Thursday, January 19, 2006

Young 'uns

Hiedi posted about kids and advertising. It was about how people are suing cereal companies for marketing to kids. It is a sad commentary on our society that parents can't say no to their kids. My parents didn't buy all the crap sugar cereals. We ate corn flakes, Total, Cheerios, Oatmeal, stuff like that. Bad things happen when you can't tell your child no. "Because I said so" was often the only reason we got when we were kids.

(Alert: I have no kids, yet, so I am not an expert on raising them).

I have inlaws who have a 4 year old, and let her do whatever she wants. She gets her way, because she knows that all she has to do is outlast her parents. She has a stronger will than they do. Now they just had kid # 2 less than a week ago. We were visiting them in the hospital. Kid number one was bouncing off the walls, misbehaving, jumping on furniture, etc. Mother was trying to feed the baby, kid #1 kept bothering her while she was doing it, with no consequences. Mother eventually fled the suite to feed the baby in the nursery. Kid #1 now tried to leave the room repeatedly to find mother and the baby. Father sat through all of this eating his own supper, just let her have her head. He apparently has no problem with his little demon running around a hospital maternity ward unsupervised. I would think that parents of such a child would try to get control of her before the baby arrived. Who knows what a kid like that can do when she doesn't have any boundaries.

It is quite a contrast to children raised on my side of the family. None of my siblings are married or have children, but my cousins are raising proper ladies and gentleman. You will not hear those kids talk back or refuse to do what they are told. They are still kids of course, but you just don't see them yell "no" at the top of their lungs because they know they won't get away with it.

Not so with my young niece. Christmas wasn't much fun with all the noise. You have one kid misbehaving, and 4 "adults" begging her to sit down and eat or she wouldn't get to open her presents. Of course she didn't eat her food, and she did open her presents. I just wanted to tell them all to shut the hell up and let her be so I could have some peace, or actually make her listen to them. Threatening children with consequences has no effect if they know you don't mean it. It is hard watching that kid grow up, knowing she is in for hell when she gets older. I think it is going to really be tough forcing rules on her as a teenager when she is so used to getting her way now.

I am getting warmer all the time to the idea of having some rugrats of my own to raise up right.