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Godiva
Wednesday, March 29th, 2006, 02:25 AM
In another thread in this section a lot of you have lightly mentioned various spiritual, physical, emotional, and mental qualities that women should possess before becoming a mother. I would like to hear more about this and in more detail. Right now I'm at a point in my life where I know I need to start preparing myself to be a mother (I'm not pregnant, nor am I currently trying). I want to be ready to be a mother long before I start trying to have children. So, what qualities and knowledge should women have to be good mothers?

nicholas
Wednesday, March 29th, 2006, 03:10 AM
patience, rational behavior, a sense of humor.

Bridie
Wednesday, March 29th, 2006, 03:23 AM
Yes, sense of humour is a HUGE plus! :thumbup Also, a healthy lifestyle (so the ability to care for oneself - otherwise how could you hope to care for another?), strong sense of responsibility, flexibility (HUGE one too!), ability to focus, good organisational skills, selflessness (this one will follow once one's baby is born most likely.) Committment. Empathy.

Financial security is important too, but of course, this will mean different things to different people.

QuietWind
Wednesday, March 29th, 2006, 04:45 AM
Nicholas and Bridie both had good posts. :thumbup

I also think it is important to prepare oneself by becoming familiar with parenting styles, studying child development, and learning positive discipline techniques.

Even now, having my third child, there are things I know now that I wish I had known with my first in order to best raise her. Infancy is so overlooked by parents, when in reality it is absolutely one of the most important periods in their life. I was explaining to my mother the other day how to correctly talk to my baby so that he learns good communication skills. I never knew with my first two, that infacy is where a child first learns things such as turn taking in communication. So when I talk to my baby and he talks back, I make a point to not talk "at" him but to talk "to" him. I talk, then I pause and allow him a chance to form his mouth and make a sound. If I see he is not, then I start speaking again. When I see his lips begin to make formation, I immediately stop talking and let him have his turn. Then when he stops, I speak again, then pause and let him have a turn. (He talks alot, and has much to say. "Agggoooo. *squeal* Gggooo." :) ) If you have never seen a 3 month old talk, it is the most fun to watch. It takes so much effort at that age to get the sound out. They begin moving their lips around, but nothing comes out. It is like they are trying to hard. Then suddenly, this sound comes out and they get so happy about their little accomplishment, as if they just told you the funniest joke in the world.

(Oops, I am getting off topic. :D )

Anyhow, I think it is so important to know all these things. I wasn't dumb about kids when I had my first. I had been babysitting for 9 years, worked in a Child Development center for 2 years, and taken a couple of classes in Child Development by the time I had my first. By the time I had my second, I had added 4 more years of working in a Child Development center, and several more Child Development/Early Childhood Education classes, plus the experience of having one child four years old. By my third child, I have all that plus more experience in Child Dev. Center's, and more course work. I still don't know everything! (But I'm trying!)

I don't know if anyone ever sees that Supernanny show on TV? She has a good grasp on thing such as discipline. I recommend her program. The things you will see her doing on there and telling parents to do are things that are done in my home. I'll tell you, from the time my eldest was born 9 years ago I have been doing those things with her, and I haven't changed with how I raise my other children either. My kids are great, so I can honestly say that those things work. Things like this new turn taking communication I am doing with my son is just gravy. I've already got a good grasp on the meat and potatoes for 9 years now. (My 9 year old baby is growing up. :~( She is getting so mature. It is so cute the things she does. Okay, I will stop gushing about my kids. :D )

No, I haven't gushed about my "middle child" yet. He deserves some gushing. He is so cute and so funny. (1 off-topic mommy story, okay?) Okay, that story was NOT off-topic. I simply providing a visual demonstration through words of how patience and a sense of humor are needed for parenting like Nicolas said. :D

He likes to talk to people who are not talking to him. So, we will be in public and some far off person will be having a conversation and suddenly he will burst out and say something about their conversation very loudly so they hear him. We were in a restaraunt and the waitresses were in the back talking about some guy asking the one to take her pants off (I didn't hear them talking, but my husband did), and suddenly my son bursts out yelling "Take your pants off!" And I was so embarassed! I was telling him "Shhhh!" Which only made him think it was funny and want to yell it more. It was then that my husband explained to me that the waitresses in the back were talking about it and that is why our son started yelling it. (He does this stuff all the time though.)

