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January 17, 2010

Fatherhood #2

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 12:04 pm

Kid looks at their parents to model relationships. It’s long known that the way the father treats the mother leads sets their context for their own expectations. With that in mind, I had to think quickly this morning when Star came to me all dressed up in scarves and other such things. She looked over at me, and with a fancified voice said:

Look at this stylish scarf, do I look like a teacher, or a mother?

Now, I presume that she considers looking stylish to be a good thing (although that is debatable as a message). I don’t want to send a message that being a teacher is somehow worse than being a mother, or that mothers/teachers would be more or less stylish. However, I think mothers tend to get a bad rap, particularly on these counts, so I smiled and answered: Like a mother, definitely!

I want her to realize that mothers can be stylish, but I don’t want her to think that non-stylish mothers are somehow not good mothers. Any suggestions on how that question could have been better answered in a way that a six-year old would understand?

3 Comments

  1. How about…

    “You look like a very stylish mother who is also a teacher.”

    or

    “You’re stylish like an astronaut, but I don’t know if all those scarves will fit under your spacesuit.”

    Comment by Cris — January 17, 2010 @ 2:53 pm

  2. hilarious!

    Comment by mary ann — January 17, 2010 @ 7:15 pm

  3. I totally commented on this post earlier and then it got erased since I didn’t leave my e-mail…..I will try to remember what I said:)….I don’t have any brilliant suggestions for explanations for star (although I agree that these types of questions have deeper layers which children may not consciously grasp at that age and also that the way children perceive their own parents is reflected on the way they will view parenthood later). I always try to help my boys know that motherhood is a choice and that if a woman decides to stay at home with her children full-time (or even at all) that doesn’t mean that she doesn’t have any identity (or skills) outside of that realm. I think it helps when my children see me using my skills at church or in the community etc. My greatest hope is that my boys will want their wives to be mothers because they saw how completely happy and fulfilled motherhood has made me(only I’m still working on that part:)

    Comment by sara Jensen — January 24, 2010 @ 7:39 am

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