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Elementary School Kids Elementary School Kids

Letting kids work it out vs. "protecting" them

Posted by on Sep. 26, 2013 at 9:14 AM
  • 23 Replies

I put quotes around the word protecting b/c sometimes we think we are protecting but what we are really doing is sheltering or in the extreme stunting growth in our children. 

I was raised by very overprotective parents and without going into a ton of detail I feel it hurt me in the long run. Of course it feels good as a child to have all your fights fought for you but then you never learn coping skills and are unable to interact in a healthy way with others. So my question is at what point is it okay to step back and allow your child to get their feelings hurt to or have a disagreement or just allow them to be uncomfortable and when is it time to step in and swoop your baby bird up and make it all better. It is so hard to see your child suffer and know you can fix it immediately but also know some of that suffering is necessary. I struggle with this constantly b/c of my upbringing it is ingrained in me to fix all my dds hurts and I really have to make a conscious effort to allow her to be uncomfortable occasionally. 

by on Sep. 26, 2013 at 9:14 AM
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mjande4
by Platinum Member on Sep. 26, 2013 at 9:22 AM
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It's a fine line, but it starts much earlier then elementary school.  For those children that have siblings/close cousins, this is usually the start.  Kids have to learn to problem solve.  I think for me the line has always been physically getting injured.  I never got involved in disputes between my kids when they were younger, I always told them to work it out.  I now have one in high school, junior high, and elementary.  All three have dealt with their conflicts well.  They tend to stay away from drama, but do not hesitate to stand up for themselves or others.  I think it's important to let kids experience disappointment and having their feelings hurt, because ultimately as adults we know that's how life really is.

wakymom
by Ruby Member on Sep. 26, 2013 at 9:22 AM

 I was guilty of stepping in too much with friend issues when dd was younger, but have been trying very hard since she was about 5 1/2 to not do that unless she and her friends don't seem to be making in headway in working it out on their own. She's now 7 and the only time I really step in is when one particular friend, who has trouble sharing dd, is in tears and refusing to go home b/c dd already made plans to play w/ someone else (and if those plans are ok w/ me).

 

 

 

MsLogansMommy
by Bronze Member on Sep. 26, 2013 at 9:29 AM

the post that got me thinking about this was the "bullying" (yup used those quotes again b/c I do not consider what was described in that post to be bullying) post. For instance if another adult is involved in a disagreement that is also including my child then I feel the need to step in for representation (haha couldn't think of a better word) but if another child took something from my child would it be better to have my child first ask for it back or is this a situation that a parent needs to handle? My opinion is that it would depend on the age and the personality of the child. I would absolutely have my dd attempt to recover her item(s) first since she is 7 and very outgoing. If her attempts didn't yield any results then I would step in. 

mjande4
by Platinum Member on Sep. 26, 2013 at 9:32 AM
2 moms liked this


My opinion is that other post is not "bullying".  Unfortunately, that term is overused, misused, and a hot button so when it REALLY occurs (and taking a 6 year old's lunch box is not it) it doesn't get taken seriously.  It's the "boy who cried wolf" phenomena.

Quoting MsLogansMommy:

the post that got me thinking about this was the "bullying" (yup used those quotes again b/c I do not consider what was described in that post to be bullying) post. For instance if another adult is involved in a disagreement that is also including my child then I feel the need to step in for representation (haha couldn't think of a better word) but if another child took something from my child would it be better to have my child first ask for it back or is this a situation that a parent needs to handle? My opinion is that it would depend on the age and the personality of the child. I would absolutely have my dd attempt to recover her item(s) first since she is 7 and very outgoing. If her attempts didn't yield any results then I would step in. 



MsLogansMommy
by Bronze Member on Sep. 26, 2013 at 9:38 AM
2 moms liked this


I actually dont even think the OP was fully on board with the term bullying for that situation. I think the poster that was adamant that it was bullying had experiences in her life (that were probably valid and extremely painful to her) that made that a very sensitive subject and she was in a sense re-living it in that post. But it is very sad that that term has been used so loosely for the very reasons that you just stated; when it truly does happen the significance has now been taken out of the word.

How sad that the very campaign to end bullying may have just made it worse.

Quoting mjande4:


My opinion is that other post is not "bullying".  Unfortunately, that term is overused, misused, and a hot button so when it REALLY occurs (and taking a 6 year old's lunch box is not it) it doesn't get taken seriously.  It's the "boy who cried wolf" phenomena.

Quoting MsLogansMommy:

the post that got me thinking about this was the "bullying" (yup used those quotes again b/c I do not consider what was described in that post to be bullying) post. For instance if another adult is involved in a disagreement that is also including my child then I feel the need to step in for representation (haha couldn't think of a better word) but if another child took something from my child would it be better to have my child first ask for it back or is this a situation that a parent needs to handle? My opinion is that it would depend on the age and the personality of the child. I would absolutely have my dd attempt to recover her item(s) first since she is 7 and very outgoing. If her attempts didn't yield any results then I would step in. 





soymujer
by Mikki on Sep. 26, 2013 at 9:08 PM
1 mom liked this

We have always told our children to stand up for themselves.  We have never fought any of their fights.  We give them pointers on how to handle situations but never do it for them.

family in the van   Mom of four


mommy053008
by Maria on Sep. 26, 2013 at 10:12 PM

This is a great question! Interested to see answers!

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kLynch315
by Bronze Member on Sep. 27, 2013 at 12:42 PM

I seldom get in the middle of their disputes unless there is physical violence going on. Her friend can push her rudely, and I won't get involved but when a kid hits her in the face with a 2x4 it crosses the line (yes this actually happened). I think it is extremely important for kids to be able to fight their own battles and to deal with disappointment and plain out bratty people. Life is ROUGH and sheltering them and coming to their rescue all the time will cause a lot of issues as they grow into adults. 

mamavalor
by Bronze Member on Sep. 27, 2013 at 2:38 PM

Hubby and I grew up in an overprotective, overbearing home life.  We vowed to be reasonable when it comes to raising our children.  I have two masters in education and have worked with children as long as I can remember, so I have learned from other people's mistakes and saw worked and what didn't.  Because of this insight, I have allowed our kids their independence, to learn to make mistakes and grow.   So far so good.

DD wrote her a short story for English class yesterday and asked us to read it.  I read it and told her how good it was.  Hubby read it and told her how many mistakes she had and then what grade he would give her if he were her teacher.  He order her to correct her mistakes.  I chimed in and reminded him that it's her work and she ought to work it with her teacher.  Thank goodnes DD is easy going, fiesty, and fun-loving who just hugged her dad and said thank you.  lol.

Txlisa7969
by Bronze Member on Sep. 27, 2013 at 2:57 PM

I tend to follow my children's lead in disputes with classmates or friends.  From the time they first started school we have had continuing conversations on how to handle certain situations.  I look more to enpower them than to over protect them.  We role play how to handle certain things and if an issue comes up I ask them do they feel this is something they need me in intervene in or do they feel it is something they can handle.  With three kiddos and 11 yrs of school under our belt I have only had to step in one time.  My younger DD tried to handle a bully on her own and physcial violence was being threatened so I of course stepped in.  My oldest DD got a English paper back last year which she didn't agree with the teacher on her grade.  I agreed with her but I told her she needed to speak with her teacher herself and respectfully argue her case.  She did and she actually got her grade changed. 

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