Who'd you rather raise?

I just received my issue of Parenting and it just served to reinforce something I've noticed lately.  I feel that there is too much pressure on parents to "raise the next genius". And there's so much pressure on kids, put upon them by parents or other adults to grow up too fast and do too much too soon. I feel that everything related to developmental milestones has become a competition. It's like people think that if their child can walk by 9 months, says "Mommy" before they're 7 months and is potty trained by 1 1/2  it means that that child is on it's way to being the next Steve Jobs. Or the next Mozart. (Never mind the fact that they pick their nose and eat it.)

I find it interesting that people are striving to have their kids be the next Steve Jobs (Seriously, the front of my magazine had a title reading "Raise the Next Steve Jobs"). After his death no one denied that he was a genius but I don't remember anyone saying anything about traits that are valuable such as generosity, kindness and empathy. It was all about his intelligence. I guess what I'm trying to say is that if I had to chose between raising a kid to be a genius or a kind, generous loving person I would chose the latter. In a heartbeat. Because it seems to me that too many people value success (financial or popular) over developing traits like compassion, empathy and generosity.

I'm not saying I don't care if Mac is illiterate at the age of ten - I do think that education is important. But if Mac goes to school and gives it 100 percent, and gets B's and C's (showing my age here - that's how we used to be graded)  I will celebrate with him the same way I would a child that easily achieves A's and A+'s.  Because to me, the ultimate goal is to raise a child that has good morals and values and gives 100 percent at whatever he tries - regardless of the outcome.

Because in the end, I'd rather raise a Mother Theresa than a Steve Jobs. Just saying'.
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