WEGG Question #17 - Mrs. Brainer's Rule

by Peter Hedges

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SamIam
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Unread postby SamIam » Thu Apr 19, 2007 10:49 am

DeppInTheHeartOfTexas wrote:And at that age we know how mean kids can be!


Totally and it can only get worse as they get older.
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Parlez
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Unread postby Parlez » Thu Apr 19, 2007 11:38 am

Interesting question ~ why a kid wetting their pants brings up such strong memories and emotions, not only for the kid doing the wetting but for everyone. Humiliation by association perhaps? 'There but for fortune go I' perhaps? It's interesting to note that the kid is always 'blamed' for being whatever...immature, unable to control him/herself, deficient, weird...but nobody looks at the circumstances, which are usually part of the picture too. It's often more that just a physical/bladder issue. Yet exasperation toward the individual kid persists, while the classroom setting, the teacher, and the 'rules' are overlooked. Young kids pick up on taboos directly from the adults in their lives - parents, teachers, et al.; they watch and listen to how the adults react to things and learn what's to be ridiculed and feared and deemed unacceptable and what's not. I don't think emotions like guilt and shame could arise otherwise.
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Linda Lee
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Unread postby Linda Lee » Thu Apr 19, 2007 12:00 pm

Parlez wrote:
Young kids pick up on taboos directly from the adults in their lives - parents, teachers, et al.; they watch and listen to how the adults react to things and learn what's to be ridiculed and feared and deemed unacceptable and what's not. I don't think emotions like guilt and shame could arise otherwise.


How true. I don't think any child wants to wet their pants, so there must be some reason for it occuring but that's rarely checked into, it's more important to place blame and humiliate the child.
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Unread postby suec » Thu Apr 19, 2007 2:35 pm

I think people inadvertently put pressure on kids without realising they doing it. Big girls don't need comforters; it's time you grew out of that; big boys can use the toilet; the proud mum boasting my baby was dry right though the night at 9 months! The praise that they give for getting it right. These are all things I have heard parents say to their children or about them. And they learn that grownups do things like that in private, with the bathroom door shut. I remember my nephew bursting into tears because he didn't make it to the loo in time at home. His parents explained that he had wanted to impress me by not needing help to go. There is no way that anyone had put any pressure on him in this matter - except maybe by praise and encouragement for getting it right. On the other hand, there are those who are cruel too.

I think that the incident is indicative of the way Gilbert reacts in the future to authority. He submits, essentially. He may try to control his emotions, but he is still not in control. He does what his Momma wants, even when he knows it is wrong, such as with the food. Even when he tells her he hates her, it is at her instigation. I think there is a similarity also with Mrs Betty Carver, with her making the decisions - certainly about when to meet. It would have to be that way, with her being married.

It also establishes a pattern with his feelings about the fake smiles. He is most worried about Amy when she smiles. The fake smiles crop up frequently but my favourite is "The citizens of Endora keep their rage and disgust quiet; their smiles and friendly nods are like fabric conditioners for the face."
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Unread postby Liz » Thu Apr 19, 2007 10:03 pm

SamIam wrote:
DeppInTheHeartOfTexas wrote:And at that age we know how mean kids can be!


Totally and it can only get worse as they get older.


Like with the teachers that punish the wetters. Where's the compassion? I think it is more the lack of compassion in the teachers that bothers me than the accident itself. Should these people even be teachers?

And Suec, I agree that a big part of the reason these accidents happen is that the parents put too much pressure on the kids to be potty trained by a certain age, as opposed to allowing them to do it when they are ready.

I'll get off of my :soapbox: now. :blush:
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nebraska
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Unread postby nebraska » Thu Apr 19, 2007 11:22 pm

I also wonder, because of the way our bodies are constructed, if there is some sort of hidden sexual connection in the whole wet pants thing....

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Unread postby dharma_bum » Fri Apr 20, 2007 1:05 am

I wondered if the incident wasn’t a protective subconscious reaction. If Gilbert was cleaning up pee, he wasn’t seeing Albert swinging from the rafters in the basement. I think Gilbert sensed the depth of his father’s detachment and depression. Even if he was too young to fully understand it, he knew on some level good would not come of it.
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DeppInTheHeartOfTexas
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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Fri Apr 20, 2007 9:26 am

He did seem to feel a subconcious connection to his father if he had the feeling something was wrong at the same time as the suicide.
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