Actually, no, we want them to keep being kids, until they are 18, and then we want them to be fully functioning adults. Pretty much the day they turn 18.
I am criticised for letting my kid cross some roads on his own. I am criticised for letting my kid climb trees. I am told that my child might be able to walk to school on his own by 6th grade - I expect him to be doing it in year 3.
These are the things I'm aware of, but what other concessions am I making? How else am I infantilising my kids? It seems to be the standard course just now. I'm watching these kids on TV fight against a world that has suddenly changed the goal posts, and I just don't think that's fair. The demands being made of these teens should have been made of them in steady increments from age 2, but some of them have barely made it past pre-school level of responsibility and respect.
It seems kinda obvious to me that the transition to adulthood is best done slowly, with heaps of time for backslides, fuck-ups, and re-drawing of the rules. The sooner we start, the more chance there is that adult responsibility isn't going to hit kids with a brick.
I could be way wrong, my eldest is only 7, but I remember being 8-18, and I know how hard some of those transitions are.
Which way do you lean? Protection or responsibility? I've written this entirely from my position - do you think I'm way off the mark? I'm still learning - not a week goes by that I don't hear something that resets my position.