How to raise children in Italy

Life in any country has its pros and cons, it's a fact. But only after becoming a mother, I started to appreciate different aspects of life abroad much more closely and critically. For example, the principles of raising children in Italy are very different from what I remember from my own Soviet childhood. For better or worse for the readers to judge!

1. The widespread love for children

Let's start with the fact that love of the Italians from small to large for children, bambini, are truly endless. Maybe someone will say that it is not educational, but kids – and moms! very nice! The kids here adore free gifts, showered with compliments and praise. Kids in Italy are allowed almost everything — and even a little more! This is probably one of the reasons why, according to the unanimous opinion of the owners of European hotels, Italian children — the most unbridled compared to their peers from other European countries.

In addition, the Italian love for children is beneficial, from a practical point of view, and the tram wheelchair lift will help, and the ball will give recapitlization toddler, and take jokes, rhymes a bored child, while the mother in a hurry pay for purchases at the supermarket and shove food in string bags. So this decaloba Italians sometimes you have handy.

True, he has a reverse side. It manifests itself when, for example, a completely unknown lady, desperate to get his own grandchildren, put their head in the stroller with a newborn to cuddle a stranger — besides sleeping! baby. Or when wasting unnecessary advice. Or when speaking directly to the children with the observations ("why are you so angry?"), criticism ("but my grandchildren can't eat THAT!") or similes ("I was your age I already knew how to ride a two-wheeled bike!").

2. The right attitude to food and healthy eating

Certainly, many have heard about the much-vaunted Mediterranean diet involving the consumption of olive oil, fish, nuts, fresh fruits and vegetables. In fact, the Mediterranean diet it does not diet and the real life style, healthy life, which, according to available statistics, in order reduce the risk of tumors and heart diseases.

The bread with olive oil instead of a cream bread, stewed meat with vegetables instead of foods, a slice of cheese for afternoon snack, "pit", as my Italian mother-in-law (the Italians believe that cheese is useful in any form and at any age) — traditional Italian kitchen boasts an abundance of easy and quick cooking. This Italian secret dolce vita, the sweet life, in the daily menu of the average Italian from childhood!

How do they do it? In the selection of products Italians are guided by principles of seasonality and geographical accessibility: here we only eat what grows in this region and at this time of year is the best guarantee of freshness and good taste products that fall on the table. Kids eat the same as adults (within reason, of course). And children — perché no? why not? — welcome guests at almost any Italian restaurant.

For them there is always a high chair, and the cook no problem concocted for the baby something simple, but surprisingly delicious! The Italians from an early age know what sauces to combine different types of pasta, how to cook risotto and cook the pasta al dente, and eventually learn a couple of proven recipes for basic dishes like spaghetti with tomato sauce and Basil and Carbonara.

However, it is necessary to mention that in the case of food, the Italian Ministry of health latest years has sounded the alarm among Italian adolescents are more children with overweight and obesity. The reason for that is imposed on fast food food culture with an abundance of semi-finished products and carbonated drinks. There is no dispute, it is easier to give the child a cookie and put in front of the TV, but to seduce a carrot and a bike ride to the Park in our age of digital technology becomes all the more difficult... no matter where you are: in Russia or in Italy.

3. Education in the faith

Faith in God, in Italy it is difficult to separate from everyday life: it accompanies every Italian from birth to death. Though not in every Italian house in the headboard hangs a rosary, but almost everywhere you will surely find a crucifix above the door of the room. Let Italian family and sent to God their gratitude for his grace before each meal, but many every Christmas sincerely donate to charity, or filling in a tax return, allocate in favor of the Catholic Church of 0.8% of income tax.

Young Italians with great fanfare baptized in infancy, followed by a two year drive to the Church for the lessons of the catechism, then to a big way to celebrate first communion — the feast, the pomp and the abundance of gifts ahead sometimes any of the children's birthdays. Not even particularly religious Italians married in the Church, attend festive mass at Christmas and Easter and give children in the Catholic gardens, even if not at the call of the soul, and because "so accepted." This is the fly in the ointment, which is found in any cask: because so it is accepted, otherwise the public will judge...

Although, on the other hand, it would be wrong to think that in Italy believe only "for fun". I know many families go to Church on his heart, for the sake of meeting with God, and with interest participate in the life of the parish, not just for the sake of, well, we — churchgoers, black belt at Catholic mass. But still I sometimes get the impression that most Catholics — believers "by inertia", as was raised in the Catholic tradition, and not because God actually lives in their heart.

