Are kids rebellious because parents are rule breakers?

We have a regular that sent in a topic near and dear to my heart — situational ethics. She wonders if parents are teaching their kids to break rules by breaking  small rules themselves that they don’t think matter. Here is what she wrote:

“We began talking about children’s behavior. Often, educators will  tell you that some children today are more disrespectful and have  less manners, than 20 years ago.  I asked them why they thought so. This mom is NOT a teacher. She mentioned that she sees co-workers, in their 30’s who are not apt to follow rules. She is baffled!  They tell her, ” I am not going to do that…” She replies, “the  boss asked you to do it and it is your job..” Their reply, ” well I am not going to do it.” So, we are wondering if this is trickling down to children not  wanting to follow rules, as they observe this at home. Are people today less apt to follow rules and more apt to challenge them? Does this mean we are less respectful of others and more self centered? Are you a rule follower? When, if any time, is it o.k. to break the rules? Do you teach your children to follow all rules or question all rules? Whose rules would you or do you need to accept 100% Do your children see you balking at rules…how does this affect their attitude towards  rules? What do you want your children to know about rules?

I think at this point most parents would say “Oh no, definitely not. I wouldn’t teach my kids to break rules.’

Well then the regular sent a follow-up note with some examples of broken rules:

“If you think the rules are trivial…do you just break them:

10 items or less in a grocery line

speed limit or stop signs
no pets allowed in hotels
pool rules…i,e, no one under age 14 without an adult over 18 ( this
one is often broken in our neighborhood).”

I think one parents break a lot without batting an eye is taking their kids out for vacations and then writing them a sick note when they get back.

So what do you think: A. Do kids misbehave more because their parents are modeling this? Is there a gap between behavior of younger generations of parents and older generations of parents — ie 20-somethings who started young and parents who started late in their 40s?

Do you break “little rules” around your kids? Do you break rules that you think don’t really matter or don’t affect anyone else? How many have you broken on the regular’s list? What about vacation lies? Do you think they pick up on it?

75 comments Add your comment

Mom3Boys

March 18th, 2011
6:23 am

I think it depends on what you mean by “rebellious.” Are you talking about teen rebellion? That’s just part of the package w/ some teens. I think little kids do watch everything you say and do…but for the most part the behavior is unacceptable because they’ve not had consistency in their lives…no one tells them “no” and follows through. As a teacher, I see so many kids whose parents want to be the kid’s best friend. This rarely works. I also think kids are born somewhere on a scale of compliant to strong willed. It’s very easy to raise a compliant child, but way more of a challenge to raise the strong willed one. I have one at both ends of the spectrum. Fortunately, in the end, the strong willed one grew out of his rebellion and is turning out quite nicely!

seabeau

March 18th, 2011
6:58 am

Situational Ethics!! The entire concept is nothing more than liberal attempt to demean societys ethics and morays into what the indiviual wants to do themselves. It takes but a brief glance at the situation in Japan to realise that our society has taken the WRONG ROAD. Children must be rulled firmly.

chkrdr

March 18th, 2011
7:15 am

amen to this…i saw this in my line of work..i retired from dfcs and i saw this constantly….parents had the nerve to ask why their child did this or that…and all they had to do was look in the mirror for the answer to their question…children learn by example. if they see their parent going against rules/regulations…then most will in turn follow….as the old saying goes”apples do not fall far from the tree”.

mom2alex&max

March 18th, 2011
7:29 am

You know, some of society’s greatest advancements in civil rights came from breaking the rules. Rosa Park broke the rules.

seabeau

March 18th, 2011
7:36 am

I doubt that the hard working MRS.ROSA PARKS would be too pleased with her peoples slide into degradation and sloth and criminality.

shaggy

March 18th, 2011
7:42 am

OK, I’ll bite, but I am reaching a little deeper than going 70+ in a 55 mph zone, like EVERY adult does on I-285.

Kids are clean slate and mostly form their character by observation. If the adults that the kids are observing, make and break rules because of convenience, that kid’s character will see that as acceptable. The kid will break the same (plus add some of their own) rules because it is more convenient to them to do so. Also, these “convenient” adults will see this as “cute”, or “a chip off the old block”, so it will/does perpetuate.
If the adults are making and breaking rules based on conviction and conciousness, the kids observe rule breaking quite differently. The kids observe that breaking some rules can be the absolute right and courageous thing to do, like standing up to oppression.

Don’t forget, this great country was founded by some major rule breakers, at the cost of being branded “traitors” and hung by the rule makers. Today, we are seeing attempts to gain freedom by groups of oppressed peoples that are breaking some pretty significant rules. Should they just conform and follow the rules?

