Tag Archives: peers

2335. Suggestions for Raising Children — Part IX


Tactical Parenting: Encouraging Tweens

Tweens: The tween phase is marked by outside influences forcing parents to change their minds about accepting the way their child thinks. Home life is as non-disruptive as good parenting prepares toddlers to value home life over all else. It is as disruptive as parents don’t enable their toddler’s to succeed in self-development and compound their consequent good feelings about themselves into loyalty to home and family.

But that’s enough about what parents should have done. Now, what can they do? (Numbered only for easy reference.)

  1. Abandon nurturing as the primary technique of connecting. To the greatest extent possible, use leadership by example. Tweens are through listening; they want to choose their paths alone except as they seek guidance over unexpected humps.
  2. Mom’s expressions of love such as hugs and kisses are expected but losing their importance. Respect, trust, and admiration carry much more convincing weight with tweens.
  3. Both parents demonstrate how to live up to something bigger that themselves—God, principles, standards, predictability, dependability, peaceful accord, loving one another, family. Always something bigger than personal opinion, feelings, or anger-stirred insistence. It enables and legitimizes parents to take the heat off of competition caused by child putting peers in the middle against parents.
  4. Keep the home friendly and familiar, a refuge. Outsiders are not the enemy, but they are less important except to tweens.
  5. Dependably and daily show interest by inquiring about accomplishments and spotlighting success from purposely doing things that contribute to development toward maturity and adulthood rather than getting along, building popularity, etc.
  6. Show trust by not getting excited about undesirable peer influence. As a matter of fact, the less parents get upset, the more easily kids learn that parents are both legitimate and worthy of being listened to.
  7. Spotlight tween’s ability to recognize right and wrong, fair and unfair, desirable and undesirable for the long term, what’s right for them. Encourage them to think more than feel.
  8. Without finding fault, encourage tweens to weigh options and decide what is greater success outside the home and how to get there. Be patient, it takes a while for kids to bridge the gap and learn to keep parents happy and peers friendly.
  9. Don’t find fault in peers, find fault in their values, standards, and expectations that differ from those taught the toddler and upheld for the tween.
  10. Find ways to enable boys to find satisfaction with themselves through accomplishments. School work is best. Having a job is great. Helping mom at home is essential. Make sure they have responsibility to match their maturity and they learn to fulfill it without animosity. If boys find satisfaction in what they are doing that has parental blessing, parents should not worry much.
  11. Find ways to enable girls to make themselves feel important in school, home, and to parents in the hope that their importance relating with others will not overtake family relations. If girls find self-importance in what they are doing that has parental blessing, parents should not worry much. A girl’s relations makes her feel good, but what she accomplishes develops her self-image and sense of self-worth.
  12. Teach that authority figures may not always be right, but they must be obeyed. If the child doesn’t like it, they can do differently when they are adults and have the authority to judge as appropriate for time, place, and incident. (To undercut authority figures is to also undercut parental authority. Whatever the parental good intentions, elevating child over authority figure teaches them to depend on others from which they also learn to plot, play, and manipulate parents against teachers and others.)
  13. Aspirations and ambitions to duplicate heroes energize children too. As toddler, heroes are found in parents. Tween boys especially look elsewhere for new heroes. Girls are not so adventurous to look elsewhere unless their current relations leave much to be desired.
  14. Heroes inspire ambitions to be a better person, which promotes mature growth. Celebrity worship highlights aspirations to have what someone else has and inspires envy and jealousy. Find ways as parent to be more admirable, hopefully hero-like as a mature adult, and don’t let children see celebrity worship in the home.
  15. When parents admire celebrities and tend to worship them, children see parents as admitting inadequacy. Subliminally the message settles into their hearts that they too must be inadequate. They don’t have enough. They easily mistake celebrities for heroes against whom they measure their own inadequacies and seek satisfaction in celebrity worship. Tweens are very vulnerable to making such a mistake, especially when parents set the example of it.
  16. Isolate boys and girls as objects of distinctly different characteristics, interest, respect, and trust. Reinforce the differences in every way practicable. The more they are NOT treated as distinctively different, the more mixed up sexually the girls will be both sooner and later in life.
  17. Females can’t have what politics promises relative to males and their nature tells them what’s right. The two are mutually exclusive. (The subject is too complex for here, but it has been described in articles titled Dark Side of Feminism and elsewhere throughout the blog.)
  18. Don’t nurture boys except to help recover from bad physical hurt, and then only minimally to show trust that he can handle whatever happened. Boys develop more manly when they convince themselves of their ability to meet all challenges and overcome or recover.
  19. Nurture girls in early tweens and morph away from it as time passes. They are slower than boys to develop self-confidence and independence for handling and acting on their feelings. (Boys act with little regard for feelings and so they learn from trial and error more quickly than girls.)
  20. Lead by example. Self-developing kids want to become adults and do best when they figure out how by following examples they select, which means they respect the models they use.
  21. Don’t aim at raising good kids; they become poor adults. Try to aim them at becoming good adults, and they will become at least acceptable and perhaps better-than-average kids.
  22. Kids more than parents have to keep up with their peers. The more that children hear parents talk enviously or jealously about what other adults do—e.g., keeping up with the Jones—the more deliberately that kids want to follow suit with peers.

