The lexicon (of sorts) of oppressive parenting:

“Man up”
“You’re not as _______ as you used to be.” (compliment veiled in criticism or vice versa)
“Why can’t you be more like ________.”
Differing expectations of different genders
Grouping siblings together
“dysfunctional family” (define dysfunction.)
Comparative dysfunction
Cycle of abuse
“Boys can’t be princesses.”
Invalidating fears/”irrational” fears
Infantilizing/fear of independence of children
Control issues
Power dynamics
“Pray away the gay”
“Why are you doing this to me!”
Stigma of free range kids
Boundaries vs. natural/logical consequences
“goody two shoes”
Birth order (oldest=more discipline, youngest=neglected)
Pressure to have children
“I was a fucking stubborn bastard.” -Carey Neal Dunn


In summary, as the crowd was mostly people who didn’t have children, we discussed how our relationships with our parents were and were not oppressive. The takeaway for me, as a parent, was that kids end up ok either way, so they might as well be free (easy to say, less easy to practice – especially when your 15 year old isn’t doing his homework and is sleeping all day.)

The ultimate takeaway was “All that shit we talked about that your parents did that was oppressive? Don’t do that shit to your kids.”

Next week’s teach-in (5/20 at 5 PM) will be on the topic of Environmental Racism at Pease Park (near the volleyball courts.) Facebook event link  /Google Calendar event link

The following week is Harvey Milk Day, and we will not have a teach-in. I will be working on the June/July/possibly August calendar this week. Thanks so much for all who have participated in these discussions.

One Response

  1. Well at least a lot of parents now have wised and don’t do the things their parents did to them. But like you say, people turn out ok anyway.

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