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There will be a post today with all of the final details for attendees as well as an email coming out shortly. Thank you!
I will look into this immediately and get it resolved for you. Please stay tuned and we’ll reach back out as soon as corrected.
I just sent you a PM on this. The event is definitely still happening and Chris will be putting out an update in the next few days. Please stay tuned!
We have 3 kids ages 10, 8 and 6. We have always had a more relaxed parenting style in some ways, and more cautious in others.
The ways in which we have always been more relaxed include: encouraging the siblings to play together and not seek adults out to entertain them, encouraging creative play as much as possible (arts and crafts, make believe play, costume/dress up) and we have a fairly relaxed attitude about screen time (no issues with using the family computer as long as educational in nature). We do not force our children into any extracurricular activities unless they have an expressed interest to do so (so t-ball and soccer at age 3 as most of our peers’ children did was out). We also tend to stray from other normal suburban family tourist traps like frenetic trips to Disney in favor of rambling RV trips for extended periods of time in the Western US.
Where we are more cautious is in terms of physical and online safety. As much as I wish we could, we do not allow the kids to roam the neighborhood unattended, as we live in a larger city with a fair amount of random crime. Nor do they own a cellphone or are allowed to communicate online. We also do not allow sleepovers, although play dates are fine as long as we know the other parents very well and are confident that they are going to be supervising the kids throughout the visit, as opposed to sending them off down the street to get them out of their hair or allowing them to surf Youtube unattended.
As the kids get older I would say the divide in their upbringing vs. that of our peers is becoming more apparent. As mentioned above, most of our social peers’ children are heavily involved in organized sports now and this practice dominates the family’s entire social circle and lifestyle choices, especially so when there are multiple kids involved in multiple sports. There is little room for friendships outside of these established sports groups. From the outside it seems like these children’s childhoods ended much sooner than ours. Our kids still have a very innocent and creative wonder about them that their more structured peers seem to lack. Another noticeable difference is that our kids favor cooperation and collaboration (they don’t really know any other way) while their peers tend to be highly competitive in almost all aspects of their lives.
The approach we take to safety also seems to be at odds with our peers’ children. Despite the families’ regimented lives and routines, the parents seem so have very little discipline when it comes to monitoring their kids safety (both physically and online.) Most kids have cellphones, engage in social media and lack any real understanding of “stranger danger”. I’ve also noticed many times when unattended children could have been easily struck by a speeding driver as they weave their bikes down the lane, and the parents were none the wiser.
As a result of these differences, my children are probably not considered “popular” by traditional standards, but they have all developed true friendships with one or 2 other like-minded kids who are equally imaginative, non-competitive and kind-hearted.
I anticipate down the road that my kids will continue to be somewhat off-beat as compared to their peers but I have no regrets about the foundation that we have given them which is based upon respect for oneself, family and others. My hope is that they will be able to appreciate the full experience life has to offer with sensitivity, compassion for others and (hopefully) an eternal sense of wonder.