Blogging 101: Be Inspired By the Community

http://modernblackdad.wordpress.com/2014/09/24/to-beat-or-not-to-beat-your-kids/

I commented on the above blog the other day. Its ironic that after having just spanked my 9 year old for being disruptive and disrespectful in music class, I clicked on it and thus my thoughts began to churn.

Let me preface the following by clarifying my position. All children do not respond the same to certain forms discipline. Spankings are not my first response to an issue. I make a stern personal effort to explore other options with my daughter before spanking. I believe in the learning process for children. Ultimately they need to be taught.

A few months ago I started thinking about the affects of spanking at the hands of a out-of-control parent. I thought about how damaging it can be to a child. I thought about myself and how I consider myself a fighter and how thats likely because Im not stranger to pain. I thought about how maybe…just maybe my having been spanked as a child made me tougher and less fearful of the world around me and how this attitude could be detrimental if I failed to be a balance person. The thoughts kept coming. I thought about my child and how meek and passive she is. I thought about her personality and how I want her to be well-rounded. I thought about how I raise her and could I be doing a better job. Those thought ended with my promising myself that I would see how much more effective I can be with other measures outside of spanking. Not because I fear what people think of me or my child but because I want to teach her more and use pain as a deterrent less

Before I became a parent I was a GO for corporal punishment. Why? Because I was and still am (but not as much as before I became a parent and received a new set of emotions and attitudes ) influenced by the way  my parents raised me. As parents ourselves, we inadvertently parent the way we were parented. Along the way we begin to develop our own standards but largely, our roots start with our parents.

I was spanked. I cant recall a time in which I felt as though my parents didn’t love me or that they were punishing me unjustly or abusively. Of course it hurt. Thats the point.Pain as a deterrent. Even as an adult looking back I don’t feel negatively affected by it. Which by the way, further illustrates why I have few qualms about it today…at least temporarily.

Times have changed drastically since the 1970s and 1980s. Our parents didnt have to combat the same type of issues and pressures that we have today as parents. On that same vein, our children arent the children that we were. We grew up in a different and more innocent era. Basically the parent v. child positioning has changed and I cannot say this change is for the better. These changes shape us and determine how we will respond to disciplining our kids. Im sure that we all can agree regardless of age or nationality that children as well as adults need discipline and structure in their lives. For some of us this involves spanking, whoppings, corporal punishment etc.

Lets BLine back to the changes that have occurred between the generations and how those changes affect the growing trend of parents that refuse to incorporate spanking in their parenting process and those that do.

Facebook didnt exist 18-30 years ago. There was no TMZ, YouTube, Reddit, etc. There were no mass outlets to report your family’s shortcomings. Our parents didnt have the nuisance of raising us on center stage and we werent growing up under the watchful eye of the internet, cell phone cameras, and overzelous neighbors.

Today nearly everything we do is exposed. We live in a READY JUDGE society.

When our children are unruly, violent, low performing, disruptive, disrespectful and dare I say it, imperfect…we want to, we need to, and must correct them before we are JUDGED.

Lets be honest, outside opinions influence what we do on the inside. Those of us that care what our peers think of us do not want them to formulate negative opinions of us. In this case, we don’t want people talking badly about us and our children so we do our best to make sure they behave and give a positive impression of us and our families. If/when they dont, we have to do something. We have to correct them. This translates into spankings for some parents. Time outs for others, deprivation of privileged, etc.

Parents spank for many reasons but if we put the pieces on a table…order them properly, they are all cause and effect.
Bad children attract negative perceptions, negative perceptions are unwanted…this leads to damage control…control the children that are causing the negative perception. control entails corporal punishment (optional).

Unfortunately…too many people have leaped completely over the line that divides corporal punishment and physical abuse. Children are being severely beaten and some are just being slowly murdered by the hands of their parents. Discipline is a process not a one swipe resolution. And when parents dont know what discipline is, dont know how to administer it.

Its not surprising that many people have began to look at themselves in the mirror and decide that corporal punishment has no place in their home. No loving and well-meaning parent wants to look into the mirror and see themselves as a chronic abuser. And sometimes this is the misinterpreted view that we have of ourselves because corporal punishment has developed a stigma.

This stigma can be attributed to both abusive parents, media sensationalism, and the invasion of privacy by outsiders. What is viewed as excessive by one person can be viewed as slight by another. Who gets to make the determination? Here is where the friction starts.

