I happen to think that children come with their own nature and the best thing to do to raise happy empowered children is to allow them to be who they are born to be instead of forcing them to conform to our ideas of what ideal people should be? Any thoughts? Are you a molder or an allower?
definitely children are their own separate person. molding is fine for what it is intended for.. a jello mold or a mold for a car part,etc., but not for a child's character. they need boundaries which are big enough for exploration and discovery along with natural consequences which instruct and inform.
a parent can still be in control and not be controlling by giving options and being consistent. I can think of nothing more sad than making a child into something he is not.
I guess you should know what you can mold and what you can't.
You can mold response but you can't mold nature.
I agree, I think some children definitely come with their own molds. Some are less susceptible to molding than others. I think the kids with their own molds should be allowed to grow and blossom as they will. On the other hand, kids that are less inclined to molding should be more cultivated.
sometimes, the child is like the parent. they choose to pattern themselves to a parent. that is however their choice. the key is to allow the child to choose the direction of his happiness. our job is to give him the tools to acquire this happiness constructively.
You can't force anything on any human being forever. You also can't allow all things society. Children must be guided, not "molded".
Children's molded by their surronding environment, either parents environment or social environment. So the question of allowing them is not arising.Give them controlled freedom , to choose their life.
Molded children are fine; but I prefer cloned children. . . . . . .
like mini me
exactly. I'm trying to clone Olivia Newton John, actually.
oh i loved her when I was 12. I use to copy her singing voice when she sang "summer loving". My sister usually would throw something at me. Sometimes its toilet paper and one time it was an actual tomato (she got in trouble)
I will answer that question with a quote from my "hub:" "...a small black button."
"A parents FIRST duty is to love a child...unconditionally! That love will be returned, in myriad ways, later in life!
Parents must express their love by intelligently and caringly exposing a child, from infancy, to education and to the real world!
When that child matures, it will be prepared to make correct decisions about abstract concepts such as love and religion.
Showing love in that manner will prepare a child to become a happy, successful and contributing human being!"
I agree and it was totally successful for me,
although those teenage years were a little tough. Always let them make their own decisions from the earliest age possible.
Present all the options and let them make
their own decisions. I don't need clones,
oh wow! so happy to hear that it actually works.
It has to be a little of both. YOu can't allow everything, or you'll end up raising a little monster, but you can surely encourage them to bring out the best in them and help them understand that it's ok to have faults and not pretend to be perfect.
A child's character needs room to grow while being maintained within a proper sphere of existence.
Think of it as play-dough - reshapeable at will, and capable of being thoroughly mixed, but always returning to its original shape when put away.
I'm going to add my two cents here, even though I have no kids.
With that said, children should be taught Life Teachings, such as honor, integrity, which goes directly to character building.
They should figure out their own beliefs, through diligent learning and experience.
They need to have a solid basis for understanding morals, because if not, then they will make up their own as they go, which is a recipe for disaster.
You can teach but if you're a parent, you'll see they choose what they learn.
Yes, they choose what they learn, but if the parent's actions are as they teach, then it remains consistent.
you'll see a lot of children out there with behaved parents who totally go the other way. they choose what they learn.
That's because parents fail their children while teaching them.
I don't think you understand. Even a teacher will tell you, children choose what they learn. They are born with individual lenses.
Again, completely dependent on "how" you teach them.
and "how" is also dependent on the individual's ability to teach. the teacher chooses a style of teaching, the child chooses a style of learning, hence no cookie cutter parenting style. Each individual parent-child pairing is unique. Get a wife, a kid. Then come back here and argue with me.
You're no different than my sister, and she turned out to be a pathetic mother. Go figure.
Tell me to get a wife, a kid, then come back and argue. Just that statement alone, makes you no longer worth any conversation. Much less anything else.
yes, I'm sure you'll be an excellent parent calling your sister a pathetic mother.
my claims are based on a parenting movement called positive parenting. The idea is borne out of the discovery that children are born with preferences that they express through 9 basic emotions.
the truth is, you really need to raise your own kids to realize that they really are born with their own predispositions.
