Monday, July 30, 2012

My Fence

Welcome to the Fabulous Hybrid Blog Carnival. Our topic this summer is BOUNDARIES! This post was written for inclusion in the quarterly Blog Carnival hosted by The Fabulous Mama Chronicles and Hybrid Rasta Mama. This month our participants reflect on boundaries in all of its many forms. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.

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I have always felt like the freak of the family to some extent. My mother was always very supportive and even helped my hippie-ness thrive and grow. My father, on the other hand... I have been the weirdo. I can't blame them. I'm drawn to things that are not mainstream. However, this has created a sort of boundary awareness in me when dealing with my family there.

I remember my dad saying he gave me bologna as my first food. I stayed present with my older daughter when ever anyone else was around. A lot of people actually liked to say they were going to give her crap to eat while I wasn't looking. I basically took these as threats and made it known that I would not stand for it.

My family (on that side) haven't been especially supportive. They weren't particularly supportive of my breastfeeding. Or our decision to keep our son, knowing he had Down syndrome. So I have a sort of an imaginary wall or boundary up. I only share my weird parenting ideas / ideals when it is something that comes up in conversation on its own or I know it can not be avoided. They know that we do elimination communication because my daughter has sat on a potty in their living room and because I've taken both of these littles up to use their bathroom.

chalk on the fenceRather than a "wall," I have more of a fence...
some stuff slips through the cracks.

I do not go to visit very often. In fact, I don't think they know yet that I have dreadlocks. (Although they might. My stepsister is a Facebook friend.) I think they've come to expect that sort of weirdness from me, though.

I think I just find that I am guarded with them. I don't automatically expect acceptance, so I have to be prepared to defend my choices. On the other hand, they have welcomed anyone I considered family with open arms. I am proud of them for that.

Are you completely open with your family about your parenting choices?

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6 comments:

  1. If you weren’t hippy-weird, you wouldn’t be you. And if your family does not like or accept YOU for who you are, well then they are missing out. It is always ok to be guarded. It is your prerogative and right how much you share and with whom. Never second guess yourself on that. And most importantly, just keep doing you. As an aside…I cannot wait for Spencer to get dreadlocks himself one day! How awesome would that be? You NEVER see anyone with Down’s Syndrome with dreads. I think he could make quite the splash and look uber cool to boot.

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    1. Thank you! And wow, never thought of that. He'll have to have hair first! lol

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  2. We are definitely guarded about some things -- particularly discipline choices and medical choices. I just don't feel like debating it half the time and I never know who's going to be into a "That's a really dumb decision" mood so we just don't alway share.

    I think having that boundary up is good though in some ways. But I do sometimes wish we could share more with everyone. :)

    FYI -- I love your dreads. :D

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    1. When I worked outside the home (and when I am in other settings), I am kind of hyper aware of conversations about parenting. I only bring up my "weird" ideas if someone seems open to new ideas. Otherwise, it isn't worth the effort, though I want to educate the world!

      And thank you! :-D

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  3. Yes, we are very much guarded on a lot of our decisions with my husband's family. I like the idea of a fence, leaving room for the little, perhaps less impacting things to get through, but it sure can keep the big stuff out!

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    1. Thanks, I'm not sure the metaphor would even have occurred to me if it hadn't been for snapping that picture of Sasha with the fence! I like it better than the idea of a wall, because I think it is impossible to not share anything with family.

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