Parental preparation for the tweens—i.e., raising toddlers—largely determines how children pass from first grade to puberty. The biggest challenge in the tween years is the child learning to play peers against parents. Unless inculcated with significant respect, trust, and dependence on parents to feel good about themselves, tween loyalty morphs predominantly into peer loyalty. They learn to succeed and feel good by heeding and duplicating peers to prove their worth outside the home. Unfortunately, too many and too easily find it more to their liking, which symbolizes less than ideal upbringing as toddler.

——

P.S. Her Majesty Grace had specific expressions she used in private with each of three sons. Her oldest and most precious. Her middlest and most precious. And her youngest and most precious. At that moment they were her most precious. And, it gave her an acceptable and endearing way to close every nurturing or counseling session. It has humored our family ever since it was disclosed to the boys in their forties.

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2264. Compatibility Axioms #881-890


881. On separation or divorce, the key issue isn’t love but respect. Any successful recovery depends on his learning to respect her more than before, which means she has to earn respect she didn’t have before.

882. Her strategy of virtual virginity shifts and keeps all his attention focused on her. Automatically, it puts the man in his natural role of proving himself worthy of her.  [294]

883. Virtual virginity gives a woman time to impose her values and blend her relationship into a joint effort, because he’s willing to listen as he searches for her weaknesses to facilitate conquest. Ditto for an ex trying to reunite. [294]

884. If they separate or divorce and she wants him back, only virtual virginity works to her advantage. If they have sex anytime for any reason, he will not change and she will not earn more respect. [294]

885. Dealing with a separated or divorced ex, virtual virginity sets them up such that he has to conquer her again. Men will change to earn conquest but conqueror’s right stops further change.

886. If he really, truly, emphatically wants back his ex, he will change into a different man if she refuses sex until remarriage. Otherwise, he will just plead with wordy promises without changing himself to meet her expectations. [294]

887. Conquering a virgin is the ultimate, but not as women think. He’s first among his buds. It pads both ego and bragging rights.

888. This springs from adolescent thinking: If he conquers a true virgin superstar, his significance among peers skyrockets. First for conquest, second for having the independence to dump her. [294]

889. To the smarter woman, Mr. GoodEnough still isn’t good enough. She should not be convinced that he’s worthy of her until the honeymoon. Only then should she stop competing with him.

890. It’s relationship maintenance gone awry; blame or expect him to resolve whatever ails their two-way relationship. This doesn’t mean that he’s not due some blame, just that treating him as such is counterproductive. [298]

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449. VIRTUE— Magnet for Males —SECTION III


Virtue is learned best before puberty and when taught by parents and authority figures such as teachers. Learned after puberty or taught by peers, behaviors are predominately adolescent. Few appear virtuous to mature men. 

What’s the difference? In today’s social marketplace, popularity and wishful thinking overrule experience and wisdom learned the hard way. Boys do, but men don’t find attractiveness in either female popularity or wishful thinking.   

Teen peers lack the maturity to match parental teaching and transfer of values, especially those regarding virtue.

Mature parents combine experience, wisdom, and personal concern. They promote cultural standards based on moral and religious values that generate respectable and admirable behavior among girls; boys follow and learn to be men accordingly. You can see it in action, as I recap some results it produced a half-century ago.

♥ Females didn’t have to fear vulgarity and disrespectful treatment, because males anticipated a female’s sensibilities and honored her expectations.

♥ Violence against females was rare.

♥ Violence of all kinds was much less common, because parents and especially females tamed, civilized, and domesticated males much better than today.