Jantelover
Wednesday, March 29th, 2006, 07:08 AM
Most of a person’s influence on someone else is unconscious – parenting especially; it’s frankly quite hard to royally screw it up, even if you tried (and so doth conscience make cowards of us all). Ask an actor -- they know why acting is hard work. The apple doesn’t and won’t fall far from the tree, and the harder you try, the closer it falls (but as I say later: the further it rolls). Your unconscious – the stuff you don’t know about you – is written all over “how hard you try” – not all over what you say and do -- and watch with wonder as it’s written now all over your progeny too.

It’s no accident Jewish and Chinese kids are best at math. Ever spend any time in their households, and compared them with WASP households? I have. I’ve tutored and taught several Chinese children at home, and I almost married a WASP seems I helped raise. Ever wonder why American WASP kids are so bad at math and science, and Asians aren’t? It’s just no fun when there’s only one right answer, even if you “show your work.” Jewish kids are chosen; Chinese are doted on; and WASPs are to be seen and not heard, and above all heel and be what mummy and daddy fretted so hard on skadi to find out how to do! Who’s raisin whom?

There are no kids less close (in two of three senses of that word that come to mind) to their families on earth than Germanic kids, loosely speaking, and for a long time now. Another thread today touched on the issue of why “Germans” aren’t having kids. Take the time to consider how close to not having them is having them the ‘right way,’ and how far they both are from “contraceptive, wazzat?” No kids have been more concerned to distinguish themselves from family from tribe and from each other than Germanic kids. I overheard one recently anointed Germanic say when asked why he had no kids as he’d make a great father reply: “Why? Should I imagine I’d do any better than myself?” Ironic but suggestive that the very folks who are trying hardest are the ones who are disappearing fastest.

QuietWind
Wednesday, March 29th, 2006, 07:59 AM
and WASPs are to be seen and not heard, and above all heel and be what mummy and daddy fretted so hard on skadi to find out how to do! Who’s raisin whom?


What are you talking about?!?! :-O Skadi is a great place to learn hwo to raise kids. :thumbup

Seriously though, you are so right about the "seen and not heard" thing. I hate this. Parents wonder why their children act up so much and they don't even consider that it is because that is the only way the child knows to get attention. Children should definitely be heard. Listening to what your children have to say is so important. (Add that to the list of things in the posts above to be remembered.) If they are not important enough for you to listen to, then why should they listen to you? Try turning off the radio in the car and just talking. Or (here is a novel idea) sit everyone down at the table together for dinner! ;)

Also add:

Play with your children.
&
Learn how to find teachable moments.
&
Be creative.

Play: Want to know a fun game? Lay on your back with your feet in the air, and then pick them up on your feet like an airplane. Or go down the slide at the park with them. Dig in the sandbox. Lay in the grass and find pictures in the clouds. Splash in the puddles. Finger paint all over the back sliding glass door (or a window)! Once in Texas it snowed at 10pm. I woke my kids up and we went outside in their P.J.'s and played in the snow as it fell. (All 1 inch of it! :lol J/k I don't know how much fell).

Teachable Moments: I've talked about these before. This is anything in life that is an opportunity to learn something. They occur all the time. They can be found in the nature out the car window while driving. They can be found in the fight between siblings. They can be found in cooking, grocery shopping, and gardening. Teach your children to compare labels at the grocery store. Help them discover how to find answer to their difficult "why" questions.

Creativity: Purple grass, yellow skies, and green rabbits are okay in pictures. Your little one wearing mouse ears outside with barbie slippers is fine (well, to a certain age. Haha). When you children paint their bodies instead of the paper, it is okay. My son wears his pants backwards, and I let him because he is dressing himself. :thumbup Go ahead and make them pancakes shaped like bears, and cut their sandwiches into hearts.

Or....just do what you want. My mom thinks I am too lenient anyhow. She told me the other day that she couldn't believe I let my little boy leave the house with his pants backwards, because she would have made him take them off and put them on right. In my opinion, the important thing is that he is dressing himself. If we were going someplace that it mattered, I'd make sure they were on right. Does it really matter when I am going to my parents house? So, if you don't want to listen to any of my tips for being a good parent, then that is fine. :) I'm sure my mom is not the only one who doesn't like my parenting style.

nicholas
Wednesday, March 29th, 2006, 03:21 PM
Most of a person’s influence on someone else is unconscious – parenting especially; it’s frankly quite hard to royally screw it up, even if you tried

I'd tend to disagree with that. Screwing it up is easy, either be indifferent and apathetic towards your children or make every little thing the end of the world. Both extremes are common in society, often with a parent flipping to either extreme at a moments notice.

