The last time I posted I asked for comments regarding my decisions as a parent, and found myself questioning my role as a parent. Not long after I submitted my post the whole horrible news regarding the victims of the Penn State Scandal came out. I am not going to go into all of my feelings here, I can only say as a parent and an advocate for children's rights and for those who can't advocate for themselves I am sick!!! (enough said)
As I have said numerous times I live in a small town. Every Sunday there is a local newspaper printed with local news, current events and there are some really great articles. In this weeks edition of the Sunday Dispatch, Ed Ackerman wrote an article that I felt answered my question about my parenting style. In this article he stated some very important things that I have to share. He qouted Thomas Hardy in the book Jude the Obscure (I have never read this book but would like to based on this qoute) "The children of a time are the responsibility of all of the adults living at that time". Also, Mr. Ackerman talks about how while his daughter was growing up he would buy her girl scout cookies rather than allow her to go door to door selling them, and how different it was from when he was a child. How his wife was able to walk with her families business banking at the age of 10 or 11 free from harm, and how his parents "never shirked from their responsiblity to protect me, even and especially when it meant protecting me from myself". He also noted that his neighbors, teachers, clergy, etc..."never hesitated to reprimand me and never worried that they might be sued for doing it. But they also never hesitated to look out for me and believed it was their responsibility to do so". And finally I would like to point out that Mr. Ackerman also wrote " In the future, if civilized people look back on this time, our time, and say it was a horrible time to be a child, then they also must say it was a shameful time to be an adult".
Upon reading this article it made me think about what I had posted previously. It made me realize that maybe my last question about "what is wrong with society", is that it is us. Maybe as the adults we need to step in and set limits, ask questions, stay informed, remain open, talk. Maybe just talk. Maybe just open up and say it no matter what the consequence is. Talking to our children, their friends, their parents etc...Which leads me to another important point in my life. As a child one of my best friend's mother's came to my house and asked me to go for a walk. On this walk she talked to me. She gave me advise and she cared enough to take the time to do this. (at the time I was a resentful brat who thought I knew enough about the world to make some really bad decisions...oops sorry about that) My point here, was she did reach out and as an adult I appreciate it. I have had the opportunity recently to tell her this. And I am grateful that she was there.
So thank you Mr. Ackerman. You answered my question. I am not crazy, I care. And I will continue to do so for my son's and their friends and any other children I may come across, regardless of the opinions they may draw and regardless of their reactions. Because for those of you who knew me way back when, if this stubborn, hard-headed girl could grow to an adult who looks back and appreciates and learns from all of the efforts of the adults around her, one could only draw the conclusion that it does make a difference.