Wednesday, April 30, 2014

I Hate you and I don't even Know you

Having access and opportunities to engage with a large variety of people and cultures sometimes can be a bit over whelming. All the sights, sounds and smells can become unnerving and paralyzing.

Perhaps you come from a certain background where you are groomed to certain thoughts and behaviors that just don't allow your mind to be open to things unlike yourself.

Too light, too dark, too loud, too quiet, too cheery, too somber, too mean, too positive, too skinny, too fat, too religious, not religious enough. The differences are vast. Clothing choices, foods that are consumed, musical interest, languages. All things that can build beauty but also can build hate.

How do we tackle these issues with our children? Are things worse or better now? Is our parenting today better than our own parents or are we still following the old play books?

-When we don't get a certain job position are we blaming others because we feel we were not the "right" puzzle piece they were looking for or do we just think we weren't qualified?
-When we are dating and certain people don't address us, do we feel slated and lash out with certain comments or do we brush it off as they are just not into you?
-When our child is not picked for the team, do we automatically assume the coach had it in for them, or do we say perhaps they just weren't ready enough?
-Do we tend to be open to try something new or do we say no before we even try it?
-Do we follow what we have heard in the past or do we listen as we move forward and make our own connections?

I was born and raised in New York City. Talk about variety! I grew up in Brooklyn, went to school in Manhattan, moved to Queens. So I have seen many different faces, heard many different sounds and smelled an infinite amount of scents. Some I added to my life and some I didn't but all were options I was blessed to have and grateful to be aware of.

Options I made sure I passed down to my daughter so that she can have an even wider range of possibilities.
I've never wanted to just eat a certain type of food, or listen to just a certain style of music or live in just one specific neighborhood.
We always made sure that she tried or experienced before she could comment.

We want her to eat what she wants, date who she likes, dress as she wishes. We want her to be respectful and learn from others.
We all have a story to tell and things we can share and learn from one another. If you are open and willing you will see that we are more alike than different.

Yes yes we will still run into some who just are who they are and like what they like and believe what they believe, regardless of education, the time that has passed or the knowledge available to them. It is fine to be who you want to be but it is not fine to push it on to another just because.

Parents we have a responsibility to teach our children to respect others and to learn from past mistakes. They are individuals, not clones of us. Communication and respect, who knows maybe they can teach us something. I always enjoy those moments when the tables are turned in my house, how about you?

What do you think?


7 comments:

  1. My three year old teaches me something new every day and I am so thankful for her free spirit to help me realize I need to let go and relax. She is the perfect balance to my life. I hope that as she grows I can remember to give her the freedom that you mentioned to experience life. As always love your posts. xo

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    1. Megan, thank you so much for support. As always love your visits and comments ;)

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  2. I live in the heart of the S.F. Bay Area and it is interesting as there is lots of variety in everything. My kids live with their mother in totally different part of the state in mindset (it is only 45 miles but light years in difference), so it is interesting.

    I try to keep an open mind on a lot of things and I try to give my kids different experiences in life, so if they didn't like something they can say "I have done that and don't like it." Also, I have always told them "Respect Everybody and Fear Nobody." Because I believe that everybody deserves some respect and that fear can could you views of people.

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    1. Patrick, hello again and thanks for comments. Love the fear statement :)

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  3. I completely agree that we need to teach our children to respect others, Mari! Part of that is definitely exposing them to a variety of situations and people. We have to pattern respect for them. They will learn far more from watching how we treat others than by listening to how we tell them to act.

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    1. Candace love your comment thanks for visit :) I agree. You can't always have teaching moments by talking, somethings have to be seen as well.

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  4. Whenever my son saw something "different" (not races because he didn't/doesn't seem to notice that), I've always encouraged him to ask that person questions instead of staring. So, if he saw someone with a large tattoo, I would have him ask "What does that mean?" If it was a piece of clothing, I would have him ask "Where did you get it?" Each "new" thing would come with a different question. I never wanted him to stare nor did I want him to feel like he should be ashamed of not understanding. Thanks for sharing with Turn it Up Tuesday.

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