Confessions of a Hypocritical Mom
One of the most memorable Facebook posts I’ve seen is one that read ‘don’t grow up.. It’s a trap.’ And a trap it is. Parents have a duty to provide a sense of security for their kids… To encourage their kids to run to them with good and bad news ..
If you’re bullied, you have to tell your parents..
Peer pressure.. Run to your parents…
Yes, we grow up under the false impression that adults, especially those of the parent variety, know everything. That they can solve any problem. Having fallen into the trap of adulthood, and now that I’ve been parenting for nearly 140 months, I can tell you with full confidence that Adults don’t always know best. In fact, I find that much of the advice I’ve given my children over the years is hypocritical to say the least:
‘Two wrongs Don’t Make a Right’: Is something I often say to my kids. Do I act like I mean it? Absolutely. Do I really mean it? Hell No! The real me would tell my son to punch that boy who keeps tripping him over at school. But I’ve never said it, and sadly I never will. The motherhood chip they implanted in my brain has me programmed to keep repeating lame things like ‘two wrongs don’t make a right’, while my subconscious is being carried away in a straight jacket stamping its feet with rage screaming ‘An Eye For An Eye.’ Yes, the real me would want my son to stand his ground, and to show everyone once and for all that he’s not an easy target. In fact, the real me would want to congratulate my son for finally having taught that boy a lesson- you know the boy who keeps provoking him with unkind words? The real me would understand that he reached a breaking point after having given his schoolmate so many chances. The real me would give him an award for patience, and another for finally having stood up for himself. Sadly though, that chip in my head has me reminding him of other sayings I grew up with -‘sticks and stones might break my bones, but words can’t hurt me’.. Meanwhile my subconscious lies rotting to death in the dungeons of motherhood.
‘Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover’: I was tested on proverbs in primary school, so I’m quite familiar with this one. Do I teach it to my kids? Naturally. But do I practice it? Of course not. I find myself conjuring all sorts of excuses to avoid people who on the surface appear to be different. Needless to say, it’s wrong… But so is everything else about this post!
The Hypocrisy of Schooling: I am living proof that grades don’t matter. My primary to college grades were dismal. Yet, I have to keep reminding my kids that grades define their existence. They are grounded for bad grades, and rewarded for good ones. I can’t tell them that I feel for them, and that if it were left up to me, I would school them in Finland where character development supercedes grades. I can’t tell them that I feel that grades measure none other than their ability to conform.. And that conformity goes against individuality, and character building I want to instill in them. Kids – if you’re reading this, this post cannot be misconstrued as permission to get bad grades. Think of all the times I’ve pretended I didn’t notice your inadvertent blurting out of parent unfriendly words. This post is me asking for payback… And as a reward for your understanding, I will show you my transcripts (after you graduate of course)!
One of my close friends keeps reminding me that my kids are not babies anymore, and that I shouldn’t be asking them for kisses and hugs as often as I do. I am guilty as charged. My kids are not babies anymore, yet.. I still enjoy on demand hugs and kisses (albeit reluctantly at times). In the context of this post, I can’t help but think of these fleeting hugs, pokes, or trampolining on the bed (again my post.. My confessions) as being one of the few chances I get to not walk in the very big shoes of motherhood.
Ps. Yes, I do trampoline on the bed at the ripe age of 40!
Hypocritically yours in parenting,