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Integral Parenting Thread!

Last post 04-11-2007, 11:13 PM by miriam. 161 replies.
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  •  07-14-2006, 6:26 AM 1408 in reply to 411

    Re: Integral parent education

    Hello Tim and All!

     

    I only heard about IOS and Big Mind 10 days ago. For the last 4 or 5 days I'd been thinking I was unique in getting Integral with a 2 yr old I stumble upon an Integral Parenting Forum! Please forgive my rambling - I'm a newbie, it's late, and I'm a bit punchy. I am very new to Integral Studies and filled with excitement, joy, and eagerness to learn and discuss it with everyone. .

     

    I would love to learn from all of you! Anyone interested in this topic can email me at marushia@cox.net - I'd appreciate discussion, debate, any recommendations for further study.

    I am a stay at home mom of an incredibly joyful 24 month old boy.  I'm married and have 2 step-children in addition to our son Brady.  I've been using AQAL in analyzing my parenting style, the baby's reaction to it, our family environment, family goals, seeing the strengths and weaknesses in my marriage.

     

    Tim - Wow, home with 4 kids - you are a brave soul! It's wonderful that you take the time and energy to give perspective and a broader way of thinking to your family.

     

    It sounds like you have already begun healing the scars blue-parenting left you with. The fact that you are aware and can publicly acknowledge it means a lot. That you are striving to move beyond the model you grew up with is everything. I can feel the struggle to give your kids what you needed as a child.

     

    The following is from a journal entry - it is not intended to be scholarly or wise - I just want to offer it to Tim and others that may be trying to integrate the parenting models they grew up with and the parents they wish to be:

     

    It can be hard being a good parent if you feel your models were lacking. I try to keep in mind that they did the best they could with what they knew, but it's frustrating not to be able to put them in one box or another (good/bad, caring/cold). Trying to compartmentalize people is our logic & reason trying to protect us from our most painful shadow elements. It's easy to give in to that angry 3 yr old version of self; wondering why you didn't get the love and affection you shower your children with. Since we see our parents as wiser or stronger, a major step in emotional evolution is letting go of our idealized view of Mom & Dad which has been set in stone since birth. If we don't conceive new ways of looking at them from the Adult Subjective/preferably the Objective, we will be mired in precognitive misery sulking and throwing tantrums!

     

    For me at least, beginning to shatter my preconceptions and looking at things more objectively has allowed me to see my Mother as a loving imperfect human being (a lot like me), and forgiving her has given me permission to be more compassionate to myself.  Now I'm able to see that my inner child screams for acknowledgement whenever I contemplate my goals, dreams, and what I wish to pass on as a parent. Once I gained perspective, I was able to be a more open and loving parent to my son AND to myself.  Most of the time now, though I'm still working on maintaining this objectivity when shadows arise, if I am loving & giving with my son,  my child-self delights! Feeling joy instead of envy.

     

    I guess you touched a nerve - I wasn't aware that was still so much on my mind! Thank you!

    If I've misunderstood or misused a term/concept I would appreciate some help. I'd also love to exchange email with anyone who likes to discuss KW, IT, AQAL, Buddhism, Taoism, meditation... Another new interest for me is Buddhism - I wouldn't even call myself a novice Buddhist student - maybe a neophyte? :-)

     

    With light & love,

     

    Stephanie


    Love & Light,

    Stephanie Marushia
    Neophyte Integral Philosopher
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  •  07-14-2006, 8:02 AM 1411 in reply to 1403

    Re: Integral parent education

    i wrote before about how children grow naturally and all they need to bloom is "sun and water" and so i agree that a lot of what parenting is includes letting children learn.  however, once children develop a a precocious sense of self and begin to exercise their discernment they likely will, by definition, exercise an immature discernment and will want to grow toward impulsive desires, absent any guidance, that are unhealthy in the long run.

    Are you sure about this? Why do you think people would naturally be inclined to want to do things that aren't healthy for them? This is where I think a lot of shadows lay for adults. We see the effects of our own shadows (unhealthy cravings, for example) and project them onto our kids. We think we need to stop them from doing what we think they want to do. But is that really the case? If encouraged to take responsibility for their own actions, given role models who are healthy, and allowed to make mistakes (without the overprotective hand of the adults around), don't you think kids would learn to make very good decisions? Don't you think we are "programmed" to be successful human beings?

