Thursday, 11 January 2007

Counter Cultural Parents

One aspect of raising counter cultural kids is to be counter cultural parents. So, for example. we are committed to each other regardless of what the future may bring - for better for worse was the promise we made, and we will honour that. That simple fact gives our kids a great deal of security - especially in an environment where they see their friends’ parents splitting up and all the problems that entails. One part of that is not using artificial contraception, but rather natural family planning. One could speculate about why, but the statistical data is clear: couples using NFP are vastly more likely to stick together than couples using artificial contraception.

Other ways in which we are different from the modern norms: we don’t owe money other than the mortgage on our house, and never borrow to buy things we can’t afford; Anna has given up her professional job to be able to bring the kids up; I work freelance, and keep as much of the holidays and half terms clear as I can. That means money can be tight (we haven’t had a family holiday away from home for years) but it feels worth it for other reasons. We aren’t great ‘consumers.’ We spend a lot of time with the kids - just hanging around with them as well as in more structured activities; we read a lot, we enjoy music, both performing and listening, we go to the theatre, we pursue hobbies and interests which all the family can enjoy (walking, climbing, sailing, cycling etc.) we play family games: card games, board games, charades etc. We work actively to educate the kids in our values and also to be critical and independent thinkers: an interesting balance to strike. We read to the little ones, and discuss the books the older ones are reading with them. And much of this is possible simply because we don’t have a TV - which frees up a huge amount of time and energy for many of these other activities.

1 comment:

S said...

Spot on.

Agree 100% with your letter to the school. A group of parents in our school have been experiencing the same. No doubt it is the Channel Four 'living and growing' programme. There needs to be a national awareness of the truth behind these videos. The government has spent a huge amount of money to produce them.

We have set up a yahoo group called parentsforumse23 which may interest you.