Nurture, every time!

Watch your thoughts; they lead to attitudes. Watch your attitudes; they lead to words. Watch your words; they lead to actions. Watch your actions; they lead to habits. Watch your habits; they form your character. Watch your character; it determines your destiny.” ~ Michael Josephson.

The midweek word prompt on my partner GC and my site Weekly Prompts is Character.

Gerry wrote about finding a credit card that belonged to a child. Yes, a child! It begs the question, what type of parent would give a child a credit card?

Veruca Salt Image 2My first thoughts turned towards the father of the obnoxious child Veruca Salt from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. The child’s character and her very nature had been spoiled by her over-indulgent father, a foolish man who had never learned to say NO.

Mr Salt had made the rudimentary error of not setting clear boundaries, both for himself and for the child. The paternal love for his daughter coupled with the desire to please her, and, possibly his need to be loved by her, overcame his common sense and parental responsibility, resulting in him giving way to her every whim, the consequence of which created a ruined and thoroughly dislikeable child.

When I worked in school, Nature or Nurture – was a question that often popped up when discussing the character of a particular child. Perhaps it’s a little of both, but unfailingly, I subscribe to the belief that it is our duty as parents to set firm boundaries, and to nurture all that is good in the child.

My late husband and I gave our children pocket money (allowance), but in our house, the pocket money was earned. We allocated simple chores, emptying the dishwasher, feeding /walking the dogs, setting/clearing the table and putting away laundry that I’d previously left clean and folded on each of their beds. I will also add that the older ones often undertook extra chores, chores that were never asked of them, but ones they chose to do when they saw a need.

Our children often made us smile in the way they swapped jobs between themselves and even wrote IOUs to each other. We did not issue Bank Credit cards!

Chauvinistic 2My husband was a little old fashioned, and once when Joss was very young and playing with jugs of water at the kitchen sink, I remarked,Β “You’ll make a super washer-upper!”Β My husband retorted, Β “He won’t be doing the dishes he has four sisters!”

Needless to say, I was swift to correct his misapprehension!

In many ways, our children had a privileged upbringing, but I’m very proud of the adults they have become, they have remained unspoilt, bright, clever and independent, and importantly, they are kind and caring individuals.

(C) 2019 Word Prompt Character from Weekly Prompts

Clipart courtesy of Google.


21 thoughts on “Nurture, every time!

  1. Your children sound wonderful! I know you are so proud of each of them! πŸ™‚
    And the way you raised them is how we raised our kiddos.
    I can’t imagine raising kids today with cell-phones, iPads, etc. Yikes!
    When mine were growing up, we had one TV, one computer, and a family phone and we all shared. My kids told me about their friends who had their own TV’s, phones, computers, etc., in their bedrooms, but that wasn’t what was happening at our house. And we all survived. πŸ™‚
    AND my kids all turned out wonderful, too! My DIL has even thanked me, numerous times, for what a great husband my son is to her and what a great Dad he is to their children. πŸ™‚
    As a mom, and having been a teacher, I agree on the nature/nurture debate. We must celebrate and nurture children’s individual personalities and intellects…and take into account their individual temperaments…give guidance and good examples…helping them to try to lead with their good/positive characteristics, etc. πŸ™‚
    Excellent post, Sue! πŸ™‚
    And that quote is so true! I’ve been thinking along those lines recently and even did my blogpost this week on the importance of words. πŸ™‚
    HUGS!!! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

    1. What a lovely reply, thank you, Carolyn. I just knew your children would be lovely, just like their mom!

      The title of this post was a working title, I had intended to change it, but I put it on the scheduler for automatic publication and completely forgot! I’m glad you liked the quote.
      Thank you again, Carolyn πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome, Sue! πŸ™‚
        I feel honored and blessed and so grateful to have such great adult-kids. πŸ™‚
        I remember when teaching, the teachers in the schools would discuss the nurture/nature debate often. It was interesting for sure. It was a joy as a parent, and a teacher, to get to help nurture children. πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I had two brothers but the only thing expected of us was to go the bakers and the fish shop! My mother and her sister were treated as slaves (mum’s words) by the aunt they lived with. So she went the opposite way with us. My dad often said, β€œI think you should go help your mother” but never said to my brothers. Fortunately, I enjoyed helping, but she would never ask or tell us to do anything. Thank you Derrick.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Murphy's Law

    Our two girls were brought up with the same guidelines as your kids. They also learned to help neighbors (shoveling snow, raking leaves, walking their dog, etc.) without expecting anything in return….just the experience of doing something nice for someone. “It builds character” my dad would always say.

    I’ve never understood the thinking process of a parent who thinks giving their child/children everything they want on a silver platter is the right thing to do. I believe that’s how Donald Trump was brought up…..just look at him now!!

    In my childhood home, my brother didn’t have to do any household chores! πŸ™„πŸ˜‘πŸ˜³ I’ll leave it at that! Lol.
    Love your quote. Very thought provoking.
    🐾Ginger 🐾

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I do agree with you. Children need parents who are prepared to set those guidelines and good examples. I like your dad’s attitude. If only Donald Trump’s dad had shared those fine qualities. Thank you, Ginger πŸ™‚


  3. Your children have definitely been natured and nurtured superbly Sue, and your family’s upbringing and development of responsibility and character, sound very similar to my lovely childhood and the happy growing up times, I was fortunate to enjoy by my wonderful parents…. Maybe a strangely related article about ‘Character” πŸ€”πŸŒŽπŸ˜Š I’m posting soon

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much Ivor.
      I love the way you always speak about your mum and dad with such pride. I will keep
      a look out for your post. πŸ™‚


  4. gc

    Great article Susan. These days parents confuse “privileged” upbringing with “pampered”. Your manner of raising your children produced responsible adults. The parents who try to pamper and please their children have the notion of parental guidance all wrong. For these modern children there must always be a Daddy War Bucks around to foot the bill for their irresponsible spending habits. A tragedy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree with you love.
      I am certain I made mistakes along the way, none of us are perfect, but we worked out okay.
      Thank you for your input on this and for our prompt. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

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