From Dr. Jane's Notebook


What Are We Teaching Our Children?


Lawsuits have almost become a national past time, a kind of sport, or worse, a way to make money off of others. In my worst nightmare, the world will go on strike due to fear of lawsuits. Doctors will refuse to treat patients, neighbors will be afraid to help their neighbors, and no one will be willing to do anything for anyone else, because it will be a risk to be helpful to others.

I worry a lot about the messages we send to our children. As individuals become more greedy, less forgiving and more revengeful, what lessons we are teaching our kids? How long can this vicious cycle continue? Just last week, I heard children discussing their career aspirations. One child said she wanted to be a doctor. The other advised her against going into medicine. She had heard that doctors stay up all night helping their patients, and then get sued in the morning. Here are a few more thoughts on matter.

When you Thought I Wasn’t Looking

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw you hang my first painting on the refrigerator, and I wanted to paint another one.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw you feed a stray cat, and I thought it was good to be kind to animals.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw you make my favorite cake, just for me, and I knew that little things are special things.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I heard you say a prayer and I believed there is a God I could always talk to.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I felt you kiss me goodnight, and I felt loved.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw tears come from your eyes, and I learned that sometimes things hurt, but its all right to cry.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw that you cared and I wanted to be everything I could be.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I looked... and wanted to say thanks for all the things I saw when you thought I wasn’t looking.

. . . Author unknown

As this poem so clearly describes, our children are watching us, listening to us, and learning from us. For their sake and ours, we must be careful of how we behave and know that at all times, we are teaching our children.

ęCopyright, 1997, 1999, Jane R. Rosen-Grandon. All rights reserved.

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Last Updated February 27, 1999 by Gary M. Grandon, Ph.D.