you act like idiots. And parents, I’m talking to you. I’m normally not that harsh or judgmental (opinionated, always, judgmental, not usually), but lately a bunch of you have given me a real headache. While I don’t consider myself a serious mommy blogger, I have definitely jumped headfirst into following and reading a smattering of interesting…and I use that term loosely, mommy blogs. In doing so, I have observed and even dipped my foot into the discussion pool on several topics of interest. In following said discussion threads and reading reaction upon reaction followed by advice (sometimes useful) upon advice (many times not) from moms all over the blogosphere, I’ve picked up on some disturbing stuff. Yes, stuff. Rants, raves, advice, musings, potty mouthed tirades and sometimes, complete hysteria. As a result, I’ve come up with a list of 5 simple things that parents should never do, allow or encourage. Oh- and dads, I’m dragging you into this too. Last time I checked, unless you married a woman who has completely torn your manhood from your body, you have a vote in what goes on under your roof.
#1- the Tooth Fairy should NEVER EVER leave a child $20 for a tooth.
#2- video players, ipads, iphones, ianything, even with headphones, ARE NEVER APPROPRIATE in church.
#3- children under the age of 18 SHOULD NOT call adults by their first name.
#4- girls, especially those who are too young to earn their own income, SHOULD NEVER carry a designer handbag, even purchased on sale.
#5- parents SHOULD NEVER, EVER gossip about or tear down a child.
In my opinion, the above 5 aren’t rocket science. They don’t require an advanced degree from a fancy university or a semester abroad. Parenting with reasonable limits and a dash of common sense is not that difficult. It’s amazing that much of the material I’ve read since beginning my blog revolves around one or more of the above issues. Again this isn’t rocket science, but I’ll explain my rationale for my reasoning below.
#1- If you give $20 for a baby tooth, what entry level job your child secures early on in life will live up to his expectations?
#2- If you cannot teach your child the art of sitting still, listening and learning to amuse oneself with something other than technology, you’ve got bigger issues. What ever happened to picture books or quiet coloring for young children?
#3- I know that many of you will go after me on this one. So be it. This is my blog and my opinion. Children do not have the cognitive ability to accurately separate adults from their peers. When we level the playing field by allowing children to call us by our first names, we erode a level of respect that should exist between adults and children. We don’t allow our children to call doctors, teachers and other professionals by their first names. We shouldn’t allow them to do so with their friends’ parents either. We are here to be parents- not friends.
#4- This is really for the dads out there. If cute little Sally gets a $450 Kate Spade or, God forbid, a $1250 Gucci bag for her 13th birthday, what young man is EVER going to be able to make her happy????? My belief, and I guess I could be wrong, is that most parents want their children to grow up to responsible, independent and successful adults. Part of this journey involves children earning things, such as designer handbags, on their own. If we set our children’s expectations that high at such a young age, we, in essence, set them up for a lifetime of disappointment.
#5- Do I really need to explain this one? Really? However, as a teacher, as a principal, and now as a parent, I am appalled to hear other parents refer to children so callously. It’s heinous actually. We’re talking about children. If we want to put an end to bullying or stop it before it starts, we need to evaluate our own behavior and attitudes first. Our children watch and learn from our actions, not our words.
Be the parent you know you can and should be. Otherwise, I certainly won’t be there to defend you.