Thursday, April 30, 2009

Tough Love

I got a little upset with the boys this morning. And yes, I feel guilty now, but that's ok, I'll get over it and they'll get over it too. As a stay home mom, I always did everything for them, and that's not necessarily good. They are so used to me hovering about, telling them what to do and how to do it.... and now they are older and need to learn to take care of their share of responsibilities. It's not like I'm asking them to do my work around the house or go out there and do manual labor to bring home some money... Just to take care of themselves. I explained today that I have so much to deal with every day, and if they would just do what they are supposed to without me constantly reminding them, it would make my job a whole lot easier.
"Brush your teeth! Take a shower! Don't forget your lunch money! Start your homework!"
I mean, COME ON! At 15 and 13, they are not babies any more, in some third world countries boys their age are either fighting a war or raising a family, or both. I think, as parents sometimes we don't want to put too much on their shoulders, but we are not doing them a favor, the sooner they learn responsibilities and the consequences as a result of ignoring those responsibilities, the more prepared they will be to face life.
I know it's been hard for the boys too, let's face it our lives changes drastically in the past year or so, and it will take some getting used to, I'm not even thinking about how hard it's going to get still..... That thought frightens me and keeps me up at nights. But, we'll have to deal with that when we get to it!
Parenting is harder now then it was for our parents. Think about it, they didn't have to worry about a lot of the things we are faced with now. We walked to school, came home, ate, did homework, and spent the rest of the evening playing outside till it was time for bed. Half the day our parents didn't even see us, and on weekends the sooner we did our chores the faster we could do something fun with our friends. But, we have to constantly entertain our kids, because they are bored! Do you think our parents thought about how every decision they made for us would effect our "emotional state" or if it would haunt us as adults? No! We were more resilient, tougher, and we probably were more street smart. It was ok to lose your soccer game (hey, a team has to lose for the other to win), it was ok to fall and scrape your knees or elbows (we found a fountain somewhere, washed it off and kept going), nobody got an infection. We baby our kids way too much nowadays. We went to Armenia a couple of years ago, and the difference was so visible, our boys seemed so much more reserved and shy, and afraid of things then younger kids there.
I guess, what I'm saying is, we shouldn't fuss over our kids so much, we need to give them some room, expect a little more from them, and not hold on to them so tight. They'll be fine, and they'll learn to think for themselves for a change.

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