I’m Not Afraid to Protect My Children

Call me crazy, but I have never left my newborn out in the street and expected her to crawl home.

I'm Not Afraid to Protect My Children

I never took my toddler to Walmart and left him in the store, expecting him to find his own way to the car.

I don’t have the habit of taking my 7-year-old out into the forest and letting her find her own way to the camp site.

I actually make my children wear coats when it’s cold, and I don’t let them play out in thunder storms. I have even been known to coerce them to eat nutritious food for dinner rather than cake and candy!

I have further sheltered them by insisting they do not play on rail-road tracks, in the middle of freeways, or hang out in drug-dens.

Yes, I unabashedly keep my kids from harm in any way I can, especially at very tender ages; not just physical harm, but emotional and spiritual as well.

My younger children seldom play alone with others outside of our family. They don’t go into neighbor’s houses, and, with few exceptions, neighbors’ children are not found in our home (and, by the way, we know our neighbors by name and speak with them and help them regularly).

When we do socialize, it is as a family, and even then closely monitored. Even if they are being watched during a church service, a family member is there with them (once a pedophile posing as a children’s church worker took our then 7-year-old to a back room during service, so we upped our oversight).

Now, as the children mature and grow in stature these parameters are relaxed a great deal. Their circle of influence widens to include more of the outside world, and often their friends come over and are treated like part of the family (meaning they are expected to help with chores, etc.), but even so that is monitored according to the needs of our family until a young person leaves the nest.

It doesn’t matter that our lifestyle meets with anyone else’s approval, it is what God has told us to do in accordance to how He has created us with our particular personalities and needs, and it has born wonderful fruit. My children know a few very wonderful things that are missing in most of us:

  • They know where they belong, and they know who they are apart from any group.
  • Home is a safe place, a retreat from the noise.
  • One can be sociable and kind to many, but true friends are where your focus should be.
  • There should be time to think, reflect, and just be yourself without the intrusion of outside evaluation.

My older children all grew up in this way, and now as adults are not stunted at all. They function quite well in any and all social situations. They know how to get along with others without being double-minded because they aren’t constantly evaluating themselves according to what others might think.

They are managers and coordinators and leaders and teachers. People depend on them. They sing and play instruments before audiences and they speak before audiences. They know how to make others feel welcomed and relaxed.

Of course, when they were younger they often awkward around guests, but that is according to personality and age; everyone experiences a little of that. Sometimes the older ones have learned about friends through trial and error–that comes with life, too. I am not saying that our sheltering produced super-socialized human beings, just that it gave them a more secure foundation from which to process the relationships in their lives.

There have been studies done on how well homeschoolers do socially when compared to public schooled individuals, and I guess this data could be important to someone who needs scientific backup, but I couldn’t care less. My children are not numbers, and they don’t fit well into categories (I don’t believe any of us fit well into categories). They are eternal, intrinsically valuable, unique individuals created in the image of God, and I expect that each one will defy the statistics in one way or another (either positively or negatively, depending on the perspective).

I personally have come to the conclusion that children raised in a peer-dependent environment grow up “socialized” all right, but in a way that kills the human spirit. They grow up never quite knowing who they are and are easily influenced by anyone and everyone who uses big words to describe things that should be common sense and call themselves “experts.”

How many of us silly adults make life-changing decisions after considering advice from some article in a supermarket magazine, or, worse yet, from watching some pompous, self-proclaimed national counselor on TV? No wonder people don’t understand why we shelter our children; we have all been conditioned from the earliest ages that growing up naturally, among parents and those who love us, is not “normal,” even when we have all suffered to one extent or the other at the hands of teachers and fellow students at early, tender ages.

Coddling a 30 year old is sin; coddling a 5 year old is called PARENTING.

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10 thoughts on “I’m Not Afraid to Protect My Children”

  1. Yes agree! Newer thinking in parenting says we should expose our kids to stuff early on basically so we can have conversations about the topic BEFORE they have those conversations with their peers. Ah! I pray that my kids can keep their innocence. There’s no reason for them to know everything. I don’t even like to watch the news for myself because I start to get anxious from all the evil going on.

  2. Corrie Ten Boom has a great story about this in her book. It has to do with not expecting children/people to carry things they aren’t ready to carry. I think her father asked her to pick up a very heavy suitcase, and she couldn’t. He told her that she would one day grow strong enough to lift the case, and that there were some things she would be told when she was old enough to ‘carry’ them. ūüôā

    • Thank you for reminding me of that story. Another illustration as to why we shouldn’t give our children more than they can handle at such tender ages.

  3. Amen! I was recently criticized for watching over/protecting my children by my sister, who wanted some of my children to sleep overnight. We have made it a rule to not do sleepovers and she was shocked, even though that was how both of us were raised by our parents. Most of my adult friends were sexually abused at sleepovers when they were children – I am the only one in our group of friends that was not – and I credit that mostly to not having slumber parties.

    • We don’t do sleepovers, either. My mom was really protective of my sister and I when we were young even though she was a working mother, and I’m so glad she did!

  4. True…. I wish my parents were “you.” Well at least the mentality of protection. There is some stuff that is not worth dealing with under the age of 20.

    Yes, we live near Amish. They speak German. They do speak english, and I don’t know how much …..just enough to survive in life. Occasionally there will be a drop-out…..but it seems it is because they believe the world system “works” ……it doesn’t work for good of humanity.

    I’ve been in church camps and so forth. Though I did work at disability camp, and learned a lot. …….there were pockets of “drug culture” and the fruits of it were some of the disabled campers.

    Expose the children to disabled folk…..but protect children from the “night shift”……. Yes, senile men do things, Not one man (and sometimes woman) can be trusted. Culture doesn’t matter. Each culture has these types.

  5. PS…… do not make the “duggar” mistake of over-exposing the children.

    Yes they protected. But ……over exposing the child’s “talents” can backfire into rebellion. A position where they don’t believe authority is there to protect from harm.

    Stuff like that has happened in Mennonite groups too. But because the parents are not willing to give “knowledge” such odd Hollywood behaviour, the older child-adult will be willing to repent and turn from corruption.

    I have cousins who are doctors, lawyers and so forth (some are related to same group of ancestry as Kardashians and Benny Hinn). The parents were not willing to “brag” about the children, hence better behaviour and putting the knowledge to good use.

    I also have some who “rebelled” into corrupt lifestyle. Reason? The father and his lack of awknowlegement of mother?? I don’t really know. They lived pretty secular city life. But, I do know she picked up some friends who were not good godly choices.

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