Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Sensitive Issue

Well, after the bring down post I left you with on Monday, I thought I should quickly get back to the funny.  Good thing I've got three girls who provide me with plenty of that!  

Andy and I try our best to teach our girls to be kind, sensitive to other's feelings, and tolerant of different kinds of people, regardless of shape, size, color, religion or sexual orientation.  I've always felt that we had done a pretty good job so far.  Perhaps a little to good in the case of Sonya, and Lana may need a bit more work.  

Lana is four, almost five, and is one of those kids who has no filter.  I recently found out she said something to one of my friends, which I was mortified by.  She asked this particular friend of mine why he/she was fat.  I guess she's asked him/her a couple of times now.  OH LANA!  This is something Sonya would NEVER do.  I wasn't around when she asked this, and I guess Sonya even scolded Lana for saying it.  We talk about how it isn't nice to say that to people and it could hurt their feelings, but apparently Lana does not care.  (See post from Monday about her having no empathy/sympathy. )  I know she doesn't really get it and I apologized to this friend of mine and I apologize to her/him again now.  So sorry!  Lana is just going to be that blunt to the point girl who doesn't think before she speaks.  Okay, that just sounded a little like me, but I am MUCH better than I used to be and would never ask someone why they are fat.  At least I wouldn't ask that NOW anyway.  

In contrast, Sonya has been beside herself this Christmas season because of everyone calling one particular person fat.  Santa Claus.  

About a week ago I was saying something about Santa.  Somehow I must have said something about Santa being fat.  I mean it's no surprise.  It gets talked about in songs, poems and Christmas shows, how Santa is fat and jolly.  I never really thought about it before.  So after I said whatever it was I said about Santa and his size, Sonya said to me,

"Mommy, that is not nice!"

"What isn't nice, Sonya?" I had zero idea what I said that she was so offended by.

"About Santa being fat!  That could hurt his feelings!" She insisted.

"Ummm...noooo..., Santa is okay with it," I tried saying.

"How do you know?" She challenged. "It's not nice to call people fat, even if they are." 

Huh.  Well.... I was completely flummoxed as to what to say to her.  I mean on the one hand she was right.  This IS what we had taught her.  On the other hand, it's SANTA!  He's SUPPOSED to be fat.  We like him to be fat and encourage it, by leaving milk and cookies for him.  In the beginning of Rudolph he is stressed out and skinny.  Mrs. Claus tries to force feed him saying, "Who's ever heard of a skinny Santa?" (yes, I just watched it two days ago. It's my favorite holiday special.)  

I never really did give her a good answer.  I just said something about him eating lots of milk and cookies and that is why he is so fat.  Her response to that was,

"Yes!  But people should stop calling him fat!"

You guys, this has been an ongoing conversation for over a week now.  Just about every day she gets upset about someone saying Santa is fat.  They even wrote letters to Santa at school, and she asked him in her letter if it hurts his feelings when people say that.  Then Andy asked her to draw some Christmas pictures for us.  Her picture of Santa is almost anorexic. (See below) I am not sure what else to say to her at this point.  I feel like this is a total FAIL moment as a parent.  I did my job as far as making her sensitive to other's feelings, but now I can't explain why it's okay for this one certain person to be fat and for us all to say it.  I think I may have the most "politically correct" seven year old on the planet.  I wouldn't be surprised if she made us leave out cucumbers and tomatoes for Santa this year instead of the milk and cookies.  I suppose that would be better for the Santa waistlines in this house anyway.

So if you know my kids, or ever meet them, and you want an honest answer about something, ask Lana.  On the other hand, Sonya will sugar coat anything, if you are in need of an ego boost.  

svelte Santa


Bethanndoddkoehn said...

Clearly,after reading this, I will only speak to Sonya and steer clear of that middle girl. Until we know more about the little one I will engage cautiously.


Hollyhome said...

I may need to take a lunch with Lana...she could probably set me straight on several issues! OH and if I could borrow her to spend the day with my husband to point out his faults that would be great too! OH and I would like to take her to the USPS every time...they need to hear it straight!
LOL I figure between your Lana and my AJ we can right the world one accidental insult at a time. We can send the big girls in to clean up the wrath left behind :)
I guess I appreciate this post because I have shied away from discussing my own middle daughters lack of censorship...wondering where I went wrong. Guess I didn't go wrong...some kids are meant to be Oprah...some are meant to be Nancy Grace! LOL