I remember my Mom telling me when I was expecting the twins about some advice my Grandma Crimin gave her. She said, "You'll always love your children. But, you want to raise children that other people love." I thought that this was very good advice. Yes, I was will always love my kids no matter what they do. I want to have kids that others love because of the way my children treat them. I've been thinking about this a lot lately as my kids are starting to get out of the safety of my bubble. Am I raising children that are kind, respectful, thoughtful, helpful, and pleasant? What can I do to teach them the importance of these things? I've had a hard time with Ewan and his biting stage and sometimes general orneriness. Sometimes he says "No" a lot. He also says, "Go away" and "no way". I have talked to Paul many times through teary eyes about my concerns with him and "bullying". I know, I know...He's two. I just would never want my kid to be the one to hurt someone else, be it physically or emotionally. We have talks about not hitting, biting, kicking, or screaming. My kids know, "we aren't mean. We give hugs and...kisses" (they fill in the last part).
As I have watched some of the television shows and teen movies about popular kids, I always wonder why the media portrays "popular" kids as mean. Aren't "popular" kids supposed to be well-liked? Isn't that what makes you popular? How are these mean girls so very popular? They're malicious and unkind.Is it because they have money? wear expensive clothing? drive nice cars? How is that popularity? I'm amazed that we as a society would designate such horribly behavior as acceptable because these kids are "popular". I just don't get it. And, where are their parents? Aren't their parents teaching them about being kind? Does it really make them feel good to have people afraid of them? Does it make them feel good when someone is mean to them? Would they want others to feel hurt, heartache and sorrow on their account? I remember some girls from middle school that were "bullies". I don't remember them being in the "popular" group. They were a grade older than me, and frankly I don't remember them at all after my freshman year because they ended up going to the Adult High for failing out of most of their classes. Popular? I think not. They were just mean.
So, how would one raise "popular"-nice kids? ones who are respected and loved rather than resented and feared?