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A Parenting Promise

My mom was talking to someone about my quest to conceive, and they told her that when I finally have a baby, it will be "able to do no wrong".  Luckily my mom knows me better than that, and after living with us off and on this year has seen my parenting in action and knows that won't happen.

My husband and I REFUSE to raise a spoiled child.  Even if it takes many more years and thousands of dollars to conceive, we will not, I repeat NOT allow our child to believe that they are more special than anyone else.  Because they won't be.  Yes, they might mean more to US than a random person, but in the big picture, and in God's eyes, they are no more important than anyone else.  And I want to make sure that my kids know that.

I want to have children that other people enjoy being around.  I want them to be respectful, generous and polite, and I don't think that I can achieve that by spoiling them.

There is obviously no guarantee that my children will not be brats, but I can guarantee that any time my children act like brats, they will be reprimanded or punished.

When we are at the grocery store and one of the kids is being loud, I remind them that other people are shopping, and then I ask if they think that the other shoppers want to hear them yelling, or want to have a quiet shopping trip.  Then they tell me that they want to have a quiet shopping trip, and are quiet for at least a few minutes.  I am hoping that by dealing with it this way I am both teaching them to be quiet in the store, and teaching them to be respectful of other people's feelings.

At the library if they are loud or running, they are given a time-out.  "My" children are not perfect.  No where even close.  Last time we went to the library Little Guy threw a huge, embarrassing tantrum when I was checking out the books.  But I just kept doing my thing, apologized to the people around me and took him out of the library when I was done.  If he were mine he would have gotten a spanking in the car, but since he isn't, he just wasn't allowed to "talk" until we got out of the car.  He is little and stubborn so getting him in trouble for things he does in public is hard, since I can't reason with him, and giving him a time out when we get home in half an hour probably is lost on him.

I know that some people are so amazed with their children that they will poo-poo misbehavior, or sometimes even think its cute.  But I am not one of those people, and I promise never to be one.  I believe that people are selfish, sinful creatures, and we must be taught how to treat other people, and I fully intend to do my best job at teaching any children in my care how to "love their neighbor as themselves".

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