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In all honesty: do you have blinders when it comes t your child?

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hurtbs posted 5/16/2013 19:14 PM

100% honesty here, do you have blinders on when it comes to your child? If someone comes to you with a concern or an accusation, is your first, gut reaction to deny they did it? That others are out to get them? What would be your reaction if a teacher presented you with definitive proof that your child cheated on an assignment? Would you state the instructions were too confusing? That the problem was in the assignment? That there was too much pressure? Expectations too high?

In all seriousness, I'm not a parent. I really ant to know how prevalent this is and if parents are conscious of it, even a they're doing it (or right after)?

jrc1963 posted 5/16/2013 19:38 PM

In all honesty, and maybe because I'm a teacher as well as a parent, my first reaction would probably be to believe the teacher...

I think I'd want to look at all the evidence before deciding on a consequence, but I'd be inclined to believe the teacher.

Also, given my son's ability level, I doubt highly that I would look to make any excuses for him, ie; instructions too confusing or any such nonsense.

But, as a teacher, dealing with the same issues I see exactly what you mean.

Me: Your child punched xyz in the face.

Parent: xyz must have looked at him funny, he probably deserved it.

Me: No, xyz was just minding his own business doing his math.

Parent: See, that's the problem, abc doesn't like math and so xyz shouldn't have been doing math around him.

It's not quite that ridiculous, but almost.

redvixen posted 5/16/2013 19:42 PM

I tend to think my child has done whatever the teacher has said he did, simply because I know my sons can be slackers. There were a few times, however, when I knew the teacher was in the wrong and I stood up for my son. But on the whole, I won't just believe my child over an educator.

DragnHeart posted 5/16/2013 19:44 PM

I don't know how much help I'll be since my kids are 2 & 4 but I take everything said with a grain of salt. I have seen first hand how my dd lies. Royally pisses me off since I didn't raise her to be a lier.

For example. When picking her up one day I saw her having a squabble over a watch with another girl. A teacher was there and upon seeing me said "there's mommy, let's ask her if this is yours".

Of course it wasn't and I said so then took dd aside and explained that we don't take other peoples things and lie about it.

I don't know if my dd is a special case. Being so tiny the school has said many people and students tend to baby her. I had to set the record straight about what she could and couldn't do herself (like putting on her jacket, shoes etc). My dd knows she's different and people will treat her differently and she may be four but she's smart enough to use this to her advantage.

If someone came to me with concerns I'd be cautious but I would want to get to the bottom of whatever the issue is.

hurtbs posted 5/16/2013 19:51 PM

See I'm really struggling with this one mother. I never approach accusatorily, I sit down and calmly go over what happened, my observations, and present the evidence. I'm also willing to let people mull it over.
This parent keeps changing. First it's "My child would never do such a thing." then it's "Well, if my child did this, then it's because *you* didn't explain it properly." If I show them the long examples of instructions and mini assignments and corrections via email, then it's "Well, little Suzie/Johnny was feeling a lot of pressure because of college applications."

I work at a very high end private school, so I've certainly dealt with my share of challenging parents (one threatened to get me fired if I didn't give her child the grade she felt her child deserved), but usually they come around at some point... this parent... excuse after excuse... it's crazy.

Sad in AZ posted 5/16/2013 19:55 PM

I would/did listen to both sides. I know my DS very well; the teacher, not so much...guess who I usually believed Guess who always was right

Nature_Girl posted 5/16/2013 20:05 PM

I listen to both sides. I go with my gut as to who/what I believe.

metamorphisis posted 5/16/2013 20:31 PM

It depends what they were being accused of. For instance let's say a teacher said my daughter started a fight.. I would go to my daughter first. She's extremely sensitive, sticks up for the underdog, and is very kind. I know there would have to be more to the story because it's just not her way. She'd stick her neck out to protect someone, but she'd never bully.
However.. if the teacher came to me and said "Your dd didn't hand in the last three assignments" I'd have zero problem believing that

She puts everything off to the last minute and isn't particularly organized.

Now cheating? I'd thank the teacher for coming to me, assure them I would be looking into it, and then follow up right away. But no, I'm not going to take another adults word for it without talking to my child.

