Children have to know their limits when dealing with each other – and for expert Deanne Carson, that begins when she is a baby. BRIGITTE editor Henning Hönicke wonders if there is not a good idea behind the absurd demand. In the video you can see how Carson herself represents her idea!
No, that’s not a joke. The woman is very serious: parents, according to expert Deanne Carson, should ask their children for permission to change their diapers. Only with the consent of the baby, they can then clean the bottom, everything else would be bad for the development of the baby.
Now, most babies from birth are less likely to speak so well, let alone give clear approval for kaka wiping. But that’s not a problem at all, according to Carson: Parents should simply keep eye contact with the baby and make him understand that his reaction is definitely registered and important.
What a nonsense – or not?
Of course, that sounds like one of those stupid ideas parents use to mess up their babies every day. But Carson is really talking about one important point: respect for the child’s body and his fundamental right to decide who should touch it. Sure, babies are being wrapped, basta, they can scream as much as they want (that’s why we wrap them). But in fact it’s not about the baby. It is, as with many of these education tips, in fact about us parents.
Even parents have to get to know borders
Because we are used to dealing with “our” baby as the situation demands, without asking any questions (that would be even better). If the baby is later a child, who can talk to us (and argue!), This relationship has simply gone into flesh and blood. And often we overlook the point where we allow the child to set boundaries that we must respect.
Many of us may know this even from our childhood, when we as a toddler unquestioned about a strange grandmother with the words “So cute!” were kissed or tickled by a “funny uncle” until it hurt. Nothing that really would be “abuse”, but it was still annoying. Much worse was and is the message that sticks in the head of a child: adults are allowed to do what they want with you, you have to endure that.
Bad idea: adults with automatic “access right”
Is that dramatic now? Usually not – of course no child dies because it does not really want to sit on an adult’s lap and still sits there. But why should it have to? If we found it unpleasant earlier, why should we ask the same nonsense to our own children? So that her aunt, who is visiting extra, is not offended? Why are other people entitled to child cuddles and the child himself, on the other hand, is not entitled to say no?
Borders have to be learned
Because then we are suddenly at the bitter heart of the story: If the child is used to the fact that adults can decide on his body (and yes, even mean gestures fall under it), it will not even open in the case of actual abuse. How should it be if it has learned that you can not resist touching, even if it is unpleasant.
And there we are again with the parents, who should ask for the winding permission. This is and remains absurd – and yet has the honorable task of accustoming the parents to take into account the limitations and needs of their children.
No goodnight kiss, no drama
I did not ask my kids for permission before every diaper, and that did not hurt them. But when my now six-year-old son did not want a good night kiss after a fight (my fault, I did not want to allow Nutella as a substitute for toothpaste), I respected that – as did my other son’s request, not tossed my head off unasked get it (no matter how proud I am of him).
I sincerely hope that my children will know later in life that only they alone will decide with whom they will exchange affection – and, on the other hand, allow this fundamental right throughout their lives to the people around them.