This is what has parents on the side of “I dont know what I can and cant do to discipline my child so I’ll do nothing” and others on the side of “Im going to report anyone who is disciplining their child in a way that I deem excessive.”

Its a CATCH 22 perhaps.

As a parent you’re damned if you do discipline your kids (and that way is disagreed upon by the masses) and you’re damned if you dont discipline your child because without discipline (and structure…children, like most things, will fall apart and run a muck.)

Whats a parent to do? Where is the happy medium here?
Do parents yield to the judgement and not discipline their kids the way they see fit?
Does corporal punishment need to be outlawed?
Does law enforcement need to provide better support and assistance with problem children if they are going to interfere with parents rights?

Your thoughts and opinions are welcomed.

Give and Take: Dialogue (Writing101)

I stammered…”ok ok picture this”
“…think of it as a number line…0 is in the middle. To the left of the zero is everything negative. To the right, is everything positive. Now instead of numbers being on the line, there are different degrees of love and hate. Hate is on the negative side…love is on the positive side”
I was really trying to explain myself which is something I don’t do often. I try to let me speak for myself but today it was apparently no use.
She replied back, “ What?!?” with a sarcastic look on her face. That face that says I get it but Im going to let you go on the passionate rant of explaining yourself.
I dug deeper trying to get her to understand…”Im not like you. You’re full of indifference. You often feel no way at all, don’t think anything at all about something. Im not like that”.
That’s when I got her attention more. She felt insulted or slighted in some way. Offending someone seems to be the best way to get their attention.
“The two ideas cannot compare. They aren’t remotely the same. You’re telling me that you are never anywhere in between with how you feel but you give me a number line of variation to describe yourself? That’s crazy” she was beginning to sound condescending.
I was beginning to get flustered.
“Yes, that’s right, maybe I need to sketch this out for you” I said, looking around for something to scribble on. I wanted her to literally get the picture…I wanted her to know how I operate.
“Seriously…hear me out” I said…”…on either side of the 0 there is either love or hate. How far you go in either direction determines how much I love or hate. Still it’s one of the two, not both, and if it happens to be zero, its likely because I haven’t had enough time to form an emotional opinion or I don’t care“ I was really trying to drive the point to her. I hate being misunderstood. So many things are lost in translation when two people didn’t understand each other.
I think she was beginning to get it. That or she had become tired of trying. I spoke again…”That is comparable to you because you can have no emotion or opinion at all about something or someone and I guess what Im trying to say is that I have one. Always. Even if its neutral. And Neutral for me usually means…I don’t care enough or I don’t have time to inquire” I went on, “I can ask you if you’re hungry and you might say you don’t know. How do you not know if you’re hungry or not? I can ask you if you’re a fan of Country Music you’ll say something like ‘Ive never really thought about it, I might’ What is that?”
This is what I loved about her. We can talk about ANYTHING. I am a chronic overthinker. She knows this and she still engages me. Most women are discussing men, babies, and fashion…she and I are debating how we feel about nothing in particular. Classic!
I thought I had won her over and we’d move on to discussing something less tangled. She turned around and said, “ok, ok…so tell me this…put this on your little scale of love and hate…since you ALWAYS know how you feel” She was being a jerk… I anticipated some frog prince comparison that was impossible to choose. We did that. We’d ask one another silly questions like Who would you rather sleep with…Flava Flav or Ol Dirty Bastard? Two equally unattractive guys by our own standards lol but the look on her face said something different. She hit me with it…”How do you feel about Kingston now? Where does he fall on this measuring stick of yours? We haven’t talked about him in a while. Surely he has a Love, Hate, or Neutral placeholder”.
I was expressionless.
TBC.

Interesting…who is the most interesting person or people Ive met thus far during 2014?

I really had to ponder on this one. “Who is the most interesting person (or people) you’ve met this year?” I had to go back through my Instagram posts to see if I took pictures of the most interesting people Ive met thus far because I surely cannot remember them. Ha! Classic.
I worked on this all day and I cant come up with one person that I found so interesting that they stand out in my mind. Is this bad? This is bad. Either I have to get out more or Im no longer entertained and intrigued by the people I meet. It’s September. The year is ¾’s over and Im drawing a blank. Wow.
Im puzzled.

Unincorporated Me: Unit 3 ReceptiNONE

Yes, you read that title correctly. ReceptiNONE is a word I just crafted. It stands for NO RECEPTIONIST EVEN THOUGH there’s a clear need for one and a space carved out in the front lobby for one.

