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Too Happy! Too Perfect! Too Fragile! – Part 3/4

Then Wendy Mogel, a clinical psychologist in Los Angeles and the author of The Blessing of a Skinned Knee, echoes Kindlon’s words when she says, “Well-intentioned parents have been metabolizing their anxiety for them (their children) their entire childhoods, so they (the children) don’t know how to deal with it when they grow up.”


“Raising Cain is a 2-hour PBS documentary that explores the emotional development of boys in America today. Our guide in the program is child psychologist Michael Thompson, Ph.D. His book on the emotional lives of boys, “Raising Cain,” with co-author Dan Kindlon, was a New York Times bestseller. Raising Cain chronicles the lives of boys from birth through high school through powerful documentary stories about real boys. The interviews reveal the challenges and confusion that boys encounter while growing up in America.”

A family psychologist in Los Angeles, Jeff Blume, then told Lori Gottlieb, “A kid needs to feel normal anxiety to be resilient. If we want our kids to group up and be more independent, then we should prepare our kids to leave us every day.”

Eventually, Gottlieb mentions Amy Chua’s memoir, the Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, and says, many of today’s parents who are obsessed with their kids’ happiness share Chua’s desire for their children to have high achievement but without the sacrifice and struggle that this kind of achievement often requires.

Continued on June 29, 2011 in Too Happy! Too Perfect! Too Fragile! – Part 4 or return to Part 2

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves

lloydlofthouse_crazyisnormal_web2_5

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

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Too Happy! Too Perfect! Too Fragile! – Part 2/4

Ann Hulbert, the author of Raising America: Experts, Parents, and a Century of Advice About Children says, there’s always been a tension among the various recommended parenting styles—the bonders versus the disciplinarians, the child-centered versus the parent-centered…

Following Gretchen Rubin, Lori Gottlieb quotes Barry Schwartz, a professor of social theory at Swarthmore College, who says, “happiness as a goal is a recipe for disaster.”


“Psychologist Barry Schwartz takes aim at a central tenet of western societies: freedom of choice. In Schwartz’s estimation, choice has made us not freer but more paralyzed, not happier but more dissatisfied.”

Then Paul Bohn, a psychiatrist at UCLA believes, “Many parents will do anything to avoid having their kids experience even mild discomfort, anxiety, or disappointment…with the result that when, as adults, they experience the normal frustrations of life, they think something must be terribly wrong.

Dan Kindlon, the author of Too Much of a Good Thing: Raising Children of Character in an Indulgent Age, says, If kids can’t experience painful feelings, they won’t develop “psychological immunity”. He also said, “We (parents) don’t set limits, because we want our kids to like us at every moment, even though it is better for them if sometimes they can’t stand us.”

Continued on June 28, 2011 in Too Happy! Too Perfect! Too Fragile! – Part 3 or return to Part 1

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves

lloydlofthouse_crazyisnormal_web2_5

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 

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What, Me Worry about Debt – I’ve got self-esteem protecting me – Part 2/3

Parents that obsess about his or her child’s self-esteem and do all they could to nurture their child’s vanity led to the average parent in America being a permissive parent.

“Permissive parenting often results in children who rank low in happiness and self-regulation. These children are more likely to experience problems with authority and tend to perform poorly in school.” Source: The Four Styles of Parenting

In fact, if the inability to self-regulate is not adequately developed, the result is increased stress vulnerability and susceptibility to psychopathology, of which depression is one possible outcome leading to unhappiness along with a higher risk of drug and/or alcohol abuse along with higher rates of suicide.

For example—Caucasian teens with the highest rates of self-esteem have almost twice the suicide rate and much higher rates of alcohol and drug use than that of Asian-Americans who, according to studies, have the lowest self-esteem in the US.

Instead of boosting self-esteem, parents should have focused on building confidence through guiding their children to overcome failure by learning to work hard to reach success.

When we learn the definition of self-esteem, we discover that it is respect for or a favorable opinion of oneself and/or an unduly high opinion of oneself that leads to vanity, which means excessive pride in one’s appearance or accomplishments regardless of the facts.

In addition, synonyms for self-esteem are: conceit, self-love, narcacism, egotism, etc.

