Let’s face it, we are all doing a whole lot of guessing in this game called parenting. I pretty much get through the day limping along doing the best I can while hoping they don’t need therapy for my stuttering, incomprehensible yell across the playground after school. However, there are a few thing that I KNOW you are doing wrong….
1. Carrying your kids’ backpacks to school– Wtf is this about?! If I had asked my mother to carry my bag to school she would have knocked me out. Since when are we teaching our children to take NO responsibility of their own? They aren’t carrying bricks in there so give the bag to your kid and force them to be responsible for at least one aspect of their tiny lives. Stop creating pussies.
2. Never letting your kids have freedom-
My mother never once walked me to school, or to the park, or supervised “playdates” with special activities. And I have never once thought worse of her as a mother for it. In fact, I delighted in the freedom she gave me and the responsibility it taught me. If I screwed up and was late to school or dinner, I lost my freedom. Holy Cow! Consequences can be issued for lack of responsible behavior? This is how children learn to navigate the real world and, unless you plan on having a 40 year old living in your basement, you better get to teaching this sh*t. If you live close to the school, let them walk with their buddies (you can creepily hover a block or two behind if you are really that paranoid), let them romp at the park without you following their every move, let them ride around the neighborhood with their pals or to walk the dog. Freedom is necessary for growth, and it isn’t free, it comes with responsibility and consequences for screwing up. These are valuable life lessons my friend, stop stunting your children and let go a little.
3. Dressing like a hoochie– I don’t care if you have girls or boys or both or only one. If you dress like a street-walker you are teaching our children that women’s bodies are valuable only as “meat.” I can’t believe the number of moms that drop their kids off wearing 3 inch stilettos, skirts they can’t bend over in without their hooha’s popping out and more cleavage the Dolly Parton bestows on a bikini. You really want your daughters dressing like that? Or even thinking that dressing like that is OK? I certainly don’t want my sons thinking that his girlfriends or wife should look like that. Have a little damn modesty and save your lady parts for the bedroom with your husband…or whoever you entertain privately. You can look sexy and classy, I promise, and it’s actually sexier because you leave a little to the imagination. All I am imagining is dollar bills and glitter in places it won’t come out….
4. Acting like a short order cook– “I want chicken nuggets,” “ I want hotdogs,” “I want cake….” Who cares what you want, you’re children! Unless you have a child with a verifiable allergy that requires special meals, your children should eat a big bowl of whatever the f*ck mom and dad want for dinner. God forbid your little darling have to scarf down something that isn’t their absolute favorite. Either they eat what you make or they go to bed hungry. They will get over it and they won’t starve, I promise and I have five tiny humans who are still breathing and healthy to prove it. Once your kids realize they don’t run the kitchen they will eat whatever you put on their plate. Your “picky” eater will figure it out and stop being so annoying. Take charge like a parent should and stop kowtowing to demands from people who can barely wipe their own butts.
5. Letting your kids play video games wherever, whenever– Yeah, yeah, video games are great for hand eye coordination. You know what else is? Playing catch, jumping around on monkey bars and playing tag. Sure they are quieter and easier to deal with when attached to a cord in front of the TV, but they are also missing out on Vitamin D and gaining social and physical strength by playing outside, or acquiring skills by reading a book or drawing a picture. The parents who plug their kids in whenever they go out to eat or to an event or to drive five minutes to Dunkin Doughnuts, you guys drive me fricking crazy. You know why kids these days don’t have any manners or ability to keep quiet and be polite for five seconds? Because rather than take the time and endure the frustration of teaching a child to sit and eat in a restaurant without causing a scene, or force a kid to be bored and use their own imagination quietly while watching a siblings school play, parents just plug in head phones to whatever wireless device they have and stick their kid in a corner. That’s great, now you and your significant other can have a nice intimate dinner with no distractions, but you also just created Cujo for any situation where your batteries die or there isn’t wifi. It’s OK for your kids to be bored, do your parenting thing and teach them how to combat this boredom. Life is full of boring moments and hours of sitting through material you don’t care about but have to pay attention to, you better get your kids ready now or you’ll be paying for a whole lot of college that won’t be worth diddly squat.
There you go. Stop screwing up.