     

    thanks for pushing this deeper. i think i can learn a few things that way.  i wrote "absent any guidance" they will make unhealthy decisions. you wrote "encouraged to take responsibility, given role models . . ." which starts sounding like "guidance".  later on you write about the bombardment upon children of bad examples, teaching children how to act in polite company.

    obviously, if a child's environment is absolutely devoid of harmful temptations and dangers, there is no possiblity of doing anything wrong.  when i think of "natural inclinations" i'm thinking about inclinations that have existed in humans since the paleolithic period, for example.  such people craved sweets but there were not many sweets available, so they couldn't do much damage to themselves.  ideally, it seems to me that no candy in the house would be preferred.  however, if given a choice, many kids would choose to eat sweets until they get sick.  is that my shadow operating if i want to teach consumption limits? 

    is possessiveness over toys and books something that is learned from adults or can children develop this on their own?   is it healthy to permit them to be possessive until they outgrow it themselves or does a healthy guidance help them experience a bit of healthy self-denial?

    The basic idea I'm proposing is that all interested parties listen to each other and then work together to integrate everyone's ideas, concerns, and needs onto a common goal.

    should this be applied 100% of the time?  children experience needs for a toy that can arise 24/7.

    I'll also suggest that the term equality may be misleading. To me, the only important idea behind equality is when it comes to healthy needs.

    the issue for me is---who decides what is healthy, the child or the parent?  a young child doesn't think in terms of health, the child thinks in terms of "i want that now".

     

    I think we all tend to forget that kids operate in the same big bad world as adults do.

    i would counter that integral theory says they do not.  they are physically in adult society but they are not of adult society.  they naturally filter only what they can understand.  adults exchange symbols that children do not understand. e.g. adults know that ads are targeted, children respond to ads with "i'm attracted to that", and are more manipulatable.

     

    Kids have plenty of consequences from the real world! Peer pressure is evidenced even in 2 year olds, perhaps even younger. We are by our very nature social animals so it behooves our genes to make us attentive to social niceties as soon as humanly possible so that we don't do something really stupid and get the DNA beat out of us.

    my question is: what if your child is the one who wants to beat the DNA out of another, do you let him?   is shadow operating more if you let him or if you offer "guidance".

     

    later,

    gee

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  •  07-14-2006, 10:24 AM 1418 in reply to 1403

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    Re: Integral parent education

    Hi Turtle, Hi Gene-- I have so much to say and feel about this! It's exactly the issue that's up for me now.
     
     
    coppersun:

    i wrote before about how children grow naturally and all they need to bloom is "sun and water" and so i agree that a lot of what parenting is includes letting children learn.  however, once children develop a a precocious sense of self and begin to exercise their discernment they likely will, by definition, exercise an immature discernment and will want to grow toward impulsive desires, absent any guidance, that are unhealthy in the long run.



    Are you sure about this? Why do you think people would naturally be inclined to want to do things that aren't healthy for them?

    Turtle and Gene-- I face the following situtation, which I just discussed with my daughter's therapist (hired to help her deal with fallout from her Dad, my ex). My daughter's temperament tends toward hyper. She's charming and vivacious and lots of fun. But she avoids negative emotions (including emptiness boredowm, anxiety) by creating ever more fun. As the therapist said, she gets a bit manic and she's "a little in love with her mania."

    Now that's an experience I've had too-- being a little in love with my mania. What that means in practical terms is that my daughter will enjoy going too far in a variety of situations. In the frenzy of the moment, she will exhibit less and less impulse control.

    Before I was a mom, my fondest theories on child raising tended toward the return to goodness model.. After all, hadn;'t I spent a million years in therapy seeing how my parents distorted my
    growth? I planned to facilitate my child's growth. I saw my role exactly as a gardener, trusting that loving attention and empathy would bring out the best qualities in my child.

    What I didn't count on is her temperament. I hadn't fantasized a kid who would try to stay up all night when she was clearly exhausted. I hadn't fantasized a kid who would stuff an entire package of candy into her mouth at once just to show she could do it. I hadn't fantasized shaving cream fights in the kitchen. (Have you ever tried to scrape that stuff off tile flooring and chrome appliances? My kid will beg persuasively for one more activity when she's already had one too many activities.

    I've come to the conclusion that some things don't come naturally for some children. Therefore the parenting style has to take the child's temperament into account. I know kids who self regulate, but mine doesn't. The ability to do so is not going to emerge from inside her (says the shrink) but she has to be taught. She just wasn't born with that resource. Genetics.

