With Kids vs. Without Kids

This is a reblog from: The Joys of Boys

Read it and weep or reminisce…

With Kids vs. Without Kids

It has been 10 years now since I first became a mom.  Can you believe that? NickMom recently asked moms to share how life was different before vs after kids so let me share.  Even though I love being a mom there are times when I have to stop and laugh about how different times were before we had kids compared to now with 4 boys.  In fact, I have a hard time even remembering what it was like.  I’m sure it was quiet – really, really quiet.

As you can imagine, life with 4 boys is an adventure.   So let’s reminisce for awhile about how much easier life was before vs after kids.

Most moms will say that they miss the days of going to the bathroom alone without a row of spectators right outside the door.  But I will have to say that I don’t mind the audience as much as I mind the obstacle course that awaits me every time I enter the bathroom.  As a mom of 4 boys I now have to keep an eye out for unidentified fluids on the floor, toilet seat and even walls and hand towels.  I will never figure out how a little boy can “aim” in one direction and hit the wall behind him.  I guess it is one of life’s greatest mysteries or greatest talents I suppose, depending on how you look at it. ;)

Read the rest: With kids vs Without kids

A Sign of Social Collapse

I have often alluded to a serious collapse in social structure. Particularly concerned that each successive generation parents are forgetting how to be parents.

It has been obvious to me for the last two, if not three, generations. That’s 40 – 60 years, from the 1970s on. Parents have abdicated their responsibilities in the pursuit of pleasure and/or the necessity to earn enough to live.

The impact is really being seen now, and the seriousness is much worse than I had ever imagined, in fact it is bordering on horrific.

This mornings article on BBC News clearly demonstrates the impact today.

Children ‘already two years behind at start of school’

The report warns that neglected children begin school far behind and never catch up

Children from the poorest homes risk becoming an “educational underclass”, starting school in nappies and behaving like toddlers, says research from the Centre for Social Justice.

The think tank says there are four-year-olds so far behind that they do not know their own names and have the social skills of a two-year-old.

The report says an “abysmal” start in life leaves pupils unready for school.

A head teacher told researchers of parents who “just can’t be bothered”.

The Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) study was produced by a panel of educationalists, chaired by Sir Robin Bosher of the Harris academy federation.

Bad parenting

It warns of children who arrive at school already far behind their classmates and who are too immature to begin learning lessons.

“In one school, some children at four years old are developmentally nearer to two when they start school,” says Sir Robin.

This means that children need to be helped to catch up as quickly as possible, he says, which, rather than learning formal lessons, might be about being taught to use a knife and fork or to improve very poor language skills.

Even after a year these pupils might still not be able to recognise that words are read from left to right, says the report.

These children have had such little experience of being sociable with others that they hurt other children and adults, says Sir Robin.

A head teacher told the researchers: “In the last three years we have had to toilet-train children who came to school in nappies at age five. Parents ask me how we managed to do it. Many of them just can’t be bothered, they think it’s our responsibility to do it for them.”

They also described children at school who “don’t even have the concentration to talk and say an answer in any kind of sentence”.

The study talks of the impact of family breakdown on children and how much they can be damaged by instability in their home life.

The lack of a male role model in families is also described as a factor affecting pupils’ behaviour.

“Emotional neglect” from disengaged parents is also a damaging factor for children’s development, says the study. There are also 700,000 children living with parents who are “dependent drinkers” and 335,000 with “dependent drug users”.

An unnamed head teacher told researchers that the label of special educational needs might be “often used as an excuse for low expectations and under-preparation on the part of parents”.

The report warns that falling behind at the very beginning of school can be the starting point for permanent disadvantage.

“These children are starting school drastically behind the levels of development expected of their age,” says the report.

The report highlights the particularly low attainment of white, working-class boys.

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So what is the solution.

It’s a case of pissing into the wind to start only with these kids, they are already disadvantaged almost beyond recuperation. Of course work needs to be done with them, but we really need go go back and teach the current grandparents how they should have been parents, and then tackle the current generation of parents.

It has to be a parallel process, or it will fail again.

There are sectors in the current population that have to undergo social re-eduction, corrective eduction. I don’t use the term rehabilitation here, because rehabilitation implies that they were ‘habilitated’ in the first place; obviously, they were not.

There will be large numbers who deny this, deny that this is their problem, but surely they will be the worst cases and the crux of the problem.

What do we do if they refuse to participate?

We have to take a very hard line, if you don’t participate then all government support (which is part of the problem) stops. The consequences will be disastrous, families will become homeless, children malnourished, reduced longevity and higher death rates.

The major factor, as I see it, is the government support. This government support has produced generations of people who don’t know how to survive without a crutch to lean on.

Government agencies should be concentrating on weaning people off government assistance, teaching people how to survive on their own. The problem that has now evidenced itself is our inheritance of successive governments meddling in social affairs, attempting to manipulate the people. If we don’t change the paradigm, it will only worsen.

It has been a terrifying social experiment that has gone terribly wrong.

We are now suffering the consequences.

Really makes you wonder…

Switzerland by train

Switzerland by train

“Yesterday, we took the train from Paris to Zurich, passing through the valley of the Rhone… past castles… medieval churches… lazy, picturesque rivers… quaint villages… to Lyon… Basel… and then skirting the Alps and lakes to Zurich. The scenery was remarkably beautiful. But the most remarkable thing we saw wasn’t outside the train car; it was in it.

A family of Americans boarded the train in Gare de Lyon in Paris. They took their seats, parents and two children. Tanned. Dressed in baggy shorts and polo shirts with little alligators on them. Even before the train left the station, the parents had given each of the children an iPad. Then mom and dad each got out their own iPad… and plugged in ear phones. From our vantage point, we could see that Dad was watching some sort of action movie, apparently with super-heroes involved. Mom’s iPad viewing was never revealed. But from Paris to the Swiss border – three hours of some of the most scenic countryside in Europe –none of them even looked out the window. Nor did they say a single word to one another.

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