lisa Vanderburg Children are the resources of tomorrow when the get what they need during the formative years. I experience parents who do nothing and parents who engage within their own fears in raising children. But i know many who realize that our time is short with our children. They pass on tools children need to explore and discern their environment. I have 6 grand children they are special and i spend as much time helping them sort the world from their perspective. Its fun and exciting. I know they will be growing up in a world where choices will have even more consequences than my day. Being able to see the environment for what it is and know the consequences of your actions within it is and will be the challenge. If there is one piece of advice for parents today.......teach your children about choice. Don't just discipline for the wrong thing help them see the three other choices they could have made and attach appropriate consequences to each. Believe it or not they pretend not to listen but they do.

Lisa Vanderburg

3 years ago #9

#9
Okay. First Donna Wood, you cannot have an eleven-year old grandson - that would mean you started breeding at a now-illegal age :) But wow - nice childhood! Running free and seemingly wild - that's what it should be, no? 'Course it's not like that much anymore, yet with your children, a houseful of kids' friends means a 'safe and happy' place - kudos to you...you pulled it off! I think you're right: balance is what is needed in this topsy-turvy world. I wonder if it will be down to grandparents to provide that reality? That would bring us full-circle...yay! BTW, we had snow. In the UK. just a couple days last week. It was perfect, dry and with a nice 1/4-inch cap of ice. The country came to a standstill. England in winter..lol!

Lisa Vanderburg

3 years ago #8

#7
So very true Jerry Fletcher; we have little control. Certainly for me, I felt that a child that knows his boundaries is a happy child. By that, they were free to explore in safety within those imaginary lines. But I also think they need space, even as babes, they need quiet time to learn to be themselves! Methods are subject to breaking down and I'm far from the perfect mother (my kids'll tell you that)! We want them to be as free as possible by encouraging quality of character over quantity of FB 'friends'. You've clearly succeeded with your daughter, and I think they have to leave to come back as yours did. Much appreciate your comments!

Jerry Fletcher

3 years ago #7

I'm discovering as I build the relationship with my grown daughter that she prized being trusted the most. She distanced herself form both her mother and me as she aged in the teen years. She felt it was better to take her Mom's invective than show up for dinner. She knew that if she called, I wouldn't ask questions, I would just "be there." She's 38 now and been through grad school, a senior level job in the Pentagon and a marriage that didn't work out. Her personal heroine is her Grandma who lived alone at age 95. They do grow up. They will be what they will be. We really can't control that.

Lisa Vanderburg

3 years ago #6

#5
Sage advise Ren\u00e9e \ud83d\udc1d Cormier and I appreciate you coming in! There's many adults that don't have self-love but raise children better than they were, but maybe it was their determination that their kids would not suffer the same fate as they did. 'Children need to be taught to think for themselves and not to mindlessly follow crowds, rules and expectations (not even parental expectations).' Absolutely right; for them to fledge successfully, this must be achieved. Thanks for the shares too!

Renée 🐝 Cormier

3 years ago #5

Probably one of the biggest mistakes we make as parents is trying to force our kids to conform to what we see as normal and healthy behaviour. The problem is, that nobody can make you do something or be something you don't want to be and as soon as your children reach an age where they begin to question you, you risk losing them entirely. Children need to be taught to think for themselves and not to mindlessly follow crowds, rules and expectations (not even parental expectations). The most important relationship you can have is the one you have with yourself. If you can teach your children to love who they are and to embrace all of their own idiosyncrasies, you will naturally put them in a better place to make healthy choices for themselves. When the relationship with the self is broken, people resort to self-abusive/self-destructive behaviours. They lose their trust in their own judgement and look to others to guide them, but those they look to are often broken as well, so they end up going down a terrible path. A child, teenager or adult with a high degree of self love and self respect cannot easily do things to compromise that relationship with the self. Telling kids to respect themselves is not the answer. It cannot be done in the absence of self love. Telling kids to hang out with better people is also not the answer. Telling kids to do anything will never work. Forcing them to seek your approval, is also fruitless. Find ways to help them approve of themselves and nobody will be able to steer them wrong, regardless of the influences around them.

Lisa Vanderburg

3 years ago #4

#1
Thank you Debasish Majumder - I don't know how young parents get 'round these thorny issues, but that just shows my age :)

Lisa Vanderburg

3 years ago #3

Too true about beefing up the memories Pascal Derrien - pretty damn sure your kids are blessed with great parents. Now they can carry on the story of 'oh, so you think YOU had it tough? When I were young.....' :)

Pascal Derrien

3 years ago #2

First thanks for the shout out I am glad I could convey some positive vibes as I sometimes come across the ''prince of darkness''. Second I think times have changed I have a 10 and 12 year old children and not necessarily by design they probably don't have the same ability to roam than I had but I am very conscious not trying to project my own aspirations on them...... We were stuck indoors Ireland the last few days because of a blizzard, schools were closed etc.... besides snow balls fights everybody avoided suffering from cabin fever by talking, checking cards, reading etc.... there was screen time obviously but what stood out was the family walking trek to the supermarket in the 30cm of snow. We need to build some muscle in their memory not keeping them busy :-)

Debasish Majumder

3 years ago #1

absolutely relevant buzz and needed to delve with greater perspective pertaining to the nation where getting gun is easier perhaps than to get quality education which may nurture the parents how to groom kids with values, where life is the most important object than any inanimate object. lovely insight Lisa Vanderburg! enjoyed read and shared. thank you for the buzz.

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