Friend's reaction to cancer news may ...

Friend's reaction to cancer news may hide worries

There are 76 comments on the Chicago Tribune story from Oct 30, 2007, titled Friend's reaction to cancer news may hide worries. In it, Chicago Tribune reports that:

Dear Amy: About a month ago, I was diagnosed with stage 2 prostate cancer. I accepted the diagnosis with equanimity, then decided that while I would pursue treatment, I would not make it a larger issue than it ...

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Chicago Tribune.

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Steph

United States

#1 Oct 30, 2007
I think that people prefer dogs to children because when a dog misbehaves it can be excused. It's a dog, it doesn't know any better. When a kid acts up, it's just annoying because you know it's (more often than not) all on the parent. For example, the other day, I was walking into a gas station. Two little boys (probably ages six and eight) were chasing each other around, and one ran headlong into my legs. He barely missed a beat. No apologies, no embarrassment...and no parent in sight.

Also--and this just occurred to me--"pet parents" must be more responsible than regular parents, since, had this happened with a dog, I have absolutely no doubt that an apologetic pet parent would have been chasing after the dog, simultaneously apologizing to me.
Walter from Indiana

La Porte, IN

#2 Oct 30, 2007
To concerned about cancer,

I to thought my life was over as i knew it when I was diagnosed with prostate cancer. After doing a lot of research and not getting much help from my doctor I went to IU Medical Center in Indianapolis, In and had a prostetomy done with the daVinci robotic machine. I went home the next day and within two weeks was back at work doing anything I wanted to do. This procedure is done at most large hospitals around the nation and I highly recommend it for someone that has to have a cancerous prostate removed.
LuvMyDog_HateYer Kid

Arlington Heights, IL

#3 Oct 30, 2007
I find responsible pet parents seem to have higher expectations of behavior from their pets than most do of their children these days.
Bad pet parents

Chicago, IL

#4 Oct 30, 2007
HMMMM. For some reason I have had a lot of experiences with bad "pet parents". Their cat jumps on your lap, you have told them you are allergic, and they do nothing to remove the cat from the environment. Their dog jumps up on you and scratches your legs and they say, "Oh, she's just excited." I have to wonder about these either/or examples, like from the original writer and Steph. I do not find pet parents to be very apologetic or corrective of their pet's behavior. For either pets or small children, the burden is on the adult, not the child or pet.
Mia

Paso Robles, CA

#5 Oct 30, 2007
To all of the dog/kid people - I was a perfect parent, too, BEFORE I HAD CHILDREN.
Steph

United States

#6 Oct 30, 2007
Bad pet parents wrote:
HMMMM. For some reason I have had a lot of experiences with bad "pet parents". Their cat jumps on your lap, you have told them you are allergic, and they do nothing to remove the cat from the environment. Their dog jumps up on you and scratches your legs and they say, "Oh, she's just excited." I have to wonder about these either/or examples, like from the original writer and Steph. I do not find pet parents to be very apologetic or corrective of their pet's behavior. For either pets or small children, the burden is on the adult, not the child or pet.
It's too bad that these people are rude about your allergies, but do these things happen in public?

I'm not claiming that I will be/would be a perfect parent, but I would definitely not let my kids run around a store and run into people without apologizing.
Rita

Berkeley, CA

#7 Oct 30, 2007
I was divorced, with four young kids, and seriously dating a man who is now my husband. He slept over only on two occasions, and both times he slept on the couch. Once was because he was in a car accident and asked me to pick him up, and the other time was when I had to leave to take care of my sick father, and he in turn took care of the kids. They never saw anything inappropriate. He even owned half of the house we were living in at the time, but we chose not to have "adult sleepovers" until we were married. I don't believe you're doing your kids any favors by having such a casual attitude about sleeping arrangements when you are not married. And I'm no prude. My girlfriend, on the other hand, has two sons, and constantly parades different men through her bedroom. The boys show her no respect, and she wonders why.
Sympathy

Riverside, MI

#8 Oct 30, 2007
I have more sympathy for animals than people because animals can't help themselves, while people can. I'd go to a dentist that brought his dog to work, rather than sit on a bus with a child with her finger stuffed up her nose, eating her bugers as I just experienced recently on vacation. How's that for sanitary? Her parents just sat there and let her gobble away. Disgusting.
Donna

Minneapolis, MN

#9 Oct 30, 2007
It's really sad that the modern parent thinks it is okay to just let a child scream or cry, and that by ignoring the child, they will learn not to do that. Parenting is a skill and more parents need to learn how to quiet the kid instead of instilling the racket on everyone else.
Mom of an imperfect child