Texas Pete

March 18th, 2011
7:56 am

Parents are generally the greatest influence over a child’s attitude via their actions and inactions. That said, just because a kid does something wrong doesn’t mean the parents failed or caused it. Likewise, just because a kid is great doesn’t mean the parents did a great job. You have to really take a big picture and start peeling back layers depending on the severity of “bad” behavior. I will say most adults in general pretty much suck with their “me-first” attitude today so it’s not surprising that kids are generally more disrespectful than 20 years ago.

FCM

March 18th, 2011
8:01 am

We had this conversation yesterday at lunch. Well sort of. We were talking about Whitney Houston & Bobby Brown’s daughter. Apparently when she was “little” she was taken to many of the parties were her parents actions were that of tabloid news. I am sure like many parents they thought she was to little to realize what was going on. Now she is (late teens? Adult?–I admit to not knowing) and is having similar issues herself. I proposed the question of whether she was emulating the behaviors she saw as a child. Probably yes was our conclusion.

However as we have said before, that is only a part of it. Other positive role models can step in and the child can change course.

@ the risk of feeding the troll (seabeau)…I fail to see how behavior (ethical or not) caused the issues in Japan. Maybe I need more coffee to understand.

@ shaggy, I agree with you.

Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.”

PW

March 18th, 2011
8:03 am

This is why Georgia will continue to slide to the bottom. At no point in the article did I see anything about race. This was just a supposed to be a conversation about ethics. So how did Seabeau take this to start talking about Rosa Parks and “her” people? Absolutely amazing.

seabeau

March 18th, 2011
8:09 am

PW! It’s not about Race! It’s about acountability or the lack thereof.

NoWay

March 18th, 2011
8:20 am

Apple. Tree. Yes.

shaggy

March 18th, 2011
8:30 am

FCM,

Yes, those celebs are wonderful “role models”, aren’t they? Can you imagine what Sheen’s kids will be like?
Freedom and iberty has a cost. This great country provides us with so much security that many forget what that cost is. Personally, I am very happy that Thomas Jefferson and company broke a few rules. I wonder what their mothers thought?

I will go back in my corner now, before DB swats me with a ruler.

MomOf2Girls

March 18th, 2011
8:45 am

@FCM – I interpreted @seabeau’s comment about Japan as a positive. With everything going on there, people are helping each other and there is no looting or other anti-societal behaviors (that we hear about, and I doubt strongly it is going on at all). Japanese are brought up to respect others, and that is showing in how they are handling the current catastrophe – with dignity and respect for others. We could definitely learn some lessons from them. Remember, your true colors show in a crisis.

I agree that parents model behaviors to their children, and rule breaking / little white lies are part of it. I try hard to be a better person because of this – children pick up everything!! Pretty much the only rule I break with regularity is highway speed limits, partly because I would get run over if I didn’t (and partly because I can’t stand going that slowly!). I try extremely hard not to break rules otherwise. I slip up occasionally, but I am very self-conscious, especially when I have the girls with me.

Have to brag a little on this :-) I was so proud the other day when my younger daughter erased the signoff on her homework register put there by the adult at homework clinic. She hadn’t done that piece of homework and said that it was wrong to lie about having done it. Nobody would have known the difference because it was verbal work (except her and G-d), but she was willing to lose the points for not doing homework because she knew it was wrong.

Spacey

March 18th, 2011
8:55 am

I’m not sure that “rule breaking” is the problem. It is good to question the rules and know that there are consequences for breaking them. My problem is with the lack of personal responsibility and the “victim” mentality.
I see it all the time at work. The “victims” are just sliding through life waiting on others. My child didn’t do his homework because there was too much of it. My child didn’t get breakfast because the school did not provide it for him. My child got on the wrong bus because the teacher didn’t hold his hand and walk him to the bus door.
I could go on and on, but you get my point.
They rebel because they are lazy and have no accountability. Busy, productive children and adults are NOT bored. They are way too busy taking care of their own responsibilities. And if they are creative, they are having a blast doing it!
My two-year old has loved this warm weather. He gets out in the yard with me and works! I’m getting the yard done and he is learning to pick up the pine cones and stack up the sticks. They are never too young to learn to take care of things.
@Shaggy, you are right on! Sheen doesn’t take care of anything and blames others for his addictions and problems. He is a “victim” of the terrible industry that pays him millions of dollars and expects him to show up to work sober. Ugh, the nerve!

JOD

March 18th, 2011
9:01 am

@shaggy – Well said!

