Your Parenting SUCKS
I was going to write about my take on the Presidential debates. I have several notes and clever one-liners I wanted to write. But I’m not going to. This morning I saw this article, about a twelve year old girl who was murdered by two teenage brothers. They lured her into their house, strangled her, and stuffed her body into a recycling bin. Why? They wanted PARTS of her bike. She was murdered because they wanted parts of her BMX bike.
Now, I’m not naïve. I know violent crime is nothing new.
I just looked at the title of this article and I want you to know I’m not blaming THESE parents for what happened. In fact it was the boy’s mother who tipped off the police. For that she should be applauded.
What I want to write about is parenting in general.
I consider both my wife and myself experts in parenting. Not because of any classes, or degrees or…well…anything you can point a finger at. It certainly isn’t because we are smart. (My wife is smart. I’m pretty stoopid). We are “experts” based solely on the fact that we have raise (and are raising) four young men who, so far, have turned out to be pretty good kids (knock on wood). Now, again, I’m not naïve. I’m SURE my kids do, and have done crap I don’t know about. And I know a lot of it has to do with who they choose as friends. My question is, why not talk to them about their friends?
In my humble opinion, as far as parenting goes, you are only as successful as your stupidest kid. If you have two kids, one who is an Olympic gold medalist and the other is robbed by a prostitute, guess what? You failed as a parent.
You may remember several months ago some kids (11 – 13 year olds) bullied an elderly bus monitor and recorded the whole thing so they could put it on Youtube. Let me tell you, if any of those kids were mine, I would STILL be raining blows upon them.
I was conversing with a co-worker recently who was talking about his kid’s football games. He claims the league requires that there be police present at the games to keep the parents in line.
Here is another story. It’s about a mother being arrested for encouraging her daughter to fight.
Quick side note: I asked my mom if I was a gifted child. She said they certainly wouldn’t have paid for me.
My question is, where the hell are the grown ups? What is wrong with talking to your kids about morals and values? I’m not even saying religion. If religion isn’t your thing you can still have the “we don’t treat people like that,” or the “we don’t dress like that,” or the “that doesn’t belong to you” talk. It isn’t hard. You just have to open your pie hole. I understand the desire to be friends with your kids, but someone has to be the adult. Grow up.
I recently had a teaching opportunity with my boys. I told them about my friends in high school. At the end of my junior year the group of boys I hung out with was getting…hmmm…at little “rougher” than I wanted. They weren’t bad guys. They were just getting into partying and drinking. So my senior year I changed friends. I wasn’t a jerk. I didn’t come across as “holier than thou.” I was friendly. I just didn’t hang with them anymore. My point is I told my kids they can stand up for themselves without being a jerk and without being afraid.
Another quick side note: I gave one of my sons a glue stick instead of chapstick last weekend. He still isn’t talking to me.
I remember one time talking to a lady about her kids. She said, “Well I don’t want to get in the way of their free will.” I remember thinking, “You’re an idiot.” Free agency or free will (I believe) is a true principle. But if you let your children play on a busy street because they want to, you’re an idiot. You need to let them know there are guide lines, and consequences to every decision they make. You can make the decisions all day long, but you have to live with the consequences. There’s no choosing those.
LIFEZILLA: There’s no place like home…except Lifezilla.