Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Read an interesting article yesterday about fear-based parenting on the SV Moms Blog, which, I have to admit, I hadn't really thought a whole lot about before.  Or at least not from this perspective.

For instance, how many times do you to tell your kids not to do something because you're afraid something will happen to them?  Using that word as a tool.  The example in the article was a little weird for me because the mother was warning her toddler to stay away from an overly friendly squirrel because she was "afraid of that squirrel".  And that's just not something I would say.  Nor would they allow it, honestly, what with the barrage of whys and hows that would surely follow.

But, personally, I'm perfectly comfortable telling my children that running out into the street will get them squished by a car, that sticking anything into exposed outlets will shock them like a ginormous monster eel and hurt them more than any shot they've ever had, that eating too much sugar will cause their teeth to turn black and crumble in their mouth before falling out of their heads and leaving a huge gaping hole behind for germs to build new sprawling cities, that hanging their arms out of vehicle windows will get them ripped off by a passing semi or crazy Californian motorcyclist, that shoving anything up any orifice on their own or anyone else's body will get them immediately arrested and thrown in jail with thieves and animal abusers, or that talking back to your elders is just the beginning to a life of neverending crime and misery. 

And you know what, if that's fear-based parenting, then sign me up. Knowledge is power. And yes, it should be somewhat filtered by age group (and embellishment), but a hard to swallow version of the truth about the harsh realities of life is still a safer bet than a sugar-coated, rose-colored view of the world.  And may save their lives (or someone else's) someday.

What about you? What do you think about this idea of fear-based parenting?


amazonfm said...

If, 'Don't touch that it is hot and will burn you' is fear based parenting, then I'm all for it.
Believe me, having a three year old ask you how windows are made, after seeing one get broken, is not a tough question to answer.

saia and chago said...

I'm with you, sista!