Tuesday, October 27

Why do I parent the way I do?

There are people out there who may think that I practice attachment parenting and home school my children because it is a lifestyle choice or because it is the current hippy fad or because I like to be different. Well for these people I'd like to set the record straight.
I parent the way I do because I happen to believe, through years of research (which is alot more thinking time than some put into their parenting) that it is the best way to treat children. I may not be doing a perfect job but I'm trying hard, damn hard!
I have come to my beliefs through thinking about how I was raised, the effects the school system had on me, through observations of society and through reading tons of literature on the subject.
There are knockers out there who don't even try to understand my perspective, they just shake their heads as if dismissing me as a crazy hippy.
Take for example Co-sleeping ie. sleeping with your children until they want their own beds. Here are some of the stupid comments I have received over the years.
"You're just pandering to the whims of a 'baby'"
"It's all very lovey and hippy but I couldn't do it I wouldn't be comfortable enough"
"You are just spoiling them"
"Aren't you afraid you are going to squash them?"
SERIOUSLY people, wake up and smell the cheese...there is no other mammal on Earth that rejects its infants the day they are born and puts them away from the mother to sleep. There is no other mammal on Earth that does not respond to an infants distress signal (ie. crying). For that matter no other mammal feeds their infants crap instead of breast milk.
We have all the scientists in the world trying to work out why there is so much crime, so little love and compassion and so much loneliness out there and the answer is obvious to me. If you are not treating infants and children how they need to be treated then they are going to grow up into fucked-up adults.
To be totally honest I believe leaving a baby to cry itself to sleep is child abuse.
I do usually try to understand how other people raise their children but I just had enough because they don't respond in kind.
Criticism from people who don't have children, people who raise their kids the way they were raised because "it didn't do me no harm" just doesn't cut it.
If you want to criticise me at least come up with an intelligent, logical argument, AND listen to my side as well.
And I home school because I want my children to love life and learning. The school system as it currently operates is a place to learn conformity, bullying, competition, low self-esteem, humiliation.
I don't believe that everyone should home school. I believe that the education system can't be fixed by a few tweeks here and a few tweeks there. It needs to be re-built from the ground up by some real education and child experts. People who understand that it is about individuals not systems, results, outcomes and school performance.
Just imagine if you dare, a world full of compassionate, kind, caring adults. People who feel free enough to do what they want to do. People who are happy because they are doing what they love. Individuals who feel good about themselves because they had their real fill of love as infants and children and they weren't forced prematurely into institutions that killed off their innate joy.
Imagine that and then tell me that the way I choose to raise my kids is just a choice like what to wear or which movie shall I go see?

20 comments:

Anna said...

Great post I am a lover of attachment parenting, home/unschooling and joyfully respecting my children as human beings (well they are no longer wee ones). Just know that you are doing the best you can with the information you have and let those who down you continue on in what they think is best.

(((hugs)))

Gina said...

Great post :)

Erin said...

Wonderful Post :)

Ariad said...

Thankyou:)

Anonymous said...

Ariad
This is your reality as a parent and you are doing a wonderful job.
Tell the skeptics to build a bridge and get over it. Children can never have too much love.
Lors

Donna said...

Wonderful and inspiring post! I am a attachment parenting,co-sleeping breatfeeding mama. I can't imagine raising and loving my children in any other way! My last child was born at home and it has changed my whole life - she too will be homeschool. Thank you for honest and beautiful post. x

karisma said...

I hear you baby! You know I had never heard of AP'ing until a couple of years ago, I did it because it was what came naturally to ME as a mother. Even 21 years ago when I had my first child, I copped all that crap from others that I was doing it all wrong and told people to mind there own business. My baby was not the one crying all the time and even now through rebellious times and becoming grown up, ALL of my babies still climb all over us, hug us to bits and yes even still climb in our bed occasionally. (It can get a little squishy these days though!)Oh but its nice to have that closeness hey?

Kel said...