Self-confidence, on the other hand, is a belief in one’s own abilities and true self-confidence isn’t an overnight acquisition. It takes dedication and time to realize you are a good and capable human being.  It is confidence in one’s own powers, judgment, etc.  It means risking failure to learn how to succeed.

Eventually, an individual with confidence gains freedom from doubt of his or her abilities.

Continued on June 21, 2011 in What, Me Worry about Debt! – Part 3 or return to Part 1

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

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Posted by on June 20, 2011 in family values, Parenting

 

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An example of Intolerance and Ignorance

After reading an insulting review titled Fascist Crap on Amazon, which was an ignorant, intollerant rant and an example of individuals that do not have the ability to accept anyone that is different from him or her, I decided to write this post.

The reaction was from an anonymous reviewer that calls herself Danielle Cara, which defines most if not all of Amy Chua’s critics. Amy Chua is the author of Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, which was on the New York Times Bestseller List for about 20 weeks after its release January 11, 2011.

Why Do Parenting Styles Differ? by Kandra Cherry, who holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Idaho State University, with additional coursework in chemical addictions and case management. She also holds a Master of Science in Education from Boise State University. Her primary research interest is in educational psychology.

Kandra Cherry writes, “After learning about the impact of parenting styles on child development, you may wonder why all parents simply don’t utilize an authoritative parenting style. After all, this parenting style is the most likely to produce happy, confident and capable children. What are some reasons why parenting styles might vary? Some potential causes of these differences include culture, personality, family size, parental background, socioeconomic status, educational level and religion.

“Of course, the parenting styles of individual parents also combine to create a unique blend in each and every family. For example, the mother may display an authoritative style while the father favors a more permissive approach. In order to create a cohesive approach to parenting, it is essential that parents learn to cooperate as they combine various elements of their unique parenting styles.”

Then there is what Amy Chua had to say about how she was raised and how that influenced her as a parent.

Amy Chua writes, “I was raised by very strict, Chinese immigrant parents, who came to the U.S. as graduate students with practically no money. My mother and father were so poor they couldn’t afford heat their first two winters in Boston, and wore blankets around to keep warm. As parents, they demanded total respect and were very tough with my three younger sisters and me. We got in trouble for A minuses, had to drill math and piano every day, no sleepovers, no boyfriends. But the strategy worked with me. To this day, I’m very close to my parents, and I feel I owe them everything. In fact, I believe that my parents having high expectations for me – coupled with love – is the greatest gift anyone has ever given me. That’s why I tried to raise my own two daughters the same way my parents raised me.”

As for the Montessori educational method, which the critic that wrote Fascist Crap is an advocate for, in 2005, the Journal of Research in Childhood Education in a Comparison of Academic Achievement Between Montessori and Traditional Education Programs said, “The results of the study failed to support the hypothesis (which means opinion) that enrollment in a Montessori school was associated with higher academic achievement.”

Then in 2006, CBS News reported, Do Montessori Schools Have An Edge? In the CBS report, Debra Ackerman, Ph.D., of the privately funded National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER), tells WebMD that no single teaching method or curriculum, including Montessori, has been proven to be the best approach for teaching young children.

There are many widely differing approaches to early education, Ackerman says, and the large-scale studies needed to better understand which methods work best are just starting to be done.

Discover how to Avoid the Mainstream Parent Trap

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves

lloydlofthouse_crazyisnormal_web2_5

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 
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Posted by on June 5, 2011 in Education, family values, Parenting

 

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A Brief History of Parenting – Part 3/3

As you may have learned in Part One and Part Two, Old-World parenting was an improvement over the way children grew up before the 18th century and the Chinese may have learned this parenting method from the invading Western nations after The Opium Wars.

However, parenting methods developed further and by the 1960s, according to research, the best method of parenting is not Authoritarian but Authoritative, which is characterized by moderate demands with moderate responsiveness.

The authoritative parent is firm but not rigid, willing to make an exception when the situation warrants. The authoritative parent is responsive to the child’s needs but not indulgent. Baumrind makes it clear that she favors the authoritative style.

The worst parenting style represents what studies show are the “average” child and parent in the United States today.  These parents are Permissive, Uninvolved or a combination of both.

