“Please, honey, please!” / “Pekne prosim, zlaticko!”"Please, honey, please!" | Czechmatediary
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“Please, honey, please!” / “Pekne prosim, zlaticko!”

http://englishdictionaryfree.com/pleadingYou know I am usually very approving of the American culture BUT this is a one thing that really bothers me: wimpy parents!!!

The other day my younger daughter Ava and I went to the local library for a story time. You know, story time,  where no one pays attention to the librarian because the kids are too little to listen and moms are too busy watching what the other moms and their kiddos are wearing? That story time.

Well, after the librarian was done with her book it was time for some free playtime with the library toys.  Ava started to play with this box which she filled with some plastic eggs and was shaking it around, having fun. All of a sudden this boy comes up to her (he must have been around 2 years old, like my daughter), takes the box away from Ava and starts playing with it. My daughter, of course, starts wailing.  So far, we have a pretty normal situation here, right? A 2-year old takes away a toy from another 2-year old and the wronged side gets upset.

The mom does not react to the whole situation so I assumed she did not see what had happened and that is why I proceed to tell her, in a very nice, non-accusatory way. She says “Oh”. Then she comes up to her boy and starts literally pleading with him:” Honey, please, give it back to the little girl.” The boy  is obviously not into it. So she goes again: “Honey, please, she was playing with it first. Please….”.And the boy, again, nothing (if he was in his teenage years I bet he would give her the finger at that moment).

Meanwhile my daughter is still crying. The mother then proceeds to frantically look for some other box, hoping her kid would be willing to exchange it for the original one. And guess what? Surprise! The plan did not work – he refused to take it. By that time the mother is red in a face, sweating profusely, not sure if it was from the embarrassment or from the actual physical exhaustion. Never the less she is not giving up and decides to go to  the original plan A – begging: “Honey, please, please, give her the toy back”.

Now I am sorry but if that was my kid and he is simply not cooperating (which is not unusual with 2-year-olds) I would simply just take the toy away from him, give it back  and deal with him later. Why?  Because I am the parent and I am the boss. I call the rules.  I don’t have to plead with my own child for crying out loud!!! How is this mother going to deal with him when he is 7 years old and will not want to do his homework? Or when he is 15 and wants to take her new car for a test drive? “Honey-please-please” technique will not cut it, that’s for sure. Honestly, I can’t even imagine some simple task like a bath time with this child.

How did this whole episode climaxed? It didn’t. She got saved because the the play time was over and it was time to go home. So she returned the box to the play chest and walked out of that door with a simple word of apology. I wasn’t really offended by that, my mind was busier with feeling sorry for that mom. But unfortunately, it is entirely her fault. She made that bed and now she gets to sleep in it…her whole life. This child will grow up to be a bratt with no respect for an authority. What kind of a future generation is that going to create?!

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18 comments… add one
  • Simone May 11, 2013, 12:16 pm

    You are absolutely right and keep doing it that way. I raised two beautiful girls in the European tradition no nonsense mom way and they turned out great. One just graduated college is tri lingual etc… The other is 17 and is on her way. You will be rewarded in the end.

  • Tanja May 11, 2013, 1:37 pm

    I will, I can’t imagine doing it any other way. I just can’t believe that they can’t even hold on doing it this way their whole life! You know how much patience these parents have?? I guess the fear of their own offspring is feeding that patience….

  • Martin Horsky May 12, 2013, 3:53 am

    I’m 100% with you on this, Tanja, and I like the way you put it – as much I am into the American culture (yes, there is one, morons), wimpy parents is one example I can’t stand either. It’s not a rule – my wife is all-American and was always a no-nonsense mom, but it’s far too common. But these pathetic parents will learn… 🙂

  • Tanja May 12, 2013, 2:28 pm

    But I think the sad part is that we will suffer for it too! These kids are potential husbands for my daughters!!!
    And you are right, a few Americans are strict with their kids but once you get to go to the playground and do a little survey you will see that maybe like one parent (or none) are that way.

  • Martin May 12, 2013, 4:00 pm

    Gotta start with husband-hunting early 🙂 My view on why are so many American mothers so ditzy when it comes to discipline is that on one hand, they want the father to be the authority figure, but on the other hand, they undermine it and don’t believe in it themselves. Popular culture took a turn in 60s to show fathers as good-natured, bumbling fools or psychopats who needed therapy or ‘help’ from the ‘kids’. Just stick it out – you are right, they are wrong 🙂

  • Tanja May 12, 2013, 9:01 pm

    I know what you mean, shows like “The Simpsons” or “Family Guy” and so forth…the guys are dumb but cute. It’s so bad. But it’s like that with the Czech shows, it has always been, remember “Takova normalni rodinka” or “”S tebou mne bavi svet”….all of the dads are dumb, but good-natured, hence loveable. And then the wives end up to be completely disrespectful to them…it’s uncomfortable to watch that stuff really.

  • Martin May 13, 2013, 5:02 am

    I saw “S tebou mne bavi” just recently, was curious since it rates something like #1 in viewer popularity in CR. Some cute kid acting, but mostly just pretty depressing look at life in socialism.
    Hey, maybe this is your chance to write a script with a strong father figure for the American market, make out like a bandit, and have fun doing it 🙂

  • Tanja May 13, 2013, 8:04 am

    no, uz vidim, jak mne s timhle tematem uhani Hollywoodsti producenti 😉

  • S G May 13, 2013, 12:05 pm

    As a teacher I see a lot of that “Please, Honey, Please!”. I often find myself correcting a child’s behavior in public.
    I think it is a generational thing. Baby boomers were the first to decide NOT to rule with that firm hand because of how their parents parented them. Unfortunately, parents are afraid of “hurting” their child’s feelings and make the mistake of spoiling the child and turning them into a self-centered brat who is in a rude awakening when they get into the real world.
    Also – unfortunately I am seeing this from a lot of my immigrant parents as well.

