Thursday, April 24, 2008

No Picture Post!!

Yes, I am at work (shame on me) and I do not have my camera to post any pics but I thought I would post a thought.

First off, any of you adoptive parents enjoy eavesdropping on conversations? I sure do. What I mean is that people do not associate Mia with me (white mom, Asian kid) so I get to hear what they say about Mia and they don't know I am mom so they speak freely. Most of the time I hear (not to brag but...) "Oh she is so cute", "she is so tiny", "what a doll" and so on. Sometimes I get to hear a little more and I LOVE IT!!! Let me preface this with I am a mom who likes to foster Independence and I am totally good with kids learning natural consequences of their actions. For example, when my boys were young I would tell them they should not climb on top of the play set. They whined and whined and I finally allowed them to and I warned them that if they fall off then they will get hurt. Sure enough, eventually they would fall off and get hurt but they would learn that if they are going to do something stupid, then they will suffer the natural consequence of their actions. I treat Mia the same way. Obviously I am not going to let her do something that is going to hurt her badly, but the small stuff is where I like them to learn their lessons. I am also not one of those moms that follow their kids around the playground to "make sure they are OK." I push Mia on the swings and I help her when needed but often I sit close by where she can see me at all times and come to me if needed (or I can go to her). OK so here is the fun eavesdropping part. The other day I was at our outdoor malls play area. My friend Laila and I were sitting there watching the kids play. A couple tables over there was an older couple with their grandchildren. Mia was being a little fussy as it was getting close to nap time but she was having fun. She would climb up the stairs and go down the slide totally on her own and we would all cheer her on. She would be running around and trip and then fuss a bit but then would just move on. Anyway, this couple was obviously watching Mia (how could you not-- she is just too cute not to :) and watching how independent she was being. They were also watching her fuss here and there with no mommy running to her side. All of a sudden the older woman says to her husband "Why is there no one attending to that little baby? Where is her mother? She is crying and no one is attending to her?" As she said this she rose up from her chair and was angrily looking around for Mia's mother. I stopped smiling and giggling to myself and then calmly and very nicely leaned over to the lady and said "I am not running over to her because we are trying to foster Independence and she is obviously just fussing and is fine so we do not want to encourage that behavior." The lady looked at me with absolute shock and embarrassment on her face. She stumbled over her words and said "Oh, umm, are you her mother?" I proudly smiled and said "yes." She said something to the extent of "Oh I didn't know you were her mother-- she is very cute and what a sweet girl." I politely said thank you and that was the end of it. I just thought it was so funny. I get that not every parent is as relaxed as me but I do laugh at some of the stuff I hear.

If you are an anxious or nervous parent I totally get that for your own peace of mind you need to be there with your kid at all times-- I get that and am fine with whatever. I am not that way. I totally have no issue with what I perceive as overprotective moms because I get that there are reasons they are that way-- good for them. But I do notice that overprotective moms have issues with moms like me. It is not as if my kids are swan diving off the play set and landing on their heads, but I am just not that "I cant leave the side of my kid" type mom. I laugh at how the other side (if you will) has total issues with moms like me. They often comment on how independent Mia is but you can tell it drives them nuts that Mia is playing independently and that I am not right there with her. I have had some comments that are not that nice but I just don't understand why they have such issues and why they feel like they need to voice their opinions. I often thank them for their input and inform them that I choose to parent my own way but I am never rude. It doesn't happen that often but enough that I thought I would post on it.

Anyway, I just thought this was a funny situation and possibly blogworthy :)

Any of you get to eavesdrop?


  1. Christy,
    I'm right there with you. Kids need to be kids. We don't need to hover. I give the warning....someone's going to get hurt and then I step back and let them learn. I think Rowan has learned so much on her own from watching and mimicking and exploring...something I don't think she did in China. When the boys fall they shake it off and move on. My sister is the overreacter type and her kids are so whiney and such whimps. They milk everything and you never know when they are really hurt.

  2. I love the "natural consequences" form of parenting. I think it helps them develop self-discipline. I'm still working on Caroline and trying to keep her from being "the baby" of the family. She's definitely more stubborn that Peter and has more perseverance when it comes to whining and crying. She's sooo different than Peter. I know you see the differences in Ethan and Owen too.

    Anyway, I had a situation with Peter getting my hair cut one day. The lady cutting my hair was Chinese (Peter is Korean) and someone said to my hairdresser, "Oh I didn't know you brought your son in!" I had to point out that he was MY son. :) Another time, I was at the playground and a Japanese man with 1/2 Japanese kids was there talking with a Chinese lady with 1/2 Chinese kids. He looked at me and Peter and said, "Oh! Another mix!" I said, "Nope! The white lady has a full Korean" He laughed and apologized, and we moved on to conversation. Too funny.


  3. LOVE IT!!!
    Bad girly you are posting at work...
    I am like you.. let them be independent...
    It helps them..
    Have a Great Evening..

  4. Great story! We try to encourage independence at our house too.

  5. It is really interesting the comments that we get. People are ALWAYS commenting on how cute Sadie is. I can agree with them cause I didn't have anything to do with it!! :) I am pretty hands off with the kids. They play in the back yard quite a bit without me right there with them. BUT...if I go in a public place...I definitely stay close by cause I just plain do not trust other people. There are SO many perverts out there. Thats the way I am protective over mine. Not that they will get hurt as in an accident...I'm totally into the consequence side that way! I LOVE your carefree attitude!!! Wish I lived close to ya so it could rub off on me!! :) Have a wonderful weekend!

  6. I loved this story. I am not a parent yet and I must say one of my biggest fears is to be that hoovering parent, who overreacts, and has whimpy kids! I hate to admit, but the odds aren't good for me, my dog is afraid of EVERYTHING! I wish we still lived in RC, I would look you up for some parenting advice!
    I love your blog! Thanks so much for sharing!

  7. I'm right there with you! I definitley encourage independence in my house too. My philosophy is that I'm raising my kids to be adults. I don't really sugarcoat very often. I don't want them to get out into the real world and be shocked (like I was...but thats a whole other issue). So, good for you!!!

  8. Oh, don't get me started on the whiny, spoiled kids whose parents cater to their every whim.... *scream* - I think if you have a few kids, you just HAVE to let up on some of this nonsense stuff, otherwise you'd go crazy!
    I shocked my babysitter when my youngest boy was a baby. We were outside, and he was putting rocks in his mouth. I took it away, and gave him one big enough so he would not choke on it *LOL* - hey, a little dust and dirt can't hurt :-))

  9. I'm not a parent either, but I would hope that I would be like you. That was a VERY classic story.

    Go Indie Mia! :)

  10. Christy,

    I think you handled the situation very well!! I can't wait for these situations! I love to hear about these conversations - so keep sharing!

  11. That is so funny. I am not a hovering mom either. We don't run over and make everything over dramatic.

    I have overheard a few conversations, but mainly about baseball stuff. Nothing too exciting. I did come into my house when it was being built, and catch a family bad-talking different things. I just hid and listened to them for a while. When I walked out, they were flustered. It was fun!

  12. We do the "independent" at our house, too! Great story! Thanks for sharing!