Of course, I want my children to mind authority. I want my children to listen to their father and I and I want my children to follow the rules. Yet, I do not believe in black and white. I also want my children to be free thinkers. I want my children to grow up and be independent and I want my children to work out problems for themselves.
Because of this I hate the word obedience, and just that word alone tends to deter me from going to church. I am Christian but I’m not a fan of organized religion and the teaching of obedience. Why? Because I want my kids to question. I do not want them to just take what is taught to them and think it’s absolutely correct, because it probably isn’t. There are so many things that we do not know. I believe in God and I will teach them so. Yet, I question every day the validity of the Bible, the stories, the religion, the believers, and the faith. I do not believe blindly, I question. I hope to teach them to do so as well and obedience gets in the way of this.
I am a feminist and I hope to raise both my children to be too. My daughter will learn she’s just as capable at anything she wants to do as my son. My daughter will not learn that she is second. She will not learn that she is to be obedient to men and she will not learn that she must be subservient. I will teach about the equality in marriage, mutual respect, love and understanding. Obedience has nothing to do with it.
I do believe children should respect their parents. I do believe children should follow their parent’s guidance. Most often than not parents are telling children ‘no’ to keep them safe. Often times they do not understand that and often times they will not listen. But I also want my children to question. Perhaps my husband and I do not have all the answers. My children are young yet, they cannot question our authority yet, but when they do I will not deter it. I will have the final word, but I hope they come to me with discussion, answers to problems, and different perspectives. I don’t know how much they have to teach me yet. A simple ‘No’ without listening sometimes may hinder my own education in them, what they need, and how they’re able to come up with solutions. This is why I do not use the word ‘Obey’ when it comes to parenting, because I do not want them to simply obey all the time.
Do you teach obedience? Do you do so and still teach your children to question? How do you do so?