"Waste Not, Want Not" often is about manipulating children's behavior. Typical reason why children are told "Waste Not, Want Not" is more to do with "being grateful", "knowing your place", etc., than actually solving a real issue. Hence children are being told "Waste Not, Want Not" for manipulative reasons to shape their behavior in a dishonest way.

I personally agree with not wasting stuff. We live in a society where we are told constantly that it is acceptable to chuck stuff away, upgrade to newer and better things...I personally feel this a way of making money for the manufacturers and retailers, nothing more. The environmental effect terrifies me for our children. I mean, we go shopping and carry our purchases home in bags made from oil! Then we throw the bags away! We are desperately short on oil, a commodity on which our society relies. Yet we have landfill sites full of oil! So personally, I agree with trying to conserve the world's resources.

In our home, it is known that I will restrict spending in line with my environmental beliefs. But, it is wrong to manipulate or guilt trip someone else into not wasting stuff. Give the reasons up front!

I also think it might be fair for a family on a limited budget to say to a child, "We cannot really afford to give you piano lessons; but if you are sure that this is something you want to do, then we will make other sacrifices." (I doubt most families would give kids such a choice.) In younger days, I would also add "But you must agree to go to all the lessons, even if it turns out you hate it."

If the child then makes the choice to do piano lessons under these conditions, the family expects her to finish them. Not to beat her or refuse her food if she doesn't, nor even to drive her there and make her sit at her bench, but annoyed if the child fails to attend the lessons after she agreed to the conditions. The child has backed out on a deal. Does she need to see the consequence of this--that the person she entered into a deal with is annoyed or whatever? And maybe that the whole family goes without a holiday or whatever?

The family should not fake annoyance to manipulate the child into attending. If I spend $10 on advance booking a performance for my daughter and she doesn't want to go--I'm not too bothered (maybe inside me...just a little!) If my husband decides at the last minute not to go to a show I've spent $50 on, and which he gave no indication of not wanting to go to before--well then I'm annoyed.

Other issue relating to wasting time, ultimately, it is their time to waste as they want. I do see TV watching as a waste of MY time, I don't enjoy it much and really just watch to be sociable. Its not how I learn. I'd love to get rid of the TV--even with just one public broadcasting channel (OPB)--and put a nice piece of decoration there. When everyone else is out, I like to just turn everything off and have peace. But to get rid of the TV would make our children deeply unhappy and me only quite transitorily happy. I'd be unhappy from having made them unhappy so the benefit overall to the family would be negative. In the final analysis, it's not up to me to decide how they spend their time unless it actually affects me.


0 encouragements:

True learning-learning that is permanent and useful,that leads to intelligent action and further learning, can arise only out of the experience, interest, and concerns of the learner.
John Holt
Real heroes are men who fall, fail and are flawed, but win out in the end because they stayed true to their ideals, beliefs and commitments.
Actor Kevin Costner

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