3 things I don’t want to teach my future children

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I’ve been thinking a lot about kids recently. Now before you all start jumping to conclusions I’m not pregnant and trust me if I was this isn’t how I’d announce it.

The whole thought process of this post and ideas came to me because of a few things I have seen on social media recently. It got me thinking about society and societal norms and what we used to consider to be OK to tell our children, and what I don’t want my kids growing up with as a habit.

IT’S BECAUSE HE LIKES YOU

Can we all just take a moment to remember that lovely game we used to call kiss chase at school? How we would play it at the mere age of 8. We were so innocent back them.

It was built into our brains that if we ran fast enough and pinned the boy down for a kiss then we would win…

A bit weird when you think about it now.

When the boy would then wipe his mouth or reject you completely, our tears were wiped away by either our friends, family or teachers who would go on to say, “if he’s being mean to you then it’s probably because he likes you.”

Nobody, man or woman, should ever think that if someone is being mean to them then this is their way of showing affection. It leads to heartbreak and sometimes a lot worse.

THERE IS A GOD

I am not personally religious but this isn’t the reason why I wouldn’t teach my children to believe in God.

In fact I grew up in a very mixed family when it comes to religion. My Grandad on my Dad’s side was Christian and my Gran on my Mum’s side is a Brahma Kumaris – I’m not going to explain it, you can just look it up here. It’s quite interesting.

I love them both but I have to admit growing up I had their religion thrust upon me. Whether it was in the form of stories, going to church or books given to me at Christmas.

Experiencing this myself and being very confused about the whole “is there a God” debate has made me realise that this isn’t something I’d want to force onto my children.

Instead I want to teach them about religion so they can understand the views of others. I was very fortunate to have had an extensive religious studied module at school so I know understand a lot about religion.

I personally feel like this is something that my children should therefore decide themselves. Whether they choose to believe in a God, many Gods, no God’s or simply just not have an overall view, I won’t judge them or treat them any differently.

FOLLOW YOUR “GENDER NORMS”

This is becoming more and more of a topic in the media but we are reacting to it in a negative or touchy way.

Just because a boy wants to play with a doll and a girl wants to make things out of nails and wood doesn’t mean that there is anything wrong with them.

If I had a son that wanted to play with my make-up or try on my shoes I’d be fine with that. If I had a daughter who hated wearing dresses and wanted to play football all the time, I’d be cool with this too.

Being what I guess we used to class as a “tomboy” growing up I was so grateful that my family let me just get on with it. I was allowed to kick a ball and play with DIY things. I was also allowed to go to bed with my teddy bear every night.

Kids should just be left to be kids. It doesn’t matter what type of toy they want to play with. At the end of the day they are still having fun and learning about new environments.

And if it turned out that my child later in life came to me to talk about their gender then I would sit down and discuss it with them. But I won’t constrict my kids to what they can and can’t play with because of what gender they are.

I understand that this is a very touchy post as I have mentioned 3 topics that usually cause arguments and stir the pot a bit.

All I ask is that when sharing this post or commenting on it you are respectful of other people’s opinions and beliefs.

I’d love to know what things you want your children to grow up knowing and what you don’t want to teach them.

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© Emmi Bowles

Photos by Alexander Ward – Website | Instagram

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Journalist & Blogger JustEmmi.com

2 thoughts on “3 things I don’t want to teach my future children

  1. Hi, thanks for a very insightful post. I too grew up with the whole ‘if he likes you he is mean to you’ (or vice versa) thing. I am guilty of saying this to my daughters once or twice when they were young too. After a lot of soul searching and reading and thinking it occurred to me that I was perpetuating the norm not changing it…so I stopped saying and thinking it.
    I raised my girls (now 25 and 21) to be independent and follow their own path, they were not forced or tricked into believing in anything; Santa, god/s, women’s rights, various conspiracy theories, etc. I am a witch, neither of my girls has shown an interest in my religion and I am fine with that too.
    As for ‘gender norms’ they don’t exist in my house, we all just do what we can; I hate cooking, my partner and daughters do that. My partner hates gardening, so I grow our vegetables, he fixes stuff, I make stuff, we both build. One daughter prefers the company of males, the other prefers no company, I’m fine with that too.
    This upbringing has left my kids with a ‘weird’ tag at times, but they are better human beings for it.

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