Back in the ’80’s “Just say no” was the slogan for the “War on drugs” I think that was misdirected. I think that should be used for the way children are coddled now. The fact that they are told from an early age that they are special little snow flakes for nothing. Or giving them ribbons or trophies just for participating. More and more frequently, we are witnessing the true results of this policy.
I am not saying that children aren’t the future or anything like that. However what I am saying is that when you run sports leagues that don’t keep score because it will hurt the child’s self esteem, you are actually doing more harm to the child. Loss is part of life. Whether is is losing the soccer game, or the promotion or the loss of a family member, learning to cope with loss at an early part of life helps you as you get older. Examples of this can be found at the recent attacks at Franklin Regional High School in PA or at the Jonathan Law High School in CT, one was allegedly caused by bullying, the other was due to rejection. This can all be traced back to the “You are a special snowflake” mentality. Let’s start with the first one at Franklin Regional. Bullies have been around since the beginning of time, EVERYONE at some point in their life had to deal with a bully. But it hasn’t been until recently that children were committing suicide and becoming violent.
In my opinion, you come off better to build a child’s sense of self-esteem than you are to try to force an elevated sense of self-esteem. Think about this, just about every school in this country has a “No bullying” policy, yet children are still being bullied. It makes more sense to teach the children how to deal with bullies instead of trying to “rule” it away. Here is a thought, instead of teaching a child they are a “Special snowflake”, how about teach them they are an artist and their life is a lump of clay or a blank canvas and as an artist they can make their life whatever they want it to be. If they want to strive to be great, their life could be the Mona Lisa or Venus De Milo. If they put less effort into it, it can be Picasso, or even less to the point where it is Sponge Bob.
It is important for children to set goals for themselves. Regardless if it is to get a base hit in a T-ball game or score a goal in a soccer game. You think you are helping them by not keeping score, but the kids that are driven to succeed, are the ones you are hurting. Instead of them trying to help the team win, they end up giving up with the attitude of, why am I trying? No one else has to work hard and everyone gets a trophy.
As for the case in CT, rejection is part of life, and instead of being able to handle rejection this kid takes a girls life simply because she said she wouldn’t go to the prom with him. Another problem I see is children today are too pampered. When I was in school and failed a test or class, I had to deal with my parents. I failed. Not the teacher, or the school, it was all on me. Now parents hold the teacher responsible because their child failed rather than the child for not doing the work. So what happens is that teachers don’t want the hassle of having to deal with these parents instead will pass them through to the next grade. (all along not helping the kid) then reports come out that the reading and math levels are so low no one can understand how this can happen.
I truly believe this mentality is the cause for many of the problems occurring in the world today, what do you think? Leave your thoughts in the comments.