    If I don't put limits on her, she may hurt herself with thrill seeking behaviors. She has a habit of flaunting trangressions until I notice and stop her. She gets wilder and wilder, making sure I see the behavior, telling me if I don't notice myself, until I step in and stop her.

    All that goes totally against my own most cherished child-raising theories. But I've been forced to realize I was wrong, or at least incomplete, about those theories. Which brings me to another interesting shadow place. You see, I developed my child-raising theories based on years of personal therapy and many of my beliefs are in response to exploring what I thought my own parents did wrong. When I realize my theories are faulty or incomplete, that means I have to look again at my own childhood and perhaps give my parents more credit or at least more compassion and understanding. Maybe some of my most precious child-raising theories (that I blamed them for not using) wouldn't have worked on me anyway.

    Let's see-- am I expalining this clearly enough? It's a kind of multi-generational shadow thing.And so common it's a cliche. But my experience with my own child forces me to look again at my judgments about my parents. Years ago I thought the way I raised my child would stand as a testament to my theories and as a living statement against their mistakes. Ha!

    So when I admit that I've been too permissive (in contrast to my own too oppressive upbringing), that means part of the stand that I've taken in life has to be re-examined. Part of my story about who I am and how my life went has to be re-edited and understood.  (FYI, I'm a writer and I do a lot of memoir.)

    Which brings me to this:

    coppersun:

    integral also tells us that children will not get to blue if they don't learn to control their hedonistic red. is it possible for children to learn self-discipline on their own?



    "I think we all tend to forget that kids operate in the same big bad world as adults do. Kids have friends, neighbors, teachers, cops, television, music, and all other manner of people and media throwing all kinds of information and emotions at them all the time, most of it about social standards.'

    Turtle, 3 years ago, I agreed with you entirely with the above. Today, my position has modified. What happened? My daughter entered middle school this year. All of a sudden, despite how touchy-feely her school is, a certain level of organization and respect is required of her. If she's rude, she gets in trouble. Middle school uses blue code. If she breaks blue code, she gets a consequence. Now I could just let that happen and she will learn from it. OR I could teach her about blue code myself, explain the reason for it, try to enlist her cooperation at least in theory. Whether or not she's consciously willing to cooperate, when it comes to teaching my daughter blue code, I'm likely to be more patient and kind than a teacher with a classroom of students. It is true that my kid can learn from the school of hard knocks, but I'd rather she learn gently (to the greatest extent possible) and believe me, no one will love her like I do or have the patience and persistence that I'll have.

    Hey, I'm willing to make it OK if she doesn't like blue code. I leave room for her to appropriately express her anger and I acknowledge her right to her emotions, even if she's mad at me. That's more than most teachers have time and patience for.

    I wonder if I've expressed all this well? Believe me, I am normally no great proponent of blue code, but I wouldn't like to see my bright, impulsive child stay at red. The older she gets the more damage she can do herself at red, it seems to me.

    And I wouldn't be much of a gardener if I didn't take a look at my particular flower and see that it needed a certain mineral in its soil to bloom its brightest. I can't garden all flowers the same way. Some need more light; some more water. So in the end, I come back to what's best for the inividual child.

    Robin

    PS consider types-- for those who know the enneagram, my daughter is a 7 with an 8 wing. My dearest friend's daughter (same age) is a 6 with a 7 wing. Can you imagine how different their needs are with regard to structure?

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  •  07-14-2006, 11:20 AM 1422 in reply to 1411

    Re: Integral parent education

    coppersun:

    thanks for pushing this deeper. i think i can learn a few things that way.  i wrote "absent any guidance" they will make unhealthy decisions. you wrote "encouraged to take responsibility, given role models . . ." which starts sounding like "guidance".



    Absolutely.  I think the thing I wanted to stress (and probably didn't do stuch a great job of) was that guidance comes from normal human interactions and other interactions with the world. The guidance I woud embrace would be supportive and natural, rather than imposed.

    Honestly, I think sometimes we put too much effort into worrying about what to do with kids that we make ouselves crazy! I think interacting with kids is best done in the same way we interact with anyone else we care about, naturally, and with the intent of sharing our lives with them and being there for them when the need us.

    coppersun:

    if given a choice, many kids would choose to eat sweets until they get sick.  is that my shadow operating if i want to teach consumption limits?



