Sunday, June 24, 2007

God, I can't stop

Just a follow-up. Neil Gaiman's daughter is writing his blog. She's on the set of the latest Hellboy being cosseted by Guillermo del Toro and Selma Blair. She's clearly quite precocious. On the one hand--how cool is that--I'm jealous. On the other, having been a precocious and cosseted child, I wish that people had been more honest with me. There comes a point when you will not be clever for your age--will not be the kid it's fun to humor, but just another adult. I think the whole self-esteem movement is actually making kid's self-esteem worse. I think I would have been better off if more people had said, "You aren't good at this--you have to work at it. This is good for a 12 year old but next year you'll have to do better." I got to rest on my laurels and I never learned to work hard or to fail. This probably won't happen to Gaiman's daughter, but I see it happening to other young people I know. Or I'm just blaming other people for my problems. I don't know how you go about doing both--keeping self-esteem, but teaching that there will always be people better than you. That's why I don't have kids.

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