Is it right to teach children to trust nobody?


#1

We often hear the phrase: “Trust nobody”, “Don’t trust anyone”, etc…

And my wife wants to teach our children just like that, starting when they are just toddlers.
But I found this to be dangerous teaching because, I think, the children will not filter well, and they will grow up with a conviction of distrust of everyone, maybe including their parents too.

Maybe the best way to teach is to “be careful”, “use your best judgement”, etc…but the “trusting nobody mentality” is not charitable…, what do you think?

Is it wrong to think that if we cannot trust anyone who are visible, then how can we trust God who is invisible? (this is my personal opinion)

Or…

If we cannot trust in Jesus, how can we trust anyone? Can this be wrong because sometimes I found this to be difficult to implement with sincerity when people say, “Trust nobody but God”.

Please enlighten me with your experiences and advices.

Thanks.


#2

Trust no one vs. We are all in this together:

1* Cor 12:12 The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ.

Eph 4:4-6 There is one body and one Spirit--just as you were called to one hope when you were called-- one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.

Rom 12:5 So in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.

Eph 4:16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

1 Cor 12:20-21 As it is, there are many parts, but one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, "I don't need you!" And the head cannot say to the feet, "I don't need you!"

1John 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.

Jn 13:34-35 "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."

1Cor 12:24-25 But God has combined the members of the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other.

2Thess 1:3 We ought always to thank God for you, brothers, and rightly so, because your faith is growing more and more, and the love every one of you has for each other is increasing.

1 John 4:11-12 Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.

1 John 4:20-21 If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother.

1Pt 1:22-23 Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart. 23 For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.

1 Pt 4:8-10 Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in its various forms

Rom 12:10 Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.

Heb 10:24-25 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another--and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

Gal 5:13 You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love. 14 The entire law is summed up in a single command: "Love your neighbor as yourself."

Rom 15:1-2 We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up.

1 John 3:14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death.

2 Peter 1:4

4Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.

John 20:21 “As the Father sent me, so I send you.”

John 14:12 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father.”

1Cor 11:1 ‘Be imitators of me – as I am of Christ.”

Eph 5:21 "Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ."

Galatians 6:2
2Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.

2 Corinthians 1:11
11as you help us by your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many.

*


#3

Does your wife want to teach your children not to trust adults who may not have their best interests at heart? Or does it go beyond that?

It’s probably a good idea to instill some measure of fear into your children. When I was 5 or something like that I remember actually being offered candy from a black car. When I was a little older I remember running like hell from a flasher. Tons of little things like that happen to children. There were many opportunities for me to end up harmed, but I didn’t put myself in them solely because of my parents’ instruction to stay away from certain situation. I didn’t understand them at the time, and didn’t have the mental capacity to agree or disagree. But I blindly trusted my parents and did what they said. Probably saved me from God knows what.


#4

Children need to know what ACTIONS to distrust, and to go to people for help when needed. For instance, it is important to teach children to go where there are lots of gownups and run and make lots of noise if they are every in danger -

A child who is taught to trust no one may not trust the firefighter who comes to save their life!


#5

This mom's blog might be of interest:

Free Range Kids


#6

Great blog, Jim.


#7

It is dangerous and a bit foolish to merely tell children what to NOT do. They cannot live by merely NOT doing things.

A person cannot live without trust in something. If your wife wants to teach them to not trust, then perhaps you should ask your wife who *she *trusts. If her answer is "no one", then you may have learned something concerning your wife and yourself.

Trustability is a deep and serious issue in the West these days. Trust is about consistency and we live in a world bent on change - inconsistency. Thus who can be trusted and what can be trusted is an issue with a live adversary promoting it.

Without trust, insecurity and doubt reigns leaving indecision in its wake. From indecision comes the lack of accomplishment which then spawns the lack of confidence. Without confidence, a person doesn't know what to believe and can't even adhere to what they believe even when they choose to believe it. They become the mush and clay with which new social ethos authorities build with through the use of the media, music, news reports, suspicions, school teachers, and other children.

Fear is the constant companion of he who has no trust. No purpose in life can be assessed and striven toward. Failure is his destiny.

So finding who to trust and in what and why is paramount.

I am not Catholic, but I would still tell your child to trust in what his Church declares as true. Trust in the intent of his parents even if they make mistakes at times. He will be far better off living with their few mistakes then trying to live with the vast indecision and number of mistakes that he will suffer by trying to avoid the mistakes of his parents and Church.

