Sunday, June 19, 2011

Parental Input Requested

I hope to get some input from parents out there about a conversation I had earlier this week with a co-worker.

I was talking to my colleague about Harry Potter world in Florida.  I was mentioning how I really, really, really want to go.  My colleague then told me that she wouldn't take her kids to one of the exhibits, Olivander's Wand Shop.  For those of you who aren't familiar with Olivander's, in the story, the person selling wands states that the wizard doesn't choose the wand, the wand chooses the wizard.  In the exhibit, what they do is bring in a group of 15-20 people and choose one from the group to be the one to test the wands. She then said and I'm paraphrasing, "How can you tell you're kid we're going to go to this exhibit where they're going to pick someone but they probably won't pick you."

My thought was, so what?  I think I know where she's coming from.  She wants to protect her children from disappointment.  Now, I'm not a parent so it's easy for me to say this so these are my thoughts. I can imagine as a parent you don't want your children to feel disappointment but disappointment is a fact of life.  Not everyone gets picked for the team, not everyone will win the contest, not everyone will get an A on a paper, not everyone will get the job.  I think for me, I'd want my child to learn how to cope with disappointment.  Now I'm not saying to ONLY have them face disappointment but when/if it does happen, use it as a learning tool.  It didn't happen this time and that's okay. Because if they don't learn how to handle not being picked for an exhibit at Harry Potter world, as they grow up how are they going to deal with real disappointments?

I'd be interested to hear from parents to see what they think.


Two Kayaks said...

My kids face disappointment from the moment they wake up in the morning, until they go to sleep at night. It's not all day every day, but it is often. Being twin siblings means that they will fight (and often lose the battle)over toys.
Teaching your kids important life lessons is VERY important and I think you are absolutely right.
Abso-freaking-lutely. I would definitely talk about it with the kids before going, but if they are not chosen, then so what? Also, teaching your kids to appreciate others' experiences is key.

3D said...

It is hard to see your child disappointed and such. But it is my job to teach them how to deal with it and not immediately rush to erase it or mitigate it. It is tempting but it does them a greater disfavour than experiencing the loss. And without loss, how can they or us fully appreciate a win?

Keep smilin!

Brandi said...

I agree with you. We, as a society, are doing our kids a disservice by allowing them to believe everything is good & perfect in the world, and that there will be no disappointments or hardships.

It is very hard to see your child disappointed, but it's a fact of life and it's our job as parents to teach the children how to deal with life.

Michele said...

The others all said it well and I agree 100%. Life is full of ups and downs and kids need to learn how to deal with all of it, not just the good parts.

Laura said...

It's a teachable moment. So she would avoid it rather than have her kid(s) face disappointment? I think it much better to just prepare them ahead of time.

Catherine said...

Writing my response before reading the others.

I think not only would it be a good opportunity for a child to learn what possible disappointment might feel like but also learn to be happy for others when good things happen to them. That's another good lesson that parent's can teach their children.