Æmeric
Wednesday, March 29th, 2006, 10:39 PM
I think a husband is important. Illegitimacy among Whites in America is about 25%. Children born to unwed mothers are more likely to grow in poverty, do poorly at school & get into trouble with the law. Children are usually better adjusted socially if the grow up in a two parent household. I know its not always possible, sometimes one parent may die, and the children turn out all right. But ideally the two parent family is usually the best.

RusViking
Thursday, March 30th, 2006, 01:56 AM
In another thread in this section a lot of you have lightly mentioned various spiritual, physical, emotional, and mental qualities that women should possess before becoming a mother. I would like to hear more about this and in more detail. Right now I'm at a point in my life where I know I need to start preparing myself to be a mother (I'm not pregnant, nor am I currently trying). I want to be ready to be a mother long before I start trying to have children. So, what qualities and knowledge should women have to be good mothers?

It is really very simple Godiva. The center of the Universe changes from you to the child. If you successfully understand and make that change, the rest will fall in place as it should because you will have the best interest of the child at heart. Is it perfect, no....we can only try our best.

I do not believe any human has become an adult if he or she has not had children; felt and made that transition. It is a right of passage necessary to become an elder of the tribe.

Esther_Helena
Thursday, March 30th, 2006, 02:08 AM
Everyone has great points. :thumbup

I'm not a parent, so I don't know how valid my advice is. I am a daughter though. So I can speak from the child's perspective.

*Children should be seen and heard. There are, however, times when they should be quiet. Try telling your child that it is now quiet time, and if they have something to say to just wait until there is a better opportunity. (Ex, after you get off the phone.) Locking your kid in her room is not a good idea.

*If your child does something they shouldn't have, take them aside and explain what they have done. If they aren't willing to listen, simply wait until you are both in a better mood to talk. Spanking them won't teach them anything. All it taught me was that my dad is an ass.

*Two parents are the ideal, however if one parent royally screws it up (cheating, child abuse, etc) then the other parent should leave with the child/ren.

*If something happens where you can barely provide for yourself, much less a child and you know someone who can better provide for them (family member, trusted friend) then it would be better to allow them to care for the child until you get back on your feet.
(Unless that person then forbids your child to talk to you... :thumbdown )

Okay, so maybe that was more of a rant. :P

Godiva
Thursday, March 30th, 2006, 03:19 AM
It is really very simple Godiva. The center of the Universe changes from you to the child.

I strongly disagree with this idea Rusviking. I know from personal experience that it is very unhealthy for both the mother and child to have the mother make the child the center of her Universe. My own mother tried for 15 years before she could have a child, me. In those fifteen years she and my father adopted my older sister. When my mother had me, I became the center of her Universe. What kind of effect did this approach have you might wonder. The effect it had was that I was 18 years old and a freshman in college before my mother would let me get a job, wash my own clothes, or cook for myself. I was stunted, developmentally speaking, because she focused all her attention on me.

I call my mother about once a week and when I do she always tells me that I have been the highlight of her week. How is my father or adopted sister supposed to feel when they hear her say this? (They're usually in the room when she makes these comments.) What sort of manipulation is this putting me under? It puts me under pressure to call her more often. There was a period of time where I hadn't called her for a couple of weeks and she actually sent me an email saying that I needed to "check in" with her every few days by mail, email, or phone. For the first year of my marriage I was a wreck because I didn't really know how to do laundry, I still don't have a good laundry schedule in place, I didn't know how to cook anything but breakfast foods, I still can't understand how to plan meals days in advance, I wasn't sure whether or not I was supposed to love my parents more than I love Leofric or the same, it never really sunk in until six months ago that I do and should love Leofric far more than I love my parents.

When my mother decided in my infancy to make me the center of the Universe she set down the path of an unhealthy relationship of co-dependency for both of us. I've just started to realize that and try to regulate myself with my mother, but she still does the same things. If my mother had been an example of a woman who is strong, independent, and loves me enough to make time for me but not surrender her life to me then I wouldn't have posted this thread. I want to know how to be a good mother so that I don't fall into this pattern, which I have been trained my whole life to lead. I want my children to be an important part of my life, but not my whole life. If any person besides me is to be my whole life, it should be the man that I've chosen as my lifetime companion. I think through this example my children will learn just how important love and marriage are between a man and a woman. If I try to smother my children they will run fast and far and might end up finding someone else to take lessons in life from. I want respect from my children, not fear or dependency.

