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Posts Tagged ‘parents’

I was watching “Must Have Dog” and thinking about how neat the protagonists’ large family was.  Ah, blog idea, I thought and began this post, then let it sit and stew for a few days and sure enough, *XUP*, blogs about having a large family.  Great minds or what?

There is a huge difference in people who grow up in a large family as opposed to those of us who are/or are like, only children.  My sister grew up in our grandmother’s home.  This was approximately an hour and a half drive, one way.  Oh, and she is ten years older than I am.   My brother, who was six years older than me and who was my protector/advisor and chess/cribbage partner, died in 1990.  I miss him still. 

While my brother and I were close, there was still that six-year’s difference in our age.  My friends had crushes on him and he helped me out with ‘boyfriend’ issues.  We did not hang out together though.  Vacations hardly count.  Even there, the contact consisted mostly of rolling our eyes at each other while our parents loudly debated whether it was day or night.

Despite these debates, which only occurred anytime our parents were both in the same county, our house was exceedingly quiet.  At times, it was deathly quiet.  Those were the times when dad was not home and the TV was off. 

Unlike people who grow up in big families with: houses full of noise, loud discussions at the dinner table, and lots of games, I like my quiet.  I am used to quiet and it is precious to me.

The three boys, who live with us now, spent many years in a large family.  There were ten children in the family when the last two came to live with us. It almost seems as if being alone is a frightening thing to them, to be avoided at all costs.

I, on the other hand, can sit and stare at patterns in the carpet and be entertained.  Of course, I see things in the patterns that other people do not see.  I am happy to travel alone.  I am fine with eating alone.  Can go to a movie alone and enjoy it.  Quiet is a good thing to me.  I value quiet.  Not so much, people from big families.

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We have taken on a roll that many adults now hold, and that is grandparents who become parents to their grandchildren, as well as taking care of their own parent.  It is one thing to raise a child from birth, or a young age, and it is another thing to take on a teenager.  I mean, come on guys, the world is WAY different now than it was when I was a teen. 

 

The deal with these guys is their previous upbringing, or lack thereof.  There was a big focus on being obedient and saying “Yes, Sir” and “No, Ma’am.”   While, we feel it is more important to have respect and give respect than it is to say meaningless words that you are beat for, if you do not say them. 

 

The boys did have varying degrees of influence from us.  They were with us, for their first: nine years, six years, and three years respectively.  The youngest does not remember living with us at all.  The oldest made a fluid transition to our home.  He did not make a fluid transition to school.  He once did a whole semester of homework, without ever turning it in to the teacher.  This is something only a homeschooled boy would do; or an idiot.  And, he is not an idiot.  We found out about it because we had four teachers tell us, at his first public school conference, that he was a genius.  I could only look down at the F’s across the page and ask “Why this, then?”  Not turning in homework will make even a genius fail. 

 

What worries me is the lack of “love of knowledge and education.”   It was more important in their stepfather’s home, to fear than to love.  Fear Stepfather’s belt and retribution, fear (for girls) of not wearing prairie dresses and head coverings.  Fear of the word “Foolishness.”  That last one is because it means the “rod of correction” is going to beat it out of you when your grandparent’s leave. 

 

These three are safe now and have varying degrees of success.  They do not know how to judge people, as their past experiences consisted only in friends like themselves.  Which consisted of other ultra conservative Christian home schooled children who are protected from the world out there by paranoid parents.  So, we are now locking our doors and covering our windows so the Bi-Polar ex-girlfriend of EMT will leave us alone, perhaps proving that it is not so bad to be paranoid.  But, it is not a good way to live.  He trusts everyone and is friends to everyone, even someone who is in need of commitment (even her mother says so at this point). 

 

I do not understand why these parents, who isolate their children from modern society, do not realize that their children must go out and live in the world we all live in and if you do not provide a child with the tools to recognize and understand that world, that they will have a hard time getting along in it.

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