Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Child as Status Symbol

From the book, The Hurried Child

The Child as Status Symbol – For mothers who cleave to the housewife role, it is often tempting to invole the children – and their precocious academic accomplishments – as the justification for their not working. – and The Child as Therapist.


In a way, there is a sin of pride that I have been vigilant about NOT hurrying my child in terms of academic excellence. But yes, I do believe I am impatient sometimes that he learns how to manage his emotions, mind his manners, etc. But back to the pride thing. I have read about it, have not liked how I only felt important when I was academically achieving as a child, and really want my child to be a happy person who is resourceful, responsible and independent. So yeah, although I have dreams of having a genius, I also cringe at the idea because it might cost him his happiness.

So in a sense, I am congratulating myself for not being guilty so much of hurrying him.

But I do ask myself sometimes, as a reality check, if I have started using him as a status symbol... to justify my lack of other goals and dreams. But then I tell myself, I may have wanted to be a SAHM so I can breastfeed without the struggle of work, but the homeschooling dream only followed after the SAHM notion. It just felt right that I will use my being at home to a more productive end.

And I did start reinventing myself when Yakee was a toddler and not so needy anymore. I started writing for sites and magazines, and became active in different advocacies. They're still not careers like what other women have, but they are things I am passionate about, things I intend to pick up again when I can... again. Right now, I'm just needed more at home... and not really in a frame of mind doing anything else.

I am currently drafting my planned curriculum for Yakee. I don't plan to be rigid at it, I just want to be more consistent to reinforce what he already knows, and further the development of his other skills. And I want to focus on life skills and other necessary things (hand dexterity, hand-to-eye coordination, body coordination, grooming, hygiene and imagination) instead of academics.

But yes, signing is part of the curriculum :D

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