Sunday, June 8, 2008


My wife and I purchased a simple board game that my 4 year-old son can play. It has dice and pegs that you move according with your roll. We bought it as a tool to help him learn to add, i.e. the sum of the dice. Last night my wife writes to tell me that our son is in tears because he lost his first game to her; with his weepy voice he exclaimed to his mother that ‘he should always win’. Welcome to life son.

How do you teach your child to lose? I’ve never been a good loser, even today; my ego doesn’t like it, not one bit. My son is quickly heading down the same road and we’re struggling to help him find a balance between his developing ego and compassion for others. Of course I want him to win and be successful at things that he tries, what father wouldn’t? On the other hand our dream is to teach him compassion for all things, and to raise an empathetic and loving son. I’m afraid many of these are lessons that are often lost on a 4 year-old boy, however his 44 year-old father could greatly benefit.

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