“Sharing is caring” is a good motto to live by, but at the same time you can’t be a doormat to other people – you need to establish healthy boundaries. It’s essential to be able to say no to people who would want to exploit your kindness. Like most emotional skills, it’s a lot easier to figure out boundaries as an adult when you’ve been properly taught as a child. However, that is sometimes where things get blurry, as sometimes we don’t always know how to balance out our boundaries, especially when we want to pass the lessons off to our kids.
Naturally, it’s important to teach our children to be emotionally open and generous with others – the world can do with more empathetic people in it. But there’s always the question of how do we teach them this, without necessarily making them lose their sense of self and boundaries. But there is one mother who shared her views on how to teach her son boundaries while also sharing.
Here is what she shared:
During a recent visit to the park, her son was almost instantaneously approached by a group of young boys who wanted him to share his toys.
His mother told him that he had a choice, rather than automatically forcing him to share. Her act in giving him a choice is something that confused the kids as well as other parents.
She broke down the logic of her reasoning by comparing it how bizarre it would be to expect an adult to share their food or other gadgets with random strangers in the park, so why then is it ok to expect the same of children.
She continued by saying that it’s crazy to think her son is considered the rude one for not sharing, yet a group of six kids hanging up on him with entitlement attitudes with regards to using his toys is supposed to be normal.
The mother finished her point by saying that she knows many adults who have never been taught to say no or how to set their own boundaries, and because of this, she wants to break the cycle for her child. She further added that her son brought his toys to the park to share with his friend, not strangers.
Her Reddit post immediately gathered a flurry of responses, most of which were commentators and parents supporting her point.
Most of the commenters agreed at how easy it was for kids to steal toys from other kids, and that teaching your kids to set boundaries and teaching your kid to be selfish are two completely different points.
I have to agree with the mother’s point. It is important to teach your child to be a kind human being to others, but it’s also important to teach them to stand up for themselves and only share their kindness with those who have shown an equal amount of respect. What do you guys think about teaching kids boundaries?