If your child were born with a predisposition to murder every child under the age of two, would you allow it to happen or teach your child that according to society's morals murder is wrong?
if a child has a predisposition to murder children under two, I would go to a doctor and have his head examined. Did he have severe trauma in the prefrontal cortex in early childhood? The thing is, contrary to popular belief, people are not predisposed to kill. People with no morals, know what the morals are, but ignore it. Morals cannot be imposed, they are acquired. The child chooses what morals she will adapt from her environment. The only thing we can do is provide an environment that espouses respect, mutual respect and self-respect. Children need to be respected even when they are two. If he says "I don't want to eat". You don't shove food down his mouth. These are how they learn to cross other people's boundaries. Moms do this thinking, what the hey, he's two.
I think values more than morals are what we can teach. Morality is very subjective. For instance, according to the church, homosexuality is immorality. The child is gay. He is gay. But if you teach him values, he can apply those values to who he is. Morality and a value-system is very different. A muslim man with many wives is immoral to a christian. But a Christian man and Muslim man could have the same values.
Morals are a standard of behavior while Values are the significance/importance an individual places on his and others' morals. In other words, the Value of a Moral is individually determined.
People with no morals either were not taught morals or choose to ignore morals. Yes, morals are acquired, but not by accident. Morals are acquired by the careful application of instruction and demonstration by the adults in a child's life. After a child has observed morals and what they mean, the child is then fully capable of choosing for themselves which morals they believe are worthy of following.
Let's consider your gay example: The parent believes homosexuality is immoral. The child is gay. What is the parent going to instruct & demonstrate for the child? The parent has unlimited choices on how to instruct their child, however, it would be hopeful that the parent would demonstrate how to love another human being. What will the child learn? Seeing as the instruction has unlimited possibilities, we may as well ignore that one, because what is taught is taught according to individual beliefs. What is learned, however, is also learned according to individual beliefs, and it would be very good indeed if the gay child learned how to love another human being.
You can't force someone to learn/understand/accept something that goes against their belief system.
So in that case, do you mold a child or guide them?
A "standard" of behavior by your definition is an external imposition. SO I guess what you mean by morals is a value system. I will give you a classic definition of morality.
[muh-ral-i-tee, maw-] Show IPA
–noun, plural -ties for 4–6.
conformity to the rules of right conduct; moral or virtuous conduct.
moral quality or character.
virtue in sexual matters; chastity.
a doctrine or system of morals.
moral instruction; a moral lesson, precept, discourse, or utterance.
Morality is an external imposition of how we should conduct ourselves. I believe that morality is something we choose just as values. But values are less about how we behave according to a standard of conduct but what we choose to uphold in our lives. Values : hardwork, friendship, generosity, help those in need. Morals : have sex only with your husband, don't seduce a priest, don't steal, don't walk around half-naked, etc.
Do you see how morals, that we choose for ourselves, have first been taught to us in order for us to understand what they are? How can anyone choose, for themselves, which morals to adopt if they have no idea what morals are??
Furthermore, Morality can't be an external imposition if we choose our own moral standards!
Well I am not against morals only that i know you can't impose your morals on others. I don't sleep around. Do I not do this because I learned this as moral. It doesn't even enter my mind. I just don't want to sleep around. I think its yucky. Do I judge a woman who sleeps around? I don't. I wonder how she can stand it. But the thing is, morality is tied so much to one's religion.
I really really want to operate more on values.
I stay out of topics I know nothing about. Because I know what those topics are.
You could expose them to ten million books, they will choose what book they will latch on to and believe.
I have to agree with Cagsil -
Parents need to provide a solid base for children to understand morals, because if the parents don't provide a solid base then the children will make up their own as they go along.
Such as: the parent teaches the child that violence is wrong and the child is more likely to accept that moral.
If the parent doesn't teach that violence is wrong, the child is more likely to accept violence as a means to an end.
Morals, when externally imposed causes all sorts of psychological problems.
You can show them what your morals are. But you cannot impose it.
For instance, you may be a one-man woman. You choose one boy to love and that's it. What if your child is naturally interested in dating many men before she chooses? You can't say be one-man woman. At a certain age, its not your business anymore. You can pound the idea to her as a child but she'll make up her mind when she grows up. If her personal choice is impeded by your concept of morality, she will be repressed. She will have all sorts of issues. And I guess the main damage would be she will be unhappy.
