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Do You Judge a Parent by Her Children?

Mother to Apple, 4, and Moses, 2, Gwyneth Paltrow recently chatted with Oprah motherhood and her friend Madonna. Ultimately, the actress told the talk show host that you can measure somebody by his or her children. Do you agree with this sentiment?


AKirstin AKirstin 9 years
Hey, here's a novel thought: Children are their own people, completely, and not just an extension of your ego, Gwyneth! Wow!
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 9 years
I base it on age really, When A child is in its teen years? I dont judge the parents on thier behavior.
Greggie Greggie 9 years
But that's basing it on how the mother reacts, not on the children. This is my ongoing point. *lol*
naughtymonkey01 naughtymonkey01 9 years
I dont know how to say this exactly but... i wonder if when she said what she said, she meant not the child exactly but the whole package. like when you are out in public and there is two kids with shopping carts (mother standing right there) and they go to opposite corners of the store and start running towards each other to slam carts. almost running people over. the mother did nothng, not even look really. and everyone else who was almost run over was upset. because of that wHOLE incident i left a little judgy of the mother.
Greggie Greggie 9 years
Oh I don't base my opinion of Lynne Spears on her daughter's pregnancy. Very many wonderful and attentive parents end up with pregnant teens. So I'm not contradicting that by not judging Palin on the same thing. My opinion of Lynne Spears was cemented long before Jamie Lynn even hit the public eye at all, much less got pregnant. If anything, the way Lynne handled a lot of that helped my opinion of her, assuming I block out how she sold out her daughter and granddaughter in the process. Glowing Moon gave an excellent example of why I think the interaction is more important than the child's behavior alone.
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 9 years
It depends. Sometimes, yes. One time, I witnessed a child (about 7 years old) called another child by a homophobic slur ("f*ggot"). The child hollered it. His parents stood two feet away, and did nothing. I was shocked by the parents non-action. I don't have children. However, I can say with certainty that if I did, and my child hollered that slur, I would have responded. As a parent, I would have FIRMLY guided my child from saying something like again.
K-is-For-Kait K-is-For-Kait 9 years
I think it can be true, but not always. I mean, if we judged parents based on their children, wouldn't VP nominee Sarah Palin be completely screwed? Lynne Spears is an idiot who let her daughter get pregnant, but Sarah Palin and her pregnant daughter are victims of sociey's influences. Gotta love hypocrisy.
Mesayme Mesayme 9 years
Based on my own personal experience yes. Absolutely. But it has to be a mother I've spent time with. Just watching strangers with their children and making a snap judgment no. I have three children. They are all different. And the only thing you could safely conclude regarding myself from watching them is that poor grades is a no, and being disrespectful to adults is a 'not having it'. I raise them like my grandmother raised me. That's just one example though.
Nyrina-Windu Nyrina-Windu 9 years
No. Sometimes children have disabilities that make them act a certain way. And sometimes there are situations that makes a child act out in the family. In other words, for example, some kids act differently to divorce. One good child in the family may be understanding and try to work with it. But then another good child in the family will turn rebel and use the divorce situation for their own gain, just to get attention in the worse way or get back at their parents for parting the family.
Gabriela14815884 Gabriela14815884 9 years
I use to think this was true but after watching some of my family members with their kids I know it is not. Like Greggie said sometimes the best parents in the world get difficult children or "rebels".
CoralAmber CoralAmber 9 years
I think each kid is unique. My best friend's kids are well behaved and smart, and while she is a great parent, even she sometimes wonders where her children get some of their traits. Once the eldest one started school, she started coming home with bad grammar and a little drama queen attitude she never had at home. I don't think you can judge parents solely by their kids, but you can judge parents by how they interact and behave with them.
Greggie Greggie 9 years
Excellent grammar in my post.
Greggie Greggie 9 years
I think a better way of putting it is that you can tell a parent by how they handles their children, not by how the children act in and of itself.
jambalam jambalam 9 years
I think it's usually true. Most of persons behaviour comes from their upbringing and the set of values and manners that their parents bestowed. Having said that there are just sometimes bad-uns that don't empathize or care about people including their parents. I think that good upbringing is not just being told what is right and wrong and being protected - they are very important too but it is also important to be strong and confident and lead by example. I went to some very bad schools and was put under a lot of pressure but I had so much respect for my parents (even though they may have been unfashionable) that nothing could convince me that some mouthy school-kids opinion was worth more than my parents.
DesignRchic DesignRchic 9 years
No. I think that children develop their own personalities that can sometimes be opposite of their parents. What I do jugde however is when a child is blatantly disobeying or being disrespectful and the parent doesn't correct it immediately or when they (the parent) don't follow through with a consequence to bad behavior and then the child starts to be testy. Does that make sense?
beccalu beccalu 9 years
You know, I can see someone thinking that you can judge a person by their kids, but I happen to know the sweetest little girl in the world and she has had the worst upbringing you could imagine. She is completely self-disciplining and an angel and it has NOTHING to do with her parents. So no, I don't think you can judge someone by how their kids act.
Greggie Greggie 9 years
I know plenty of toddlers and older kids that I don't like to be around at all even though I adore their parents.
runningesq runningesq 9 years
Her holier than thou attitude annoys me. I had friends in high school that came from 'good homes' -- involved, good parents -- that ended up as druggies. Parents can certainly lay a foundation, but once a child is old enough to make his or her own decisions, they are responsibly (mostly) for their actions.
LiLRuck44 LiLRuck44 9 years
I try my hardest not to judge anyone. I know exactly what you're talking about shoogerbooger :)
Greggie Greggie 9 years
I don't necessarily agree that young children only do what their parents show as an example. We raised both our boys with the same example and one was very easy going and friendly as a small child and one was very difficult. It was just his personality. They actually live more by our example now that they're older as opposed to when they were a few years old.
lickety-split lickety-split 9 years
well generally no. but gwen's only been a mother for what, 4 years? and her kid is in a protected cocoon. this is the same woman who said she would "rather die that let my daughter eat cup o' noodles". please, is really a big concern? when her child goes off to school and makes her own choices and her child is influenced by her peers she may have a different view. and temperament is as much an influence as anything. having said that some of the kids in my girls classes have said the RUDEST things that could have only come from their parents. including comments about money and how much or how little other children's parents have (how would a 5 year old know about such things).
psterling psterling 9 years
I agree nevadamtnbear! Small children only know what their parents do and don't teach them and you can tell a lot about a person's parenting skills by the way their young ones behave. But after a certain age kids have much more exposure to the outside world and can easily be influenced by kids at school, etc. and they also start turning into their own individuals. At that point, parents can't be held accountable.
macgirl macgirl 9 years
I initially voted yes as I just have these visions of certain Orange County moms. With their kids that are screaming out of control while they walk around South Coast Plaza on a cell phone in high heels not paying attention to where their 3 kids are doing. That I do think is a product of their parenting. I do know more than one person that is odd considering how they were raised though.
nevadamtnbear nevadamtnbear 9 years
I think it depends. Up and until a certain age, I can garner a lot about a parent from their children. However, after a certain age you can't necessarily judge a parent based upon their children. There are certainly exceptions to the rule.
shoogerbooger shoogerbooger 9 years
Absolutely not! I think all of my friends have a "black sheep" in their family. My brother and I always ask ourselves, "What planet did our brother come from?" You would think he was not raised with the same love, support, and values that we were.
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