    Well, think about yourself. If given a choice, would you choose to eat sweets until you got sick? Maybe occasionally. And when you do, you feel sick! Feeling sick is that real world consequence that encourages you not to do it! People can lecture us all they want about not eating too many sweets, but in the end, the only real reason we don't do it is because it makes us feel like crap.

    Of couse we want to save our kids from making the same mistakes that we did, or other, more creative mistakes that we hadn't even thought of yet! But the only way humans truly learn is by experiencing something for themselves and finding out what happens as a result. We can make suggestions to others, especially with the more deadly illusions presented by society (heroin, drag racing on a residential street, unprotected sex, etc.), but in the end, they have to make the decision for themselves and meet the consequences of that decision. And sometimes those consequences include mom and dad not inviting the kid use their car!

    I see the role of the caretaker as being one of supporting kids find a way to meet their needs in healthy ways. If the kid wants to eat sweet things (as we all do), a parent can provide lots of sweet, yet mostly healthy options around the house. If a kid wants to experiment with altered states of mind, perhaps leading the kid in the direction of meditation, yoga, Big Mind, or even some of the less dangerous mind altering drugs, perhaps, under close and accepting supervision. And for drag racing, how about a defensive driving class or actual drag racing! See what I mean? Rather than punishing kids for having natural urges and the need to explore their world, you encourage them to do it in socially acceptable and healthy ways.

    coppersun:

    is possessiveness over toys and books something that is learned from adults or can children develop this on their own?   is it healthy to permit them to be possessive until they outgrow it themselves or does a healthy guidance help them experience a bit of healthy self-denial?



    I my classroom, we have shared toys and spaces as well as personal toys and spaces. Home life is similar. That's how kids learn about how society works, by being in society. And kids really learn what to expect by watching us adults and other kids. And when it comes down to it I've never met a kid who didn't, at least some times, want to share! And sometimes they don't want to share, and that's healthy too. A kid not wanting to share their toy car is the same as an adult not wanting to share their big car. It's ok.

    The basic idea I'm proposing is that all interested parties listen to each other and then work together to integrate everyone's ideas, concerns, and needs onto a common goal.

    coppersun:

    should this be applied 100% of the time?  children experience needs for a toy that can arise 24/7.



    I'm not sure exactly of your example here. But yes, collaboration is a problem solving style, as far as I'm concerned, so for every problem, it's great to use it. It's what we do in my classroom. As soon as a problem arises (someone is clearly upset about something) we do a "check in" to find out what's up and see what we can do to make everyone happy. It's not perfect, but it works better than anything else I've ever heard of. And it teaches the kids the skills of collaborative problem solving so that they can do it on their own - which by the end of the year, at 5 years old, they can do quite well!

    Obviously if there is an emergency situation (someone is physically in immediate danger), then quick action might be the best thing to do, and then later, once the stress hormones have dissipated, you can talk about why it was done and what might be done to prevent further danger.

    coppersun:

    the issue for me is---who decides what is healthy, the child or the parent?



    Well, as I say, we humans are genetically programmed to seek what we need to be healthy. We can be led astray, but we have an inherent urge to stay healthy, so I say let the kid choose as far often as you can, let them make mistakes as often as you can, offer them advice whenever you can, and only step in to take control if you see them really going off the deep end and losing control of their sanity or endangering their life.

    coppersun:

    a young child doesn't think in terms of health, the child thinks in terms of "i want that now".



    Are you sure? See my above comment about natural instinct to be healthy (and survive!). Also, kids want things now because that's the way we humans work - we want things so that we can learn about the world. It's a very normal, healthy thought to want things. Of course, we can't always get the things we want, though. We don't need to go out of our way to teach kids about the disappointment of not always getting what we want, because the real world will provide that lesson over, and over, and over again! So if you don't want to spend your hard earned money on the latest fad toy for your kid, then tell them that! Don't say that it's for their own good, and that they have to learn about disappointment. And if the kid continues to protest and beg and cajole, let them know that if it's really important to them that they have the option of doing some extra chores to earn the money to buy the toy. And if they do, and find out what you already guessed, that the toy sucks, they will have learned an even more important lesson: to be more attentive to what we really need and less attentive to what commercials tell us we need!

    coppersun:

    my question is: what if your child is the one who wants to beat the DNA out of another, do you let him?   is shadow operating more if you let him or if you offer "guidance".