@MomOf2Girls – That’s a sign of a job well done for you :o)

So I had the opposite problem this morning (vent alert!). My 2-year-old gets super shy when we first get to school each day, and usually her buddies are a little in her face, as you would expect – everyone’s excited when others get to school. But recently, when she’s in a bad mood, she pushes or (lightly) hits the others to make them go away. We’ve talked about this and today I decided to apply the home punishment at school (e.g. time out) when she hit then refused to apologize. That went over like a lead balloon (read: tears), and the other kids were agog. But as usual, it was working…and then a teacher’s aide pulled her out of time out and took her over to the other kids. I was so shocked at first that I just walked out, then realized ‘WTH?! My kid, my discipline.’ So I walked back in, called her to me, and we proceeded with our usual why it’s wrong-sorry-kiss/hug/all good. All good. I was so mad I almost tracked down someone at the school, but then decided to just get over it. Sorry to vent at length but I just can’t believe someone would get between a parent and child when disciplining for something like hitting! Tell me I’m nuts…

*vent over* Thank you!

alh

March 18th, 2011
9:11 am

“Today, we are seeing attempts to gain freedom by groups of oppressed peoples that are breaking some pretty significant rules. Should they just conform and follow the rules?”

Bingo! Many of us parents/adults are so sick and tired of seeing the above mentioned get away with so much for so long, we (I know and admit I have) done some things in the spirit of “they don’t have to so why should I”!

My school age kids have always supported our current President. I did not, but I refused from day one to show my bias towards his policies and ideals. Since the economy has turned bad, my kids are coming home from school disliking him and blaming him from all wrong with society. They were getting opinions from everyone but me. I wish now I would have taken that time to explain my viewpoint, maybe I could have done some damage control. So even if a parent decides to be PC, there are are myriad of external forces out there.

DH & I have had issues with the grandparents and seatbelts. They adide by our rules, but have been a bit agrumentative about it in front of the kids. We often have seatbelt issues with the kids after the grandparents have had them for a few days. They are following our rules, but the kids do remember and try to push boundaries.

Kids today are smart and savvy, more so than when I was growing up, because of many more external factors.

motherjanegoose

March 18th, 2011
9:16 am

I suggested this topic and YES I have /do sometimes drive over the speed limit. When your kids are getting ready to drive…you tend to pay more attention to your habits! I have,

Part of the story that TWG did not share was that the daughter, of the person whom I was chatting with about this, was standing there with us. She ( home on spring break) is going into education and working in the field now. She mentioned that she sees little children who behave horribly and will not comply. It amazes her.

I have already broadened my perspective by reading comments today. Really. It is not simply about rules but accountability and respect….something I see LACKING in many people. Anyone else? Yes. there are rules that need to be challenged but the general attitude of many today is…I am doing what I want to do.,,,not my problem. If children see parents doing this..will they follow thier lead?

Here is another example:

We rent two different beach condos, from time to time. The times we go are low season. There is typically no one there. The pools are smaller and the sign is posted NO FLOATS IN THE POOL.

When we are in the pool alone…we bring in a float and if anyone else shows up we carefully take it out, as we know that the pool can get quite crowded when there are 15 people in it floating around.
Now, we are just adults but when the kids were there I explained the rule, why and told them it was out of respect to others. Was that the wrong approach?

Momof2girls…it is o.k. to brag in my book…you have done a good job. My son signed tried to sign my name Kinder, he was in trouble and using a CRAYON to sign the note from me, his mom :). WE had a big talk!

motherjanegoose

March 18th, 2011
9:26 am

chkrdr…you would have broader perspective than the rest of us…due to your employ.
You probably tend to deal with families who might have some problems. While others here could be on the outside looking in, you are on the inside. Thanks for sharing.

justmy2cents

March 18th, 2011
9:34 am

@ Spacey- AMEN!!!! I get so tired of lack of personal responsibility and the victim mentality (something I am working on with my youngest). It drives me absolutely nuts! Toss in the entitlement attitude to boot….shoot me now! LOL

@ alh- my kids know “buckle your rear before you put it in gear”…regardless of who is driving! Might be easier to focus on the kids and what is expected of them and forget about the stubborn adults :o)

@ JOD, not 100% sure if this is the case…it is your kid, your discipline (I agree), but I am betting the teacher thought “her turf, her time”. That, and heaven forbid, we hurt anyone’s self esteem. :o)

I’m not a big rule follower, per se, but not along the lines of speeding, etc. I once had to take a personality test, and it showed me as having such a problem with authority that I would probably be incarcerated at some point in time. LOL Luckily, that has not happened (yet). Mine is more I have a problem with authority because I know that being in a position of authority does not mean that you are right, or that you know the best way to get something accomplished. So until it is proven to me that you are indeed the end all be all, I will continue to do it my way. :o) That being said, I am firm believer that laws/safety measures should be followed.

On topic- no, I don’t break any of the rules the regular listed, nor the vacation rules. I think kids are more rebellious because parents have quit parenting and want to be their child’s friend. I will say that children of teachers seem to be the worst with the “I’m special because my mommy works here, and therefore the rules do not apply to me” attitude.

