Know what really sucks? Parents who seem hell-bent on ensuring that their children turn out to be assholes. Oh, they may not DELIBERATELY be trying to turn their kids into raging jerks, but they do. Everyone makes mistakes. Everyone screws something up, and gawd knows I beat myself up about every little thing I mess up. But it’s kids who are in close proximity to mine with parents who don’t give a good goddamn about rules and boundaries and seem more concerned with being their kids' friends instead of being their PARENTS. it’s a novel concept.
Do you know what I mean?
Parents who let their kids bring expensive toys for show-and-tell because it’s easier than bringing actual stuff to discuss. Even when the teacher asks really nicely for kids to bring discussion items that could end up being educational. Photos, books, plants, stones, something from a trip – you get the idea. Not the latest fucking Lego creation that your own child will beg for once he returns home from school. And when next Monday rolls around, your child will plead to be allowed to bring his own Lego shit for show-and-tell, because Jack* did.
Parents who let their five- and six-year-old children play violent killing video games because they “lost that battle.” THAT IS A DIRECT QUOTE. I am now 37 years old, and I don’t lose battles to my 5-year-old son. Because I am The Parent. Oh, sure. It’s not always pretty, but I stand my ground. And no, this doesn’t endear me to him 100% of the time. In fact, he might tell me that he really doesn’t like me. But at that point, I’ll take a page from my mother’s playbook and tell him that he doesn’t have to like me.
I love both my children so much I feel that my heart will just burst open sometimes. But I have a duty to them. A duty to make their lives as good as possible while teaching them to be responsible residents of this planet. If they hate me sometimes because I don't let them watch TV all day or ask them to clean their rooms, well, sucks to be me. Sure, I'll let them make as many of their own decisions as possible. But when it comes down to letting my kid watch a PG-13 movie that I am 100% sure will give him nightmares? Sorry, not going to happen. That's also me being lazy - I mean, who wants to get up in the middle of the night to deal with that? Not me.
What do you guys think? Am I too much of a hardass? How do you handle that sort of thing?
*name has been changed, of course.