I wonder who teaches children it's okay to be cruel. I wonder who teaches children that being mean is acceptable. And I wonder who takes the ultimate responsibility for all the negative crap that children are exposed to.
David & I are working very hard to ensure that Erin is a nice person. We definitely don't believe in original sin but know that children can say/do hurtful things. It's not always easy to do the right thing, & G-d knows that I certainly don't get there 100% of the time. I've always said that I'm not perfect nor do I want to be. However, when it comes to my daughter I try pretty darn hard.
Last night we had a situation with Erin that pretty much shocked me. David always puts Erin to bed. We have a routine that works quite well for us. Erin gives me night-night hugs, gets her pill & a drink, gives me another hug, asks me when I'm going to sleep, hugs me one more time & goes into her room for some time with Daddy. Last night David came storming out & told me that I needed to take care of Erin because he was too ticked. Since this has happened maybe 3 times in 4 years I asked him what happened.
WELL!!!! It seems that David was talking with Erin & told her that when she turns 6, she will have to start walking because we won't be carrying her anymore. He told her that this was happening because she's a big girl & getting bigger. Apparently, Erin took this very negatively & told David that he was "too darn fat." (Yes. You can pick your jaw up off the floor. She truly did.)
When I went into her room to chat, she was already hysterical because she knew that she had done bad. The usual response is that Erin will tell you she doesn't know why she said what she said. I explained to her that we cannot say things that are hurtful or rude because we don't want to give someone a sad heart & make them cry. Lately, I've had to remind her that there is NOTHING she can do that will make us stop loving her, send her back to China or leave her alone. I reminded her that we want to be her mommy & daddy & even flew all the way to China so we could have that job. Since Erin is in Hebrew School Sunday mornings, I know that my friend Karen is teaching the class all about mitzvot (G-d's commandments). I asked Erin if Miss Karen had taught about mitzvot yet (knowing full well that it's an integral part of the curriculum) & she said yes. I asked her if what she said to her daddy was doing a mitzvah or not. Needless to say, she knew the answer.
I told her that she was right. Daddy & I are fat. However, that is not a nice thing to say to anyone. When we finished our conversation, Erin went out to David & told him that she was sorry she made his heart sad.
She seems to understand what I was saying & was quite upset over having hurt her daddy's feelings. Hopefully, we won't have this chat again soon.