A Tale of Two Six-Year Olds
Rarely do six-year olds make the news. What’s even more rare is when two of their stories provide the perfect back drop for the polar opposite ways one can raise her child.
Tiernan Paul, a kindergartener, is still breastfed by his mother, Robyn. She feels it creates a closer bond between them and allows her to soothe her son. Tiernan’s two older siblings also breastfed until the age of six and they have only fond memories of their days being nursed. Robyn says she enjoys very open communication and strong relationships with her kids, due in part to their prolonged breastfeeding.
Six is definitely too old in my book for this, but you can’t argue that this mom has earned a medal of valor for her efforts in being there for her kids. (We complained to my sister that her two and a half year old was too old for it, since he was eating hot dogs in one hand and leaning in for sips in between bites. She might have been on ABC News in Robyn’s place had she not thrown in the towel shortly after she became pregnant around her son’s third birthday).
In the other corner, we have a first grader who feels like he has to fend for himself.This poor little guy missed the school bus and hopped in mom’s Taurus and drove himself 10 miles to get there. He slammed into a utility pole and told the sheriff “he did not want to miss breakfast and PE.” The boy’s father had been under court order not to leave his two sons alone with their mother, so sadly, the boys have now been placed in foster care. The mom is in jail.
Even though Tiernan is poised for some tortuous years of teenage teasing and some embarrassing slides in his wedding slide show, he he has nothing on what our little Taurus driver is going to have to deal with if this is the kind of supervision and parental involvement to which he’s grown accustomed.