    My answer would be to do that collaborative problem solving technique and find out why my child wants to beat up other kids! Then I would work with him to find other ways of getting his real needs met in healthy ways. And no, I would definitely not let a kid beat up another kid if I could stop it (see above about emergency situations). Letting a kid beat up someone else (human or not) is, to me, a Permissive style of parenting. It's letting the bully win while someone else loses. With the collaborative style of parenting, both the bully wins and so does everyone else. And no one wants to be a bully when they feel like a winner.

    Now, I'm not saying I know how to always do this collaborative problem solving perfectly, or even well sometimes. But I keep it as a goal, and do my best to work on it whenever I can because, as I said before, I see that when I can do it well, it works better than anything else.

    Thanks for keeping up with all my ramblings!

    Peace, Love, and Bicycles,
    Turtle
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  •  07-14-2006, 11:21 AM 1423 in reply to 1408

    • imom is not online. Last active: 10-09-2006, 1:13 PM imom
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    Re: Integral parent education

    Hi All ~

    Great questions and comments.  Thanks to everyone who is participating.

    As Tim pointed out earlier on,
    taking an all quadrant, all level approach to parenting means exercising physical,
    emotional, mental and spiritual waves in SELF, CULTURE and NATURE.

    What does this mean for parents wishing to apply an integral approach to
    family life and raising children?

    IMO, at the very least, we should consider:

    The INTERIOR  and EXTERIOR domains of both
    our children as individuals developing in their own unique ways, and of the
    family as a whole, developing in its equally unique way.
    In other words, we want to consider The INTERIOR  and the EXTERIOR of the
    INDIVIDUAL  and the COLLECTIVE.

    Secondly, we must acknowledge the myriad ways in which our own development is
    enmeshed with, and radically effects, the development of our children.


    For the most part, when we think of human development we think of the period of
    time spanning birth to maturity.  But development obviously doesn't (or
    shouldn't) end there.


    We can begin by looking at the 4 quadrants as we would with regard to our own
    personal development, and then fill in each area with stage appropriate
    material.

    To do this, we need at least a fundamental understanding of the basic
    developmental stages that humans pass through on the way to
    maturity. Certainly this all needs to be done with repect for the fact that
    every child is an individual and will unfold differently than another.  Our
    aim is not to pigeon hole development or individuals.  But we can say a few
    things about the broad developmental blueprint through which we all must pass.

    I would love to go through the different elements of AQAL one by one and apply them to parenting.

    On 07/04 Random Turtle Wrote:

    "I'm not actually familliar with ILP, really, but I see this as being very helpful. Is there somewhere other than the expensive ILP CD's and such that I could get suggestions for this kind of daily Integral practice? Somewhere on Integral Naked, perhaps?"

     

    Here is a concise explaination of AQAL:
    http://in.integralinstitute.org/pdf/E122CFD2-03E0-40e1-BA1D-B2A37D2E216E.pdf

    Also, check out the Embodied Practice section in the IN Forums:
    http://in.integralinstitute.org/public/forums/ShowForum.aspx?ForumID=13

    Ken's book, One Taste is another example, and may even be available at your library.

    Random Turtle Wrote:

    "The basic idea I'm proposing is that all interested parties listen to each other and then work together to integrate everyone's ideas, concerns, and needs onto a common goal."


    I think we've hit upon a very key element here...


    The ability to do what you're proposing, Random Turtle, requires a postconventional level of development.

    Pluralism, the ability to hold multiple, differing perspectives, is one of the hallmarks of green - of worldcentric. 

    The majority of adults in our culture are not yet at this level, let alone babies, children and toddlers; and the adults who are, reached it through a developmental proccess.

    To carry this discussion forward we have to admit that we are not all born with fully developed pluralsitic capacities, that everyone is subject to a developmental proccess wich moves from egocentric to ethnocentric to worldcentric.


    To me, a basic injunction implied by an integral model of parenting is that we respect the differing needs and expectations of all the varying stages/levels of life, which means we need to acknowledge they exist so that we can look at the specific requirements they pose.


    There is no question that parenting styles will differ from parent to parent. That's a given.

    Just as we would do with an integral approach to our own development, we want to
    look at the 4 quadrants - at SELF CULTURE and NATURE and decide, based on our
    child's age and stage,  in what ways we can encourage and allow for physical,
    emotional, mental and spiritual growth.

