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Old 07-23-2014, 07:40 AM   #1
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What kind of parenting results in...

... kids that are eerily quiet, with little to no facial expression and very little movement?

I ran into the mom and kid and I sort of know them. I always knew the kids were quiet but I got to observe them in a different context yesterday. I know they have been reported to CPS but nothing came of it.

I once picked up their crying baby and both parents asked me to put him down. I thought the one parent was just being polite but then the father asked/suggested I put him down because the baby was heavy (which he was not.)

The age range was 5,7,2,3. The infant was surprisingly quiet too.

They sat perfectly still and said close to nothing while watching a demonstration. In comparison, my kids were jumping out of their seats with excitement.

They had little or no facial expression changes even when the exciting stuff was happening.

My 2 year old had to get a time out during the program and they just stared at us as I took him out of the room.

Has anyone come upon children like I am describing?

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Old 07-23-2014, 07:55 AM   #2
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Re: What kind of parenting results in...

I would think at the least emotional abuse. I know I am jumping to conclusions but they sound like traumatized children. I could well be wrong though. I have seen children that do sit quietly. However the lack of appropriate reactions makes me think abuse of some kind.
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Old 07-23-2014, 07:57 AM   #3
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Re: What kind of parenting results in...

A family in our church is like that. They are not super zealous religious or anything, and I really don't think they abuse the kids. I helped the mom with Wednesday night children's church last year and got to know her and the kids. The kids are very quiet, expressionless, almost in a creepy way. They are like 8, 11, and 14 years old. All I can think is it must be genetic.

My brother's oldest two kids are almost perfect and it certainly is not from uber parenting. They are just quiet, genetically "good" kids. I was so happy when their youngest came along and was "normal" like mine. They act like she is some kind of demon because at age 2 she ("gasp!") climbs on chairs to reach things off the counter! She takes off her diaper when it is wet, instead of waiting for a parent to change it! She colors on the table instead of just on the paper sometimes! She's "out of control" and they have no idea how to handle it because they truly did not have to parent the other two

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Old 07-23-2014, 08:04 AM   #4
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Re: What kind of parenting results in...

Quote:
Originally Posted by qsefthuko View Post
I would think at the least emotional abuse. I know I am jumping to conclusions but they sound like traumatized children. I could well be wrong though. I have seen children that do sit quietly. However the lack of appropriate reactions makes me think abuse of some kind.
Honestly, I really thought it was personality at first. But I have never seen all the kids sitting together. Can a family that large all have kids with the same temperaments?

I have a couple that are quiet. They would sit and listen attentively. I know my youngest two are more boisterous.

I know this family has very different ideas than we do but I thought the CPS report was just cruel retribution. But I admit I didn't like the vibe yesterday at all.
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Old 07-23-2014, 08:08 AM   #5
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Re: What kind of parenting results in...

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Originally Posted by Melinda29 View Post
A family in our church is like that. They are not super zealous religious or anything, and I really don't think they abuse the kids. I helped the mom with Wednesday night children's church last year and got to know her and the kids. The kids are very quiet, expressionless, almost in a creepy way. They are like 8, 11, and 14 years old. All I can think is it must be genetic.

My brother's oldest two kids are almost perfect and it certainly is not from uber parenting. They are just quiet, genetically "good" kids. I was so happy when their youngest came along and was "normal" like mine. They act like she is some kind of demon because at age 2 she ("gasp!") climbs on chairs to reach things off the counter! She takes off her diaper when it is wet, instead of waiting for a parent to change it! She colors on the table instead of just on the paper sometimes! She's "out of control" and they have no idea how to handle it because they truly did not have to parent the other two
Genetics is something I considered. Thanks for giving me some more insight. I guess both parents are very shy and quiet.

I have to laugh because I had the perfect first child. I would put him on a blanket with some toys and he would just sit and play.

Then my second came and she gave me a dose of reality. But we managed to somehow get it together and our first three kids are now well behaved.

The youngest two.... they are a work in progress.

Maybe they creeped me out because I am unaccustomed to the quiet.
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Old 07-23-2014, 09:12 AM   #6
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Re: What kind of parenting results in...

I don't know how likely it is to have a whole family of quiet kids - are the parents naturally rather quiet too? They may just take after Mom/Dad. They may also be very shy.

