Do As I Say, Not As I Do?

Krista - posted on 01/08/2011 ( 29 moms have responded )




In several threads, I've seen moms say things like "I don't drink soda in the house, because I don't let my kids drink it, so why should I be allowed?"

Maybe I'm weird, but I don't understand this attitude of forbidding yourself from x, y, or z, because you don't allow it for your kid and you don't want to be a hypocrite.

There are TONS of things that I'm allowed to do that my child will not be able to do until he is a) older or b) no longer under my roof. I'm allowed to drive the car. I'm allowed to have a drink of wine. I'm allowed to stay up late. I'm allowed to have sex in my bedroom. I'm allowed to start a fire in the furnace and use the big carving knife to carve up a roast. And yes, I'm allowed to drink my Diet Pepsi. Sam is not allowed to do any of those things -- he's my child, not my peer.

What is so wrong with just saying, "This is for grownups only. When you're grown up, you can do it too."?

Is there anything that you ladies no longer allow yourselves to have/do, solely because those things are forbidden for your kids?


[deleted account]

" If i get her use to great healthy food, she wont have cravings for crap when shes older."

That's great in theory but it doesn't always work out that way. We NEVER had junk growing up, never ate out, always had healthy homemade meals etc. and as soon as I was a teenager, I COMPLETELY rebelled against food. I ate at McDonald's whenever I could, became a junk food junkie, and lived a lot of years like that before I got back on track with healthy eating as an adult.

Sometimes when we push too hard one way, things backfire. Children want control and they'll take that control wherever and whenever they can get it.

Becky - posted on 01/09/2011




For me that statement applies more to modelling appropriate behavior. I don't want my kids to hit, so I don't hit them. I don't want them to think yelling is an appropriate way to express anger or frustration, so I try not to yell - not that I always succeed! I don't want them to call people names, so I try to never do it. I don't want them to swear, so I don't, etc. But as far as adult things like using knives, drinking coffee or alcohol, etc, I will do that around them and I just explain that it's a grown up thing and why - because Cole now asks why to EVERYTHING. aargh! If it's something that they are allowed to do but can't at that time, for whatever reason, then I don't do it in front of them, because that's not fair. For instance, if they're not getting a treat because they didn't finish their dinner, then I won't go get myself a bowl of ice cream, because that's just not fair to sit there and eat it in front of them and not share. And they'll beg and cry, and I'll give in because I'm a suck... gqtm

[deleted account]

I have no problem with telling my children "Do as I say not as I do" because I am the parent, its that simple.

Lady Heather - posted on 01/09/2011




The thing about the pop is that it's really not something anyone should be drinking regularly for the sake of their health. So I would have a really hard time explaining why I could partake in this unhealthy thing while my child could not. All the other things you listed are not the same sort of thing. They are things that children can't do because they are not yet cognitively, emotionally or physically able to do them yet.

I'm just curious as to how you explain to a child that soda isn't good for them, while consuming it yourself. I'm not talking about the odd treat here and there. Just regular consumption. We all have treats now and then, but I think if you expect your kids to maintain a healthy lifestyle, you probably should too. They might not trust your judgment if you do the opposite of what you say is healthy for them.

I try not to swear as much. I don't personally find swearing to be evil, but I figure other people don't like it and my kids have to deal with other people. I find I'm a lot more active now because I want to model that behavior for my kids.

Jodi - posted on 01/08/2011




"What is so wrong with just saying, "This is for grownups only. When you're grown up, you can do it too."? "

Nothing is wrong with it. The "I don't drink soda in front of my kids because' is ridiculous in my opinion.


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Shauna - posted on 01/10/2011




My parents used to tell me that crap when i was little... do as i say not as i do. I rebelled as soon as i was able. I did EVERYTHING they did. They smoked in front of me and said its bad for you...... so i stole their ciggs and smoked them!!!!! ... they drank in front of me .... so i stole their liquor and drank it!!!!! They cursed to me ... i had the biggest curssing vocabulary by time i was 5 and if one slipped id get my ass beaten ..... i say lead by example.

[deleted account]

I try to lead by example because it what i am telling them to do is probably better behaviour then what i would be doing. I also have to problems with telling they can't do something that i can. My daughter now asks "why mummy?" in her most annoying tone so that her brother will start up in the same tone and then she will turn to him and say "because mummy is the boss". To right kid, i'm glad she learnt early on.

[deleted account]

I admit to being a bit of a hypocrite, as I will swear but then tell my kids they shouldn't. When it comes to foods, well I do try to led by example but yes, if I am having a soda with my dinner (which I only do once a week at the most) I will allow my kids to have some. Obviously if I'm having a glass of wine or a cocktail I won't give it to my kids (not even a tiny taste) and I explain that alcohol is only for grown ups. Sometimes our kids do have to witness us doing things they are not allowed to do. I don't go out of my way to avoid such situations because it is good for kids to learn that there are rules in life and sometimes those rules are only for some people and not necessarily everyone.

Nikkole - posted on 01/09/2011




I just tell my son mommy and daddy are adults an we can do a lot more than kids and when your old enough you can do what you want! That goes for foods,drinks, stuff like that,

Shauna - posted on 01/09/2011




If i didnt want my kids to have soda, i wouldnt drink it either. Iead by example.

