[quote="3DOCTORS, post:4, topic:218703"]
Thanks for the thoughtful answers - the lady in question is a devout person, doesn't do drugs or alcohol or anything like that. And the couple are legal immigrants as far as I know. She's a friend of a friend so I don't see her that often.
I asked our mutual friend if the children obey their father, and the friend said yes. I get this sense (again, I just have to intuit because of the limited contact I have with her) that she is very submissive to her husband and perhaps let the two boys be somewhat spoiled too. The baby girl is learning from the brothers' example.
The young lady also is just always in a hurry, always stressed but also sort of resigned to her children's uncontrollability.
I noticed the time recently when I did ride with them (which I hope not to do again, as, which I pray doesn't happen but if there was an accident and the children were hurt or killed it would haunt me forever) - I noticed this time after we arrived at our destination the baby had not been buckled in the entire time (it was night and the baby was relaxed while riding so I had assumed she'd been buckled in).
Not only are the two boys up and down in the van while it's in motion, as soon as it stops at the destination they're out the doors and running all over the place. That's how I noticed the baby girl was not buckled, because she was trying to climb out of her carseat also.
Anyway, getting back to where I was going with this, I had the question in my mind of whether it could be some cultural phenomenon, that maybe the young woman felt inferior as a female, and so was reluctant to discipline her sons.
I just wondered if anyone knew a parenting book in Spanish that has helped others.
No, it is definitely NOT a cultural phenomena. From what you describe, something is very much amiss in this situation. Quite frankly, living in the city that I do, I have been exposed to many women from the Mexican culture and the Latino culture in general. What you are describing is just downright strange. The Latino women that I've come in contact with keep their kids in line, and would never even think for a moment of not securing their children in their safety seats or doing anything so very negligent. From what you tell me, something is very much wrong with this lady. Is it possible that she was or is a victim of domestic violence? Could she perhaps be mildly retarded. It's been my experience that some mildly retarded people are able to carry out certain duties, but unable to make certain (sometimes critical) judgement calls. Something is very much amiss. Does your priest know about this situation? Perhaps he can intervene. If he is unable to, then perhaps a call to your local social work agency will get the ball rolling in the right direction.
Heavenly Father, thank You for looking out for the family in question. Thank You for securing the safety, health and well-being of all. Father only You know what is truly going on in this situation. Thank You Father for Your Holy intervention. Amen.