He who trusts no one earns no trust from anyone and cannot be trusted himself.

By trusting in Church and parents, he will always have friends. Although it is said that life is about "survival of the fittest", the real truth is that it is about "survival of the fitted." Trust and believe in no one, and you will fit where you trust - nowhere.

But in the end, trust is not a black or white issue. One finds what is trustable to this degree or that. Accept that all things are only trustable to a degree. Seek out to what degree and to be trusted for what behavior.

If one questions ALL things, then he must also question the wisdom of questioning all things and the lack of achievement it brings.

Life is making your best guess and remembering so that you can learn how to guess better. It is not the knowing of what is or isn't.


#8

Teaching them to trust NOBODY is not good. There are many good people who are to be trusted…teachers, Godparents, Grandparents, friends, etc.

Teach them, instead, to be careful and to be wise. Teach them good touch and bad touch. Teach them what is OK and what is not OK.

It is OK to trust the teacher and go into the classroom with other kindergartners. It is not OK to go the coach’s house alone and watch movies. It is OK to go to a classmate’s house to work on a school project. It is not OK to “hang out” at the “mall” until 1 am with a classmate whose parents you’ve never met. Big difference!

I would question what is in your wife’s background that is making her so paranoid…

It is not good to teach our children to be fearful, but instead to be careful and make wise, street smart choices.

Afterall, it is often the fearful child who is made fun of and bullied. Is that what she wants? I don’t think so.


#9

Coming from a childhood where there was physical, sexual and mental abuse...I'd still NEVER advocate teaching a child 'trust no-one', rather: be careful, don't trust someone just because they're an adult or say 'trust me'...I would teach a child, as I do with our own children, to be wary of any adult who is too touchy-feely, too kind, too nice, to the point where it makes you feel uncomfortable, I also tell them there is NOTHING they can't tell me, and not to listen to adults who want to keep something a secret.

I personally trust no-one 100%, but it's a very lonely way to be, and I would never recommend that route for anyone.


#10

It can’t be done.
Just think about it. You have to lie through your teeth to ascribe such an approach. In one sentence you tell the child to trust no one and in the next you chastise her for not paying attention to the teacher at school. Liar! Liar! Pants on fire!
Do it one way or the other. But I’m here to tell you that the “trust no one” approach is anti-societal, and anti-Christian, and complete dishonest.

Brother Matthew


#11

several points that I think of as a parent on trust–
if you want to teach a kid not to trust, you change his primary care taker every few years or every few months, such as having a nanny for a few years and then she disappears out of the kid’s life, or daycare where care takers keeps changing. That teaches a kid that primary relationships are temporary, which as an adult can lead to ending relationships easily… A daycare worker can be with the kid for the same or more waking hours a day then the parents and in the kids eyes are just as important , then it suddenly ends. That is why my son has been with me 24/7 for 12 years and not ever leaving him with a baby sitter. I think it is more important for kids to totally trust their parents , trusting others is a minor issue compared to making sure they trust you and not have ‘parent replacement’ figures that come and go, that lead a person to not trust relationships to last.

along with that another trust issue is – if you lie to them for 8 or 10 years, and their peers finally tell them the truth, and they find out you lied to them for years just as they are hitting puberty, I think it breaks a bond and the kids learn to trust/listen to their peers for the truth and not trust their parents who scammed them for years. What I am talking about is the Santa, easter bunny and tooth fairey lies that are prepetuated by parents for years. For too many kids Santa is the high point of the year. When mine was 2yo, I explained santa was not real, told him about St. Nicholas, and Christmas was about Jesus, not santa. When my son was 8 or 10 yo I did not have to tell him that I lied to him all those years. He did not learn from his peers the truth, because I told him the truth all along. If you teach them to believe in Santa, or silently go along with the pretense, and the kids later find out the truth and that it was all a lie, then what you teach them about God falls into the same catagory, the kids think that is part of the invisible lie too. I think that if you do not want them to doubt you or God just as they are about to hit puberty, then you teach them trust by not lieing to them about all the myths of childhood. Then as teens they will trust you, and you will not add doubt to their faith. .


