French Parenting is Better

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Registered: 10-23-2001
French Parenting is Better
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Tue, 02-07-2012 - 8:59am

 

 

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Registered: 01-08-2009
Tue, 02-07-2012 - 10:22pm
I've lived in France off and on, the last time being for three months about five years ago. You seldom saw little kids out to dinner in the evening, but you did on Sunday afternoons. And they mostly stayed in their seats.
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Registered: 05-27-1998
Tue, 02-07-2012 - 9:30pm

The French family I lived with in Paris in

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Registered: 03-27-2003
Tue, 02-07-2012 - 7:06pm
All this reminds me of a cartoon I saw on FB the other day. The "then" was a cartoon of 50s-era parents hauling a kid into the teacher's office to berate the kid for getting a poor grade, and the "now" was the same parents yelling at the teacher for giving the kid a bad grade.
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Registered: 03-27-2003
Tue, 02-07-2012 - 7:01pm
You know, I'm in my 50s, and the adult-oriented parenting style I remember when I was a kid wasn't so much like what's described in that article. My parents didn't take us out to nice restaurants or bring us to their parties or drive us around to activities after school. They got a babysitter and went out every Saturday night without us, and they took a vacation every year without kids, too. Our idea of going out to dinner was the A & W on a Friday night once in a while if my dad had to work late. To me, what's described in that article is a more relaxed parenting style that integrates kids and adults, sort of a happy medium between the old days and the helicoptering, overscheduling, etc. that goes on today.
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Registered: 01-05-2000
Tue, 02-07-2012 - 3:02pm

DIscipline as in to follow, learn from a mentor.

The truth may be out there but lies are in your head. Terry Pratchett

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Registered: 10-23-2001
Tue, 02-07-2012 - 1:53pm

Yep, and it's more than perfect attendance awards. Kids today are growing up without consequences for their actions, teachers are afraid to discipline and set boundaries and so are some parents for that matter... My middle kid struggles in school and a few months ago she missed an assignment deadline, I found out about it on the school site that reports her grades. DH and I took up the problem with school and asked them what consequences kids in general get for missed work, there are none. School detention has been replaced with homework help after school if the kids want it, but it's completely voluntary. Kids get pushed through the system too unless a parent speaks up. I am still haunted by the punishment in the schools when I was there and I do think that was a kind of discipline because you knew what was expected of you. That doesn't exist a lot today IME.

 


 


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Registered: 01-05-2000
Tue, 02-07-2012 - 11:49am

So far what has stood out for me is this:

The truth may be out there but lies are in your head. Terry Pratchett

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Registered: 10-23-2001
Tue, 02-07-2012 - 11:05am
I agree with you, And some of what was mentioned took me back to my own upbringing. I have well mannered kids but I do think that American culture insofar as raising kids and parenting has changed in the last 30-40 years, Good or bad depends on who you ask, Lol.

 


 


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Registered: 05-27-1998
Tue, 02-07-2012 - 10:44am

When I first read the essay in the WSJ, I thought, "Hey, I must be French!" because this is the type of parenting I practice. We have an adult-centered household. I must say it's a challenge to parent like this in the US because people think you're selfish for not playing with your kids or jumping when they say jump so I can understand why some parents give in to cultural norms.

However, I don't think this style of parenting is uniquely French. Once upon a time, most American parents practiced it, too, and the households I know with well-behaved kids still do. And it's certainly not the only way to raise well-adjusted kids with nice manners. It's just the one that happens to work best with my temperament.

One benefit the WSJ article did not mention--perhaps the book does--is that siblings tend to get along better with one another because they're not competing for your attention as much. They also tend to discover reading as an antidote to boredom.

Whenever the kids would say they were bored, we used to pretend to get all excited and say, "Yay! You're on the edge of a creative breakthrough! Quick, go find a cure for cancer before the moment passes!" or something like that.

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