Biting My Tongue

I try to mind my own business but it’s getting too hard to ignore and bite my tongue.

The past few weeks have really tested my patience.  They’ve worn me down and forced me to step away from Facebook.  I dread MR’s step on the stair to the basement where he has PC and the shut of the front door when Beena comes home from work.  What I used to find amusing has now made me agitated and sad.

My angst is stemming from the level of parenting I’m encountering and hearing about what goes on in Beena’s day.  I know I should mind my own business but it’s disheartening, really.  I don’t know how ANYONE who deals with children can put up with this insanity day after day and not quit and take a job deep in the recesses of a jungle, away from the crazy people we call PARENTS. 

We need to open our fucking eyes and swallow our fucking pride when it comes to our kids.  We send our precious bundles into school and have only THEIR WORD on what’s going on there.  Do you remember what it was like being 13?  Were you objective about the level of study you were receiving or about the attitude of your teachers?   Did you tell your parents the truth about what you did all day?  No, I didn’t think so. 

Why then do so many of these parents think what their kids say is gospel? Why don’t they trust the Certified professionals we give our kids over to every day?  Why do they feel the need to berate and scream “Foul!” when their little precious bundles come home with a failing grade, detention or warnings about their behavior?  When did these little precious bundles become so entitled?  When did they become so “precious”?  When did parents become so delusional?

(So in the safety of my own little blog that no one reads and without risking any confrontation,)

I will mind my business no longer…

  • If your kid is failing, he/she is not allowed to play sports.  If your kid has had a discipline problem, he/she should not be allowed to play sports.  Sports are SECONDARY to education, not the other way around.
  • If your kid mouths off to a teacher, he/she deserves discipline.  If your kid breaks the rules, he/she deserves to be disciplined.  They should be disciplined in school, then you should discipline them at home.  Being a parent to a child means teaching them they can’t get away with breaking the rules.
  • If your kid suddenly shows aptitude in a subject, that does not make them automatically entitled to be in an Honors class in the following year.  Being a teacher/principal/PTA whore/school board member does not make them entitled to be in an Honors class.  Consistent high grades in previous years, teacher recommendations and a propensity to handle the work entitles your child to be in an Honors class.  Teach your kid to earn a place in the world- don’t buy (or bully) it for them.
  • Speaking of buying a place…just because you’re friends with a sports team coach doesn’t entitle your child to be on that team.  I’m dismayed parents are already teaching their kids the “it’s who you know…” attitude instead of earning the right. 
  • Speaking of earning the right…if your child is not pulling their weight on the field or missing practices they should not be expected to play the same amount of time as the kids who go all out and are at every practice.  Zombiegirl is playing at a competitive level and to have her teammates not show up for practice, come late to the games or be on the field and NOT TOUCH THE STINKING BALL demeans everything she (and mostly the rest of the team) strives for.  They’re playing  to win, not have a good time.  Be fully committed or go home.  Most of all, don’t give the coaches grief about what position they play or how much time they get.  Trust in the coach and stop believing the misconception that your child is exceptional.
  • Strive to put a little diversity in your child’s life.  Don’t surround yourself and your children with people JUST LIKE YOU.  Our neighborhood is the perfect example of a multi-national quilt and to admit you didn’t know this before you moved in is criminal on your part.  To say you fear for your child’s life sending them to the public school- which you pay for with your taxes- is racist and bigoted.   I would rather have my kid playing with the wonderful brown children she’s friends with than with your stuck-up mini racist.  And Taco Bell does NOT qualify as an ethnic restaurant.
  • Learn to say “No” to your child.  They don’t need to play every sport or join every extra-curricular activity.  Instead of being mediocre (or worse) in everything, try working with your kid to be stellar in SOMETHING. 
  • Don’t run your kid’s life based on YOUR ego.  Volunteer for the right reasons, not your twisted, power hungry reasons.  I’m sure your co-workers don’t care you’re coaching all three of your kids in soccer (I know you brag…).  Who are you impressing?  Not us normal parents who have to deal with your crazy ideas and egocentric manners.  It’s leaving us frustrated.  I’ve pulled my kids out of organizations that were run by people doing it for all the wrong reasons.  I will do it again.  Think to yourself before you volunteer- do you have the right qualifications to run this team/meeting/club?  You’re shaping the pliable minds of pre-teens.  If you have personality traits that would benefit from therapy, you shouldn’t be in charge of my kid.  If you’ve never played that sport before, step aside and let someone who knows how to play be in charge of my kid.
  • Ask to see your child’s tests and homework.  Better yet, take advantage of the technological resources the school pays for to check in on your kid.  Attendance, grades, homework- it’s all reported.  A failing test grade should NOT come as a surprise to you and it’s not the teacher’s fault your kid did poorly. It might have been a hard test, but if your kid studied for it, they should have done fine/better.  Be accountable for your kid and stop making excuses.