  • Greg May 13, 2013, 3:48 pm

    AMEN to all this. I’m American, but don’t put up with crap from my 3 1/2 year old son, who has a strong will and temper. He’s at the stage of thinking he is calling the shots and that just doesn’t and won’t happen here. I think even us Czechs who are generations removed have kept that tradition of enforcing our rules to our kids. Not all, but many. However, you get many other mixed cultures who now deem discipline as “abuse” has now tainted our system. Years ago, if you had a rude child and you disciplined them, other people would nod in agreement. Now, if you do that, they want to call the police on you. And let me see, society here is heading down a steep slope and could it be because these kids are growing up with no boundaries or respect and now they are out of control. Any correlation there?
    So Tanja, you have my full support. You have daughters to look after, I have a son. We both share similar concerns. Who will our children marry one day? Even girls these days are getting to be just as bad as the boys.

    Maybe all of us on thi website should get together and introduce our children to each other now and hope they all click one day. =) Because a lot of those kids out in the world today are not fit for our kids for future spouses.

  • christy May 15, 2013, 4:04 am


  • Melissa S May 16, 2013, 6:20 am

    That’s terrible! Please don’t think all Americans are like that! But it does make me depressed to think good parents might be a minority in this country. I know there are at least some of us who don’t/wouldn’t raise kids that way. I don’t have kids yet, but even I know you don’t beg your kids to do something.

    Unfortunately it’s not just parents of young children though. I work at a university, and I see far too many parents who won’t allow their college-age children to grow up. Sad.

  • Tanja May 16, 2013, 8:16 am

    Yes i know:). Many of my American friends are actually strict with their kids (that is why we are friends:)). They also explain the discipline process to them more that i am used to doing which is something that I admire. That is something completely foreign to me and i am trying to learn from that.

  • Katie Boman May 27, 2013, 10:42 am

    I’m American, and I think the progressive parenting notions are mostly nonsense as well. But more than just parenting styles have changed. There have been changes in the larger world that make it scary to bring the proverbial hammer down on kids. Horror stories of parents losing their children to the state and the foster system for administering public spankings, and children reporting abuse when they don’t want to cooperate with disciplinary measures. And there seems to be a frightening rise in the ratio of children who will manipulate their parents through EXTREME behavior at such a young age that the parents are completely unprepared…as if there were some help out there for the mother that’s being threatened at knife-point by a 5 year old. And yes, it does happen, sometimes to parents that really aren’t bringing it upon themselves.

    The scenario you describe, however, is inexcusable. I use “please” with my kids as much as I can, because I want them to learn to use politeness and respect when dealing with others. My 6 year old gets one chance to cooperate with politeness. Defiance is not tolerated. My 19 month old is a different story, but she only gets 3 chances before whatever I’m “asking” of her gets demanded, execution of the task is marched through if necessary. And even with her, snatching things away from others isn’t tolerated at all, particularly with other families’ children. I’ll work with her for a couple of attempts to teach her the concept of sharing, but if she isn’t attentive to it, or fights it, then the toy or whatever she snatched is taken away and she’s removed from the situation.

    I’m not the only American parent who is disgusted with the laissez-faire uber-tolerant parenting trend that’s been developing here for some 30 years or so. The lack of discipline in the lives many of the kids being raised since 1970 is destroying our society. Those kids are the people running the country now. They’re in Congress, and running Wall Street, and their tripe is easy to sell, because they make it look like gold and smell like chocolate. And their undisciplined constituents are fooled even when they’re poisoned by the tripe they’re swallowing.

  • Martin May 29, 2013, 4:40 am

    Katie, I agree that the consequences of poor child rearing are now visible all around us. I’d say that the “spoiled generation”, unable and unwilling to “pursue their happiness”, now tries to extort what it can from others, through the power of state. Somebody wrote that the best definition of the American liberal is an infantile adult…

  • Katie Boman May 29, 2013, 5:28 am

    Being an American liberal myself, I’d be willing to bet that “someone” is an American conservative looking to justify de-funding social services and voting against anything that will demand the American wealthiest be required to pay higher taxes.

    Being liberal is not synonymous with being undisciplined. My experience is quite the opposite. It is the children of the conservative well-to-do that are being taught that anyone who doesn’t think or look like they do doesn’t deserve to play in any sandbox they earmark as “theirs.”

  • Martin Horsky May 29, 2013, 6:55 am

    Katie, you may consider yourself a liberal, but you certainly do not sound like one 🙂 I am not into labeling people, but if you are, labels “socially liberal”, “fiscally liberal”, and “politically liberal” work pretty well. By that I’d call you a “social conservative”.
    What the well-to-do conservatives teach their children I do not know (I’ve never lived next to any). What I do know is that all the American Left preaches through public schools, politics, government or media is a message of envy, defeatism, ignorance, and low standards.

  • Katie Boman May 29, 2013, 7:45 am

    You are misunderstanding/misinterpreting the message.

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