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Saturday, October 8, 2011

Bad Parent

This week I decided that I will definitely never win the mother of the year award. Never. As a matter of fact, if I were to grade myself in a number of areas, here's how it would go:

Assignment of Chores:  C-
Comments:  I often start off Gung Ho on some sort of chore routine, thinking that the kids will zoom off on their own laundry folding schedule without my direction. But their sense of responsibilities continue to be under-developed.  They never smell an overflowing sink of dirty dishes or see the dog needing fed WITHOUT A BRASH AND OVERT LIST. And sometimes that doesn't even work. Poor dog. No wonder Percy has to beg all the time.

Ability to Say No: D 
Comments:  No, I don't let them play with matches or anything like that. But all of the sudden I've noticed an overwhelming sense of entitlement in the Kramer children. When I was a kid, going to McDonald's was a huge treat. Nowadays, it's an expectation. (In our household, Applebee's has become the new McDonald's.) Last weekend, I let my children talk me into taking them to the city for a "fun" little shopping trip. Fun? What was I thinking? It took me approximately thirty seconds to regret the idea. Spending money on clothes for my kids that I don't like feels like stuffing money down the garbage disposal. You see? The problem. My money. My inability to say no.

Nutrition: C+
Comments:  I wish we ate less frozen pizza, less red meat, less Oreos, less frozen waffles. I wish we ate more asparagus, more watermelon - more real food in general. I do. I really, really do wish that.

Homework: A
Comments:  My allegiance to academics prevail here. Only when the kids pull one over on me with the "I don't have a test tomorrow" bit, do I fail in this area...much to my chagrin.

Hygienic Instruction: B- 
Comments:  How long are those toenails? Are you really using shampoo? No! That's the body wash! You can't wear socks two days in a row...three days you say? You have no clean socks in your drawer? Really?

Oh sure, they're cute. It's part of my problem.
My kids are happy and there's something to say about that. But I also want ensure that I'm raising functional, contributing citizens of society. So my parenting style...could it be described as lazy?  Maybe even lacking of courage? I don't spend much time with them by the time I get home from work. So, every moment I have with them is used in the name of efficiency. I have no aspirations of being a tiger mom. Love, obviously, is the non-negotiable. But perhaps I need to, at the very least, show some fang to my cubs. Parents out there? What do you think? What advice do you have to make these kids show a bit of responsibility...clean rooms, music practiced, shoes put away, etc.

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