Being a mother means our everyday behaviors are being watched and emulated; what we do is as much a part of teaching a child as our words. If you spank a child for hitting another child, are you teaching the child not to hit or are you teaching him it is okay to hit? If you tell a child not to steal and you walk out of the store with more change than you were supposed to receive or an item that the sales clerk missed, and you don’t return to tell them, are you teaching your child not to steal?
I have learned by mistakes, failures, and successes that my behaviors are what taught my children, not my words. I left a store one day and dropped the change in my purse. Half way home from the journey I looked down and noticed I had a twenty dollar bill on top of several ones. I turned the car around and headed back to the store. My daughter said, “Are you going all the way back?” I said yes. The salesperson thanked me for returning. That one action I took taught my daughter a lifelong lesson. She returns to the store every time she is undercharged or given too much change. Teaching your child your values is in your actions.
BIO: About Dorothy (Sue) Laqua: I am a 51-year-old woman who is currently attending Minnesota State – Mankato and will be receiving my BS in Gender and Women Studies. I have worked in the human services field all of my life with developmentally delayed and mentally ill clients. I want to earn a master’s degree in my field of study with an emphasis on Ethnic Studies, and would like to work in a reentry program for women who have been incarcerated. I believe these women are the most marginalized in our society, and understand that they are stuck in a revolving door with no way out of poverty. Many of them are mothers who have little chance of rejoining their family and making it safe. I know that being a mother and a feminist can sometimes be at separate ends of the spectrum as we try to protect our daughters and in the same breath give them the freedoms of choice and equality. I have 4 children, and two step-children. I fostered two grandchildren and helped raise three young multi-cultural women. I also have seven grandchildren to complete my family. My husband and I live in a small agricultural community and spend a great deal of time volunteering by helping older persons or persons with disabilities.
I have just opened up a new blog at http://breakingthesilence-sue.blogspot.com.
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