12 June 2011

Everyone is invited once

We have a fun house with a large yard.  And an open door policy.  Everyone is invited to come over...once.  Most are invited back, but once in a while, a few are not.  We'll meet at parks or local attractions instead--or we won't meet at all.

It's taken me a long, long time (and I'm still working on it!) to get over the guilt, anxiety, and social pressure of feeling as though we need to maintain that open door policy at all times.  I have to remind myself that the kids have to deal with all sorts of people in school, at parks, in recreational class, etc., but do they not have to do so in their own home; they have the right to feel safe and loved in their own home.  I have to remind myself that I will unlikely wield this much control over the peers with whom the boys associate when they are older and it's only now that I'm able to directly teach them how to befriend kind people and how to be kind to them.  And finally, I have to remind myself of how awful I felt as a child when my mother followed social norms instead of protecting me.

But all of this makes me feel so judgmental.  Of course, I think of neither the parents nor the child as bad, but I do gauge the behavior, especially if it is not amenable to redirection. 

By now, the boys know that they have to use their words, firmly and with direct eye contact, and then walk away and/or consult an adult if their words are not heeded.  And they feel empowered to create a bully-free zone at our home.  So all my distressing over it all is worth it.

Unrelated photos at the Midway Museum follow.  All these photos are of the air craft carrier, which was huge--like a floating city!  And never mind the funky processing.

1 comment:

Amber Riley said...

Wow! That place looks awesome!! Totally agree with you on this post...TOTALLY!!!