I know this post is likely to make me unpopular, but it’s okay, I was a super nerd at school and being unpopular is second nature.
As much as I love the concept of a village raising a child there are some places where “village idiots need not apply”.
There are certain values and traits that I would like my child to grow up with and for this to work, there are some subjects I would rather have you avoid when speaking to my preschooler – and those are.
My reproductive decisions
I’d rather you not tell my son, to tell me that he needs a sibling, or that he is so lonely, or that I’m being unfair to him by him not having siblings. Your “small talk” is going to put me between a rock and a hard place; either I am going to have to discuss dead babies, moms that don’t survive birth and the possibility of me being confined to bed, along with financial decisions with a four-year-old or I am going to have to say, a hard no…either way I am not coming off like the hero of this story. So don’t ask my son about his mom’s reproductive decisions (and this comes from sooooooooo much experience)
2. Your racial/cultural PREJUDICE
We are working hard to teach our son to embrace people’s differences so if you could please not make any comments against any other races, cultures or religions, that would be super. He knows that his friends come in different shapes and sizes and at this point he is just impressed that God doesn’t run out of ideas of how to make people look, and that is good enough for me. Don’t you dare add stereotypes or derogatory names to any of these. PS. He doesn’t flinch when he sees same sex couples so if you wouldn’t mind, could you not make it weird for him. Right now he sees being a couple as an adult thing,that’s enough.
3. Religious sentiments
And while we are on the topic of God, my husband and I have taught our son that there is one God with many ways to serve him, that is why some of his friends go to Sunday School and others to Madrasa, why some of his friends wear dreadlocks and others headscarves. I would appreciate it if you don’t add your penny to this plate. By all means share about religion and tell him stories, but don’t ever try to get him to look down on other religions, NOT COOL! NOT COOL!
4. His decision to be vegetarian
Yes it is rather unconventional for a preschooler to decide to be vegetarian, BUT we respect his decision. If you can force your child to eat meat after they fell asleep sobbing because they put two and two together and figured out on their own that animals had to die to be meat, then, that is honestly, no judgement, your decision. But for us , respecting his wishes is our decision so can you not make fun of him/tease him/draw unnecessary attention to it or tell us to simply lie to him, because I simply don’t have time for that.
5. Gender stereotypes
My son doesn’t care that the toy he is playing with is pink or “made for a girl”, he cares that it is fun. He likes My Little Pony and Unicorns and also calls himself Catboy and spends a ridiculous amount of time pretending to be a ninja. We don’t care if he wants to play with a doll or a dragon, it is all just in good fun and I would appreciate it if you wouldn’t make it weird with your preconceived notions.
I know that was a little ranty, but I find so many adults being so inappropriate and I simply had to say something. Ask him about school, about his love of PJ Mask, about anything really, just keep in mind that those five points are a no go…
What topics are off limits when it comes to your kids?