You can only tell her why it works for you. She will eventually choose what works for her.
The only thing you can do is tell her why you choose they way you choose. It is actually not your choice whether she'll agree with you or not.
You can only offer your thoughts, not impose them.
Before the daughter can choose her own morals she must understand what morals are. if the daughter doesn't understand morals before choosing to date many men then she isn't making the choice according to a set of morals. She would be doing so simply because she wants to, or because it feels good.
And in your opinion, what feels good is immoral? I'm curious.
Morality is acquired by the individual, it cannot be imposed. Just like you can teach a child anything, but it is the child that chooses to pay attention and learn. To ram it down their throat would make them detached from who they are, making the crazy, borderline, depressed etc. If you have a bipolar personality, you don't know the difference between what you want from what is expected of you. you become unhinged.
The role of parents is to guide children to find their inner self and to help them express it in positive ways.
As for morality, that is judgmental making children mental.
If someone says it feels good to murder 10,000 people is it immoral? I'm curious.
It is the responsibility of the parents to teach and guide a child until the child is capable of choosing their own morality.
so in this post, you are saying guide not mold. we went into morality because you said you can mold a child's morals.
If someone says it feels good to murder 10,000 people that's crazy.
I feel guide and mold are basically the same thing. However, a mold can either be temporary or permanent. Whichever the moldee chooses.
Oh in that case, I don't think we are disagreeing. But molding to me means specifically work on the assumption that you can raise say, an even-tempered child or a doctor, or an artist. I find this is not always possible. Sometimes, some parents get lucky where they and of the same mold as their kids. But most of the time, its a disaster. A lot of psychological disorders are born out of well-meaning parenting that does not respect the child's nature.
Many mothers tell me their children don't know what they want. I personally think they do, they just don't know how to express it. So it's my job to help my kid find out what she wants, what she values and direct it to positive expression. I don't have a perfect child, but my goal is not to have a perfect child but a happy and empowered one.
You can try and try but they will end up doing their own thing in the long run.
That's true. My priority is this. Am I creating an environment that allows her to see herself in a positive light. That she can disagree without being disagreeable, that she can honor herself while being respectful of others. The important thing is to know the root of the misbehavior and you'll see it's all coming from a good place. They are just unable to deal with it in positive ways.
Many problems of adults stem from habits as a child that were not corrected.
When you're angry and you know it, say so...but respectfully. Use words,not your hands.
..i don't believe in molding...that'll just cause conflict
..i believe i should love, nurture, guide, set the example (good examples), plant the seeds (good seeds) and give them the freedom to figure out who they are, not who i want them to be.....and always knowing i'm beside them and behind them when they are ready to fly and when they do fly...while knowing my love is always there...
I agree. There is a book titled the drama of the gifted child and it discusses how mothers cheat their children of their happiness because they impose their concept of happiness to their children.
A mother must serve as a mirror to the child not the other way around.
It is very difficult for some people to understand that you can only show a child HOW to express how she feels not tell them how to feel about something.
For instance a kid hits her friend.
The parent punishes the kid. Don't ever hit! she says.
The kid learns not to hit.
But inside the violence is still there.
One day, he snaps and kills someone. He was a good boy, but he couldn't take the oppression any more.
Kid's fault? Yes and NO.
A kid hits.
The parent asks why.
She stole my favorite toy.
parents say. What she did was wrong but hitting won't make her give it back. It will only make you mean and wrong.
Say sorry and then ask for it back nicely.
What happened here? The parent recognizes that the child has legitimate reasons for being angry and showed how to effectively deal with that anger in a positive way.
Molding a child is making a child into something she may or may not be.
Allowing a child to be who she is and validating her feelings while showing her how to express them constructively is giving the individual a chance to find her own goodness.
Each child is unique, it is the responsibility of the parents to teach their child good conduct and morality. the aim of the parents is not to mold their child into another version of them, but to mold and allow them to become, responsible, strong, confident and caring individuals.
No matter how often you are throwing them off the cliff, some stubborn kids just refuse to fly.
I do believe there should be some boundaries when it comes to bringing up children but they should be allowed to grow and become their own person. We all have different personalities and although a parent can guide to a certain extent a child should be allowed to grow into the person they are not who we want them to be.
