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3 Bumps

Running for Student Council, even though he might lose?

I am not in any way shape or form a sugar coating kind of mom. My 8 year old is running for Student Council, I am really proud of him. He keeps asking me if I think he will win? I said, I have no idea, but I am really proud you are doing it.

This is a new school for him, most of the kids have known each other forever, I doubt he will win, and it really doesn't matter to me if he does, just happy he is putting it out there.

My girlfriend told me that I am ridiculous for allowing him to most likely fail, and that I should only encourage him if I really thought he could win!

I told her everyone fails, part of life, she said that I am "setting him up" to fail?

Agree or not?

Answer Question

Asked by 2kids2dogs2cats at 1:52 PM on Nov. 6, 2013 in Parenting Debate

Level 29 (39,783 Credits)
Answers (21)
  • Agree with you. Hey, you never know! I bet he does win! I'd just prepare him in advance either way. Sometimes you win & sometimes you lose.

    Answer by ILovemyPaulie at 1:56 PM on Nov. 6, 2013

  • Who knows, he has quite the gaggle of little girls chasing him. I said you should just be happy you tried, he wants to offer hour long lunches as part of his platform, lol. I told him he couldn't lie to get elected, and he said why not, even the president did? We will be discussing the parts of his speech when he gets home, make sure it is PC enough to not get a phone call, LOL!

    Comment by 2kids2dogs2cats (original poster) at 2:00 PM on Nov. 6, 2013

  • You are not 'setting him up' to fail. You are supporting a decision that he made. Winning is a great feeling, but only one competitor can 'win'. Maybe he will win, but if he doesn't it's an opportunity for him to learn to be a gracious 'loser'. Although, I wouldn't call him a loser at all, I'd say just throwing his hat in the ring makes him a winner.

    Why would a mom tell her chld not to run because he might lose? Your son knows he has your support, win or lose, that makes it okay to try things and fail. If you tell your child not to do run because he might fail, you're telling him he must never fail, and that taking the risk of trying something new isn't a good idea.

    Just running is a learning experience in itself. I think you are handling the situation in a supportive way.

    Answer by ohwrite at 2:01 PM on Nov. 6, 2013

  • I think it's a great life lesson
    He wins,he learns how great it is to work hard and achieve your goal. He loses,he learns that sometimes you work hard and lose,but you pick yourself up,and try again.

    Answer by butterflyblue19 at 2:03 PM on Nov. 6, 2013

  • I am glad you all agree, this is coming from one of my perfect friends, she has a son the same age, same school as me, so she thinks she has the "inside" track on the popular children.

    Comment by 2kids2dogs2cats (original poster) at 2:03 PM on Nov. 6, 2013

  • I completely disagree with your friend. You'd be setting him up to fail if you blew smoke up his ass and told him he was a shoo-in to win. You are being encouraging and supporting him, but also leaving the door open for possible failure.

    I think y'all are doing fine.

    Answer by Rosehawk at 2:09 PM on Nov. 6, 2013

  • you are doing just right imo! you havent filled his head with guarantees that he'll win and you didnt crush his dreams before he even tried. kids need to fail in a safe environment when they are still young enough to jump back in and have ppl around them to help them through it. if he fails, he knows you supported him. if he wins, he knows you supported him haha.

    setting him up to fail would have been filling his head with grand dreams of crushing the other kids running and him being the best student council member ever, etc.

    Answer by okmanders at 2:19 PM on Nov. 6, 2013

  • You are setting him up for real are doing a great thing by telling him how proud you are, that alone is worth it's weight in gold!

    Answer by older at 2:33 PM on Nov. 6, 2013

  • Does she know how many politicians lost before they won? A fairly large percentage. My dd lost her first student council election, but she learned so much from running. The next year she put what she had learned to use and she won!

    Answer by missanc at 2:43 PM on Nov. 6, 2013

  • Even if you were, wouldn't it be better for him to learn that life doesn't end when something doesn't go right while he is young, instead of when he is a young adult and his world crumbles because he's never had to deal with disappointment before?

    My DS campaigned to be on student council and he didn't win. He was disappointed, and yet he was still able to move on. The 'everybody gets a trophy' theory has done far more damage to our youth than friendly competition.


    Answer by QuinnMae at 2:43 PM on Nov. 6, 2013

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