Teaching tolerance to our kids

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-16-2010
Teaching tolerance to our kids
1822
Mon, 12-27-2010 - 4:06pm

The discussion in the other thread about gay marriage (OK, it wasn’t so much a discussion as an attack on granitestategal, plus the last time I checked it had devolved into mumbling and maniacal laughter...time to move on!) got me to thinking about this new generation of kids and how things have changed for them. Technology has exploded, and kids are more connected than ever before. They’re also disconnected in a whole new way, but this thread isn’t about that. I’d like to know what we are teaching our kids as far as tolerance for other religions, races and lifestyles.

My parents were brought up by parents who were extremely prejudiced against non-Catholics and non-whites. My great-grandparents must not have passed along the lessons they’d learned as immigrants themselves. The town we lived in was predominantly white and Catholic, and up until high school I didn’t know anyone who was black, Jewish, Hispanic, or gay*. When I moved away from home, I was blown away by how different people outside my little world really were, and fascinated by it. I was, and am, determined to raise my kids to respect and appreciate the differences of others and to understand that deep down we really aren’t that different.

A few years ago when DS was 4, we ran into the husband of a co-worker at a music festival. My co-worker is also male. I probably went overboard in my introduction, but I wanted to get the point across that it’s perfectly OK for some families to consist of 2 dads or 2 moms, or one parent, or parents of different races/religions.

Kevali


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iVillage Member
Registered: 10-22-2009
Mon, 12-27-2010 - 5:18pm

I am very open with them and it started at a very young age... we respect all ppl and difference.

Mine were raised around different, cultures, race, religions, beliefs, sam sex partners, it is engraved in them.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2010
Mon, 12-27-2010 - 5:24pm
I don't think that *teaching* them is necessary, when it's what they live. My mother used to tell the story of when I was about five or six years old. My best friend (since were were three) was Japanese, and until I had heard a racial slur used towards him, I didn't even realize that he was *different* than me.
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-01-2009
Mon, 12-27-2010 - 5:26pm

Well obvs tolerance is a biggie in our house- but not just tolerance of our family and famlies like it but I also tell my daughter that there are families who don't believe that our family is legitmate and rather than turn on them with equal intolerance the best way to combat it is by just being who we are - a tremendously hum drum family -- fear and intolerance is usually born of ignorance and mistrust of "the other"

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-22-2009
Mon, 12-27-2010 - 5:28pm

Im on the fence with this...I know that i dont have to teach my kids it is a part of who they are how they are rasied, but some kids do need to be taught, i live around many who are VERY

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-22-2009
Mon, 12-27-2010 - 5:30pm
ROTFLOL! Great story.
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-01-2009
Mon, 12-27-2010 - 5:31pm

well the other thing we're big on is not living any kind of closeted life -- we have friends who are closeted and they have been the target of a horrible hate campaign from neighbors to the point their daughter was targetd at school.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2010
Mon, 12-27-2010 - 5:37pm
I have a similar story with ds2 and one of his friends, he had no idea either.
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2010
Mon, 12-27-2010 - 5:42pm
"I get a lot of whispers b/c of the way we raise our kids. While they are banging their bible! GAG!"

I am one of the most uptight parents we know, lol. We hold onto biblical truths, and teach them to our children. The bible however, is not a weapon to be used against others, either who call themselves Christian, nor those who do not. In fact scripture is quite clear that I am responsible for my own behavior, and I am to train my kids up "to love God, and to love others"....these things being more important than anything else! Judging others is not an act of love, no matter how you (general) try and twist it.
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2010
Mon, 12-27-2010 - 5:44pm
Yep. I believe this is true, with most things (maybe everything?) in life. Real life, and the truth, is a lot less exciting than the fanatsies that people make up if you are hiding something (anything).
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-22-2009
Mon, 12-27-2010 - 5:49pm

DH's family is from the deep south so the generations up to and including his dad's has some racism.

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