I wasn't so much molded as harrassed, beaten and broken.
Happily none of it made me twisted, mean or anything like my own mother.
I have raised three children, pretty much alone. I used the same method with all three - I guided and taught them (and yes, I used morals, mine - they worked for me and still do) so I shared what I knew, what I thought, how I viewed the world.
Kieran, Michael and Abbie are well adjusted, happy, possess good manners - they know right from wrong, they understand what it is to be a decent member of the society that they move within.
I didn't mold. Not that I'm aware of - but I did set down guidelines relating to their personal safety and well being. All three are responsible, happy people. They do what they do, unfettered by any worries as to whether I'll agree or disgree.
They are able to think for themselves, have the balls to make mistakes and stand by them, learn from them (sometimes!) and I enjoy a close relationship with each one.
They're all doing whatever it is they want to do - with whomever they want. No rules are getting broken, no one's getting in trouble or causing concern for alarm.
Did I do a good job of raising them? Yep - I believe I did.
Do I believe children require molding? No, I don't. But that doesn't also mean that we should throw caution to the wind and hope all will be well. That's just as damaging as weighing them down with expectations.
I understand what you're saying. You know I think you should read "the Drama of the gifted child". Some children really have surprising ability to rise above the most horrible parenting, which makes me realize that a lot of it is choice, individual choice.
Never heard of the book. I will look for it and think about reading it. I'm not gifted by the way. Just sensible.
I've worked with many damaged children - and no matter how many times I heard them use their upbringing as an excuse for their rotten (and sometimes it really was rotten) behavior, I always countered with 'you made a choice. The wrong one - and you know it'.
And that's the simple truth. It's all down to choice.
A gifted child by definition is one who rises above unusually bad parenting and finds his own way.
http://www.amazon.com/Drama-Gifted-Chil … 0465016901
I had a quick look. I'm still not gifted. I just knew how bloody awful she made me feel all the way through my childhood (and beyond) and never wanted children. I was afraid that what she did was genetic.
Then I got pregnant at 19 and realised I'd better be the change. I wasn't a horrible kid anyway - far from it. She was horrible - not me.
Children need to be guided not forced. Molding gives the idea of being a replica. Each person has his or her own identity but good morals and proper ethics should be cultivated. Children need freedom to express themselves but with limits. If there were no traffic lights and no laws, people would be lawless. Therefore, proper common sense exhibited by the parents should be a rule of thumb.
I find shock therapy works well. KIDDING!
I agree with the comment, "children must be GUIDED, not molded" --
I have five children - still young (2, 4, 6, 9 & 11). Although I am a Christian, I am teaching them the belief systems (as best I can through research & friends who have practiced other religions/spiritualism) of other religions. Although I am a fiscal conservative, I am teaching them the other political views and understandings. I do not believe we help anyone by only teaching our convictions and expect them to mindlessly adhere -- Rather, share as much knowledge as possible. I believe one cannot truly know what they believe if they don't understand the differing views. I also think judgmentalism is breeded in narrowly applied/taught principles.
Anywhoo. Good thread.
I once read a book by Carolyn Myss about these things. The book is Invisible acts of Power. It was an eye opener. She says that anything you reject or judge is within you. I was very intrigued by this idea. She gave an example about a father who detested crying. He was pretty harsh about it calling his children weak and lame when they cry. The truth was, the man felt weak and lame and has many reasons to cry but since he didn't perceive this as part of being human he rejected it within himself. When he sees it in his children, he judges them as he judges himself.
Another was this woman who was so heartless about a beggar. The truth is, she herself was having fears of poverty, she had been receiving charity from relatives and so the sight of the embodiment of her fears angered her.
Often parents fall into trap of judging their children for the very flaws that they perceive they have but reject.
Being a human is hard, and that is why parenting is hard. You have to have the courage to forgive yourself, so you do not castigate your children for the crimes you perceive you've committed.
I think guidance is crucial through the early years. But the thing about guidance is tricky. It comes with all kinds of colorations of the parents' view of life, and as we change and grow, so does that coloration. Perhaps the most important thing is that we help our kids understand the experiences they are having, without coloring those experiences for them. Understand them so that they don't get "stuck" in not being able to recover and move forward.