    This growth, or movement, is organic in nature and a large part of our task
    would seem to be allowing it to unfold of its own accord.

    By being aware of the needs and expectations of developmental stages we can create an appropriate environment for this to happen.  By ignoring or forcing stages we get into all sorts of trouble.

    Ken is often saying that if he has any sort of injuncton, beyond being integrally informed, it is to harmonize at the level we are at.

    The same holds for children.

    So, in this discussion of integral parenting, let's apply the integral model.

    I still think a clear vision of what 2nd tier authority looks/feels like is very helpful.

    While we're considering levels, another question I'd like to pose to the group is:

    What are some examples of

    healthy purple?

    healthy red?

    healthy blue?

    healthy orange?

    healthy green?

    etc...

    I would like to hear people's ideas on how to encourage healthy development of each level.

    We don't have to use SD, I'm just assuming most of us are mostly farmilar w this

    model - but feel free to use a different one.

    Warmly,
    Cori

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  •  07-14-2006, 11:57 AM 1427 in reply to 1418

    Re: Integral parent education

    Robin, thanks so much for sharing more of your story. I'm glad you are aware enough of the difference in the school's policy in contrast to other philosphies, and are willing to help your daughter understand this too. That, I think, is the most helpful thing we can offer to kids, the ability to see things from different viewpoints and how to be themselves while working with this diversity of views.

    And I'm totally with you on the inability to fantasize about how unique kids turn out! We have an amazing ability to be so very, very wrong when we try to predict the future of a human being! :-) Learning to go with the flow as people grow (ewww, that's a really bad rhyme!) is the toughest job we can ever do, as far as I've seen.

    I might suggest having a little discussion with yourself about why you don't think your daugher should stay up late, or have shaving cream figthts in the kitchen. And be really honest with yourself. Is it because you don't want to have to pick up the mess youself (literally or metaphorically), or is it because you want your daughter to fit in to society better, or something else entirely? And consider that your ideas of health and happiness may be right for yourself, and wrong for your daugher. Some people are late night people, and others are morning people. Unfortunately, most schools only accomodate morning people. If your daughter is a night person, maybe you can help her find solutions that work well for her (only taking study halls in the morning in high school, homeschooling, or trying to meditate or do yoga or tai chi in the evening so that she's more calm and can get to sleep more easily).

    Also, I hear you saying that your daughter may be trying to compensate for some missing need by overdoing it on the thrill-seeking scale. You may be able to work with her (and the therapist, too, perhaps) to figure out what she is missing and how she can fill that need in a healthy way. Clearly your daughter is acting "wild" for a reason, and it's not because she's stupid or out of control, it's beacause it's working for her better than anything else she's found. If you want her to find healthier options, you can help her look for those options and make sure she has access to them.

    I would add that I think your daughter has excellent self regulation skills! She knows that she needs certain things (even if she isn't consciously aware of what they are) and she works to meet those needs. The only problem is that you don't like the way she's meeting her needs. That may be a problem of your perception, or it may be a real problem for her health. If you offer to help her find healthier ways to meet her needs, she may be happy to take you up on it, or she may find that she's already happy with things as they are right now. If you can respect her innate need to be who she needs to be, then she'll be open to learning how to do that well.

    Peace, Love, and Bicycles,
    Turtle
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  •  07-14-2006, 12:35 PM 1431 in reply to 1423

    Re: Integral parent education

    imom:
    The ability to do what you're proposing, Random Turtle, requires a postconventional level of development.


    Pluralism, the ability to hold multiple, differing perspectives, is one of the hallmarks of green - of worldcentric. 



    Hmmm. I think perhaps I'm not being clear enough about my goals in collaborative problem solving. It does not require all of the individuals to see other's points of view, at least not at the most basic level, it simply requires one of the individuals to see all of the points of view. Therapists are the real experts here, as are comflict negotiators. And they are who I look to for help when I'm confused about how to approach kids (or adults)

    Also, I'll note that while many kids may not be up to the worldcentric vMeme, that doesn't mean they can't see other people's viewpoints. In my teaching experiece, not only can even young kids (under 5) have worldcentric states (as opposed to stages), but they will happily work to help a friend feel better. This shows me that the collaborative process does work with even young kids. And when these young kids are involved in the collaborative problems solving process, I've seen them learn how to do it with amazing speed and efficiency. Heck, some of these kids I work with are better conflict negotiators (or "difference reconcilliators, as Don Beck calls it) than I am!

    imom:

    While we're considering levels, another question I'd like to pose to the group is:
    What are some examples of
    healthy purple?
    healthy red?
    healthy blue?
    healthy orange?
    healthy green?
    etc...
    I would like to hear people's ideas on how to encourage healthy development of each level.