April - posted on 01/09/2011




I just don't offer my child soda. I drink it in front of him and he has tasted it before (without my consent, but I didn't scold him). He promptly spit it out and made the yuck face. Then it happened again a few months later and he did the same thing. I think the boy doesn't like soda...woo hoo!!!! Anyway, I think kids need to know that certain things are for adults only. At the same time, I don't think it is always necessary to rub it in their faces. I think doing the "forbidden thing" during nap or bed or when they're in school is a good idea too.

[deleted account]

I don't eat or drink anything that poisons my body. Daddy does on the other hand, love his pepsi. I am hoping that she learns from me and not him when it comes to food!! I don't ban certian foods from my house, just our diet. Daddy gets what he wants. If i get her use to great healthy food, she wont have cravings for crap when shes older.

[deleted account]

I don't necessarily change or exempt things from my life because my child is around BUT, I HATE that saying! My dad used to say that when I was a kid and it drove me nuts. That happened as a teenager/young adult though, which is why, at the time, it felt hypocritical to me.

Everything in moderation and YES, there are obviously things that we do that Roxanne is not allowed to do and she actually understands and accepts them quite humbly. I remember once her asking for a sip of Chad's pop and he explained to her that "pop is for mommy and daddy, but it's not good for kids" and she literally said, "ok!" and walked away. To this day she doesn't ask for anything except milk or water (and the OCCASIONAL glass of juice) and we have even accidentally left a can of Pepsi on the coffee table and she brought it to Chad and said, "here's your pop, daddy!"

Not sure why I felt the need to tell that story but, there you go...

Rosie - posted on 01/09/2011




nope, i feel the same way. the only thing i don't want them to do that i don't do is hit another person. most everything else i just say it's an adult thing, to bad.

Bonnie - posted on 01/09/2011




Yup we need to set good examples for our children and know right from wrong, but I don't think there is one habit I had before having kids (if they are even habits persay) that I don't have or do now because I have kids. Both my boys really like chips, cookies, and chocolate. Yes they do get them but only small amounts and in moderation. I have to sneak my craving every so often :-).

Jenn - posted on 01/09/2011




Actions speak louder than words. Do I want my children to grow up with my bad habits? Nope. So if I have a bad habit (say eating an ass load of junk food at night), then I don't do it in front of them.

Stifler's - posted on 01/08/2011




JuLeah makes a good point, we do need to set a good example with our personal habits. But there needs to be a happy medium of things only adults can do vs. things that everyone can do.

JuLeah - posted on 01/08/2011




I attempt to model good behavior, so I don't sit in front of the TV for hours on end, or the computer - even when feeling lazy. I attempt to model behaviors I want her to act out, so yes, in her company I do alter my behavior a bit. I pay more attention to my language for example. And, some things are for grown up and she understands that too.

[deleted account]

I only eat Dove dark chocolate 'candy' and chocolate Haagen-Dazs bars. ;) I buy them other stuff, but then.... they don't mind milk chocolate and actually eat some NON chocolate candy....

Charlie - posted on 01/08/2011




I only don't eat chocolate around Cooper because I don't want to share haha.

[deleted account]

For the most part, everything I do is ok for my kids to do (except the obvious things... like driving), but I haven't changed my life any to make that happen. They aren't allowed to touch my chocolate though... except rarely. They DO get their own, but mine is special. ;)

Charlie - posted on 01/08/2011




No , I am an adult and as an adult if I want to wind down with a glass of red wine I have every right to just as they will if they so desire when they are of legal age .

Stifler's - posted on 01/08/2011




i agree. especially with alcoholic beverages. i waited 18 years to be able to buy them, i'm not letting my 5 year old have one just because i have one. and i'm not not having one because they can't!

Kate CP - posted on 01/08/2011




Yea, I think swearing and anything that my child would NEVER be allowed to do are off limits. I don't rough house with the dogs any more because I don't want my daughter to think it's okay to do. But drinking soda, alcohol, cooking on the stove, driving the car...those are all grown up things that she can't do yet. I'd rather set an example of how to do those things the right way and in moderation (drinking, soda, etc) than not doing them at all.

Nicole - posted on 01/08/2011




I no longer allow myself to smoke. I quit smoking when I was pregnant with my first child. He's four, and I still don't smoke.

Also, if I am going to have a treat and do not want to share, I have it when the kids are in bed

Mrs. - posted on 01/08/2011




As far as food goes and soda, I don't eat or drink crap because I don't want to, cause it makes me sick. I'd rather my kid didn't, I'm not gonna have it in the house because I don't consume it...but kids have a will of their own.

The other things like bed time and all that, I do what's best for me and my health too and she can just suck it if she doesn't like it.

Veronica - posted on 01/08/2011




Swearing would be the only thing. We dont want to swear, and we def. dont want our kids to swear. But because we are their teachers, when we say 'shit', they say 'shit' -- we are pretty good about it - but there are still times a word will slip.

Otherwise, no - what i have and what i do is mine. Sometimes i do hide stuff, but its mostly when i go on my sweet binge or something, and i dont want to share my candy bar!! lol
I will tell the kids what is for a grown up when I dont want them having something, or doing something - we/I do.

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