Spacey

March 18th, 2011
9:35 am

@alh… You are so right. It can be difficult to feel motivated when everyone else is doing it, they don’t have to so why should I”! Children can see the struggle too. It furthers their distain for rules.
@MDJ – Respect for others or even respect for yourself? What do you tell them when they ask, why? Everyone else is doing it. Why are you bothering?
I can remember my Grandmother simply saying that we were better than that. Was it the right approach? I’m not sure, but I plan on adopting some of it with my kids.

NoWay

March 18th, 2011
9:37 am

No Floats in the Pool means just that. You justify it however you like but would perhaps feel differently when your kid starts trying to justify why he/she broke a rule.

jarvis

March 18th, 2011
9:55 am

I’m an authority questioner by nature. My parents never modeled it.

As long as I can remember, when faced with a rule I’ve always asked “why?” or “how did that become rule?”, and “who can I talk to about that”.

I don’t take to authority without reason.

Don’t get me wrong, once explained I generally do what’s asked, and as for ethical behavior, I try to set an example. I don’t believe in taking for my gain at the expense of others. This includes breaking in line or letting the cashier give me incorrect change.

Like I said yesterday….nurture and nature can be debated on almost any topic.

motherjanegoose

March 18th, 2011
9:56 am

@ NoWay…I simply admitted that I too have broken rules. Everyone probably has. Nowadays, it is just my husband and myself at the pool, no kids. Believe me, I know how kids/adults try to justify.

alh

March 18th, 2011
9:58 am

“It is not simply about rules but accountability and respect….something I see LACKING in many people. Anyone else? Yes. there are rules that need to be challenged but the general attitude of many today is…I am doing what I want to do.,,,not my problem.”

motherjane I think I get what you are saying. There are lots people that have been raised that way and others that have just been torn down and take this attitude. I generally am a rule follower and have a great attitude and respect towards others, the overwhelming majority of time I can “deal” with lots of nastiness. There are rare times that I can become one of “those” people, but I can quicly jerk myself back into reality.

I really think the bad economy is destoying a lot of people mentally. I see people making personal and financial decisions that I never dreamed they would make, and the attitudes I see come out are not pretty.

shaggy

March 18th, 2011
10:01 am

alh,

“Today, we are seeing attempts to gain freedom by groups of oppressed peoples that are breaking some pretty significant rules. Should they just conform and follow the rules?”

Bingo! Many of us parents/adults are so sick and tired of seeing the above mentioned get away with so much for so long, we (I know and admit I have) done some things in the spirit of “they don’t have to so why should I”!”

My reference was about the peoples in Egypt, Libya, Bahrain, etc… that are staring oppressive regimes right in the eye, many dying for “breaking that rule”. How does that make a “Bingo” getting away with something. Actually, I really hope these people “get away” with their lives and establish a working democratic republic…kind of like ours. They will have discovered the true cost of freedom.

motherjanegoose

March 18th, 2011
10:18 am

Since I work with children and am not a history buff nor intelligent about global affairs…I have read
( here) things to ponder today . My point was not with folks who are oppressed but with children seeing their parents and modeling the behavior of “no one is going to make me to anything I do not want to do.” Thanks for the other ideas…something to think about! Heading out to a meeting. Enjoy the spring weather in ATL.

alh

March 18th, 2011
10:22 am

“My reference was about the peoples in Egypt, Libya, Bahrain, etc…”

Then YOU should have made yourself more clear. Instead, you come back and scold me?
I guess I am not cut out to be part of an open dialect. Thank you.

alh

March 18th, 2011
10:28 am

Excuse me – open dialogue. I have already had my hand slapped once today. :(

JOD

March 18th, 2011
10:32 am

@justmy2cents – You’re probably right, thanks.

@alh – I’m in the same boat (on topic, I abide by all those rules, except – of course – the speed limit sometimes). I get so disgusted seeing how little regard people have for others, but I try to stay centered (repeat after me: ‘like water off a duck’s back’) :o)

@Spacey: Your grandmother sounds like good people.

@seabeau

March 18th, 2011
10:33 am

If it’s just about “acountability or the lack thereof” why even mention “HER PEOPLES slide into degradation…” . If it wasn’t about race, you would say something like “society’s slide into degradation…”.

shaggy

March 18th, 2011
10:38 am

alh,

Calm down, no “scolding”, just seeking an understanding of your point of view.

I do love freedom and this country. The rest of my original post refered to the breaking of rules by our founding fathers being absolutely necessary for starting the greatest country that has EVER been. The United States of America

Kat

March 18th, 2011
10:45 am

I try to follow the rules as a parent. My son will “call me out” when I go over the speed limit, which is annoying but true. At the same time, I ALWAYS tell the cashier when they give me too much change (whether it’s a bank drive-thru or fast food one). I also return to the store when I realize something was left in the bottom of the cart when out shopping, even though it means a return to the store. Obviously, I need to look more closely at what I’m doing.

alh

March 18th, 2011
11:05 am

“just seeking an understanding of your point of view.”

