Sunday, October 17, 2010

Parents - Be Careful With Your Words

I am a parent of two. I have also been working with kids for 20+ years. I even spent a lot of my early years as a kid myself.

Here is my observation: Teens and children often reflect the rhetoric they hear at home in an exaggerated way. Kids reflect their parents' views. However, because of their youth, the usage of their parents' views tend to be represented in very stark terms.  Often without realization, a child can become a bully. They do not think of themselves as a bully, they are simply executing what they perceive the home attitude to be. Convinced of the rightness of their home view, any opposing view can be put-down and mistreated. The bully at school is being empowered by the attitudes and words of the parents.

So parents - are your words gracious or judgmental? Excluding or embracing? Tolerant or snide? How do you feel about other Religions? Ethnicity? Social status? Your attitudes will be reflected and amplified in your children.

Kids are killing themselves over the things being said and done to them by their peers.  If it is going to stop, parents have to start taking a look at what kind of foundations they are laying at home.

The offhanded, gay-disparaging comment you make becomes a weapon in your child's hands.


curmudgeon said...

Andrew I watched this video a couple of days ago. I will openly admit it brought tears to my eyes.

Sammy said...

I also saw this video a couple of day ago and it had me crying. Even if parents don't explicitly advocate violence, telling their children that one group of people is inferior/wrong/sinful/evil/etc is enough. Kids can be so cruel and when they are taught to look down on another group, the results can be disastrous.

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