THIS SELF ESTEEM STUFF

1 10 2011

Although all my children are grown, I still enjoy reading the columns on raising kids that are in the newspapers.  I always think it is very interesting to see the various points of view.  I am certainly not an ‘expert’, but I really am, too.  I have raised quite a number of great, grand and wonderful children and have a lot of really, really nice grandchildren.  None of these people seem to have any bad behavior problems, nor any other special needs.

On this Self Esteem stuff I read about, I think that is a bunch of trash perpetrated on these poor, misinformed parents of today.  I never did want to spend my time and my precious life being a part of my children’s lives.  I took care of them, provided for them, made sure they were all warm, well fed, healthy, and happy and then I let them be their own people.  I did not want to play their games nor watch their television programs.  I wanted to be myself which is an adult and let them be themselves which was a child.

They didn’t want me hanging out with them and their friends and I didn’t want them hanging out with me and my friends.  I spent all day every day taking care of them, providing for all their needs.  But my time was mine and theirs was theirs.  We shared all the meals together, we went on vacations together, we sat around the table and visited whenever we wanted to.  I was always there when they came in from school and I sent them out to school every day that they went.  I did not park my children in the daycares and let other people teach them the necessities of life. My children were not regimented from their earliest moments.  They were good children, happy in their lives at home with me until school age at which time, they began to grow up.

By this time, they had managed to absorb most of the valuable lessons of life.  They had all the basics of good behavior and respect for their elders.  That included me and my husband and all the neighbors and family.  They knew where they stood in this world and were happy with their position.  As they grew, they also learned more and more about responsibility in their lives.  They had already learned all the basics about making their beds, keeping their belongings picked up, taking care of whatever they needed to do.  They also knew how to help around the house, doing specific chores when they were old enough.  They knew how to share without it being beat into their heads;  they knew what they were expected to do in their daily lives.  This was called responsibiiity.  It was taught early and was redundant at all times.

They never had to wonder where that Self Esteem was to come from.  They didn’t have to worry about trying so hard to please everyone because they automatically did that when they followed the rules of responsibility in their lives.

When they grew up, they accepted graciously what was asked of them in their grown up lives whether it was to raise their own children or perform well in a job market.  They never had to worry about Self Esteem because they earned their own Self Esteem.  Self Esteem comes from responsibility for their own actions.  Self Esteem is earned by each and every person as they grow up in this world.

Teach your child responsibility for his own actions and be consistent with it.  Be always kind but firm.  When he has learned the responsibilities in his life, he will have earned and rightfully so what Self Esteem is all about.  Give your child a chance at this thing called life.  Don’t live his life for him.  You have no right to it just as he has no right to your life.  You are the parent.  You make the rules.  Teach Self Esteem at home where it needs to be taught.  Another name for that Self Esteem Stuff is just simply responsibility.





BIRTHDAYS AT MY HOUSE

20 09 2011

Hi again:  We have a lot of fun with birthdays at my house.  We also have a good time celebrating Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and all other necessary celebrations.  There are a lot of people in my family and so we really enjoy the visits with one another.  Everyone has such a good time just laughing and teasing and talking and visiting about everything from politics to old times.

We only celebrate birthdays every 3 months.  And it doesn’t have to be any particular time during that three months.  We might have it on the first weekend or the last weekend.  Never know.  We just try to do it when the most of us can come.  And then comes the presents.  And those are some presents, too.  We trade gifts back and forth.  I usually give the kids some money, but it isn’t much.  Then everyone usually gets some candy or treats of some kind.  After that, it is ‘hold the buggy, betsy!’  You just never know what might be in that sack.

For instance, one of my daughters and I trade a cheap, ugly statue back and forth, so we are going to get that if it is our turn.  That’s for sure!  Another child and I have been trading an ugly puzzle that no one could possibly work.  It is all in shades of black and gray and not even a good picture.  He originally got it at the dollar store, but we trade it every birthday.  Then, one son gave me a bag of plastic balls and said, ‘have a ball’.  Another time, I got a gold brick.  I have also received a stimulus check in the amount of $2 million.  I am still trying to cash that.  It came from one of my grandsons.

So, as you can see, presents are just for fun.   There is no great expense to this.  No one has to spend much money.  Sometimes they even make their own birthday cards with cutouts from magazines.  Always fun stuff.   We don’t usually put a limit on the money for birthdays.  No need to.  No one is going to spend much anyway.  And it is well known that not everyone has to get a gift for everyone.  Sometimes we have a lot of birthdays and there is no reason for anyone to be obligated.  It is all just for fun anyway.

I buy a cake at WalMart and put everyone’s name on it  Then we all sing, Happy Birthday to Everyone.  After that, we enjoy visiting some more and have our ice cream and cake or ice cream cones or whatever all those kids want at the time.  We have colas or tea or coffee to drink.  And a great time is had by all.

We do this same thing on other holidays.  Only we usually have a limit of $5 for gifts.  When my own children were younger, there was a limit of $1 for presents for Mother’s Day.  No reason to spend more.  I didn’t want anything anyway.  I usually got typing paper or envelopes or something in that range.  One year, my daughter who had grown up and was working went to get me a present for $1.  She saw a mirror that stood up in the bathroom.  It said, ‘Hi Gorgeous’ so that was what she wanted to buy for me.  When the clerk took her money, my daughter was laughing and saying that she was buying it for her mother for Mother’s Day.  This made the clerk mad and she said my daughter had no respect for her mother and made my daughter feel really bad.  I thought that was truly ridiculous.  Since when did the amount of money spent for a gift have anything to do with respect.  I treasured that mirror for many years.  It was always one of my favorite gifts.

So, next time you are thinking of giving a family party, you might want to bring out some of these ideas and use them.  Makes for a lot of fun and a very close family.  Have a Happy Birthday and make it fun this year.