No, you were not. My point of view had to deal with entitlement mentality and illegal immigration, which I ass-umed you were referring. I get it. Your opinions matters, mine doesn’t. Your compassionate, I am not.

JJ

March 18th, 2011
11:10 am

I’ve definately broken my share of the rules. I constantly drive 10mph over the posted limit, but I will do the posted limit in a school zone when the yellow lights are flashing. Just this morning, I was in a 25mph zone, the yellow lights were flashing and I slowed down to 25mph. There was a car behind me, practically riding my bumper. That is one thing that just kills me, is people zooming through a school zone. I see it every day in front of Norcross High School. There its a 35mph zone, but no one slows down. Maybe everything thinks because they are older kids, they won’t step out in front of a moving car. WRONG……

Now, there’s another school zone I hit on the way home from work, on PIB. There are two cops there, directing the buses. When the cops are there, traffic slows to a crawl. If the cops are gone, no one slows down……

JJ

March 18th, 2011
11:23 am

Does anyone here go to 12 Stone on GA 20?

JATL

March 18th, 2011
11:39 am

Except for speeding, I try to follow most rules. I think it’s very important for parents to talk to their kids if they’re going to break some big rule and the kid is going to be witness to it, so that the child understands why this is happening -and it can’t be, “Because it’s a stupid rule…” -seriously -there needs to be a real, legitimate, thoughtful reason. I think when we start talking about societal standards of different times that profoundly impacted whole groups of people in a negative way, then we should use those examples to teach our children when it’s GOOD to break rules and go against the grain. I make it a point though (because it irritates me so much) to let my kids know that rules like coming to a complete stop, taking only the allotted amount into the express lane, etc. negatively impact others individually and personally, and it’s not okay to break those rules simply because, as an individual, you think you’re “above” it or it doesn’t suit you at a particular time. A lot of that goes hand in hand with teaching manners and having well-behaved children, which unfortunately many don’t seem to value.

Techmom

March 18th, 2011
11:54 am

I am generally a rule follower as well though I do question a lot. As long as I understand the reason, I’m good.

I was however totally busted last week in the parking lot at my son’s school. For drop-offs and pick-ups they have certain lanes blocked off to force traffic to go a certain way. I was dropping my son off early for tutoring so there wasn’t any traffic and instead of driving around the lot as usual, I pulled through the “wrong” way. Wouldn’t you know that I got a ‘talking to’ by the school security guard. My son of course was like, “see mom, you’re supposed to go around that way”. I apologized and promised to follow the rules in the future. I was embarrassed of course but honestly, I think it was a good lesson for my son b/c I have told him over and over that rules are there for reason and if you break them, you better be prepared for the consequences. In this case, it was just a bit of embarrassment but I’ll guarantee you, he’ll drive the correct way around the parking lot in the future (he’s 15 and will be driving himself to school soon).

Kate

March 18th, 2011
12:16 pm

Some parents are of the “do as I say, not as I do” mentality, which may work well enough while your children are small, but will nearly always come back to haunt you once they are old enough to think for themselves. There is nothing wrong with questioning authority, but many of the examples listed (breaking in line, not following basic pool safety rules, etc.) are more symptoms of being ill-mannered, narcissistic and just plain rude than of being a rebel. If that is what you want to teach your kids, and clearly some parents do, than so be it. Just remember another cliche that actually does ring true: you reap what you sow.

Photius

March 18th, 2011
12:20 pm

I am huge rule follower but also instructed our son that some rules should be broken and challenged if they are wrong; bear in mind you probably will suffer the consequences so be prepared.

Our top Universities have changed over the last 40 to 50 years, producing too many rule breakers with serious repercussions. Top leadership in major corporations mostly emerges from our top Business schools and then wind up running Tyco, Enron, Worldcom, AIG, Bear Stearns, Lehman Brothers….. They break huge rules and suffer no consequences either. The last ten years in America has been the decade of some of the largest business scams in history; those who ran the show and burned the house down walked away with millions while 15 million people in America are out of work because of their “rule breaking”. It’s no wonder the people look at what’s going on all around them, see the BS and ask themselves “why am I following the rules then? “ You do everything right in life, play by all of their rules and you find yourself out of work with no jobs on the horizon. So why play by the rules when those at the top are screwing us over? It’s a valid point of consideration.

JJ

March 18th, 2011
12:42 pm

“You are responsible for your own actions, and your actions have consequences” – My Dad.

Bluebell

March 18th, 2011
12:50 pm

This all started when rednecks started to be proud of their lack of class.
Just do the right thing. There is a reasonable expectation that you all know what that means.

