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Any Jehovah witnesses here? I have a question.

I get that your faith doesn't allow you to celebrate birthdays and holidays and stuff but at what age do you start teaching your children about the reason why. I ask because of this. I teach a 3-4 year old class. One of the young boys in our class has to be excluded from class parties (taken to another room) and was not allowed to create any Halloween Art or hear any Halloween stories. Well today as I was taking him to another room so we could celebrate a birthday he asked me why he did not get a crown on his birthday last week. I told him he needed to ask his mom. He then tells me that he is not allowed to have parties or talk about his birthday. I again tell him he needs to talk to his mom about this. Then later the kids were discussing costumes and he was asking me why he can't go Trick or Treating. I just had to keep telling him to ask his parents. He said it was because he was bad. Seriously? this is what his mom is allowing him to think? I feel so bad for him. Is this typical though? To not really get into the 'why' until they are older?

Answer Question
 
Anonymous

Asked by Anonymous at 5:02 PM on Oct. 29, 2013 in Religion & Beliefs

Answers (15)
  • Oh no, please do not summon the beast (our resident JW troll).
    3libras

    Answer by 3libras at 5:04 PM on Oct. 29, 2013

  • I'm not trying to start anything I swear! lol. I only went anon because this was work related. I just feel bad for this kid! I understand where they are coming from I just don't understand when this get explained to the children.
    Anonymous

    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 5:06 PM on Oct. 29, 2013

  • I'm not, but I know some. They consider themselves 'foot step followers' of Jesus and don't celebrate anything but their Memorial (around the time others would celebrate Easter).

    Honestly, in your situation you should just shoot the parents an email telling them what their child is expressing to you and that he has inferred that he isn't able to celebrate because he thinks he was bad. They really should do a better job explaining these things to the kids so that they don't feel left out of things.
    QuinnMae

    Answer by QuinnMae at 5:08 PM on Oct. 29, 2013

  • i don't have the slightest clue, but this is a prime example of what pisses me off about organized religion. forcing your beliefs on your kids and stripping them of a choice... (your in general)
    tnm786

    Answer by tnm786 at 5:17 PM on Oct. 29, 2013

  • Idk any JW's who are currently following their faith, just a couple people who grew up in the religion, but my understanding is that they knew the reasons from very early on. The parents of this kid are either terribly stupid, abusive, or ignorant of their own faith and can't explain why.
    anime_mom619

    Answer by anime_mom619 at 5:33 PM on Oct. 29, 2013

  • How heartbreaking! Not necessarily that the kid can't celebrate Halloween, but that he thinks it's because he's bad. I would definitely pull the mom aside or get in touch with her by phone or e-mail. Tell her you aren't questioning her beliefs, but her son is confused and thinks he's missing out because he's bad. She needs to fix that.
    Ballad

    Answer by Ballad at 6:00 PM on Oct. 29, 2013

  • I think this is a good question and I would like to here the answer. There are things that we do not do and my kids knew from early on why age appropriately.
    Since you are the one he is always asking I would ask the parents to come in for a conference and have them explain to you what they would like you to say to their child and also be made aware that he does not understand and thinks it is a punishment because he is perpetually bad, something you are sure he does not want their child to think about himself.
    Dardenella

    Answer by Dardenella at 6:03 PM on Oct. 29, 2013

  • Oh,,that is sooo sad! I can't help here but that breaks my heart.
    ILovemyPaulie

    Answer by ILovemyPaulie at 6:18 PM on Oct. 29, 2013

  • Careful, she'll (our resident JW troll) will swear that we're trying to bait her.

    But I do agree, I can't understand making a child feel like it's his fault, instead of explaining why the religion forbids it.
    bandgeek521

    Answer by bandgeek521 at 9:35 PM on Oct. 29, 2013

  • This is definitely something the parents should explain, not you. You're in a tough situation having to exclude him.

    Like others have said, pull the parents aside or email them all his questions and the remark about being bad. If it still continues, have a sit-down conference with them.

    Good luck!
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:18 AM on Oct. 30, 2013

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