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Old 10-10-2012, 02:03 PM   #45
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Re: Parenting style: Raising a person

Originally Posted by mcpforever View Post
Just to play devil's advocate, what if your child grows up and chooses a religion that compels him to do the very things that you purposely avoided? Let's include his own children (your grand children) as well. Would he still be saying, "Thanks for letting me choose my own path." Or would it be "Why didn't you do these things for me? I feel so behind and lacking."

Some parents struggle with sports like this. Will the kids really grow up and say, "Thanks for making me play soccer all those years. It taught me perserverance, discipline, etc." Or will they say, "All that wasted time I spent playing a sport I hated when I could have been spending time with my family or learning about something I really love."
I have no problem with any religion that he chooses, even if it is different than mine. However, I do not agree that any of the core religions (meaning the words found in their ancient holy books) compel anyone to do anything that I disagree with, clergy on the other hand are a different story. The Qu'ran does not require of it's followers the extremist actions that we see in many places, it is certain leaders of the faith that twist those words and encourage the lack of literacy so that their followers can not find this out for themselves. This is also a historical fact for Christians, during the Crusades most of the men who were fighting in the name of God were not able to read, did not speak latin, and did not have the money to own even one book.

I do not want my son to not be a Christian, I do not want my son to be a Christian because his father is a Christian and is unwilling to question his faith out of fear of retribution or disapproval. If he chooses that faith or any other faith when he goes out into the world and is judged by others, because although it may upset us to be judged it is as guaranteed as gravity, I want him to explain why he chose the faith of his choice and I want his answer to be stronger than "because that's what my parent's taught me" which projects my identity onto him, allowing him to choose for himself gives him the much stronger position of saying "I chose this faith because I studied the tenements of multiple religions and I found that this faith is most in line with who I am as a person because in my religion it says...."

I have to say I take issue with making my child do anything. You suggest that soccer teaches discipline and perseverance, and it most definitely can. It can also not teach these things. Both those attributes as well other good traits can be learned by many means. There are also people who do not learn those things by playing soccer or any other activity that teaches a person the specific attribute we are referring to. Also, I have to pick apart the sports subject. There is a difference between pushing your child to do something that they do not want and motivating them to push through a particularly hard time in that activity. Since I will always value my child's opinion and not be looking for the simple answer when I ask "Do you like playing soccer?" after his first few practices and he says "no" I will delve into the topic further, what specifically is the issue, "I think it is boring" versus "I don't like the way my coach treats me" are very different answers that require a different solution. The first one means that a different activity needs to be found, the second requires I go analyze the coaches methods and address it if necessary.

I remember being a child and wanting to have my opinion respected and it not. Not only by my parents but by the "authority" in religion, school etc. When I disagreed and took issue the answer was always that I couldn't understand the full breadth because of my age and lack of experience. I have instead found more evidence and support for what I figured out as a child and have been waiting for my peers to catch up ever since.
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