Sunday, May 18, 2008

~Isn't Ballet All About Discipline~

This is a topic that has been bothering me for a few weeks and I just need to get it out.

My daughter, Mona Lisa, is a dancer. At her studio they have a dress code. She is required to wear a specific color of leotard, pink tights, and pink ballet slippers. Another requirement is to wear their hair in a bun. The first day of class parents are allowed to watch. We all sat there as the teacher explained the dress code and showed them the variety of ways to pull their hair back. Because I think it's important for my daughter to show respect to her teachers, I have always enforced the dress code and she's never fought it. However, most of the girls in class don't even pull their hair back at all.

A few weeks ago a mom approached me and asked how I convinced my daughter to put her hair into a bun. I told her that I just told Mona Lisa that it was part of the dress code. The mom then said she could barely convince her daughter to wear a ponytail and that it was ridiculous to fight it. Is she kidding? Who's in charge? If my daughter refused to wear a bun or follow any other part of the dress code, I would refuse to pay for her class and I would definitely not drive her there.

This reminded me of a blog entry I read a few months ago. The author was frustrated about a situation and her husband made the comment that "it's because parents try to avoid confrontation with their kids." Then she goes on to write, "Seriously? Seriously? They are PARENTS! There is SUPPOSED to be confrontation."

I know there is a lot of emphasis placed on "choosing your battles." And maybe some people will feel that whether or not your child wears a bun to dance class is not worth the "controversy" it would cause. But, I feel that the bun signifies respect for the teacher and the rules. If you don't teach your children respect for the rules then what else are you teaching or not teaching them.

I know I'm not a perfect parent. I have definitely made my fair share of mistakes. What I have learned through these mistakes is that part of loving your child is to give them discipline and to teach them respect by having rules and guidelines. And then by enforcing them.

So, I leave you with this quote by King Edward VIII: "The thing that impresses me the most about America is the way parents obey their children."


alisha said...

Amen, amen! I agree 100% on this. While not always easy, kids need structure, and rules, and expectations. These are things sadly lacking from a large part of society these days.

kersten campbell said...

So true Becky!! I love it! I am going to post it in the motherhood center! I also love those darling baskets you made!! You are so talented. I can't believe how big your little girl is getting!