I don't bury my head in the sand with my kids, but I wouldn't automatically believe something until I had a chance to talk to them.

To present the other side of this ...
Twice this year I've been called because "Mrs Meta we're calling to inform you that dd16 was not in this class today".
But when I said "She's not a skipper, and I'm sure there's another explanation..." you could almost hear the eyeroll from the other end of the phone. The first time the supply had messed up the attendance sheet. The second time she had just walked in the door straight from the 4th period class she had just taken, still in her gym uniform, sweaty, and showing me the Mambo she had learned. That would be a pretty elaborate ruse to skip 75 minutes of class

I really haven't had to deal with anything from the school with these two.

On the other hand, my neighbour will raise holy hell for her special snowflake and woe to the person who dares to say he's done something. Special snowflake sells pot out of his garage these days

sullymeishadomi posted 5/16/2013 21:21 PM

Not all of us blame others for our kids wrong doing but Ive seen and heard about many who do.

Its difficult to accept your kid m8sbehaves ( or in my case hits and disrupts class), but in order to help your kid you must. T/ kid still struggles to sit and talk in turn but he is better and doesnt hit. The last six weeks Ive seen greens (good) and blues (very good)

This "its not my kid..." is becoming more prevelent. Its the character society is adopting about not accepting self responsibility.

wannabenormal posted 5/16/2013 22:15 PM

I'm not an "in denial, my kids do nothing wrong" parent at all. I feel like I know them both well enough to 'know' if the story I get jives or not.

They're 11 and 13, so up to this point, I've not had anything super serious to deal with (like cheating or bullying for example).

Talking to them about things that have come up (like talking during class - sometimes they WERE talking out of turn and sometimes they were helping another student and the teacher didn't realize...). I take it all with a grain of salt and try to make a lesson out of whatever.

Pentup posted 5/16/2013 23:25 PM

I have friends and relatives who would say they do not. They would be wrong. I think if you have blinders on about your child, you are often living in the land of denial about your own behavior about said child as well. JMO

It is odd to me (I do not have children) how it is not always all their children. Sometimes it is just one. Usually the horrid one. Which makes me wonder, is the child horrid because the parents are in denial or did the parents move to denial because they have a horrid child and do not know how to deal with it?

ThoughtIKnewYa posted 5/16/2013 23:37 PM

I guess I DO have blinders on when it comes to DD.

To a degree.

I would believe the teacher, though, in the situation you describe.

click4it posted 5/16/2013 23:38 PM

I'd have to say we all have blinders when it comes to our children. Its a gut reaction to protect and defend our children no matter what. So I know I'm generalizing, but yep I've got blinders and occasionally they get ripped off from time to time.

wannabenormal posted 5/17/2013 00:55 AM

Of course we want to defend and/or protect our kids...but at the same time, we know them well enough to call them out on their shit.

That's what makes a good parent.

I've met plenty of 'not mine!' parents. Guess what?! Sometimes our kids aren't great, sometimes they are's our job to teach them to be nice! Don't cheat, steal, lie or embarass the family name!

rachelc posted 5/17/2013 09:18 AM

I look at issues involving kids as an opportunities for them to learn.

I have 4 kids and I gave myself one phone call a year to the school if there was an issue. Otherwise, they needed to handle it themselves. Calls home didn't count. And that involved one kid and was the same phone call every year from the principal - "he plays too rough at recess."
ok, then the nightly discussion on what was appropriate play and no you can't push girls down or chicken fight them and squeeze them on the monkey bars.
What burned me is all the calls to the AD with parents whining that their kid didn't get as much playing time. I always said to myself, "Its 16 year old sports" who cares!!! And believe me, sometimes my kids got slighted and sometimes not. But again, it's youth sports. Its NOT important!
I think parents sometimes miss the message on this that we should just be happy our child is participating.

My daughter was the slowest swimmer on her college swim team. She would routinely come in last. We were so proud she was just out there our hearts were bursting. At her last conference meet she asked to see us and we went down to meet her on deck. She was sobbing as she thanked us for being at every meet, watching her. We told her it was our pleasure and we were honored to be there. Now, THAT was important.