DD2 is that way. She is super shy and hates attention drawn to herself in anyway. Large groups are extremely intimidating to her. She will sit quietly in the crowd and pay attention but the look on her face either looks like she's bored out of her mind or miserable to her there. People think it is odd that I 'force' her to go to things. What they don't realize is as soon as we get home she gushes about all the cool stuff she saw and is bouncing up and down all excited about the program. She loves going to the stuff and seeing what they are doing but in the moment she shuts down until she's back home.
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Old 07-23-2014, 09:20 AM   #7
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Re: What kind of parenting results in...

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I don't know how likely it is to have a whole family of quiet kids - are the parents naturally rather quiet too? They may just take after Mom/Dad. They may also be very shy.

DD2 is that way. She is super shy and hates attention drawn to herself in anyway. Large groups are extremely intimidating to her. She will sit quietly in the crowd and pay attention but the look on her face either looks like she's bored out of her mind or miserable to her there. People think it is odd that I 'force' her to go to things. What they don't realize is as soon as we get home she gushes about all the cool stuff she saw and is bouncing up and down all excited about the program. She loves going to the stuff and seeing what they are doing but in the moment she shuts down until she's back home.
I have a friend who has a dd like that but exactly as you describe she wants to go to EVERYTHING! She actually enjoys going just don't pay much attention to her or she gets shy.

These kids are very quiet at home too from what I understand. It's probably one of those things I'll never really know.

I thought I heard a baby get slapped once but I didn't see it with my own eyes. I think that I just came upon a reason why although I initially made overtures they have kept me at arm's length. I'm pretty vocal about my parenting style and let's just say we don't mesh.
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Old 07-23-2014, 10:16 AM   #8
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Re: What kind of parenting results in...

We have run across SO many kids who are like this. My kids are very outgoing and friendly and it really makes me mad when they introduce themselves to a kid and the other child doesn't even acknowledge them! And typically their parents are standing right behind them not giving them any social cues to use, like to at least wave, say hello, do something other than stand there and stare. I understand being shy and all but IMO they should at least have to acknowledge someone when they are being spoken to.

My son had a couple kids like you're describing in his preschool class and one of the days I volunteered another mom was there and they were reading a silly story and the child started laughing and getting excited and the mom told her she needed to calm down and that her behavior was inappropriate. Their teacher handled the whole situation well by modelling some appropriate behaviors to situations (sad faces, happy faces, etc) and the mom looked livid.

So it could be that the parents don't "approve" of them behaving in a certain way or something more...
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Old 07-23-2014, 11:51 AM   #9
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Re: What kind of parenting results in...

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We have run across SO many kids who are like this. My kids are very outgoing and friendly and it really makes me mad when they introduce themselves to a kid and the other child doesn't even acknowledge them! And typically their parents are standing right behind them not giving them any social cues to use, like to at least wave, say hello, do something other than stand there and stare. I understand being shy and all but IMO they should at least have to acknowledge someone when they are being spoken to.
I will say, I don't make dd2 acknowledge random kids coming up and talking to her. She will not talk to a stranger and no amount of encouraging is going to change that so we gave up and don't even try to get her to acknowledge someone she doesn't know. Now if I'm close enough by to see a kid trying to talk to her I will tell them she is really shy and maybe she'll talk to them or play with them later. But I don't hover over her so I'm sure some kids do feel ignored by her sometimes. It takes a lot out of her to go to places with lots of other kids that asking her to be social (even a simple hello or wave) will often be her undoing and she'll ask to go home and melt into tears. I'd rather have her having those experiences and be percieved as rude than to keep her home all the time. At almost 7 she's slowly getting better and will sometimes give a little wave but not very often yet.
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Old 07-23-2014, 01:31 PM   #10
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Re: What kind of parenting results in...

I totally get the stranger thing. My kids always ask me first if they can go speak with someone and it's typically at the playground and they want to play with them or just say hello. I was a pretty shy kid too but I was also told to not ignore someone if they were speaking to you. My kids would get so hurt at first when someone wouldn't respond to them, but I have also had to tell them that just because they want to play or speak with someone that it doesn't always mean the other person does as well. I totally get being shy and definitely get stranger danger and all that but there are certain social cues that I would say most kids in our area don't follow.
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