Balanced Melting Pot

Is it intelligence or disrespect?

In Culture, Parenting, Questions, Traditions on November 17, 2008 at 2:07 pm

Even today, I can distinctly remember what type of “talk” was considered to be disrespectful/inappropriate around adults. As a parent now, I am struggling with what is acceptable for “modern children” so that I don’t cause irreparable damage to their development.

My six-year old is very smart. She’s very curious about the world and can be very introspective about complicated issues. With that said, she also has very little self-restraint. I can remember having questions about many of the same things that she does (why is there a certain age for doing certain things, what does “dead” mean), but I was not as comfortable as she is in voicing them.

What I’ve realized is that what was considered disrespectful for my parents, is considered healthy development for parents of my generation. Although I have made great progress in accepting these changes, I also think it’s healthy to teach a child self-control at an early age. I think it’s important for them to know when it is appropriate to interrupt a conversation and what subjects are strictly for the home/family. Having this ability is what I think allowed my parents to take us just about anywhere without worry. So I’m working on this, keeping in mind that there is that fine line between disrespect and curiosity. 

Do you have a similar problem with the conversational habits of children today versus when you were a child? How do you address them without hindering your child’s development? Or, do you think that children should be allowed to say what they want, whenever they want? If so, why?

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