[This message edited by rachelc at 9:20 AM, May 17th (Friday)]

tushnurse posted 5/17/2013 10:40 AM

In all honesty, I have more inclination to believe the teacher, or whoever is claiming something my kid did. They are both strong, confident kids who have opinions about things, and don't hesitate to share them.

slight T/J
It's funny that you ask this, my Daughter was telling me her English teacher was talking about cheating, and asked who in the class has ever cheated, and every kid in the class raised their hand, except my kid. All the other kids were saying she was lying, and she was offended. The teacher later pulled her aside, and told her not to worry about those kids, because she knew she was being truthful.

I have a very strict/strong feeling about copying/cheating. They are very aware of it. They know that I would prefer them to flunk an assignment if they don't get it, rather than faking it. Maybe that is why they have never considered it.

StillGoing posted 5/17/2013 11:33 AM

Unfortunately my opinion on teachers has been shaped by less than stellar examples so my reflex would be to take my sons side over their teachers unless that definitive proof is presented. Thus far their teachers have been so reluctant to communicate in any capacity beyond the shallow meet & greet I am very cynical about anything they personally send home, on the rare occasions it happens. Generally I don't hear about things until there's an official notice or the school counselor is involved.

If they were unarguably doing something wrong? Absolutely they would be punished and told they are in the wrong. Coming down to a he said/she said thing though, I side with my kids. Their teachers are too unreliable and uncommunicative for me to trust them when it comes to total honesty about their classrooms. Hopefully 5th grade will change that with new teachers but I remain skeptical.

LisaP posted 5/17/2013 12:10 PM

I don't have blinders. Let's be honest lie. We call it damage control on this board.

When I am faced with a situation, I listen to what everyone has to say. I know what my kid is capable of. I also know when they are faced with challenges. I can read them well enough to know when they are flat out lying or maybe just twisting the words to work for them. That's not to say I get it right each time.

With that said, I have thrown my kids under the bus and I have stood right by them fighting for them. I am lucky to have pretty good kids, so I haven't been faced with anything as significant as cheating.

I know many parents in my community have "perfect" children and it's difficult to watch. Some parents tend to take their children's flaws personally as a reflection of their parenting...and it can be challenging to deal with!

[This message edited by LisaP at 12:11 PM, May 17th (Friday)]

Undefinabl3 posted 5/17/2013 12:37 PM

As of right now I can tell when my son is lying. Its a mom thing, i know him better then he does right now (hes 4).

I will side with him first, but I will always be open to any and all information about whatever he's talking about.

I need him to know that he has me as an ally, it will probably change in the future as our dynamic changes, but right now i need him to be able to trust me.

dazdandconfuzed posted 5/17/2013 14:19 PM

Generally I don't hear about things until there's an official notice or the school counselor is involved.

This tends to be what I face. My DS has asperger's and every year, at the beginning of the year, I contact all of his teachers. This has been since second grade, he was diagnosed in first grade. He only had an IEP through 5th grade because his grades improved to the point where they said he no longer qualified for an IEP so I have made SURE to contact his teachers after that. I generally feel like I've been blown off. I don't hear anything for months from the teachers, no "there is a problem" type stuff UNTIL I get the "there is a serious problem" phone call. Makes me crazy because it has happened that way almost every year.

But - with that said, my DS has a serious persecution complex. Nothing is ever his fault, the teachers are always out to get him, so on and so forth. They are unfair, everyone does it and he is the only one that gets punished - blah blah. I do think he honestly believes this - and I doubt it's true. I'm sure it is possible to some extent as with his lack of social awareness he can be .... a pain in the butt sometimes and I'm sure some teachers have a short fuse with him after putting up with it for months.

So I guess I would say I do blame alot of it on the school system/teachers for not knowing how to handle a kid with asperger's and them treating him the same as all the other kids and then being suprised when he gets disruptive. Oh yeah - he has a gifted IQ and there's no gifted program, either, so he's generally bored out of his mind. But, regardless of why the issues started, I do believe the teachers when they tell me there are problems and we try to work with the "well, maybe your teacher is out to get you, I don't know, but it doesn't matter because you still have to get your work done and not disrupt class" model with our DS.

Now, my DD is an angel, so any teacher that says anything about her is obviously wrong.

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