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  • Isabelle Daza Points Out Differences Between French and Filipino Styles of Parenting

    The mom of one believes there is no single way to raise a child right.
    by Lei Dimarucut-Sison .
Isabelle Daza Points Out Differences Between French and Filipino Styles of Parenting
PHOTO BY @isabelledaza/Instagram
To read this story in Tagalog, click here.
  • With a degree in Early Childhood Education and her experience as a preschool teacher, mom of one Isabelle Daza should feel confident about raising her one-year-old son Balthazar, or Baltie. But the actress knows there is still so much to learn about being a parent. 

    Aside from consulting with experts, Isabelle told Pep.ph that she reads up a lot on the subject. One particular book she takes pointers from is American journalist Pamela Druckerman's Bringing Up Bebe, which compares the French and American styles of parenting.

    Druckerman concludes that the French produce kids who are more well-behaved than do American parents, because "The French believe that kids feel confident when they're able to do things for themselves, and do those things well."

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    Could it be true? The actress does not need to look far -- her French husband Adrien Semblat is living proof of it.

    In her interview with Pep.ph during the Pigeon Safety Alert event in May, Isabelle shared that the French teach their kids to stimulate themselves and have fun on their own. It's something her mother-in-law taught her.

    During a beach outing with Adrien's family, she remembers, "I went to the beach, and I had so many toys for my son. Sabi ko, 'Oh my God, he needs to be stimulated' ganyan, ganyan.

    "Then I look over and I see my husband. He's playing with his three siblings and they're just digging a hole with their hands.

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    "Ang dami-dami kong bitbit. I have a ball, I have a shovel, I have a pail, and I have all these toys.

    "And here's my husband and his family digging a hole and tuwang-tuwa na sila.


    "So, parang, what I learned from there, you don't need to [have] many things to be happy or enjoy.

    "It's just about allowing yourself to be curious and allowing yourself to be creative enough to explore simple things."

    She also noted three key differences between the French style of raising kids and the Filipino way, which she grew up with.


    One, the French are more relaxed about their ways, in general. "I think Filipinos, we coddle our children so much, whereas the French, siyempre it's not in their culture to have help and have yayas, so they're a bit more relaxed.

    "Kapag nahulog anak ko, I'm like, 'Ha!' but [Adrien is] like, 'It's okay. He's fine.'

    "So, I think I'm learning from him how to be more chill."

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    Two, the French take healthy eating seriously especially when it comes to their kids. "They train their children at a very early age na kung hindi ka kumain ng vegetables, hindi ka kakain.

    "In the book, it says, first you give them the vegetables and then you feed them the main dish.

    "Whereas, for us, 'Ay, ayaw niya. Palitan mo ng Mac 'n' Cheese.'"


    Three, the French allow their kids to be "naughty" at times, to give them autonomy and freedom of expression.

    "That was, for me, a shock because tayo we're always correcting our kids. 'Don't do this, don't do that. Hindi iyan puwede.'

    "But in France, they give them time to be naughty because it is in our nature to deviant."

    So which style of parenting will it be for the Semblats?

    "I know it's gut feel and I think when you become a mom, you have a gut feel of what is correct and what isn't," says Isabelle.

    "You just have to do your best in the best way you know how."

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