Since the average parent in the US today talks to his or her child less than five minutes a day and the average child spends more than 10 hours a day dividing his or her time up between watching TV, playing video games, social networking on sites such as Facebook, or sending hundreds of text messages monthly, it is obvious what the results are. Source: Media Literacy Clearinghouse

Since the Permissive and/or Uninvolved parent has few requirements for mature behavior, children may lack skills in social settings. While they may be good at interpersonal communication, they lack other important skills such as sharing. The child may also fear becoming dependent on other people, are often emotionally withdrawn, tend to exhibit more delinquency during adolescence, feels fear and anxiety or stress due to lack of family support and had an increased risk of substance abuse.

Return to A Brief History of Parenting – Part Two or start with Part 1

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves

lloydlofthouse_crazyisnormal_web2_5

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 

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A Brief History of Parenting – Part 2/3

Amy Chua‘s so-called Chinese parenting style, identified as mostly Authoritarian, is the “CLASSIC” no nonsense do as I say, not as I do parenting style that first came about during Victorian England in the 18th century. The other parenting methods did not materialize until the 20th century, so how Amy Chua raised her two daughters had been in practice for more than two hundred years.

Amy Chua says, “I believed that raising my two daughters the same way my Chinese immigrant parents raised me was the right way and that I had nothing to learn from the laxer parenting I saw all around me.” Source: USA Today

Positive Parenting Ally.com (PPA) says, “I think we can see the early seeds of the authoritarian parenting style in the 18th century. At that point in time, parents in the Western world (particularly the British) began taking the first steps toward a mind shift and become more involved in their children’s upbringing.

PPA also says, “The mind of an authoritarian parent likes order, neatness, routine and predictability.… Children of authoritarian parents tend to do well in school and are said to generally not engage in drinking or drug use. They know the consensus rules and follow them.”

Instead of calling this method of parenting authoritarian or Chinese, I’ve used the term Old-World, which fits and is an acceptable choice of parenting

Authoritarian parenting was a vast improvement over how children had been raised (or not raised) before the 18th century. Prior to the authoritarian parent, children were mostly treated as adults and faced severe punishments such as mutilation, slavery, servitude, torture, and death. In fact, the US has a long history of treating children this way. Source: Child Labor in U.S. History

It was in the 18th century that Western parents stopped seeing their children as a potential representation of dark and evil forces that had to be kept in check physically (harsh beatings etc.) and instead attempted controlling their minds, their feelings, and their needs.

Continued on May 24, 2011 in A Brief History of Parenting – Part Three or return to Part 1

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves

lloydlofthouse_crazyisnormal_web2_5

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 

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A Brief History of Parenting – Part 1/3

The Chinese did not invent the parenting style Amy Chua described in her memoir, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother. In fact, the Chinese may have learned this method of parenting from the British, French, Germans, Russians, Portuguese and Americans since this method of parenting first developed in the West in the 18th century.

The 19th century invasion of China by Western powers during The Opium Wars explains what happened, and it was a British citizen from Northern Ireland that may have introduced this style of parenting to the Chinese.

This man was Sir Robert Hart, known as the godfather of China’s modernization. It was Hart, the main character in The Concubine Saga that guided the Qing Dynasty to restructure China’s educational system to compete with the superior, Western style of education of that time.

Recently, I discovered that the one-star critics’ reviews of Amy Chua memoir of raising children the Chinese way had gone too far when another anonymous reviewer calling itself Tiger Indeed left this one-star review, “There once was a nation that fully endorsed these principals (referring to Amy Chua’s parenting methods). It was called the Soviet Union. Enough said.”

This wasn’t a book review. It was an opinionated condemnation of the way Amy Chua raised her children.

Digging further, I discovered that Tiger Indeed had reviewed one book. I’m sure you guessed the title: Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother.

Then I discovered Diana Baumrind, a developmental psychologist, who in the 1960s was the first to identify the different methods of parenting.

Baumrind described Amy Chua’s parenting method but the way Chua raised her daughters wasn’t the same as there is some crossover between Authoritarian and Authoritative.

Continued on May 23, 2011 in A Brief History of Parenting – Part Two

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves

lloydlofthouse_crazyisnormal_web2_5

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 

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