We've heard it our whole life: Share. You share with kids in schools and you share your toys when friends come over to your house and you share what you have with others because it's just nice and makes you a nice person, right?
I don't know about you, but after middle school I stopped 'sharing' things with people. Usually, they lost them or broke them. Typically, they 'forgot' to give it back and probably still have it to this day or pawned it for cigarette money. So I'm over sharing, and I refuse to teach my children to take part of this barbaric tradition we teach kids.
I think my passion stemmed from a story Hubs told me. He was doing pick up at daycare and P was sitting in the toddler room, which was pretty typical for that late in the day, and she was playing with a toy phone when a toddler came up to her and ripped it from her hands. Luckily, P is pretty chill and just rolled with it. Upon hearing this story, I got super Mama Bear. I asked Hubs if he yelled at the kid (I would have) and he explained that he just stared at him (trying not to push him over, I would assume). I asked him if any of the teachers yelled at him (they didn't). Umm what the hell. This, my readers, is not sharing. This is being an asshole. But the situation itself is not uncommon. How many times do we see a child cry because they want the toy someone else has? And more often than not, we tell the child to hand it over to the whiny one because it's 'nice to share.' Admit it, because we're all guilty of it. And we were all wrong.
I believe there is a difference in sharing (total bullshit) and playing nice. I want P to play nice with other kids, but not be told she has to give up a toy she is playing with and 'share' it with someone else just because they want it. I want a lot of things, but I'm pretty sure that if I cry every day about the Mercedes I wouldn't mind driving, that no one is going to just give it to me. P is not always going to get her way. P won't always get what someone else has, and in no way am I going to raise her to think that she is owed something just because someone else has it and she wants it too.
Maybe my toddler story isn't fair. Maybe a teacher didn't see him do it. Maybe they didn't think it was a big deal because Hubs was there to take her home anyways and obviously she had to be done with the toy because she was leaving. Maybe that kid really is just an asshole and thinks it's okay to rip toys from a baby's hands, but it stirred something in me. As much as I don't want P thinking if she asks nicely or cries enough for something that someone else has to give it to her, I also don't want her to think that if someone else asks or cries at her that she needs to give up what she has. That's not how the world will work for most of her life, so that is not how her life should work as a small child.
Now don't get me wrong, P won't be running around hoarding toys yelling 'MINE MINE MINE.' No, she will be raised to play nice. Play with others and play nice. Don't feel like you need to give something up if you're not done with it. You have just as much right to an object as the next person. Under no circumstance should you feel like you need to give something to someone for no reason simply because they wanted it too. Don't take from others. Wait your turn. Don't be an asshole.
It's simple, right? Stop sharing. (Unless you own that Mercedes and are looking to give it away, in which case, I'll take that).