I could go on (and on and on) but I need to run some more reports at work.  

Disclaimer:  I’m not saying that my kid is perfect, or my method of parenting is perfect, either. As an “insider” though, I am privy to certain things due to MR’s position as soccer coach and Beena’s position as a teacher at the Middle School and I’m astonished at the amount of crazy my fellow parents exhibit if they think their babies have been wronged, but at the same time are so wrapped up in their own minds that they don’t pay attention to obvious problems their children are exhibiting.  Trust the system and parent with eyes wide open.

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Hoarders: Buried Alive

(Announcer voice)
Now, on the next episode of Hoarders, we visit Long Island, New York, home of Mamasoo.

Here we see her office worktable. How many unfinished craft projects can you find? (We counted 16 without moving things around.) Precariously stacked ceramic pieces, precious cross stitching, a tiara (?) all items haphazardly thrown onto the table which it starting to buckle under the strain of broken promises and wet craft glue.

Turning around (slowly, we don’t want to knock anything over) we focus on her closet, jammed pack with batting, a box of Christmas projects and a bag of paper towel tubes. We ask Mamasoo what she has planned for all these things and when she thinks she might start cleaning up. She shrugs her shoulders, puts on a weak smile and says, “I can’t start anything until my work table is cleaned off”.

“When might that be?”, we ask.

“When I find room in the closet.” Clearly, she has avoidance issues.

Circling around the room, we spy her filing “system” that has toppled over like a Mayan temple this coming December. Expensive video gaming equipment piled in the corner by the bookcase has a layer of dust coating it. The saddest aspect of this room is the Winnie the Pooh border on the wall- a remainder of the loving decorations when her daughter, Zombiegirl used to occupy this room…eight years ago.

Last and probably the most horrifying corner of this little hell this dear, sweet woman works in is her desk, piled high with half-completed sewing projects, papers spit out and left from her printer and video games played and abandoned. There sits her “laptop”, tied to the desk, it’s portability long gone. And what’s this? What has she been sitting on for days, once again avoiding the horror of the condition of her room?

(If there are small children or persons with weak constitutions, it might be wise to turn away…)

Oh. My. Word. It’s…it’s a frog. She’s been sitting on a rubber frog while on the computer. We asked Mamasoo what was going on with the frog.

“I don’t know, I moved it from one place to another and never moved it back.”

“But you sit on it every time you go on the computer!”

“Um…I don’t feel it. He’s kind of squishy and I have a big a(BLEEP).”

Let’s take a look at what has Mamasoo so preoccupied that she not only let her office grow out of control, but doesn’t even feel when she’s sitting on…a frog…

(Camera pans to the monitor)

Oh, of course. Now we understand why nothing has been getting done and why Mamasoo’s hoarding problem has escalated. It is definitely an addiction called…

(Cue dramatic music)

Words With Friends.

(Cue end music and roll credits)

The End.