Ariad I'm really enjoying your blog lately (not that I didn't enjoy it before but ... well you know what I mean!)I love the way you write about parenting and unschooling.
You seem to me to be very grounded.

Anonymous said...

A lovely well written explanation of how to parent the natural way. Children are not children forever.. how some mums can separate themselves from their tiny babies i simply fail to understand..my 7 year old still sleeps with me and i love it.. i home ed too...i breast fed all three of my children until they were almost 2yrs old or over.. (they chose when to stop) and enjoyed the very special bond it gave us.. I wouldnt change a thing and two of my children are now young adults and truly lovely people.How many mums can say that about their kids honestly!


well done you!

Trudy said...

Wow, great post Ariad.
Just checking out your blog from Down to Earth Forum. My children have all been in the school system and I have always wished I had the guts to have homeschooled them. We are still in the system and I am so over it, can't wait for the next four years to fly by!!!

Kimmie and Heartpoet said...

Hi lovely

I think your lifestyle and blog are both divine.

I have presented you with a blog award. Please come pick it up from my blog.

Well done :)

Hugs


Kimmie
x

Naomi said...

Fantastic post oxox

naturewitch said...

Hey Ariad

You are absolutely right! Most (say 99.9%) people spend their adult lives undoing what was done to them during their childhood - neglect, abuse and needs, especially for closeness and unconditional love, being unmet.

You are a brave and courageous woman, as well as a thinker and a person who leads with her heart. I applaud your approach to child-rearing and education. There should be much more of it and it should be the norm, not the exception.

Many people are spoiling their children with material possessions and not giving them what they really need - love and gentle guidance and a feeling of being safe and supported in their world. This is at the heart of the rampant consumerism that grips our society.

And you will be passing down a lot of wisdom to your children. There is so much knowledge that used to be passed down from generation to generation, especially with respect to nature and life. You are giving your children the very best opportunity to learn this.

So keep on doing what you are doing - it is extremely valuable and we need people to show others that there is another way. xx

Anne said...

:)

Anonymous said...

What you do is wonderful, and brave. I am also wonderful and brave!!! We all mother how we can, no one who feels tenderness and love for their children are out done by another mothering style. Mainstreanm or alternative. We need tolerance. Some have the knowlege to help others, as you do by leading by example. Not all are fortunate to have that knowlege, and are defensive if they feel you are giving something perhaps they are not. Stay peaceful not defensive. No matter what choice, it right for those who choose, and what works for some may not for others. Its not about purity, is it? Its about love, indrstanding and reality, whatever that is in a given moment of life. Be proud of your choice and allow others to feel they too make the right choices...It only takes a glimps at your site to seee you love your family.

Ariad said...

well said amonymous, I totally agree.
It IS all about love and every choice is right for each person...we are all learning.
I try to remain in the spirit of love and understanding with my children as well as with others but we all have bad days when the negativity gets us down. Thanks for your wise words.

Debbie said...

thank you for sharing your inner thoughts. I feel like I am in a fantasy world when I read your blog. A world where I wish I could transport my family and live like your family.......maybe one day.
thank you :)

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Hellena Post said...

Beautifully written, straight to the point, and you made some really good ones! Thank you for speaking up so eloquently for the undomesticated human animal types!!

Bjorn and Crystal said...

Lovely post :)
I literally just stumbled onto your blog just by linking here and there from my blog and discovered what AP is all about. I am not a mother yet, but plan to one day and I am totally in agreement with you in terms of how what is deemed acceptable for a mother is soooo utterly distorted these days. I am a Singaporean and parenting is warped here. Children are taken care of my foreign live-in maids while both parents go to work to afford piano lessons and math tuition at age 1. Basically, children here have no childhood. Its insane. You've inspired me to find out more about this alternative parenting. I want my children to grow up happy, free to do what they love and nurtured to even discover what they love. Coz I can safely say that most Singaporeans dont even know what talents they have or what they like to do except for eating out and shopping. Because I myself was a product of that, until recently.

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