♥ Girls providing fellatio in school buses and elsewhere was never thought about, much less done and even copied to become popular.  

♥ Mothers directly taught and fathers indirectly coached daughters about boys. Brothers revenged harm to sister’s reputation.

♥ Sexual predators were not unknown, but their numbers were extremely small and audacity weak.

♥ Girls were too easily embarrassed to talk about sex with boys. They explored the subject in the dark, as they were felt over by a boy’s hands. Modesty caused embarrassment in the light, and her virtuous character slowed or stopped his hands in the dark. Or she yielded, self-respect plummeted, virtue took a hit, and his respect and admiration wavered.   

♥ Teen pregnancy was shameful and special care was given usually out of town, if the father didn’t marry her. Shame held down the incidence. (I knew of only one teen girl that reputedly had given birth, and I grew up in a mid-size city with four junior high and two big high schools. I got around to half of them socially during my school years: dances, dates, visits, hanging out.)

♥ Female modesty and feminine unknowns taught boys to respect girls in general. Chastity taught boys to respect each girl in particular. Silent admiration flowed easily out of respect, whether she was liked or not.

♥ Pre-pubescent girls knew nothing about sex and were embarrassed by thoughts of it. Boys of that age were ‘educated’ earlier, if they had bigger brothers. But disinterest usually prevailed until puberty set in. (Plenty of challenges other than sexual interests exist for boys and girls in the tweens.)

♥ Children aspired to become mature adults, not adolescent idols. Few grew up and retained the immature mindset of adolescence, because parents set examples to be admired and respected. Kids sought to duplicate parents.

You can imagine that parents used to have it much easier raising kids than do parents today.

The next post describes how moms and grannies exploited virtue.

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303. Weans, tweens, and teens, #11 — Immature kids


Immature adults emerge from this background: Kids enter puberty with empty minds primed to vacuum up adolescent values that produce these characteristics in adulthood:

·        Action comes before responsibility.

·        Self-centeredness overpowers ‘us’.

·                   Good intentions explain away lack of results.

·        Taking risks overrides common sense.

·        Others must earn my respect.

·        Popularity is more important than character.

·        Symbols are as good as substance.

·        Sex outweighs fidelity.

·        Parental supervision offends.

·        Wisdom resides in my peers.

They get that way from poor parenting in the weans and tweens. The following point to impending immaturity when present at puberty.

They lack:

o   A good work ethic and strong sense of personal responsibility.

o   Religious beliefs and moral convictions that guide them toward living up to something bigger than themselves.

o   Dependence upon parents for wisdom, guidance, support, back up.

o   Respect for authority and authority figures.

o   A foundation of unconditional respect for all people.

o   Ambitions (underdeveloped) for their own adult life. Not necessarily what they want to do, but expectations and preferably dreams of living in the adult world of responsibility, work, mature fun, family building.

They have:

o   Dreams of becoming a teen instead of an adult. They focus on peers, popularity, fashions, outside-the-family activities, and earlier duplication of older kids.  

o   Respect others only for what they can do for the child.

o   Self-centeredness. Selfishness comes easily to them. Their heart is soft for peers, but hard for most others.

o   A mother that did not nurture the child well in the weans, a father that did not lead well in the tweens, or both.

They exit adolescence with convicted beliefs that values learned in the teens are right and proper for adult life. This happens for one reason: They entered puberty with a mind empty of mature adult, albeit underdeveloped, values into which they expected to grow.  

[More about childhood mental growth appears in posts 268, 239, 223, 208, 197, 193, 192, 187, 178, and 177. Scroll down or search by the number with a dot and space following it.]

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294. Virtual virginity #16


  Even though previously married, virtual virginity success lies with her friendly feminine charm and persistent refusal to have unmarried sex. If he won’t honor her wishes or forces himself on her, he’ll be worse after conquest, during shack up, and even after marriage.

  This springs from adolescent thinking: If he conquers a true virgin superstar in looks, his significance among peers skyrockets for having the freedom to dump her. 

  Virtual virginity’s power shifts all the attention from him to her. 

  His ‘conqueror’s rights’ emerge after their first sex together. It’s as natural as her succumbing to his charm or looks.

  Virtual virginity gives a woman time to impose her values and blend her relationship into a joint effort, because he’s willing to listen as he searches for her weaknesses that will enable conquest.

  If they divorced and she wants him back, virtual virginity works best. If they have sex anytime for any reason, he will not change. If he really, truly, emphatically wants her back, he will change into a different man if she refuses sex until remarriage.