4. Love and reverence towards their parents

My "acquaintance" with Italy lasts no less than 17 years and I have never heard that the Italians were rude to their parents. I do not take into account the pathological cases where sons killed their own parents for profit that are periodically shown on TV, I say a sincere FILIAL and FILIAL love and respect for mother and father. For Italian children's father — do best friend and comrade in games and mother is the model for the daughters and the sample women have sons.

And the love and respect of adult children is manifested in little but important gestures of everyday concerns about the health and mood of the parents, the amount of time and attention, they pay. Festive feast on Christmas day, Sunday family dinners — all this bonds the family together. And the family is the center of life of the Italians. That is why they are extremely rare and are reluctant to give elderly parents in a nursing home: your age mamma e papà live at home, otherwise children dying of embarrassment!

But such attachment to parents has, I think, and the opposite direction, causing a painful dependence on them, both emotional and material. The local men, long live with their parents under one roof, later married, and even married, not in a hurry to live an independent life.

Mom is always aware of everything that happens in the home of her son, she is always near and ready with advice and "constructive criticism". Mom can call adult son in the middle of the day and ask what he ate for lunch. It is no secret that Italian mothers are extremely jealous of their sons and with passion review each potential candidate to be my bride.

Although the daughter of the Italian mothers are no less love of their parents as it is the only Italian mother-in-law can completely seriously (and with a certain claim) to submit the newly made son-in-law that he was not the daughter was taken away from the mother, and "plucked the sweetest rose in the garden of her heart!".

Oh Yes, almost forgot: la mamma prepares a lasagna tastier in the world. And Italian mother — best fashion expert for their children. She closely inspect the appearance of the offspring up ready, even if you have an adult child going just to drop in the mail, and will be for a long time to worry about his ignominious failure as a mother if you suddenly find that her offspring is not able to properly read, she taught to match colors and styles. And, of course, la mamma is always right — that's the unwritten motto of almost all Italian men.

5. Education in total love

Italian parents certainly love their children as well as parents in Russia, Argentina or China. Only show love where they are actively how old you may be, your Italian mother will always turn to you not only as amore mio, my love, il mio bambino (la mia bambina), publicly and passionately kiss and hug like you haven't seen him not since lunch, and at least five years. So nice in 35 years to feel this kind of parental adoration, as in 5?

Needless to say that every Italian mother firmly believes in the absolute superiority of their children over other: her children are the most intelligent, clever, skillful, cunning, the list goes on. "No, my son is not lazy slacker, you just wrong!" — this is the real phrase is real Italian mom, seriously made as a claim for school teachers in her son-slut. Among my Italian relatives have selfless moms who several times (exactly the number of children) were school and University course, effectively dividing with their offspring, their diplomas of a lawyer, an engineer and economist.

Unfortunately, sometimes Italian mother, giving life to a child, then her and taken away, not allowing him to learn from their mistakes and took my lumps, getting the necessary experience. I am also a mother and I know from experience that it is much easier to tell the child "no!" and not allow to change to a two-wheeled bike, not to write to the pool for diving or not go to sleep with a friend than with a tremor in her voice to say "Yes!" and give the growing baby a bit of independence, giving him the opportunity to explore the world.

Pacifiers, diapers and stroller until preschool age, the lack of regulations and jointly with the mother is a dream that is so common in Italy, all this "together through life" from early childhood almost to adulthood is nothing like fencing off from reality to the detriment of discipline and independence, this is my mother's selfish desire to keep the precious child under control, to keep it to myself.

I constantly compare Italian and Russian manners of raising children and do not find, to his delight, the unconditional winner. In Russia, on the one hand, children are raised and develop, on the other — unnecessarily drill. In Italy, conversely, allow you to mess around, zalyublivayut utterly spoiled and "graze".


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A couple of years ago, quite unexpectedly, I heard in a Catholic kindergarten of her daughter the term dolce fermezza, which is conditionally applied to pedagogy — can be translated as soft, but strong leadership and literally as "sweet toughness" (if interested, search the Internet for information on principles of education San Giovanni Battista de La Salle).

That's exactly what I would like to raise their children with love and rigor, freedom and respect in abundance and austerity. Especially after my daughter told me that he wants "to be like you, mom" — by example. After all, the whole educational work of the parent is reduced primarily to permanent work on yourself!


Author: Anna Chertkova


P. S. And remember, only by changing their consumption — together we change the world! ©



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