We all know THOSE moms.
You know the ones. The ones who have masters degrees in child psychology and seem to always know what is best for your kid and look down their noses at you when you have some minor issues with your own kids. And you just know they are thinking “you poor, poor stupid mom” as they look like they have just sucked on a case of lemons.
I know one of them.
JC has been friends with this mom’s daughter since kindergarten. JC and Haley have done Girl Scouts and soccer together, had sleepovers and birthday parties. Since graduation they have drifted apart but they still run into each other occasionally. So when JC came home this weekend and told me what was happening with Haley I was really surprised.
Haley had some problems in school and needed to have tutoring to get her to read at grade level and always had to push herself to get good grades. And her mom pushed her. Pushed her in school and in sports to excel. So off she went to college. Moved into the dorms, played soccer and seemed to have adjusted fairly well. She moved home when the school year was done. But that didn’t last.
Haley is now living with friends, working two jobs and has no plans to go back to school. She apparently was not doing well and gave up. She moved out because her parents put too many rules in place. The girl is 19. Yes, she is living under your roof and there needs to be respectful, reasonable rules. But not rules that treat them like they are 16 again.
We were talking about it at dinner and MJ then tells me that Haley’s brother has run away and has been a handful of trouble. So what happened to this family that both kids are rebelling?
She always told me that she thought that we were too free with JC and didn’t have enough rules and that was why she was boy crazy. Blah-blah-blah blah-blah. Like all parents, you do what you think is right for your kids. We had rules. Lots of rules. Maybe different rules that she had for her kids but they were still rules.
We had curfews, who she could hang out with, what dances she could go to, when she could date, who she could date. But we also trusted her. And I think that is the one thing that made a difference.
It’s hard to trust sometimes but if your children don’t do anything to lose trust, why do you still distrust them? We always tell our kids that we trust them until they do something to lose it. Don’t get me wrong, we have had our circle of trust violated by both kids but then they have more limits until they regain the trust. And it takes A LONG TIME for that to happen.
This family didn’t trust their kids. They installed that driving camera for the car to monitor their driving habits. Once, Haley turned on the radio which broke the rules and she got her driving privileges taken away. For turning on the radio! The only reason they knew this was because they downloaded the video and watched it. I understand instilling safe driving habits, but really?
Is she a bad mom for being so strict? No, she was doing what she thought was best for her kids and the kids are pushing back finally. Then who is the bad mom here?
My heart goes out to Haley and I hope and pray she finds her way. I hope she goes back to school so she doesn’t have to have 3 jobs to make ends meet.
I am a bad mom because in my heart, I am gloating. Yes, I am gloating because this lemon-faced mom thought that my daughter would end up pregnant at 17. Instead she is graduating with her first degree in December, less than 2 year after graduating from high school. While she doesn’t know what she wants to do, she is enrolling in an undergraduate science program at the local university. And my daughter has done it debt free, paying her way through school.
I am gloating and I feel bad and bitchy for it. I just want to go up to her and tell her neither one of us had the right answers. We did what we thought was best. Parenting is a crap shoot and you hope for the best.
And yes, I will be saying nah-nah-na-boo-boo under my breath. It’s what sassy bitches do.