  Conquering a virgin is the ultimate, but not as women think. He’s first among his buds. It pads both ego and bragging rights.

[More about virtual virginity appears in posts 273, 248, 231, 212, 198, 181, 169, 158, 147, 136, 125, 96, 70, 51, and 44. Post 25 describes options for girls. Scroll down or search for the number with a dot and space following.]

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262. Mom’s misguided intentions


Loving intentions: Mother wants her little darlings to look cute and be well liked and become more popular. So, starting soon after birth, she keeps them in the latest kids’ fashions.  

Unintended consequences compound for years:

·        Kids in the weans don’t care how they look. Other than being warm and dry, clothes bore them. Little girls playing dolls and dress up are an exception, but it doesn’t affect the rest of this story.

·        Kids learn that moms are supposed to spend time, effort, and money to make them look better, more well-liked, more popular.

·        Girls look like Shirley Temple. Mom looks like Raggedy Ann, because she lives vicariously through her daughter

·        Kids become eye candy for perverts and predators.

·        Mom prompts and kids learn to focus on looks rather than character.

·        Kids learn to deal with one conflict of the tweens. Mom says fashionable clothes generate popularity. Kids learn acceptance is both easier and more important than popularity, but they still yearn for the latter.

·        The approach of puberty makes kids more clothes conscious. They learn that fashion is not only essential, but the latest is more so.

·        Kids enter teen years, and clothes consciousness assumes its own independence. They accept late fashions as necessary to their appearance and, hence, acceptance by peers and potential for popularity.

·        Fashion statements become critical for one’s popularity. Independence must be shown. Looking different from one’s parents crowns this emerging independent spirit.

·        Mom must pay, but taste belongs to kids. They fully expect to stay fashionable in teen years, because mom awakened the spirit in the weans and tweens.  

·        Mom liked the kids being fashionable, when she set standards, shopped, and selected. After puberty, she objects to teen independence, style, fashions, and costs. Too extreme for her.

·        Mom remembers having heard that clothes make the person. She now sees her priceless kids attired so different from her expectations.

·        Teen years fill up with family squabbles over style, substance, standards, costs, and choices of attire.  

·        Self-esteem takes a hit. Teens assume that mom no longer likes them. She changed so drastically when they wanted to define what makes them look good, well liked, and popular.  

·        Until mom’s self-imposed problems arose, husband/father/stepfather was largely ignored. His interests don’t lie in keeping kids fashionable.

·        To men, clothes make the man, not the boy. Childhood is for play. Being well liked is far less important then becoming well accomplished and prepared for adulthood.

·        He’s ill prepared to solve the unintended consequences of mom’s good and loving intentions.

Such multiple consequences haunt throughout the teen years and harsh feelings may linger beyond.

NOTE: I’m not against fashion, fashionable or fashion statements—for adults. Keeping kids in the latest fashions treats them as adults, and that’s the problem. Good intentions smash family harmony after they pass through puberty. I hope to publish more on family disharmony caused by elevating kids and treating them as adults.  

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120. Choices determine life


First, the way we dress plays a major role in how we behave. People judge behavior. Therefore, our attire and grooming generate judgments about us, and people act on those judgments when they deal with us.

Second, we are who we associate with. So, dressing like our peers catalogues us. It breeds stereotypes. As mother so correctly stated, “Birds of a feather flock together.”

Third, dressing up improves part of one’s appearance, so it brings self-gratitude, which brings happiness with oneself, which improves the picture one has of oneself, which breeds self-confidence and greater ability to deal successfully with others.

Fourth, when women dress up they make my world prettier. Of course, women respond that they care little about brightening this man’s world, but I’m not the only man out there. If women don’t want to light up the world men live in, men are released to uglify in their own style. In the end, the way women dress and groom themselves shapes the real world for all of us.   

A WOMAN DRESSES AND GROOMS HERSELF:

©      For comfort to please herself.

©      With class to show her self-confidence.

©      Prettily to feel good about herself.

©      Distinctly to attract a man’s attention.

©      Sloppily if she just doesn’t care.

 ©      As a hottie to avoid being called a nottie.

©      Femininely if she wants respect and recognition for who she is.

©      Professionally if she works proudly in her job.

©      Masculinely if she’s bitch or butch.

 ©      Gaudily if she’s weak at reading other people or insensitive to or disdainful of their judgments.

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