Can someone please explain the mentality of banning something like this from their homes?
I’ve seen this type of thing happen in various ways and it never stops being confusing. Most recently I overheard an angry mother demand that a worker in the store portrait studio be fired for having facial piercings because she “shouldn’t have to explain to her four-year-old why the girl behind the counter at the store has metal in her tongue”.
I don’t understand what is so difficult about talking things out. I know that little kids tend to publicly notice nearly everything, but from my experience they can also be pretty understanding. That’s just one former babysitters opinion, though.
“I shouldn’t have to explain to a _-year-old why…”
What IS this?
Parents: Why do you feel it’s unfair that you are sometimes forced to explain to your kids that sometimes people are different? Is it really best to avoid these discussions? Is turning off the tv/leaving a store/etc. really about being sensitive to a kids (natural?) fear of people who are different, or is this about parents unwillingness to accept these things?
I would not have a problem allowing my kids to view this program. I would see this as an opportunity to explain the disability assuming my child was curious. The only time I’ve been uncomfortable and unwilling to explain something to my child is when he was asking what an “Adult Cafe” was. We were driving down 75 near Gainesville which has a ton of billboards for the Risque Cafe (which is a 24-hour topless (nude?) cafe) and my son - who was only 4 at the time - could read the billboards and kept asking me what they meant. I’m not ready to explain adult entertainment to a 4-year-old!
When ever someone says they don’t want their child to see something, they mean they are themselves are uncomfortable with it and use the child as an excuse. If the adult didn’t have a problem, the adult wouldn’t have such a hard time explaining it to a child.
I think the parent’s reaction is both dangerous and unwise. Disabilities are part of the fabric of life. War or accident injuries, birth defects…these things happen. A person with less limbs or other challenges is still a person. They eat, sleep, shit, fuck, cry, love, etc just like anybody else.
There are certain forms of adult behavior that I think are appropriately confined to adult contexts. For example, kids shouldn’t be finding discarded condoms on the playground or having to catch the bus outside the XXX theatre. There is such a thing as too young to need to know about that, and parents can do a better job of age-appropriate sex education if they can approach it on their own timetable.
That said, seeing a person with a disability is in a completely different category. Those comments are pointing out the parent’s own failure to proactively educate their kid about something people of all ages do need to know about. If a kid goes to any kind of school, he or she will encounter people with disabilities. I find those parental comments ignorant and offensive.
The tongue piercing, I dunno. I guess for some people body modification is a sexual practice. If that’s you, and it’s obvious from looking at you, I guess I feel there should be some effort to keep it in an adult context. Winding up deep in TMI territory with a stranger is not pleasant, whether it’s their penchant for pain or their cell phone conversation about colonoscopy prep. On the other hand, I think most kids could handle a simple explanation of a tongue piercing as “some people think it looks pretty.” That’s how we’d explain ear piercing or nose piercing.
“And I don’t like having to explain to MY kids why someone else is so busy getting upset about things that aren’t any of their business. STFU, you busybody control freak (expletive).”
I feel the same about this as I feel about anyone who refuses to do part of their job because it makes them uncomfortable. Don’t like dealing with personnel squabbles when you’re a manager or director? Quit. Go Home. Let someone who CAN do the job do the job. Don’t like explaining things about the real world to your children? Good luck with that. Your comfort level with explaining something to your children gives you no rights to attempt to control the entire rest of the world so that you don’t have to do it. Grow the f— up and be a parent, not an angry control freak who is teaching their child that it’s right to be angry about inconsequential things that don’t affect you.
Sorry, not aimed at anyone here, it’s just this entire behavior pattern, especially in parents of young kids, really pisses me off. :mad:
It’s generally a sign of a parent who lacks imagination or is so overwhelmed by the larger context that they’re caught, deer-in-headlights, and can’t find a simple answer to the *actual *question asked. “It’s a cafe for adults” being the perfect example. The kid didn’t ask what goes on inside (although if he did, I’d say, “It’s private.” or, honestly, “I’m not exactly sure, I’ve never been to one.”)
