Permission to ask questions is possibly the greatest gift Bobbie was given – Even if her mother didn’t know the answer and even if she didn’t want to talk about the issue, Bobbie was never told to stop questioning. As important, Bobbie was not always given a direct answer but often asked “well, what do you think?”
In the middle of contradicting lessons and limited visions for the future, simply posing a question allowed a suggestion that there may be a different option from what was immediately in front of her. For this specifically, Bobbie continues to credit her mother for helping her continue looking for ways to dig out of what seemed an inescapable trap of an abusive life.
As adults, it is up to all of us to help kids learn how to think through things and not just give them answers to memorize. Check out the links below to learn more about teaching children about critical thinking: