Are They Made or Born?

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There is a child who is in our lives that I sort of wish wasn’t. By this, I mean the kid is an a-hole in the making. It is a painful, yet fascinating process to watch.

But yet, was this the way the child came out of the womb? Did he come out of it completely defiant, rude, and with the penchant for stomping on people’s feet simply because doesn’t like what they are saying?

Or is the fault of the parents?

Why is it that the mother can watch the boy as he deliberately obstructs tee ball practice as he sits down in mid-field, or purposely throws the ball the other way? Or somehow not see as he sticks his tongue out to adults who are in charge?

Well, she did at least give him a time-out when he stomped on the coach’s foot.

I’ve heard her make excuses for her ignoring of his behavior, as if it will one day all just magically disappear. It’s just a phase, you know. The path of least resistance is one this mother is all too familiar with. In fact, I think it has bench alongside it with her name on a plaque, that’s how often she uses it.

All kids do indeed have their phases. But when is such behavior a phase, and when is it obvious to all but the parents that this is ingrained behavior? And even if it’s a phase, it still needs to be addressed, stat.

So tell me, are children like this a product of nature, or nurture?

4 Responses to “Are They Made or Born?”

  1. Hillary April 7, 2009 at 4:10 pm #

    I think it’s both, actually. I think every child has this behavior in them (nature), but parents help to teach their children not to give in to it. (Nurture)

  2. ayla April 7, 2009 at 5:45 pm #

    Both. A penchant for bad behavior can be nature. Allowing it to continue is nurture. If it were my child, I would be telling him it is okay to be angry, but it is NOT okay to ruin things for everyone else. Bah. So many parents don’t set any GD limits!

  3. galadrium April 7, 2009 at 6:52 pm #

    Nurture needs to tend to nature. Kids come with certain predispositions, but it’s up to parents to encourage the good ones and discourage the bad ones.

  4. Pencils April 8, 2009 at 11:22 am #

    It can be both. Every child has a tendency to an inborn personality. But how the child is raised has a huge influence on that. I believe that even a child who naturally tends toward rudeness or bad behavior can be taught how to behave properly, if the parents try hard enough. Just as I believe that a naturally tractable, sweet-natured child can be ruined by bad parenting. The child who interrupts T-ball wants attention, attention he is not getting from his mother. I feel sorry for the kid, he’s not getting the parenting that he obviously needs. Some kids are OK when parented using a method of benign neglect, but I don’t think most kids can handle it well.