Chicago, IL

#10 Oct 30, 2007
Regarding children and pets, I am always amazed when people prefer pets to children. Yes, children can be difficult. They have tantrums, they get into trouble, they cost money, they're messy, they can break your heart but nothing will ever give you a lifetime of satisfaction and happiness then giving yourself to a child. When people cut themselves off from the human experience, I find it very sad. Sometimes I believe it's harder to find people willing to volunteer to help a child then to help an animal. I'm grateful for the people who take care of the animals, I just wish people put humans first. I do love my dog but my son and the humans in my life just come first.
Joss Fan

Downers Grove, IL

#11 Oct 30, 2007
I have just as much compassion for animals as I do children. I love children and work with children. What I do not have compassion for, however, are the children who cannot behave themselves in public. And I have even less compassion for the parents who should have either used birth control or taken parenting classes.

The number of irresponsible parents out there today absolutely stuns me. I cannot tell you how many terrible children I see on a daily basis at my place of work - and the parents who do absolutely nothing to discourage the behavior, or who give in to the slightest sniffle.
mgg45usmc

Boulder, CO

#12 Oct 30, 2007
In response to Sympathy, children can't help themselves anymore than animals if that haven't had proper training. Poorly behaved pets and children are usually (not always) reflective of indulgent owners/parents. Also, to Bad Pet Parents, it behooves both the visitor and the host to touch base before a visit and mention allergies or discomfort with a pet who jumps on them. For friends of mine who express these issues, I insure the pet is confined in another area of my apartment or I suggest we meet in a restaurant, museum, etc. depending on the situation.
Steph

United States

#13 Oct 30, 2007
Mom of an imperfect child wrote:
Regarding children and pets, I am always amazed when people prefer pets to children. Yes, children can be difficult. They have tantrums, they get into trouble, they cost money, they're messy, they can break your heart but nothing will ever give you a lifetime of satisfaction and happiness then giving yourself to a child. When people cut themselves off from the human experience, I find it very sad. Sometimes I believe it's harder to find people willing to volunteer to help a child then to help an animal. I'm grateful for the people who take care of the animals, I just wish people put humans first. I do love my dog but my son and the humans in my life just come first.
I guess I wasn't clear: I love children. My three nieces and nephew are all awesome, and I adore them. But guess what? Their parents make them behave.

If you make your children behave, I will have zero problem with your children. I hope to have children someday, but they will behave themselves, say please, thank you, and excuse me. If all parents would make their kids do those things, you wouldn't hear a single complaint about kids from me.
Jennifer

Stamford, CT

#14 Oct 30, 2007
If I was to generalise about pet owners the way people do about parents you'd all be up in arms about how wrong I was to criticise dogs who lick themselves in places they shouldn't in public areas, or the owners who have no problem letting their dog use the middle of the sidewalk as a bathroom, or the owners who think hugely oversized dogs should be allowed to run unleashed at public family events where small children are present.
I know that not all dog owners are like this. It's a shame more people don't realise that not all modern parents are like this.
And last time I checked it was more than possible to train a pet, much the same way we are expected to 'train' our kids.
Jennifer

Batavia, OH

#15 Oct 30, 2007
Donna wrote:
It's really sad that the modern parent thinks it is okay to just let a child scream or cry, and that by ignoring the child, they will learn not to do that. Parenting is a skill and more parents need to learn how to quiet the kid instead of instilling the racket on everyone else.
What would you have me do if I'm in a store and my child wants a toy and I say no and he throws a tantrum? Any advice? Shall I smack him? Shall I take away his dinner? Shall I threaten him? Three-year-olds are not little adults. They are developing humans. temper tantrums are normal toddler and pre-school behavior. Shall I never buy him a little matchbox car when we go to the store again? Shopping centers and grocery stores are public places...I have every right to be there just as your judgemental self. I don't like my child's crying either. No child or adult is perfect.
I'm speaking of young children here....there is little excuse for older children running around a store unattended.
Jennifer

Batavia, OH

#16 Oct 30, 2007
And one other thing...the comparison of children with animals disgusts me!
Children are NOT objects that you train!
Steph

United States

#17 Oct 30, 2007
Jennifer wrote:
If I was to generalise about pet owners the way people do about parents you'd all be up in arms about how wrong I was to criticise dogs who lick themselves in places they shouldn't in public areas, or the owners who have no problem letting their dog use the middle of the sidewalk as a bathroom, or the owners who think hugely oversized dogs should be allowed to run unleashed at public family events where small children are present.
I know that not all dog owners are like this. It's a shame more people don't realise that not all modern parents are like this.
And last time I checked it was more than possible to train a pet, much the same way we are expected to 'train' our kids.
Seriously? You think that owners need to make sure their dogs don't lick themselves in public? That's hardly comparable to letting your dog take a crap in the middle of the sidewalk and not cleaning up after it.