JJ

March 18th, 2011
12:53 pm

And “gangstas”…..when did looking like a prisoner become a fashion statement????

jarvis

March 18th, 2011
1:04 pm

I couldn’t fit all of the rebellious stuff I’ve done on this blog, and I learned NONE of it from my parents.

JJ

March 18th, 2011
1:06 pm

Me either Jarvis!!!!

JATL

March 18th, 2011
1:11 pm

I will second that jarvis! My parents used to ask me, “Where did you come from?” I didn’t learn any of my rebellious behavior from them. I used to call my mother “prissy pants” and you would be hard-pressed to find more of a straight arrow than she was.

Mr. Freeze

March 18th, 2011
1:26 pm

I’ve noticed,the one thing that can’t be gauged is the unpredictability of human nature. Sure, we can speak of personal accountability, responsibility, etc… but it seems to me there’s always an element of surprise lurking around when it comes to human behavior. People are break rules for their own self interest. Always have and always will.

shaggy

March 18th, 2011
1:35 pm

I was not rebellious. I always followed the rules. Everything was my parent’s fault. Mom, I was not doing what all of the evidence points to. Dad, you know I would never drive like that in your truck. Principal, I did not spike the commodes with powerful water-proof M-80s. Teacher, I did not super glue your chalk to your desk. Summer work supervisor, no me and my friends would never skinny dip and jump off the resort pavillion into the lake after work.
I was a Boy Scout; I never lie.

Layla

March 18th, 2011
2:41 pm

regarding the quoted Bible verse: Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” That verse is one of the favorites of Christian parents, unfortunately it’s also a mistranslation. From the original language (Greek, I think) it’s actually “Train up a child in his own way and when he is older he will not depart from it.” In other words, give a kid his way all the time and don’t discipline him (or her), and they’ll be a completely spoiled brat when they’re an adult.

Becky

March 18th, 2011
2:44 pm

Too funny shaggy..You know, I never did any of those things..In school, I was so quiet that teachers hardly knew I was there..Boy have times changed..

I wasn’t a real rebellious person as a teenager or even now..Anything that I have been rebellious about I did not learn from my Mom..Like most, about the only thing that I have done in front of the kids that was wrong was speeding..Heck, I took the kids to Olive Garden Monday and when the waitress offered me a sample of wine, the boy told her that his Nanny didn’t drink..

I’m not saying that I’m perfect, cause I’m not by a long shot..I’m sure that I could find more rules that I have broken if I spent a lot of time thinking about it..I really try to set a good example for the kids and I have seen it pay off..I think I’ve already told this, but back during the summer, I took the kids to the air show..Picked up some sunglasses at a booth to buy, the girl walked away and without thinking, I put the glasses on and went after her..Once I had her by the arm, the boy said Nanny, you didn’t pay for those did you? Nope, I didn’t..We went back & I paid for them..The guy running the booth never knew that I had “taken” them..The boy said that’s what God would want you to do..

catlady

March 18th, 2011
2:57 pm

JJ: and when did mothers decide to send their young daughters out looking like streetwalkers, pole dancers, and trollops?

jarvis

March 18th, 2011
3:25 pm

Poll: What do Bradford Pear trees smell like to you?

Techmom

March 18th, 2011
4:11 pm

@jarvis What do you think they smell like?

Becky

March 18th, 2011
4:38 pm

@jarvis..to me they smell like crap..In the SD where I live, the builder planted one in every yard.. They are very pretty when they bloom, but that’s about it..

jarvis

March 18th, 2011
6:00 pm

I think they smell like a body product.

Stacey

March 18th, 2011
6:38 pm

@jarvis…Funny you should say that because I have a friend who swears she can smell Bradford pear blooms from a mile away and that they smelled like musty body odor. I swore (behind her back) that I iit’s all in her head because I have been surronded by them for 12 years and have never smelled them. Like Becky’s neighborhood our builder put two in each front yard (one on each side of the driveway). When I got home this afternoon I stood in the yard talking to my neighbor and was nearly overcome by what smelled like week old body odor and though that I discreetly did an underarm check. My neighbor saw it and laughed & told me she had checked herself the first few times she smelled it until she realized it was the trees. :-D

JOD

March 18th, 2011
7:31 pm

@jarvis – Dead fish! 3 in my old neighbor’s backyard. Ungodly stench and limbs down every time the wind blew.

JoDee

March 18th, 2011
7:59 pm

I use Bradford Pears as a lesson to teach the vocabulary word “ubiquitous”.

Kat

March 19th, 2011
12:04 am

They smell like semen.

Enemas for Easter

March 19th, 2011
9:02 am

Another lame blog.

motherjanegoose

March 19th, 2011
11:54 am

@ Layla…I have never heard your take and am quite interested. Can you share where you got the information? Here is what I found:

http://bible.cc/proverbs/22-6.htm

several choices and maybe I missed something?

karma

March 19th, 2011
12:39 pm

looks like she deleted an earlier post that reminded us of a blog from deep into the drought where she bragged about breaking the drought rules, let her kids run through sprinklers, how she filled and emptied the kiddie pool as it got dirty, but it was ok, she had agreed with the other neighborhood moms that they would split the fine, so it was ok. yea, she deleted it.

