Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

3 Bumps

Don't kids have the right to choose?

Why do people teach their kids to believe what they were taught? What if it doesn't work for them? I don't tell my kids what to believe. I let them search it out for themselves and if they have questions, I try to explain as best I can. But I tell them that even I don't know why sometimes.
I just think we should respect our kids more and let them choose those kinds of impotant choices for themselves.


Asked by TwilightMack at 3:08 PM on Mar. 2, 2011 in Religion & Beliefs

Level 18 (5,507 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (20)
  • What I feel is the biggest problem of teaching your children religion is the resentment that follows if they finally DO decide that the way they have been taught isn't for them. Like my SO- he was raised a Catholic, taught by his parents that "this is how things are" he was part of the church group all the way up until he way in junior high. Then he met people that weren't catholic- and realized that they were good people. His parents supported his decision to not be a catholic anymore but he still felt this resentment that that was the only thing he was taught- like that was the only way to being a good person.

    Now, years later, he thinks just about every religion is a crock. It's a shame because there are some beautiful ones out there.

    Answer by meandrphoto at 3:45 PM on Mar. 2, 2011

  • I choose to raise my children in my religion because I believe it is my duty to teach them the ways I believe. If and when they are old enough to choose to turn away from what I believe then that will be their choice, and I will respect that choice. I will know I brought them up with God and knowing right from wrong in general and hope they take the good with them when they leave home.

    Answer by gemgem at 3:12 PM on Mar. 2, 2011

  • There is nothing wrong with children learning about any religion. When they are grown, they will have to make a decision about what they believe and want to follow but I'm not going to avoid talking to my children about something that is very important to me. My relationship with Christ is central to who I am, I couldn't let my children get to know me without also learning about my Savior.
    btw - I also don't think a 5 yr old can always make smart, informed choices. If I let my 2 yo choose what to eat, he would have m&ms for breakfast, lunch and supper. Children sometimes need a parent to direct their choices when they are young.

    Answer by missanc at 3:34 PM on Mar. 2, 2011

  • They should have the right to choose. It bothers me that in the dynamic between my son and his classmates at public school, it is HIS responsibility at 8 years old to be constantly vigilant not to upset the other kids because nobody bothered to teach those 8 year olds that their "belief" (if you can call it that when it's been ingrained from birth and they've never been given a choice) isn't the only one on earth. I wonder how it is that mine is the one apparently without any guidance in right from wrong, yet they are the ones who bully and ostracize other kids for not being the same religion they are.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 4:38 PM on Mar. 2, 2011

  • gemgem, it is inherently dangerous to rely solely upon religion to instill morals. Religion and moral behavior may very well go hand in hand for some, but the ultimate reality is that religion holds no bearing on whether or not a person is in fact moral.

    Were that the case, every person of differing beliefs than yours would be out to rape and pillage. This is not a matter of being my view, it is a simple matter of reality versus delusion.
    Reality- people are capable of knowing right from wrong as moral individuals without religion.
    Delusion- people need religion to guide them into moral decisions.

    Answer by ObbyDobbie at 3:33 PM on Mar. 2, 2011

  • gemgem, knowing right from wrong has nothing to do with god. Religion is not a prerequisite to moral behavior. We've been down that road before.

    OP- when my children are teens, and can comprehend the implications they may decide to be involved in some sort of religion. Until then, they simply can not understand how dangerous it is.

    Answer by ObbyDobbie at 3:15 PM on Mar. 2, 2011

  • I agree with you OP, it's my child's decision what they want to believe. We're not a religious family anyways so there's no one pressuring them into believing one thing or another. I'd be totally ticked if someone tried to shove their beliefs on them though. When they're old enough to decide what they want to believe, then that's totally on them.

    Answer by Nanixh at 3:22 PM on Mar. 2, 2011

  • How can a child choose what they believe when they are brought up thinking it is true?

    Answer by Andriya at 3:30 PM on Mar. 2, 2011

  • How can a child choose what they believe when they are brought up thinking it is true?

    Do you still have the same religious beliefs as you did when you were a child? Did something along your path of life ever change the way you believed as a kid? My SIL was raised in a strict Catholic setting, and now as an adult, is an atheist. My husband became Baptist in highschool. What's wrong with teaching your kids your way of thinking as children, and letting them make their own decisions when they're old enough?

    Answer by tnm786 at 3:33 PM on Mar. 2, 2011

  • so is a parent suppose to stop going to church completely when they have children and go back when the child has made their own decision?

    Answer by tnm786 at 4:02 PM on Mar. 2, 2011