Don’t eat that! It’s toxic – Greene Publishing, Inc.



“Don’t eat that!” It’s poisonous, I yelled across the playground.

“They’re not poisonous,” the second-year boy told me, “I eat them all the time. See, ”and he put a shelled acorn in his mouth.

I was there. Yawning mouth. I looked at one of my coworkers: “My mom has been lying to me all these years.”

Later that day, I told my mom what had happened. She, of course, found it hilarious, “You mean, did you really believe me?” she asked between her chuckles and sniffles.

“Of course I believed you,” I replied. “You are my mother. Mothers are not supposed to lie to their children. When your mom says acorns are poisonous, don’t eat them, of course you believe her! What else have you lied about?

Still laughing: “Nothing. I swear. “There was a pause and a small chuckle,” Well, maybe I told you mushrooms have been roast your whole life. “

We do that, don’t we? In good faith, we say things to our children, hoping to steer them away from dangerous things or to convince them to branch out and try something new. I am just as guilty. When my oldest started losing his baby teeth, I told him he had to try all the foods again because his new adult teeth might like that food better than his baby teeth. And it worked !

Sometimes it is not very pretty, but all parents and grandparents do. But as we warn them and guide them through the simple things, do we take the time to point out the real dangers?

Do we openly discuss the dangers of drugs and alcohol and model ourselves for healthy moderation and sobriety?

Do we warn them about pornography and set limits on their electronic devices, but also model appropriate behavior through the movies, shows and websites we visit regularly?

Do we protect them by setting curfews and paying attention to the friends they hang out with while being mindful of our own circle of friends and time management?

Do we carefully choose the words that come out of our mouths or do we teach them that dirty and degrading language is okay?

Do we show them the really toxic things in life or do we wait for them to find out as they go along?

The things we learn in childhood accompany us in adulthood; be it good, bad or debilitating. Let’s make the effort to keep our kids away from really toxic things and choose the good and healthy ones.

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