The ones I have trouble with are ones which really don’t have simple answers. I was really appalled that the 9-11 plane crash footage was shown over and over and over. I think the visual impact of that was terribly upsetting, and I wanted some time to think about how to talk about the event with my son (then 8 years old). I’m never sure what to say when they ask about hookers, either. But those are about the only things I can think of at the moment.
I actually use condoms on the playground as a twofold lesson plan. First, don’t touch that. Second, that’s what people use when they don’t want to make babies. That’s it. Contrary to popular belief, answering that question honestly has never led to a torrent of others requiring biological texts and slide shows.
It does presume you’ve already covered how babies are made. And since kids use playgrounds before they start to talk, I don’t think that’s a given. I find it rather disturbing that you take condoms on the playground as so common you’ve essentially incorporated the situation into your lifestyle (oh, the joys of urban living). I don’t mean I think you should handle it differently. But I think we as a society honestly do owe kids a little more consideration than leaving discarded biohazards around their play areas. And by extension, we can give some consideration to leaving some adult topics to adult settings.
Nope, haven’t covered that yet. The thing is, near as I can tell, 98% of what the average 3 year old hears is, “Mwah-mwha-mwhaaa-mwha-whaa-wa” (Unless, of course, you whisper a swearword two rooms away from where they’re playing.) They probably asked what it is just to hear themselves talk, or to hear you talk back to them. You could tell them they’re squirrel hats and they’d not think to question it.
Well, it’s not like I have a primer devoted to it or anything! But I’m a babysitter by trade, as well as a mom, and we do go try to make the park at least twice a week in the summertime. So yeah, over the past 20 years or so I’ve seen half a dozen used condoms lying around.
I absolutely agree about the biohazard part of it (which is why Don’t Touch That is lesson one) but that’s a different issue from “I don’t want them seeing it” or “I don’t want to explain that yet.” I mean, sure, it’d be nice not to see the disgusting things, and I’m a fan of sex! But it’s not something I get like the lady in the OP about.
No, it really doesn’t. No more than serving a young child chicken for dinner requires you to explain methods of poultry slaughter. You think the connection is necessary but small children do not.
Explanations of adult behavior that I myself have found most difficult have involved violence against children (there was a grade school child murdered here when Eldest was, let’s see, in Kindy or so, and the coverage was wall to wall and impossible to avoid) and mental illness/bizzare behavior in family members. I cannot say that I think I handled either one well though I did the best I could. But I did find myslef wishing this conversation could wait about a decade or so.
Little kids can sometimes handle things far better than their parents.
I finally came up with an explanation about my height for little kids who ask, because they do
when somebody looks like an adult but is 4’2". “Some people are really tall, like basketball players, you know? And some people are really short, like me. Most people are in the middle, like your mom/dad. I’m a grownup, I’m just a really short grownup.”
There’s no need to get into the details of my medical condition, or for hers. I would think – as a non-parent, mind you – that for a really little kid saying, “Some people only have one arm. You have two!” would be enough.
Being a walking life lesson sucks sometimes, but I’m not going to hide away, and neither should she.
Because, isn’t that her job/responsiblity as a parent, to explain the world to her child, whether it’s piercings or cute puppies and kitties (what if the family has one of these and they die? Does she replace it with an identical animal? Does she think it actually works if she does?)?
I think it’s funny how these parents in the article are mind readers, “I just know Sally will be upset when she sees the one armed lady and will have bad dreams about her” So this parent can read the conscious as well as unconscious mind of her child!! I wish I could do that!!
I don’t get it. It just seems like such a teachable moment to me. I can almost envision Mr. Rogers doing an episode dealing with something like this. “Some people are born with differences like this and sometimes people are injured and lose a body part, but they still live normal lives. Look at how she does all the same things you can do, but she has figured out how to do them with one hand.”
I really don’t think the kids will think that much about it and if they do it’s the perfect time to tell them about it. They’ll have to see it sometime.