HB

March 19th, 2011
12:55 pm

MJG, Barnes’ notes come the closest to translating the text as Layla did but the interpretation is very different seeing “own way” as recognizing all children are different and parents should raise them as works best for each individually. In terms of understanding the translation, I think Clarke’s commentary that parses the original Hebrew text is most interesting.

Jack

March 20th, 2011
9:13 am

Kids learn most of their bad stuff at home. The rest of it they learn from peers who learned bad stuff at home.

Toby

March 20th, 2011
10:32 am

Rules are broken by kids because either the rules are bad or the rules are good but the kids don’t know any better… they’re so often, here in the US, fed bad food, offered entertainment & mythology (Christianity) instead of ethics or truth, they’re so often left to their own devices… left to raise themselves… they’re taught that big issues are trivial, they’re generally raised badly, so there we are.
-kids copy their parents yes… by the way, if someone (child or otherwise) thinks that everything is part of God’s plan, then why would they bother doing the moral thing? If they think they can just say, “sorry” to the voice in their head, why bother being good? That mythological thinking which is indistinguishable from schizophrenia is massively damaging. Religion & a lack of respect for ethics & for evidence-based rational thinking (science) is a huge problem.

mom of two/teacher

March 20th, 2011
11:11 am

There is no debate about this subject where I work – a high school in metro Atlanta. The student who has little or no for respect for teachers – they have little to no respect for their parents. The student who is respectful, hard working and cares about their grades – they have parents who have taught them manners, respect and a good work ethic.
Breaking “little” rules is a matter of opinion. A “rule” that is often broken at my school is being on time to school. And the school encourages tardiness by “holding the bell” on rainy days so that fewer students are tardy!! The reason they are tardy is that so many parents “have to” drive their children to school rather than put them on the bus.
Lack of following the rules is part of our culture today – this is seen even in the smallest of courtesies – how many times do you have someone say to you “you’re welcome” when you say “thank you”? I know this seems trivial to many, but it used to be part of our culture and people actually meant it!

Rich

March 20th, 2011
11:15 am

The problem starts with parents letting the children reject/change what the parent or authority decides. Examples: Kids in preK can decide what activities that they want to participate in, no authority to force them to participate. Parent tells the child to do something and the child complains enough for the parent to not have the child do it. When I was a child, whining did not change what had been decide by my parents, it got me punished. These things have changed over the last 40 years.

It is not about following the speed limit. Which is a silly rule. If most people do not agree with the speed limit as it is currently set, why should it stay there? It is not saving lives, most people do not follow it.

somewhereinga

March 20th, 2011
12:10 pm

I have a retail store. A young boy broke a piece of merchandise and showed it to his mother right in front of the register (and me) and she put it back on the table and walked away. RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME! She left first and then eventually the boy left and I asked him to send her back in. She came in and I asked if she didn’t plan on paying for the merchandise her son broke. She went and picked it up without a word and placed it on the register. I said “That’s one hell of an example of honesty to show to your kid, lady.” Still not a word. She paid and walked out.

And she will wonder why he is dishonest.

japanese homogeneity

March 20th, 2011
1:07 pm

it’s much easier to avoid looting when the citizenry are the same religion, same color, and the political parties are not waging an us versus them campaign. Class warfare in the US is ripping us apart, and it has nothing to do with upbringing or religion. It’s all about money and power.

therese persaud

March 20th, 2011
1:43 pm

How long have we gone on with this standardized testing in the schools ? Will we ever revert back to EDUCATION and dealing with the Whole Child?

DLink

March 20th, 2011
2:11 pm

All people regularly break rules which make no sense to them. This applies to you, me, and our children – w/out exception.

It isn’t until there is a consequence that can be seen or felt personally that a certain rule begins to make sense and people begin to follow the rule. One of the first rules upon venturing into the world for children is to not step into an ant bed, and yet children don’t really look for them until bitten a few times. Now, it’s important. So it goes will all “rules” and “laws”.

So, what of rules which have consequences which can’t be seen or felt or have personal impact for many years. How consequential is the rule? Building a house on a flood plain which hasn’t flooded in 50 yrs, smoking, sexual relations with the same sex, sexual relations within the same family, not learning how to swim, learning how to drive a stick shift, knowing how to handle a gun, learning a long-term skill or trade, having many spouses instead of just one, taking a day of rest regularly.

Jumping from a moving vehicle provides immediately satisfying consequences which support and reinforce the rule. Taking home a pen from work every day, not so much. An open campfire in the yard. Burning leaves. Killing a bald eagle for lunch. Raising chickens/hens for eggs and meat. Fishing with nets for food.