It's all about responsibility, whether your "child" is human or animal. Like others, I love my dog, but when she misbehaves, she will be confined to the basement or put outside where she will not disturb our guests. If a child is misbehaving, I'm not advocating you lock him/her in the basement, but you should put them in line.
Michele

Round Lake, IL

#18 Oct 30, 2007
America has turn into a disgusting country for equating animals with children. They are not the same! Don't you see the articles about autism, Down's Syndrome, etc etc. Should these parents keep in their kids inside all day? These are special children and the parents are often in the process of learning how to deal with their issue. While they might not apologize every time, maybe they are so embarassed and overwhelmed that it is the last on their minds.
These same things don't occur with animals.
You know we have dogs in outfits and receiving health insurance but we still have child without health insurance in America.
What will you say when you're at Heaven's Gate - I provided health care for animal but let a child go without medical care.
Dienne

United States

#19 Oct 30, 2007
I agree that there are some awful parents out there - parents who yap away with other adults while the wee ones are running around, making messes, screaming, swinging from the curtains, you name it. Those people shouldn't have children because they clearly don't want them, or at least want them badly enough to pay attention when they have something "better" to do.

That said, I think a lot of good parents get a bum rap because they're in a lose-lose situation. Corporal punishment in any form can get you arrested - even a firm grasp on the upper arm. Some parents are afraid to speak sternly to their children for fear of being judged too harshly. If a child throws a tantrum, the parent can either ignore the child until they calm down, in which case they have to endure the evil stares of people annoyed by the screaming, or they can do something to calm the kid down, in which case they'll probably be judged as too "soft" on the kid. Or they could firmly haul the kid out by his upper arm, but see my first point.

Parenting, especially if the child is active and/or willful, reminds me of the story of the man, the boy and the donkey. The boy is riding the donkey while the man walks beside him, until people start to talk about the selfish little boy making his poor father walk. So the boy gets down and the father rides the donkey until people start talking about the abusive man making that poor little boy walk. So the man pulls the boy onto the donkey with him until people start talking about those mean people making that poor donkey carry all that weight. So they both get down and walk at which point people say, how stupid - why should they walk when they have a perfectly good donkey to ride?
Ann

Marion, MI

#20 Oct 30, 2007
Jennifer : "And last time I checked it was more than possible to train a pet, much the same way we are expected to 'train' our kids."

"Possible"? Silly snide and definitely unaware.

My dogs have always behave BETTER in public than about 60% of kids and as well as the other 40%.

Over 45 years ago, my dog earned the highest AKC obedience degrees in in record time,set scores that I have never been broken - and he and I did that before I was 12 years old. He was also one of the very first dogs to do ursing home visits as therapy for the residents.

Yesterday my mobility assistance Service Dog whirled through a day of errands performing his tasks flawlessly and often anticipating what I needed him to do to help; and being his usual charming and happy self with the staff of the places we shop.(He is a great favorite of everyone out in public from the symphony to a restuarant to an airline.)

The words 'teach' and 'train' are interchangeable. My helper was 'taught' his job duties through a consistent process of 'training.' One sets the goal of behavior that is desired and then work toward achieving it by educating the dog as to what is expected in response to a hand signal or if he is in a store.

Teaching my partner to be polite and quiet in public began when he was 16 weeks old when he would go out and about with my now-retired Service Dog and me. That meant taking him places simply so he could be exposed to the environment, insisting that he behave and REMOVING him if he wasn't responding to my instructions because of excitment (and praising him if he did.) Learning to visit restuarants was too much stimulus for him at 5 months of age but he had learned enough about behavior to handle a restuarant for a short time to a quiet restuarant at 6 1/2 months. Can't say that a lot of parents have the same sense or ability to know that some places are not appropriate for their little darlings or that they shuldn't be in a place for longer than the kid can handle without becoming out of control.

"Training" is educating. "Teaching" is the process by which one 'trains'.

What, do you have the problem with the phrase "nurse's training?" Or "training" for this or that job?

YOu better bloody well 'train' your children to behave in public and society by 'teaching' them what they should or should not do. If you don't there were phrases used in my profession to describe such children at some point in their lives - we called them 'criminal law clients','defendants' and 'juvenile delinquents now in custody.'

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