I know it's a Wednesday, I just didn't get this done yesterday. I apologize.
My parents are coming in from out of town this weekend to stay for a couple of days. So they will stay here this weekend and then go visit my mom’s family for a week and stay with us again next weekend as well. It seems to be how they visit. Honestly it kind of works in a weird “we’re not super close” kind of way. We really aren’t that close. They forgot to call on their only granddaughter’s birthday and on their second son’s birthday as well. Which is a little hurtful, but it does really speak volumes as to what my expectations should be concerning their level of interaction.
So, since my parents are coming, and I am constantly parenting at the moment, the topic this week is “Parenting.” Thanks this week go to Bruce, Sandy, Kallie, Suzanne, my lovely wife, and some other guy for donating questions.
Let’s get to it.
1. Have you noticed yourself "turning into your parent(s)"?
I have been actively fighting some tendencies that I am seeing. I am trying not to be as controlling as my dad was concerning little things that really do not matter. I need to watch that pattern to make sure I do not repeat. I also need to make sure that I am not zoning out like my ‘rents did when they were reading the paper/doing word puzzles.
2. What is/are the best parenting advice/behavior you've taken from your parents?
My parents truly and earnestly loved me and parented me with all the skills they had at their disposal. In some areas they came up short, and they easily covered the spread in others. I am trying to do just that as well. I love these kiddos truly and earnestly and I am trying to parent them with all the skills at my disposal. In some areas I will come up short as well, but I think I am definitely covering the spread in other areas.
3. If you and your wife were parents on a TV show who would you each want to play you?
I would want to play me and I would want her to be played by Beyonce.
4. Is it even possible to get your kids to stop fighting? I'm starting to think no.
We have instilled in our kids a healthy disdain for each other. They do not fight as much as they will lift their chin slightly and sneer. Train them for healthy disdain and Bob's your uncle.
5. When hosting aging parents from out of town, do your kids have to be sequestered too?
Hells to the no. I think it is important that the g-parents get some in-person time with the kids, but kids need to be doing what kids need to do. If there is a sleep-over that is going on and your kid wants to go to it, make sure the kid spends some QT with the old folk, but let them have fun. Too much of adulting is wrapped up in non-fun, kids should be able to have fun in our stead.
6. What were your parenting issues at ages 3, 7, and 13?
I was not a parent at ages 3, 7, and 13… I do not know what you are asking…
When Little Man was 3, the biggest issue was getting him to let us do non-train things… and his asthma
When Q was 3, the biggest issue was her asthma flaring up and thinking about daycares for her
When Little Man was 7, the biggest issue was me finding a job and not being a horribly depressed out-of-work dad.
When Q was 7, the biggest issue was getting her to eat vegetables and fruits… still a big one.
When Little Man was 13 (last year) it was constant worry about having a kid in middle school because middle school is a terrible place.
Q has not hit 13 yet.
7. What do you allow you allow your children to do that you always wanted to do as a kid but were not allowed?
I think we allow waaaay more time passively consuming content that is on a screen. I did not have cable growing up, these kids have youtube and twitch at their fingertips.
8. What don’t you allow your kids to do that you were allowed to do as a kid?
To go places on their own. I remember walking 2 miles to meet up with a friend to watch a matinee movie when I was 10.
9. What is the hardest part of part of parenting through the slime craze?
The slime being everywhere.
10. What’s for dinner?
Orange rice... when in doubt orange rice.
11. Where do you think you fall in the continuum of Free-Range to Helicopter parenting?
That is an interesting one to answer in a verbal format. I would say that I am relatively in the center of the continuum. I don’t really hover too much, but I also do not throw meat out the back door and let nature take care of the kiddos. I think where I am on that continuum really depends on the activity and the kids’ ages.
12. Where do you fall on the continuum of “Elephant Mom” and “Tiger Mom” continuum?
Really?!?! Elephant is the opposite of a Tiger? That’s a thing? Wow… people actually are willing to call someone an Elephant Mom? Do they get hit when that happens? I have so many questions. To answer the question I lean further away from the Tiger side than toward it.
13. Have you had “the talk” with you kids yet?
Which talk do you speak of? The sex talk or the talk parents of POC kids have to give their boys about police interactions? The sex talk is an ongoing horribly uncomfortable conversation with Little Man, and that other talk is coming soon for him. We are starting to have the sexuality talk with Q.
14. How good of a parent do you think you are?
I feel I am pretty good. I am not the best there is, but I feel like I give it a good go.
15. How good a parent do you think your partner is?
She is amazing. She is way always willing to be silly with the kids and always has the time to give them some loving. I am constantly impressed with her parenting.
16. When should your kids get cell phones?
Little Man is 14 and just got a smartphone. His feature phone has been passed down to Q at the age of 9. She will not get a smartphone for a few more years (but probably before she is 14)
17. Did you co-sleep when the kids were younger?
When they were younger? Q still jumps in bed with us around 3 AM every night. Co-sleeping is a great way, as working parents, that you can get physical contact time with the kids when they are young. It does not take the place of conscious interactions with the kids, but it does help. There are times that I would have loved just having a bed to only my wife and I when the kids were co-sleeping all the time, but I do think it was a good process to bond with the kiddos in a less conscious manner.
Not even a question. Of course.
19. Did you baby-proof the house much when your kids were wee little babbies?
Not too much. We felt that we needed to teach the kids that some things are bad and need to be avoided for safety reasons but are necessary in life for living. You can’t nerf the world enough to make it absolutely safe.
20. Do you judge other parents?
I try not to, but of course I do. My silent judgements are harsher than my audible ones.
The parents are coming!
The parents are coming!
This is not a drill
Sure sure there might be other more pressing matters going on in the world
But, the parents are coming!
I am alarmed by the state of my country
There hasn’t been a solid nuke scare since the 80’s
I really feel this nuclear scare life is old hat
I mean seriously, WTF
Enough about our impending doom
My parents are coming into town and that is enough doom for the week
I love Netflix’s Voltron series
It is just some lovingly made
It harkens back to the version from my childhood without being slavish to the concepts from the first show
Have a great weekend everyone
I hope we don’t die in a pile of “Fire and Fury”