For most of these rules, the only immediate consequence is going to jail. They have little or no immediate negative impact, other than socially. aka “We don’t approve of that behavior.” Pants hanging low, short skirts, drinking in public, spitting on the sidewalk. In Saudi Arabia, showing the sole of a foot at another, in the U.S. shooting ‘the bird’ (edited out from the movie Top Gun for television), so as not to offend. So is it offensive, a rule, or a law. Laws are generally deemed to be guaranteed consequences whether you feel the impact immediately or not. Rules or guidelines generally assist you to get where you want to be faster and safer. Offenses are usually unappreciated behaviors people would prefer to be a law and therefore create a consequence to deter a behavior with no actual consequence other than social.

And what does all this mean? Nothing. I’m merely a person elaborating on the question at hand. Tweeting, “I feel good.” While in the dugout on a pro ball-field? The perfect insecticide / it kills everything. It’s all a matter of the consequences as to whether any rule/law/regulation is followed. Don’t go out after dark… If you masturbate you’ll go blind… Keep making that face and it’ll be there forever.

Unfortunately, there are so many manufactured consequences that people don’t trust what they’re told anymore, until they are hit by a natural personal impact as a result of their actions. And right or wrong, this is the way it will be, the law be d*md

DLink

March 20th, 2011
2:26 pm

OH… My sister’s guide to solving the climbing problem of her toddler – witnessed at the shoe rack of a McDonald’s ball pit. Paid absolutely no attention to him other than to remind him, “You know if you climb up there, I’m not going to help you get down.” and kept eating while we talked (Looking back, I think the warning was actually for me :)

He made it to the top and back down with no consequence other than my initial surprise at my sister’s approach to the matter. Must have been worked out previously as matter-of-factly as she’d handled it.

motherjanegoose

March 20th, 2011
3:00 pm

mom of two…re: manners. I give away FREE books and Cd’s at my educational venues. Typically $50 to $100 worth of things per session…I pay for these myself. Out of 8-10 teachers who come up to the front and claim their prize, in front of the group…4 might say thank you. WHAT is up with that? If someone passed me a straw for the Coke I was drinking…I would say thanks! Manners are becoming extinct.

Dlink…My neighbor just had someone run into her mailbox yesterday. It was knocked on the ground and broken. No note or apology. Hubby is out there right now fixing it. He has always been good about looking out for the neighbors. He went to Home Depot to get the parts. Civility is just something we, as neighbors share. We take turns assisting those who may need it. No consequences for the person who trashed her mailbox but we are happy to help her fix it. People, to me, do not often seem to care about things like this.

motherjanegoose

March 20th, 2011
3:02 pm

@japanese…so, should those of us who have worked hard and have some cash share it with those who have no aspiration to succeed…would this solve the dilemma?
@therese…seems to me that manners are respect are as much a part of parenting as tying shoes and brushing teeth…hmmm.

motherjanegoose

March 20th, 2011
3:10 pm

@somewhere…I recently shopped at Ross Dress for Less. An unattended 8 ish year old was carrying a 3 foot ceramic statue of a leopard alone. No adult in sight. I carefully said, “You might want to set that down…” The Mom came around the corner and gave me a dirty look. Well, I would not have to pay for it but if it were my kid, I would have said…thanks! Guess I should mind my own business?

DB

March 20th, 2011
8:43 pm

Ah, don’t you love the products of the rebellious 60s and 70s? So many kids born then grew up “free” and encouraged to question authority — it was practically the mantra of the age. Add to that a heavy dose of a generation of parents who have spent the last twenty years trying to “give” their child “self-esteem,” and you’ve created a generation of kids and young people who think that the world begins and ends with them and their wants and needs. Parents can’t teach what they, themselves, don’t know and don’t understand. Manners are a part of everyday life, and either you have them, or you don’t — it’s not memorizing the Miss Manners book, it’s a frame of mind in which you understand that you, yourself, are not the center of the universe. Unfortunately, so many kids are raised to BE the center of the universe. While “My Super Sweet 16″ is an over-the-top example, the “Me-Me-Me” generation see themselves as the reason the sun rises and sets, simply because they exist. It’s proven out over the increased bullying and cyberbullying (in spite of all the intervention programs schools have tried to implement) — heck, Facebook, alone, is an amazing window into the psyche of so many of these narcissistic kids. So many of them do “service projects” — but only as a social outlet or because they are required to (sorta like “community service” decreed by the court). And while I’ll get blasted for this, I believe that there are a LOT of kids who would benefit from being exposed to regular religious training. It’s not a cure-all, but it does help lay a foundation that parents can build on.

@shaggy — no smacking with a ruler, today — I agree with everything in your 7:42 am post :-)