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Future Little Science Experiments


  10:05:22 pm, by Nimble   , 838 words  
Categories: Thoughts, Common Sense, Ethics, People

Future Little Science Experiments

I have a casual plan in mind to call my future children "my little science experiments", with a twinkle in my eye.

It's odd to be contemplating children. I feel at once too young and well past old enough. You know it's an investment. You know your lives are not your own for the next twenty or so years. It will be worth it. Regardless of the mere concept of children, though, you can only be so prepared for the real thing when you finally meet them ;)

Everyone's got plans of some sort or another for their children. Thoughts about how to discipline them, how to bring them up, what battles to fight. I've put a little thought into that so far, and what follows is a perhaps meandering yet representative list of what I plan to do, without yet having the experience of children that may yet render some of my plans moot :)

  • When it comes to what my children want to be when they grow up, I will not mind if they go into the trades
  • Unless I get stinking rich, I am not buying my children new cars
  • I am not going to fight any battles over hair
  • I will endeavour not to dangle carrots in front of them to make them do things in the first place; I plan on surprising them with such rewards as I see fit from time to time after the fact
  • They will have themselves a clothing budget to buy their own clothes once they come of age, though we will buy them the sundries (underwear, etc.) if they wish. They will learn the true value of clothing on their own
  • I will model kindness to others regardless of race or station. That will be easy, because I already do it
  • If my children are willing to suffer the temporary embarrassment, around the age of eight, I will get them to use 'plus glasses' (reading glasses) for nearwork like reading or computers, and to take them off for all other pursuits. If they start going a little farsighted, we will stop for a time
  • I will understand that my older children will feel jealous of younger children; I will try to make sure they don't feel left out
  • I will teach my children about religions and their histories
  • I will teach my children how to be skeptical
  • I will teach my children that's it's okay to admit fault, and how to admit fault
  • I will probably teach my children at least one foreign language, despite how crazy it will drive my wife
  • I will try to take my children on a trip somewhere exotic, something which has rich experiences they can draw on for the rest of their lives
  • I will, as far as I'm able, stand as one with my wife against the kids on most issues
  • I will not tolerate smoking or drugs
  • I will teach my children how to be safe online and offline
  • As far as I'm able to keep the door open, I will make sure my children can talk to me about anything
  • If my children are lazy or dumb at school, they can take a failing grade; we will talk about options for the future, but I don't particularly care for excuses for the past
  • I will torment my children mercilessly with bad jokes
  • I will not tease my children about someone being their "boyfriend" or "girlfriend"
  • I will remember, as far as I am able, what it was like to be their age
  • I will not fret over my children's gender identity or sexual orientation, except inasmuch as knowing it may reduce the number of grandchildren
  • I will not fill up every spare minute of my children's time with hockey and tae-kwon-do and Toastmasters and the like; my children will be able to slow down and I'll be able to sleep
  • I apologize in advance for the required orthodontics, inability to get up in the mornings, insensitivity to painkillers or caffeine, heat sensitivity and taste buds that make coffee and squash taste like poison. Oh, and the possibly unbrushable curly hair
  • I do not want presents for Father's Day
  • I will teach my children about science, respect for others, the world, and self-confidence. I will not go about this in pop psychology fashion
  • If my children do need glasses, they will have access to glasses that look good

There's a lot more I could and would say. A lot of it is common sense, but the tone that ties it altogether is undeniably mine.

(I'll admit that the rewards-after instead of the carrot-before is undeniably from the psychology of partial reinforcement, but I like the approach regardless, just from mentally role-playing it a little and thinking about the surprises that most made me happy)

Fear our little progenies, for they will be cute for the first eight years. Then, ummm, well... well, they'll be cute again at some point :)

They'll be interesting kids, regardless, and I will love them to pieces :)

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