#12

[quote="JustinR, post:11, topic:177557"]

along with that another trust issue is -- if you lie to them for 8 or 10 years, and their peers finally tell them the truth, and they find out you lied to them for years just as they are hitting puberty, I think it breaks a bond and the kids learn to trust/listen to their peers for the truth and not trust their parents who scammed them for years. What I am talking about is the Santa, easter bunny and tooth fairey lies that are prepetuated by parents for years. ........................ then what you teach them about God falls into the same catagory, the kids think that is part of the invisible lie too. I think that if you do not want them to doubt you or God just as they are about to hit puberty, then you teach them trust by not lieing to them about all the myths of childhood. Then as teens they will trust you, and you will not add doubt to their faith. .

[/quote]

Severely disagree with this part.:rolleyes:

It IS possible for children to have been believing in Santa AND have a strong faith in God. Give the kids some credit. They are NOT stupid! ;)


#13

[quote="david40, post:1, topic:177557"]
We often hear the phrase: "Trust nobody", "Don't trust anyone", etc...

And my wife wants to teach our children just like that, starting when they are just toddlers.
But I found this to be dangerous teaching because, I think, the children will not filter well, and they will grow up with a conviction of distrust of everyone, maybe including their parents too.

Maybe the best way to teach is to "be careful", "use your best judgement", etc...but the "trusting nobody mentality" is not charitable..., what do you think?

Is it wrong to think that if we cannot trust anyone who are visible, then how can we trust God who is invisible? (this is my personal opinion)

Or...

If we cannot trust in Jesus, how can we trust anyone? Can this be wrong because sometimes I found this to be difficult to implement with sincerity when people say, "Trust nobody but God".

Please enlighten me with your experiences and advices.

Thanks.

[/quote]

Reading the OP the first thing that popped into my mind was an experience I had when I was four years old. My mom had drilled into me the whole "don't talk to strangers" thing. Fairly routine. I was with a whole group of cousins (I think one of the older ones must have been watching us, because my mom was always so careful about watching me as her only child) at a pool and I followed them out deeper and deeper. I got to the point where I was bobbing up and down with my head just barely above water and couldn't get to the side. A man who was nearby came over and asked if I needed help. I shook my head "no" and kept bobbing because I knew that I wasn't supposed to talk to strangers. It finally became so obvious that I was in trouble that he pulled me out anyway, just as my mom saw what was going on and rushed over. When he explained what had happened and my mom asked why I'd said no to help I explained that he was a stranger. Little kids can take things very literally, so while I definitely think it's important to stress things like not talking to strangers and being careful around people, it's also important that they know that they can ask for help if they need it!

Thinking about it from another angle, I would think it could also cause major relationship problems later on. People have enough trust issues as it is!


#14

[quote="Catholic90, post:12, topic:177557"]
Severely disagree with this part.:rolleyes:

It IS possible for children to have been believing in Santa AND have a strong faith in God. Give the kids some credit. They are NOT stupid! ;)

[/quote]

I give SOME kids credit, and it IS possible, but I have seen the problem in other kids who turn their backs on parents at the preteen/teen years, and this is often the first event that starts the process, For parents to go along with the hoax for years does break some kids trust with their parents when they find out the fraud. And the kids learn that their peers told them the truth, so they will listen to their peers over their parents. And when parents teach kids about the tooth fairy, easter bunny, santa, and God, and then for the kids to find out that the first 3 of them are not real, then some kids doubt what they have been taught about the fourth one.


#15

Is that an exaggeration? Does he get to go hang out with friends or spend the night at a friend’s house? Go to school? Go to summer camp?


#16

[quote="JustinR, post:11, topic:177557"]
several points that I think of as a parent on trust--

if you want to teach a kid not to trust, you change his primary care taker every few years or every few months, such as having a nanny for a few years and then she disappears out of the kid's life, or daycare where care takers keeps changing. That teaches a kid that primary relationships are temporary, which as an adult can lead to ending relationships easily.. A daycare worker can be with the kid for the same or more waking hours a day then the parents and in the kids eyes are just as important , then it suddenly ends. That is why my son has been with me 24/7 for 12 years and not ever leaving him with a baby sitter. I think it is more important for kids to totally trust their parents , trusting others is a minor issue compared to making sure they trust you and not have 'parent replacement' figures that come and go, that lead a person to not trust relationships to last.

[/quote]

You know what Justin, I really agree with you. Well except for the 24/7 part....I mean my kids are with me 90% of the time....we've never had a babysitter....but as for primary caregivers, I agree.


#17

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