I would like to thank you, Rusviking, for the rudeness of the beginning of your post. As I steamed over it, clarity entered my mind to show me the biggest problem I've had when I've thought about being a mother. I've wanted to be a good mother and I've known that I have a tendency to do something unhealthy that wouldn't be good to bring into parenting, but I couldn't put my finger on it. Now I have. Though your post ticked me off to begin with, I believe that the result has been the most personally helpful to my situation of all the posts before it. Thank you.

Leofric
Thursday, March 30th, 2006, 03:53 AM
It is really very simple Godiva. The center of the Universe changes from you to the child.
I would disagree quite strongly with this as well, but for different reasons than my wife (though I couldn't honestly say I dislike her reasons).

I think it's very detrimental to a child to raise it as though it were the center of the universe. I think too many people of the current grandparental and parental generations have made and are making this mistake, and at this point, it has become detrimental to society.

I was raised from birth to be very aware of the fact that I was most definitely not the center of the universe. That innate ugliness was beaten out of me (gently) from a very early age. I was not to be allowed to make it through boyhood into youth still carrying that horrible notion with me. Oh no. I was to recognize that I am a member of a family and a society (several societies, actually), with soical roles and duties that I was expected to fulfill in each of the groups in which I was a member.

This is the very thing that's missing in our society today. Too many people go around thinking that they are the center of the universe, and our societies are deteriorating as a result. That's the whole reason this board exists — if the current grandparental generation had not bought into the lie that children should be raised as though they were the center of the universe, then our societies and cultures would still have enough cohesion and strength to render discussion of their preservation trivial. But they did buy that lie, and now we have a whole generation of hedomats rising into power as a result — millions of fiercely individualistic universe-centers running around seeking self-gratification, divorced from all social bonds that built the culture they are milking dry. And now we few have to figure out how to preserve what we were taught to hold dear.

No, in a properly functioning society, no such switch needs to be made, because no parent believes that perniciously evil lie that the child is the center of the universe, so no child is allowed to grow to adulthood thinking it (except the few who will end up housing the prisons — wardens need a job, too). That whole mindset is what has contributed more than anything to the disintegration of our society. I'll have none of it. The child is not the center of the universe, and the good father and mother do everything they can to root that falsehood out of the child's young mind.

Northern Paladin
Thursday, March 30th, 2006, 04:14 AM
To be like the mother hen in her nurturing nature. To be like the mother owl in her wisdom.

And last but not least to have a strong virtuous man behind her to keep Jr in his place and give him someone to look up to.:)

Æmeric
Thursday, March 30th, 2006, 04:44 AM
When Rusviking said the center of the universal changes to the child he may have meant newborns. Newborns need alot of attention. But obviously it's unheathy for a twenty-something to be the center of her mother's universal. I personally do'nt know what its like to be the center of the universe because my mother gave birth to my sister when I was 10 months old.

I think your mother's obsession with you is due to the fact you are her only birth-child & it took her fifteen years to have you. She must have some emotional issues. I assume she must be in her fifties or sixties. She is not going to change. You & your family will just have to deal with her. Try not to dwell on the past because it may prevent you from enjoying the present & future.

SouthernBoy
Thursday, March 30th, 2006, 04:46 AM
They require a superior genetic-constitution. :)

Bridie
Thursday, March 30th, 2006, 05:11 AM
Gee, there are some great points coming out now. Very interesting conversation....


I know from personal experience that it is very unhealthy for both the mother and child to have the mother make the child the center of her Universe.I couldn't agree more. However it is somewhat inevitable for a mother to initially (when an infant is SO dependant on her) to view her baby as the centre of her universe... and this is as, Anglo-Hoosier alluded, quite necessary for an infant's survival.

It is difficult sometimes for a mum to shift her focus as her child gets older and concentrate on herself and others again. It can be a trap that's hard to get out of. This is something I'm struggling with at the moment, and probably (if I'm to be completely honest), part of the reason why I've been spending so much time on the 'net lately. I'm focussing on something other than just my family when I'm on here, for the first time in close to 6 yrs. So necessary for healing the emotional wounds that childbearing and constant childcaring inflicts.


When my mother decided in my infancy to make me the center of the Universe she set down the path of an unhealthy relationship of co-dependency for both of us.Thank you SO MUCH for sharing your thoughts on this count Godiva. :) You've just re-affirmed for me the importance of focussing on something other than just my kids 24/7. (Of course, they are still my #1 priority. :thumbup ) Not just for my sake, but for their's too. :)

It probably wasn't so much a voluntary decision on your Mum's part to make you the centre of the universe though..... a mother's love is so strong that it tends to decide for you. You need to keep on the right side of a love like this (from a Mum's POV). It can just as surely drown you, as quickly as it can uplift you.