    Excellent questions! I just asked about this very thing somewhere else. Someone somewhere must have already answered this set of questions. Anyone know where? The closest I've heard is one of Don Beck's workshop speeches from the WIE website. He listed the 7 things that need to be in place for healthy growth to happen. Unfortunately I can't find my notes from that lecture right now. I'll take a look for them later.

    Peace, Love, and Bicycles,
    Turtle
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  •  07-14-2006, 1:31 PM 1436 in reply to 1423

    • rosecpw is not online. Last active: 04-07-2008, 1:57 PM rosecpw
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    Re: Integral parent education

    Hi Cori,

    Thanks for stating the below so succinctly.

    Random Turtle Wrote:

    "The basic idea I'm proposing is that all interested parties listen to each other and then work together to integrate everyone's ideas, concerns, and needs onto a common goal."


    I think we've hit upon a very key element here...


    The ability to do what you're proposing, Random Turtle, requires a postconventional level of development.

    Pluralism, the ability to hold multiple, differing perspectives, is one of the hallmarks of green - of worldcentric. 

    The majority of adults in our culture are not yet at this level, let alone babies, children and toddlers; and the adults who are, reached it through a developmental proccess.

    To carry this discussion forward we have to admit that we are not all born with fully developed pluralsitic capacities, that everyone is subject to a developmental proccess wich moves from egocentric to ethnocentric to worldcentric.


    To me, a basic injunction implied by an integral model of parenting is that we respect the differing needs and expectations of all the varying stages/levels of life, which means we need to acknowledge they exist so that we can look at the specific requirements they pose.

     

    You have articulated my exact issue. And my daughter has as much as told me that she is tired of my trying to explain my perspective and would rather I just set the limit and get on with it! She doesn't get my perspective and she doesn't want to get it and its burdsome to her for me to keep trying to explain it.

    I finally realized that the need to explain it to her came from me! That I was taking care of myself, not her by explaining so much. This was the exact realization that started this whole post thread-- seperating out my needs from my daughters and parenting based on her needs, not my needs, not my theories, not anything about what makes me feel good. But what's best for her. (Even if doesn't come naturally to me, even if it contrasts with some of my pet theories.)

    Robin

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  •  07-14-2006, 3:38 PM 1443 in reply to 1436

    Re: Integral parent education

    rosecpw:
    my daughter has as much as told me that she is tired of my trying to explain my perspective and would rather I just set the limit and get on with it!


    You mentioned that before, which was why I suggested that maybe you have most of the conversation with yourself :-) You're right that kids don't like to spend time philosphizing with their parents. If you make a decision about something and tell your daughter what you expect of her and she accepts that, then there's no need to get into a big discussion. The only time I see a need for the collaborative problem solving technique is when there is an obvious problem.

    One other thought I had, which came up this year for one of my coteachers who's new at teaching and having problems "controling" the kids, was to think of setting limits for you, rather than for the kids. When you let people know where your limits are, e.g., "I'm not going to spend 20 minutes waking you up every morning because I have better things to do with my time." then kids know what to expect and can try to work within those limits. If the kid doesn't wake up, and misses school, then you can say, "It is my job as a parent to make sure you have an education, so I need to find a way to make that happen. I can come up with a solution myself, or we can work together to find a solution. It's up to you."

    Setting limits for yourself is a way of honoring your needs, while not imposing on others unnecessarily. The more you understand what your needs are, the more you can clearly express your limits.

    So I'm really glad that you are starting to take care of yourself Robin! It will make your life, and your daughter's life so much better.

    Peace, Love, and Bicycles
    Turtle
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  •  07-14-2006, 4:00 PM 1446 in reply to 1423

    Re: Integral parent education

    Oh, and thanks for those links Cori. I think I've seen them before, but I'll look to see if I missed anything about the Integral Life Practices kit.

