Not only do we have to invite every kid to the party, no teams lose, everyone has to share...
Every team wins?! What the hell?? Nope. In life, there are winners and losers. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. It happens to all of us. I lost student council secretary in 5th grade. I was super disappointed. I lived. I tried again in high school. I lost that too. I have definitely learned how to lose. I've also won some stuff at some point, all of which are escaping me at the moment (see, the losing really does shape us!) Our kids need to learn how to lose AND how to win. They need to learn how to lose and cope and deal with their feelings, they need to learn how to win graciously.
Everyone has to share. Ok I get it. Sharing is caring and all that character counts jazz. But seriously, kids shouldn't have to share everything. Sometimes, kids need to learn it's okay to say no about a special item or something they aren't done using. And the kid who wants it needs to learn to respect no. That either that thing belongs to that person and he's not getting it, or he needs to patiently wait his turn. He's not entitled to what that other kid has. A has things that I don't make her share. I'm sorry parents, if you or your kid are offended by that, but there are things that are special to her (or to me) that I don't require her to share. It's not everything and sure, I intervene if she's not sharing at all, or if she's hoarding toys, or just being generally selfish, but I also respect her personal boundaries. She has learned the other way, too. If another kid doesn't want to share, well, she has to deal with it. It's called coping and it's important because life isn't fair. At all.
Let's just look at some of this from the perspective of adulthood. Winning and losing. Pretty obvious. If there were no winners or losers, we'd have no presidents, no scholarships, and the Superbowl would be really lame. Winners. Losers. Real life.
As far as sharing... well, if you have to share everything, then I would like to use your Lamborghini for the day good sir. New iPhone6? Don't mind if I do. I mean come on. Sure, it's cool to borrow things from friends or family, certain things, but there are limits. That's the point I'm making here.
I think as a society, we've gotten soft. Come on, now, I'm not that old. Things can't have changed that much... but they have! I love my little girl more than anything in the world. And I want to give her everything she wants in this world and keep her from all pain. But I know, unfortunately, that that is just not realistic. It is my responsibility as her parent to make sure she doesn't turn into an asshole. We aren't just raising kids, we are raising people. They are one day going to be adults, and what was ingrained in them in childhood is going to carry over into their adulthood. So let's teach them how to cope and deal with inevitable disappointment, how to respect others' space, how to work hard and earn things, how to be caring and curious and polite and generous but be just tough enough. I don't want to thicken her skin into rough calluses, I just want her to be just tough enough. It's a fine line to walk, I know, but right now, I think the general way it's being handled is teetering dangerously off that line and into a very bad place.
What say you? Let's have some open communication on this. I'm interested in what you have to say. Respect others' opinions while standing your ground and let's have a dialogue on preparing our children for the big, scary world out there and whether or not this is helping.