When raising the kids, I wonder if I’m asking the wrong questions.
If an answer seems impossible to find, it’s often because we are asking the wrong questions.
Rather than wondering what my kids should ‘be’ like, and how I can help them become that, I’m going to think about what our children will have to deal with by virtue of the fact that they are human beings.
Here are the twenty things that will (more than likely) happen to our kids:
- They will see the world from their own view-point. This view-point will be determined by their age, their sex, their colour, their religion, their sexuality, their ailments, their disabilities, their looks, their upbringing, even their height.
- They will meet people who all be different to them, in little ways and large ways. These people may not share their viewpoints.
- They will love some people, like lots of people, feel hatred towards a handful of people, and be indifferent to many.
- Some people will scare them, some will make them feel safe. They will scare some people.
- They will make choices, some good, some bad. They will have to deal with the mistakes that they make.
- They will receive an education, formal or otherwise.
- Their bodies will change constantly, not just up until puberty.
- They will have to deal with the fact that they look different to the person that the person they fancy fancies.
- They will be intrigued by sex, be terrified by sex, and probably have sex. Sometimes they will want sex more than anything, and sometimes they will not.
- They will decide whether they want children and then have to deal with the consequences of what actually happens after they have made that decision.
- They will have to find food, shelter and water.
- They will be faced with violent situations: both personal threats to themselves, and wars between ideologies. They may cause these situations.
- They will create things and destroy others.
- They will be confronted with drugs.
- They will earn, spend and ultimately have some inner drive to contribute to something bigger than themselves.
- They may break a heart. They will have their own heartbroken.
- They will have to deal with death, disease, illness, disability, loneliness, and despair – their own and others’.
- They will have to deal with disappointment.
- They will experience the true power of a group of people, both as something beautiful, and something terrible.
- They will laugh, cry, dance, sing, smile, frown and hopefully, if they are lucky, find peace within themselves.
So much of the news is preoccupied with telling me how terrible a world we live in, based on the fact that numbers 1 – 20 on this list are happening. The question I have asked to date is how to shield my children from these events, rather than how to handle these events when they happen. And these events will happen to my kids because these events are life.