Case in point: My daughter was molested by a cousin when she was 16. It put her in a cataclysmic set of events which lead to anorexia (which her mother also contributed to) alcoholism and heroine addiction. While my wife at the time spouted religious crap at her as I watched our marriage crumble, all I could think to do was love her and let her know I couldn't save her form all this, but I could be there to make sure she didn't have to face it alone. She pulled herself out of addiction and anorexia without rehab. She did get into counseling, which I believe saved her life. I asked her a couple of years ago how she did all that. She told me it was her counselor, and that she knew that I would never turn on her like her mom. I was there for no other reason than to love and support. (This is not meant as a self pat on the back. I was also estranged from my children for 4 years. It was the consistency that I only showed them love, no matter what, I believe, that reunited us.)
This coming from a girl whose dad was going through horrific divorce and was losing everything. I had no idea that I was that important to her. Somehow, we both made it through. We learned what really is important to us, and so many things we thought were important no longer mattered.
I have been amazed that my two kids, as hurt as they have been in life at times, have forgiven and loved me, as I have done the same for them. They are the two best things that have ever happened in my life. Neither they nor I am perfect, but we have allowed each other the dignity of being who we each truly are, and have been supportive of it. As a result, I get to have them in my life without regret or resentment. I'm glad that they have been able to forgive the stupidity that I perpetrated on to them. But I think we see together now, that we all had to learn by going through it. The key is to allow each other the dignity of learning our own lessons and loving without condition or restraint.
And now, having this 20/20 hindsight, I can see the mistakes I made being too "right", too demanding and much more. Letting a religion dictate my actions in some cases when I knew in my heart I should have just loved and supported them. Help them understand that whatever harms them or anyone else isn't good for the soul, and that life is about figuring out how to live without regret, create happiness and well being.
And because I've learned these lessons, I feel grateful that my life is as good as it is.
[What a ramble. Oh well, I guess I have strong opinions about this....]
No, its great that you're sharing this. My father and my mom divorced too. He was a major lady killer. He was a wonderful compassionate dad with issues what can I say. Before he died, we showered him with our presence and our love and he was wondering what he did to deserve it. I however am old enough to know that well, he wasn't perfect but he did his best. you do your best, your children will know it.
No, I don't think children should be molded to fit someone else's desires. I do think they are born unique, with their own personality and nature as well. With that said however, I do think parents need to instill some values, for instance, honesty. Every child lies from time to time and it's parents responsibility to teach honesty.
I believe like most here that you model the behavior you want to see in your child, not mold them - but, in spite of yourself, you'll probably want them to be better than you - so it's human nature to want more, and there's where it gets difficult to stand back and not interfere if they're making the same mistakes you made. I always hate the word "parenting" - I like instead to see my kids as distinct from me and appreciate them for who they are and do my best to nourish their strengths, as I would with good friends. The most difficult thing is to really see them wholly and unselfishly for exactly who they are, with all their strengths and weaknesses without imposing our own expectations for ourselves on them.
I don't know that children need to be molded as much as they need to be guided and have boundaries. They need to learn about compassion, empathy, tolerance, and how to advocate for themselves without becoming arrogant.
I remember a poster from years ago that is likely still hanging in many classrooms...it was called, "Everything I know I learned in Kindergarten." That particular poster, albeit funny, is very true about the guidance that children need as they grow up.
As for molding, I think children also need to be given the opportunities to explore and discover for themselves, make mistakes and learn from them, and to accept others for who they are even if they are different. This is more guidance than molding as children should be molding themselves...
Don't mold children in your likeness, only guide them on proper behavior and inculcate good habits. They will find a personality of their own.
Whether you want to or not, you ARE molding your baby/child in at least the first three years. What you do with a two-year-old, and what you do when the child is a teenager (who is quite far along, although not finished in brain development/wiring), are two completely different things. If you don't know how to nurture (mold) the right kind of brain connection formation in the first three years of life, you may end up with a child with any number of problems for the rest of his life (including things like an immune system or stress-response system that don't function as well as they otherwise would have).
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tLiP4b-T … r_embedded
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