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Is it just because of their age?

  • Sarah, 13, frustrates me with her attitude but that’s just what teenage girls do.
  • Tommy, 16, smells like teen spirit even after a bath (and no, I’m not referring to the song or the deoderant) but teenage boys just smell.
  • Noah, 10, is a space cadet but all 10 year old boys have their brains turned off.
  • Amy, 4, is having her terrible twos but all children go through this.
  • Evan, 14 months, is clingly but he is still a baby and needs coddling (2nd definition! Not first!).
  • Cathy, 27, is simply wonderful but if I put anything here I’ll be cut off for a year.
  • Doug, 37, has CRS disease but that is because of stress and bad sleep habits.

So when do we quit attributing actions to their ages and just brushing them off? That is not accurate. We are a very consequence based family. Cathy and I put great weight in natural consequences. "if you choose to walk across the gravel in your bare feet rather than slip on shoes, your feet will hurt." When the child is going to learn the lesson for themselves, the lesson sticks more than if it is scolded or yelled into their head. Besides, why create a riff between child and parent when nature is going to handle it? You may bring about a shortterm solution faster or avoid a mess by forcing a child to do something, but having patience and taking time to clean up this mess will have a much more positive impact long term. I know, easier said than done.

Just this week, Tommy started asking everyone to be sure to rinse their dishes before putting in the sink. He has learned on his own that cleaning the dish is more difficult after the food has dried and hardened. That comes from the natural consequence of having to rewash dishes.

So Noah. I fear his absentmindedness is going to hurt him in school badly this year. Seems he has gone from spacey to deep spacey. Just yesterday he gets out of the van, goes to the tailgate, opens it, gets his $200 karate gear (pads) out of the back, sets them down on the ground to close the gate, closes the tailgate, and walks into the house. Hours later, fortunately no rain, Cathy returns from an errand and is agast to see the brand new pads in the yard where weather, animal, child or crook could have put a damper on Noah’s karate lessons. We ask Noah to look in the yard and he just stares in confusion failing to see the pads. 10? I’m thinking daily games that improve memory, concentration and attention to details are in order! Of course, as much as I hate to become one of those adults, I cannot help but think that video games are contributing to the absentmindedness.

5 thoughts on “Is it just because of their age?

  1. If we’re going to lie about my age, we could at least try to make it believable.

  2. Children today seem to have no grasp of where they are in space, or what shares their space. I struggle with how to create this consciousness. When I am around the pre-teens/teens of our friends, I am dumbfounded at the complete blissful abscentness of any concept of what is going on around them. I understand a degree of narcissism is expected, but at some poing maturity should gain a little headway and they should start to be more aware. Then again, maybe not.

  3. Man, I feel you. I don’t have the same issues with my kids, but we do have some, and you can wonder about age until your head falls off. Maybe its just who they are. Noah may be that absentminded genius. Lord knows, I still get freaked out when my Dad sends me out to the shop to find a tool, because when I was a kid I’d be out there for 15 minutes looking for something, and as soon as he shows up, all irritated at waiting, he grabs it from right in front of my face.
    See, I turned out fine!

    …betcha feel better now, don’t you?

  4. lol@at

    In my hectic life I have yet to find the self-discipline to make it happen, but I think the best thing for the children and being aware of the space around them is to teach them to juggle. I have Noah interested in the diabolo and am trying to teach him passing with clubs. It is funny that you mention their space issues the way you do because one of my almost daily mantras to the children is “be aware of the world around you!”

  5. Heh … lemme tell you about MY kids

    If they survive the next week, it will be a miracle. 16 year old Princess Anne … what can I say? And Justin .. well, I am thinking that duct tape and IV lithium is his only hope.

    Oh, and Cathy? You don’t look a day over 22 … really.

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