    Thanks,
    Turtle
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  •  07-14-2006, 5:41 PM 1449 in reply to 1423

    Re: Integral parent education

    Dear Cori,

    This is a great post, and thanks for doing all of this!  i think that I might have mentioned that the Integral Education Center has a volunteer who is doing serious research on Integral Parenting, and is writing an article for the AQAL Journal as well as her own book, PLUS raising a daughter with incredible integral intention.  I just spent 3 days with her, Miriam Martineau, her almost 3 yr old daughter Adonia, and dad Stephan.. Here is a couple who have devoted their lives to intentional, Integral parenting from a thoroughly grounded AQAL methodology.  As Robin remidned me, the sweet temperament and great genetics in this little moppet who looks like an angel, cannot be discounted.  But here's the great news----in the best scenario, the AQAL model can produce a fabulous child.

    So, as Robin and I were talking about this, what about the NOT so great scenario, with Robin's ex in the picture, my daughter living thru a nightmare with a severely mentally ill step-daughter in the house....yes, it will not result in the perfection of Adonia, granted, BUT-----I honestly believe that attnetion to what you have posted above will compensate for the ordinary and not-so-ordinary horrors of growing up.  I KNOW that had I not added AQAL components into my parenting, even tho my husband has no knowledge or interest in anything Integral, my daughter was literally "saved" from serious psychological consequences.  I don't want to go into the litany of serious events in our lives, but they could have produced a metally ill young woman, instead of the sweet, moral, happy, accomplished young 27 yr. old Phi Beta Kappa lawyer I have.

    If you would like to contact Miriam, her email is star@netidea.com.

     

    Hope this helps forwaard the discussion,

    Lynne

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  •  07-14-2006, 7:18 PM 1455 in reply to 1449

    • imom is not online. Last active: 10-09-2006, 1:13 PM imom
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    Re: Integral parent education

    Lynne ~

    Thank you for the thoughtful post.

    I am very much looking forward to the AQAL journal!  I recall Miriam from the Integral Ed forum. This is so wonderful that all at once, the multiplex is up and the fruits of integral research are coming to the fore.  It feels like signs of spring in many ways! :)  Thank you for the email address also.

    Robin ~

    Your posts are so compelling.  Thank you for sharing with such depth and insight. There's so much about my own path as a parent that we share.  So much so that I could almost have signed my own name to your recent posts! I really look forward to going into these things more.  For now, duty calls.  Like all of you, I wear many hats, and the one I need to put on now is that of the bony fingered cook! (My girls actually call me that, and I actually smile!)

    Big Love,

    Cori

    “I slept and dreamt that life was joy.
     I awoke and saw that life was service.
     I acted and beheld that service was joy.”   - Rabindranath Tagore

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  •  07-15-2006, 1:07 PM 1469 in reply to 1455

    • rosecpw is not online. Last active: 04-07-2008, 1:57 PM rosecpw
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    Re: Integral parent education

    Cori,

    Thanks for understanding. Your recognition, support and empathy are meaningful to me.

    Tutle,

    I think you have hit upon something important when you say I have to set my own limits. That's exactly right. And if I do that, other choices will flow from those limits, exactly as you described. As an ennegaram 2, (the "helper") my personal tendency is to do too much and not set enough of my own limits. These current interactions with my daughter are challenging me to grow strong enough to take a stand on what I'm willing to do (or not) and what I'm willing to allow in my home (or not). So interactions with my daughter are pushing me to change in ways I really need to anyway. Holons co-evolve, right?

    Lynne,

    I wish I could have watched Miriam and her daughter (especially the daugher) who sounds like such a little darling!

    Sending love to you all, Robin

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  •  07-15-2006, 7:34 PM 1473 in reply to 1469

    Re: Integral parent education

    Robin,

    As a "fellow" Two, I hear you loud and clear.  I had a devil of a time setting my limits.  Thank goodness I had a good child!!  As for types, there is a great book dealing with MBTI called "Please Understand Me", and it talks about what happens when one MB type parents another MB type. Fascinating stuff, I recommend that and its sequel, "Please Understand Me Too", totally to all of us parent-types!

    Lynne

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  •  07-16-2006, 4:14 PM 1505 in reply to 1473

    Re: Integral parent education

    Not surprisingly I'm mostly a #1, the Reformer, but with a healthy dose of #2 as well. I'm always on a mission to save everyone, pretty much any way I can, I guess.

    Thanks for talking about this, which made me pay more attention to how I was approaching things. I have a habit of coming on too strong for many people. I've been working on that a lot lately, and definitely getting better at it. I used to piss off pretty much everyone most of the time!

    Peace, Love, and Bicycles,
    Turtle

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