We do our best to teach our kids right from wrong and how to behave in society. At the same time, you do realize we are contradicting ourselves on a daily basis, right? You do it sometimes too, it’s cool. You are probably still a great parent. Here are some of the biggest parenting contradictions:
Don’t talk to strangers, but be polite when they talk to you.
My son cold-cocked a lady once at Chuck E Cheese. He got her right in the nose. No joke. It was packed and he turned around and couldn’t find me. I saw him from a distance but was fighting my way through the crowd to get to him. He was terrified. I’ve always told him don’t talk to strangers and if they grab you, you fight them. I don’t care if you have to bite them, just get away. A nice lady, noticed he looked lost and grabbed his arm to ask him if he needed help. He clocked her. Yikes, he was doing what he was told. However, I catch myself reacting to them if a stranger in a store asks them how old they are, or what their name is and they don’t answer. I’m like, “be polite, answer when someone asks you a question.” Total contradiction.
Don’t fucking say bad words!
Even though I write down these words for adults to read, doesn’t mean I spew out swear words all the time in front of my kids. But the occasional, “oh shit” or “dammit” will come out during a spill or a hit in the funny bone. Have you ever knocked your hip on the corner of the counter? Words come out that you didn’t know existed! My children do hear me say these things sometimes. Shit happens. It happens to us. It happens to them. But they are not allowed to say it.
It doesn’t matter what people think. Be who you are, but not like that.
I am constantly trying to teach my kids to screw what everybody thinks and just be themselves. I grew up way too worried about other people’s opinions about my life and I don’t want them to be that way. See-I just did it. “I don’t want them to be that way.” I just made my point.
Turn off the video games as soon as I’m off the phone!
Making doctors appointments, checking emails, browsing Facebook, shopping, playing Candy Crush, FINALLY returning that phone call or text, it seems like I am always on my phone. I try to limit my children’s video game time to a reasonable amount, but I should probably do the same for my electronic devices too. Hypocrite much?
Looks are not what’s important in life, but you are NOT wearing that.
It’s a conversation I have with my kids often…it doesn’t matter what someone looks like on the outside, it’s what’s on the inside that counts. That being said, when I say, “get back in your room, you are not wearing pajama pants and a wife-beater to a birthday party,” they get confused. My seven year-old even said the other day, “Mom, I thought it didn’t matter what we looked like.” Well yes, I may have said that, but…oh, just listen to me right now. Ugh…
Really or not???
Being responsible and on time is important, but hurry up because we are running late!
How do I expect them to learn to be organized and responsible creatures, when I can’t get my own shit together? With three boys, one is always either sick, hurt, crying, has to pee, or forgetting something, and I am typically right there with them. With so much to do, I am always running late, and they see that. Kids pick up on so much we don’t even realize. Running late is now their “normal.” Well crap.
Don’t be a tattle-tale, but if someone’s mean to you, you need to tell on them.
My five year-old told me yesterday that he told on a boy at school for going inside when he wasn’t supposed to at recess. “Was that the right thing to do?” he asked. Umm…honestly…I don’t flipping know. If I was the teacher I would want to know if a kindergartener was roaming the halls, but I don’t want my kids to be tattle-tales. So I told him this, “If someone could get hurt or could hurt someone else, you should tell. If someone is goofing off, then you should probably mind your own business.” I’m hoping that was the right answer. Hoping. Either way, it could be right or wrong. Aye yai yai.
~So what’s the answer? How do we solve this problem? Are we going to raise a bunch of terribly confused kids? The answer is most likely yes. That being said, I will place a penny in their pockets each day so they can make heads or tails decisions. Just kidding. I will just do the very best I can. That’s all we can really do right? We can explain that we are not perfect humans and don’t always have all the right answers, but we can also give them the best guidance possible. We will do this while still confusing the hell out of them. I think we should still stick a penny in their pocket though, and take our chances that it’s a lucky one, so they make the right choices.
This parenting thing is one huge contradiction, how else could you possibly love someone so much that shits all over you?
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