(Note, Carrie Rubin's previous book The Seneca Scourge was book of the month in December 2012. )
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I completely agree with this! These are the situations when you cannot just observe and ignore what is happening. But in other situations, when child is in no real danger (and there are no signs of any kind of abuse), I don't think that it's fair to do backseat parenting.TeaAndSpooks wrote:I think it depends on the parents. If there is any kind of verbal, sexual or physical abuse of the child, then I do think that things need to be said, people need to be called, etc. The child needs to be in a good, healthy, loving environment. Some people are just not cut out to be parents.
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I agree with @CataclysmicKnight that a respectful suggestion is fine. It becomes a problem when the wishes of the parents are disrespected like a grandparent feeding the grandchild candy when the parent asked them not to. Consistency in how messages are delivered to the child make a huge difference. My parents never consulted each other about decisions or rules and as a result I was always confused. Caught between an overprotective mother and a overly generous father, I spent a lot of time trying to figure things out on my own.CataclysmicKnight wrote:This all depends on how far the backseat parenting goes. If it's suggestions out of earshot of the kids, that's perfectly fair if done respectfully. But NOTHING is worse than arguing and making the parents look inept in front of the child/children. The worst thing anyone can do is make the kids feel like there's a major discrepancy on what they can or can't do, or feeling like "well mommy doesn't want me to eat this candy but daddy says as long as mommy doesn't know, it's okay". Or, worse yet, "mommy and daddy don't want me watching this movie but my uncle/grandma/etc took me anyway!" I've been on both sides of this one, and in hindsight I see the damage I did when doing the backseat parenting myself. I've massively disagreed with another parent's parenting recently, but any sane adult knows the only way to change the situation is to respectfully approach that person privately and explain calmly. If that doesn't work, there's no point in pushing the issue
I think Sue was the ultimate backseat parent. She needed to stop helping everyone else and look at the mess her own house was in. Her daughter anorexic and her husband one foot out the door. She needed someone to backseat parent her a little.
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TeaAndSpooks wrote:I think it depends on the parents. If there is any kind of verbal, sexual or physical abuse of the child, then I do think that things need to be said, people need to be called, etc. The child needs to be in a good, healthy, loving environment. Some people are just not cut out to be parents.
This I agree with. Otherwise I believe people should mind their own business. Everybody parents differently and as long as the child is happy, healthy, and in a stable house, there is no need for backseat parenting.
– George R. R. Martin
"I solemnly swear I am up to no good."
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As for removing a child that is overweight from a household, I believe the same issues as with an underweight child. Social services should be able to step in if a child is morbidly overweight with no legitimate health related causes. Just as a parent can get in trouble for starving a child, they should also be in trouble for over feeding a child a poor diet. If a social worker finds that someone is allowing a child to live on a diet that is excessive and causing extreme weight gain, then something needs to be done. This being said, there are extenuating circumstance when it comes to food availability, cost, and culture. Some situations can make the whole subject even more controversial.
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I, as a coach, am often in the parent role. When we travel for competitions I have to make sure that they have everything they need, including food. At practice, I'm teaching them life skills other than just for our sport. Everyday is a struggle because, as an adult, I have to reiterate and teach them things that I believe they already should know. Like respect. I'm sure most will say "well they're teenagers". Of course, but I don't remember being disrespectful to my teachers and coaches. Family? Sure. But everyday this season we had to discuss and reinforce the importance of respect.
The night before every competition I had to remind them to "wash their face and brush their teeth." (They wear makeup) that night and in the morning. I had to enforce bedtimes so they would be well rested.
These are only a couple of things. But, yes, backseat parenting is okay. If you have older kids post attention to the things their coach is teaching them. It's more than how to play a sport, I assure you.
-- 08 Apr 2016, 17:25 --
I cannot disagree with this more. The difference between starving a child and over feeding a child is great. For example, starving a child results in death far faster than overeating. It also solidifies society's standards of judging a person's health based on looks. Social workers do not have medical degrees. They cannot legally or accurately assess a child's health.Mune wrote:As for removing a child that is overweight from a household, I believe the same issues as with an underweight child. Social services should be able to step in if a child is morbidly overweight with no legitimate health related causes. Just as a parent can get in trouble for starving a child, they should also be in trouble for over feeding a child a poor diet. If a social worker finds that someone is allowing a child to live on a diet that is excessive and causing extreme weight gain, then something needs to be done. This being said, there are extenuating circumstance when it comes to food availability, cost, and culture. Some situations can make the whole subject even more controversial.
Secondly, to make a child focus on their size so early, when there isn't any health issue, develops body dysmorphia far quicker and ensures life long issues. As a tall and muscular child, my grandmother was quoted with saying "suck it in, I'm not taking you up another size". That has stuck with me my entire life. Things she said are things you should never tell a child. I look at photos from when I was a teenager and my grandmother considered me "fat" I was far from it. And when you mix law enforcement in, that is even worse. That is the government saying what you can and cannot do.
Lastly, most children are "obese" because their parents are obese. The issue lies with the parents, not the child. And by removing the child, you are punishing the family for something the parents might not have the resources to change.
Thank you, though, for bringing up the circumstances of purchasing nutritious food. 60 years ago the poor ate healthier because healthier food was cheaper. It's why gout is called "the rich man's disease".
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Shelle wrote:Yep. This.TeaAndSpooks wrote:I think it depends on the parents. If there is any kind of verbal, sexual or physical abuse of the child, then I do think that things need to be said, people need to be called, etc. The child needs to be in a good, healthy, loving environment. Some people are just not cut out to be parents.
If a child is in immediate danger or you are witnessing physical harm, then yes. By all means, do what you can to protect the child. But for the most part, believing that most parents are genuinely doing the best they have with the resources available, is usually true.
I feel that both of these comments are on target. Everyone has an opinion. Everyone has there own view of how to raise a child based on innumerable factors that made them who they are. It very much depends on circumstances and the people/events involved and in most cases parents are doing the best they can. However, as said above, worse case scenarios have to be dealt with. Sorry parent who does not provide a child's basic human needs adequately, if your upset about people taking your child. The child deserves the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness too.
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I do agree with many forum answers that there are sometimes exceptions to this, when the child is in danger or neglected. I do not think intervening during this time should be considered wrong then because it could mean saving a child's life.