Why my kids are the center of my world

A blog post that has been making the Internet rounds the last few weeks begins with this title: “Why my kids are NOT the center of my world.” The article is from a mom who says she loves her two sons enough to not overindulge them with attention or false praise.

“My kids are NOT the center of my world, and that’s quite simply because they aren’t the center of any world, anywhere,” she writes on her blog, here.

Her post sparked comments and reposts around the Internet from Moms who said things like “Amen, Sister!” or “Right On! Someone finally said it!” I so wanted to join in on this chorus of moms and be all awesome and totally on board with proclaiming my kids are not the center of my world. I wanted to be a cool mom, too.

But, I couldn’t do it. In fact, this post irked me. I couldn’t stop thinking about why it bothered me so much because I actually agree with most of the author’s points.

I agree that many children today are completely overindulged by their parents and think their demands should be met first and completely. I 100 percent agree that children are way too coddled. They are handed answers, excuses and compliments like candy.

She writes, “Parents who make their children the center of their universe are not doing anyone any favors. Obviously, as parents, we love our children more than anything. But dropping everything to cater to their every need is only going to lead to a very rude awakening once they enter the real world.”

I couldn’t agree more.

But still, there it was … the irking. So I thought about this blog post and my somewhat mixed reaction to it. And then, I think I finally settled on why it bugged me. It was the title: “Why my kids are NOT the center of my world.”

I am sure this author was really going for the shock and awe factor here with this title, and it worked. Her post received lots of hits and hundreds of comments. But I have a serious problem with her statement. I do not think I am an overindulgent or enabling parent, but I am proud to say my children are the center of my world.

I’d like to ask this author: If your children aren’t the center of your world, then what is?

No, our daily lives and schedules should not revolve around our children’s every whim. But even when I am allowing my child to fail, she is the center of my world. It would be easier to rescue her from pain and failure, but I don’t because her growth and future is solidly affixed as my life’s goal.

Every child deserves a parent who sets limits. Every child deserves to get frustrated so he finds his own solutions. Every child deserves a chance at self-sufficiency and selflessness.

But every child also deserves to wake up in world where they know mom and dad would drop everything and do anything for them. They deserve to be the center of their mother’s world.

6 comments

  1. Momof7

    My husband and my children are the center of my world. I love being a mom. I know some women are not given that opportunity. Regardless of whether you are a mother or not, the well being of our families should be our highest priority. Because almost everything I do affects my husband and children, I do make decisions based on what they need/desire. I can’t be as selfish as I want to be if I want what is best for them. Obviously we have to take care of ourselves so we can take care of them.

  2. Danny Chipman

    Like you, the post irked me, too. I agreed with the gist of it, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on the thing bothering me for a while. Then it struck me that for many years now I’ve had my priorities out of order. I’ve been taught and believe that the hierarchy of devotion ought to be God, husband, THEN children. Unfortunately, I’ve mixed these up in one way or another for a long time. Usually my kids came out on top. Worshipping God and loving my husband usually duked it out for last place. It’s going to be a hard habit to change, a hard balance to strike, but I’m working on it.

  3. Robert Lucas

    Everyone is the center of his or her own world.That is not really the issue. What relationship should have priority is what matters. The marriage is the foundation of the family. If the marriage is strong all will benefit. If the marriage fails all will suffer. It’s that simple.

  4. J Betts

    “I dont negotiate w/ terrorist”, thats my motto w’/ my kids. My family is center of my life. My kids don’t run/dictate my life. Too many parents spend so much time catering to every little want/wish/desire their kid feels. There’s not enough “I am the adult,you will do what I tell you”. We all want our kids to feel loved,heard,accepted,understood… But many parents,I feel,carry it too far. A highschool football team in Texas beat another team 91-0. The parents of the losing team wanted to file bullying charges against the winning coach; who sat his best players after the first quarter. We aren’t parenting our kids through rough times. We’re giving in to what they want because its easier. We’re sending them into the world spoiled & unequiped to handle adversity. Were teaching them that demeaning the tech & the pharmacy gets us what we want. thats openly disrespecting people w/ different political beliefs is acceptable. telling uour kid to play nice & school means nothing if you walk around saying “damn obama” everytime you disagree w/ the dems/reps. we tell our kids to listen to the teacher, but we cheer the tea party when they hold up signs calling the president a muslim terrorist (actually happened). I spend time talking to my kids (2&3) about feelings;both their’s & others. I ask how situations make them feel,how to express that,what actions led to those feelings, & how to deal with it. Whether its obnoxious kids not following rules @ swim class, or kids throwing fit @ ballet, or them refusing to eat lunch, or not wanting to take naps. People (yes kids are people too) do better when they process the “why”. “It’s ok to feel angry/upset, but not to throw things. It hurts daddy’s feeling when you don’t follow the rules. Daddy is so proud that you did the right thing even though EVERYBODY else was acting up.” I demonstrate how saying “excuse me” when adults are talking will get you what you want. How asking politely is much more effective than throwing fits. This teaches them to understand their feelings & respect the feelings of others. My kids Christmas wish was to give toys to kids who don’t have a mommy & daddy. That’s what I teach, but more importantly that’s what I demonstrate. I might not agree w/ other people (reps/dems) but its ok to disagree respectfully. So maybe we should look @ how we act, that goes alot farther than what we say

  5. MIchelle H

    I actually like the title of her post. I agree with every aspect of her article, including the title. As a single parent of 2 children, who am I supposed to put in the center of my universe? I can’t choose between one or the other, because they are such different beings. However, I have chosen that I am the center of my universe. They revolve around me. I have given up so much for them, including my marriage so that they were not subjected to the hostility, arguing, and poisonous atmosphere that my ex and I had created. However, If I don’t take care of myself, put myself first, how can I be there to take care of them? If I put their every whim, hardship, problem, argument and need before myself, how can I raise them properly? My health, happiness, job, etc…MUST come first, or there is nothing for them. If I don’t take care of myself, who is going to care for them? If I am not happy, how can I make them happy? What kind of a lifestyle is that for a child?

  6. citygrrl

    I just finished reading “Bringing Up Bebe,” by Pamela Druckerman, who is raising her three young children in Paris. She compares French attitudes toward parenting with those of Americans, and I kept thinking of the many topics raised in this blog as I read the book. And I have one question: is the South Dakota mom (the blogger) originally from France? Because her views are very similar to what Druckerman finds in France. And after reading the book, I cannot understand why American parents, especially mothers, wouldn’t follow the French habits of parently and look for ways to 1) raise independent adults; 2) insist on good manners from their children; 3) care about their own appearance; and 4) not go through parenthood constantly hovering over their children, and as Druckerman says, “valorizing guilt.” I highly recommend this book.

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