This is the very thing that's missing in our society today. Too many people go around thinking that they are the center of the universe, and our societies are deteriorating as a result.Too right Leofric. :thumbup One only has to look at the broad-ranging effects of the "one child policy" in China to see how damaging this sort of up-bringing can be. I'll try to find an article on it soon and post it on the boards somewhere. VERY interesting stuff.

QuietWind
Thursday, March 30th, 2006, 06:02 AM
I agree that Children should not be the center of the universe (good points, Godiva and Leofric) and that it is not healthy especially to raise them in a co-dependent environment. Developing healthy, secure infant attachments is so important to the type of attachment the individual will later possess as an adult in their relationships.

I do think that some amount of putting your child first is healthy, though. Some of it is protective. For example, it is my habit to serve my children's meals first, then from what is left I give my husband a huge, very generous servings, and I take what is left often leaving some for if the children want seconds. It is almost like instinct for me to want to make sure they eat healthy and have proper nutrition rather than myself. They also come first when it comes to buying new shoes and things of that nature. I do not need shoes, but their feet grow and grow and grow and it is important to me that they have shoes. In ways like these I put my children first.

But you can't spend 24 hrs. with/on your kids. Not even every waking moment. They need to get out and learn some independence. It is easier with some children than with others. My daughter was a sinch. She is very independent. My "middle child" wants to be my mama's boy. :P I keep trying to push him out of the nest (so to speak) and he keeps climbing back up in because flying is "too hard." :) We have him involved in one activity away from home and I am going to get him into another.

What I see as being a greater problem in today's society is not the over-mothering, but rather that many parent's do not spend enought ime with their children. The kids are at achool 6 hours a day, and then they have activities booked every night of the week, and by the time they get home at night it is a quick snack, bath, and to bed. At my daughter's gym, for example.... these girls are in the gym 12,15, + hrs. a week. They are in school all day, come home for a snack, then go to the gym for 3 hrs. every evening. Honestly, I am glad I homeschool my daughter and actually have time to see her every day. I can't imagine picking her up from school and rushing her straight to the gym every night, then coming home just to sleep.

I like how Bridie talks about going on the computer to get away from things. That is important in being a mother. We need our breaks too. :thumbup

RusViking
Thursday, March 30th, 2006, 02:57 PM
Godiva, Leofric, Jennifer:

I understand your positions. I certainly did not mean to convey that one should raise a child in the manner you all describe. It would never occur to me do so. My words were taken very literal. Rather, the meaning was, in a general sense, one should be caring for a child as you would care for yourself. I do not wish to speak to the details of doing so as they vary greatly and many have differing, legitimate ideas on how to raise a child.

Sorry for the miscommunication.

nicholas
Thursday, March 30th, 2006, 04:12 PM
Give your sons their space. Your son is NOT your best friend, your shoulder to cry on, surrogate husband, etc. He is your son.

On daughters. Your daughter is not in competition with you for your husbands love, your daughter is not your dmping ground, your best friend, or your clone. She is your daughter.

ostseefront
Friday, March 31st, 2006, 06:11 AM
A mother should always be for her children there, even if times something happens. The mother should not despise their child in addition, love and, as it is with some mothers.

nicholas
Friday, March 31st, 2006, 03:23 PM
It is really very simple Godiva. The center of the Universe changes from you to the child.

No. That will smother the child. I've seen men who've had mothers like that and they turn out to be cowardly effeminate men who cannot handle the harsh realities of the worlds indifference much less hostility.

RusViking
Friday, March 31st, 2006, 05:15 PM
No. That will smother the child. I've seen men who've had mothers like that and they turn out to be cowardly effeminate men who cannot handle the harsh realities of the worlds indifference much less hostility.

Nicholas, check my subsequent clarification to the my comments you just read.

Bridie
Saturday, April 1st, 2006, 04:05 AM
I do not believe any human has become an adult if he or she has not had children; felt and made that transition. It is a rite of passage necessary to become an elder of the tribe.I strongly agree. :) Pregancy and childbirth are very distinct rites of passage for women too. They can be very empowering.

You and Leofric have got great things ahead of you Godiva. :thumbup :)

Enibas
Wednesday, May 24th, 2006, 08:51 AM
There are many things necessary to be a good mother but the most importent is love. Here is my top-5-list:

1. love
2. patience
3. courage
4. intelligence
5. humour