Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Pressuring Our Issues on Our Kids

My oldest child is nine years old and he does not care what people think of him. He talks loud, he laughs loud, and he shares whatever is on his mind. When I drop him off at school, over the car running, he will shout out, "I love you mom" and proceed to blow me kisses in front of whomever might be passing by. He doesn't care. He was on stage one day and my husband came up to congratulate him and he gave this affectionate, big hug to his dad in front of the entire school. He doesn't care who sees him or what people think. My son is everything I am not. I do care.

His dad gets our two boys ready and takes them to school during the week while I am at work. One day I picked up the boys from school and low and behold the older one is still wearing his pajama shirt. Every morning I put out their clothes for the next day, but somehow he didn't manage to finish dressing. He was wearing his green and yellow plaid shorts and his gray pajama shirt that was wearing thin. The shirt was two sizes too small (and was suppose to be in his brother's drawer) so it was tight and only hit to his waist. It even had Buzz Lightyear from Toy Story on the front waving. I was appalled when I picked him up and I made an unnecessary big deal about it. He didn't care what he was wearing and didn't care that I made such a big deal about it. He says things and does things I would never do and I have to catch myself from stopping him because, really, it doesn't matter (if it doesn't offend and if it is not impolite) and should I make it matter?

Have you seen that 2004 movie, Spanglish, with Adam Sandler and Tea Leoni (I know you are trying to forget you ever saw that movie)? In the movie the two are married and have a child. The mom is a competitor and runs every day, eats right, and tries to do better than everyone else. The daughter is a bit overweight (I guess, she doesn't look it) and the mother buys her clothes too small so the pre-teen will be motivated to loose weight . The house maid takes all the clothes and secretly adjusts them so the daughter can fit in them.
I don't have any girls in the house so I'm not sure how that dynamic works, but it is difficult not to make our issues (the parent) our child's issues.


  1. I'm so glad to find your blog. I'm still new at this Mommy thing, my son is only 1 1/2 years old, but I see what you are saying about putting our issues on our kids.

    Not only do I see myself doing this to my son in little ways already :)
    but I really see it in how my mom did this to me. Her insecurities, her need to be perfect, and even have a spotless house 24 hours a day definitely was put on me from a very young age... and guess what? I adopted several of her "pressures."

    Ooh, I don't want my kids to get stuck with my junk.... is it possible for it to skip a generation? hmmm.... and how?

    on a side not, thinking of your son going to school with his pj top made me snicker. last weekend my husband watched my son all day. at the end of the day when we were debriefing he showed me pictures of them at the park and all around town... what was my son wearing? a shirt and diaper. that's it! no shoes even. when i picked him up from his crib the next morning, his feet were FILTHY black with dirt. i would never have done that! but did my son have fun with daddy, yep! :) get over it, mom!

  2. I love to go to the store or some random resturant and see kids dressed in their favorite costums or get up. They don't care that it doesn't 'fit' with where they are going. All they care about is they love what they are wearing! Letting kids express who they are is the greatest gift a parent can give!! Way to go Sharon...the things kids teach us!!

  3. I say... Let your freak flag fly! As long as your are not hurting anyone. Expression is something that not every one is comfortable with... Be comfortable with who you are... and who you can become... Learn who you are & not who & what people want you to be... The day will come when kids have to "conform" to something. As adults we have our brain "regulator" or "filter"...always trying to do what is acceptable or proper. "Dockers with a polo shirt".."saggy bottom pants with HUGE game jersey"... Enjoy life. A comment that comes to mind is a movie with Susan Sarandon ( the precise one) & Goldie Hawn (the fly by the seat of your pants friend). Don't know the name...But they used to be great friends in the "good ole days" and many year later crossed paths and Susan went on an errand with Goldie to the DMV... They were talking about their past and Susan gasped and rolled her eyes and muttered something to the effect of "OMG my clothes are so drab I match the walls at the DMV".. Haha... It could happen to you! Enjoy life-Express yourself because you like to.. not to spite, not to embarrass, not to be hurtful! As they say... "Dance like no one is watching!"
    M'lu...p.s I love A & S- they rock! :)