Receptionist: Our office resides in a small upscale office building. We indirectly boast a level of professionalism that rivals most offices. The office layout is an original design. The art pieces were handpicked. Even the tile and carpets were designers. This place isn’t shabby by any means. The guests that we host arent either. We welcome quarterly partnership meetings, wholesaler meetings, client meetings, proposal meetings, etc. You name it its been held here and or it will be. But often upon entering our office…we do not have a receptionist to greet our guests, sign for packages, answer and direct incoming calls, provide assistance to the company leaders, etc. The absence of this component pretty much shames the latter. The receptionist is one of the most important people a company hires. This is the person that your clients and guests will speak to first, they will see him/her first. This person represents what your company stands for and what your company wants to convey. When the first impression of your company is weak this vibrates throughout.

Case & Point: You have a very important meeting scheduled. Your guest arrives to the lobby. He or she cannot get into the actually lobby area because of the security doors so he has to ring the bell. He has to ring it more than once because the receptionist is not present, not at all, not today. He eventually makes his way in by way of another employee who after the 2nd or 3rd time of hearing the bell decides to unlock the doors to let the person in. I wonder what your guest is thinking right now? You are told that your guest has arrived. Thereafter he waits alone until you emerge to being the meeting. What went wrong here?

The office wasn’t prepared for your meeting, your guest had to make his presence known 2/3 times by ringing the bell, and thereafter he is left alone until you arrive for your meeting.
Not to mention phone calls that are routed to the receptionist before they go anywhere else. This is a stall in communication because the receptionist is out so the lines have to roll to other available lines before the caller is assisted…if assisted.

When couriers and delivery persons arrive…its a given they are on a tight schedule. Standing outside someone’s office with packages isnt the best use of anyone’s time but thats what happens when the head of your organization is not present.

Unfortunately an absent receptionist desk is also a target for thieves and scammers. When people see that your company lacks specific key presence its vulnerable.

The Receptionist is the first impression and first impressions are not second impressions on repeat. If your offense is a failure your battle form is doomed.

Writing 101: Be Brief, Pass it On!

I brought a jacket from a thrift store. It was classic vintage. Brown rustic soft leather. Silk lining. A bit worn around the seams but that’s the point of vintage.

I wanted to have it cleaned before I wore it. I was ok with vintage but I wasn’t ok with someone else’s b/o. I rechecked the zippers and snaps, both side pockets and the inside pocket. There I felt a piece of paper. I pulled it out. It was an envelope. A small letter envelope with no names. Just addresses. Handwritten.  Both addresses were the same. Odd. I forged ahead.dropped the letter in my purse as I left the dry cleaners and made a mental note to put the letter in the mail later. Maybe someone forgot to mail it. It hadn’t been postmarked.
When I got home I decided to Google the addresses. Turns out they’re nonexistent. I tried several more sites and I began to get curious. I wanted to know what was in the envelope but I didn’t think it was right to open it without trying to find the owner.

I mulled over it for a couple of days, asked some friends what I should do. They were puzzled as to why something to minor was so consuming of my time. I didnt know the answer. There could have been a life changing message, an emergency notification, money! It could have been anything. And Im holding it. So I did what any person in my position would do. I opened it.

One measly sheet of paper with a few lines on it. I started to just throw it away without reading it but I had come this far…why not?

So I read it.

 

Dear Recipient, if you have found this letter, you have also found opportunity.

I thought…Oh God a damn chain letter! I knew I should have thrown it away!

I continued reading.

This is not a chain letter. Nothing bad will happen to you if you dont pass it along. You wont inherit millions if you do. It will cost you nothing to do what I just did by leaving this note in the pocket of an old jacket. As a matter of fact, I wont even know if you do it or not so you have nothing to lose.

By now Im a bit intrigued so I keep reading…

If you dont believe in love, Im here to tell you that love is real. It is possible to fall in love, love until you’re breathless, fall out of love, and love again but you have to believe that it is possible. If you dont, you’re likely to never experience it. Open your heart to give and receive love. Thats all you have to do. And one other thing…pass it on. 

Ah ha! I thought! This is a chain letter. Damn it!

To no one in particular, in no specific manner, tell someone else how it is possible to love. Even if you didnt know before, you do now. I just told you. And if you already knew, consider this affirmation. Again, if you dont do it, there’s no curse, there’s no reward…pass it on.

So you know what I did right!?

I balled that note up…tossed it in the garbage…and begin writing my own so that I could pass it on!