Friday, March 16, 2012

Conscientious Parenting in a World of Drugs, Sex and Uggs

A modest blogger's words (and the nasty comments people left her) have me thinking. Thinking about something I've written about before with respect to Audrey and raising a daughter and my job as a mom. Thinking about all of the tough decisions that Blake and I will have to make as parents over the next two decades. We often find ourselves saying "not my child" and "no she won't" and "not on my watch" and "not under my roof" about the things you'd expect. Dirty words like drugs, cigarettes, underage drinking, sex, tattoos, excessive piercings...

But we also say those things about other, less obvious, less dangerous stuff like cell phones, television, an iPad, sleepovers at friends' homes, video games, bikinis, short-shorts, cleavage, Uggs, junk food, skydiving, boys, some girls, cheerleading, guns, spring break...

Not on my watch
This is crazy. I am crazy. You probably think I'm crazy. I mean, I say "Audrey will not smoke cigarettes" with the same disgust and firmness that I say "Audrey will not sleep over at a friends' house."  According to my list, Uggs and tatoos have the same conotation. (I'm honestly not even sure what conotation that is, other than this image of Britney that comes to mind whenever I think about them. Plus, I myself kind of covet a pair of Uggs... hypocrite. I know.) Junk food, premarital sex, video games, and drugs should be equally banned. Underage drinking and cheerleading? Essentially the same in my book.

What is wrong with me? Have I turned into my over-protective parents? The Duggers? Am I setting Audrey up to be a rebellious teenager before she even learns how to walk or write her own name?

No. I'm not. There is nothing wrong with me.

Only acceptable on a 10-month old.
I am being a parent. I am conscientiously planning (way) ahead about how I plan to deal with the challegnes that will surely face both me and my daughter in the years to come. I don't have all the answers now. And I've not decided on the boundaries. But there will be boundaries. And they will be firm. There will also be battles won and lost over things like cell phones and Uggs, I'm sure. But Audrey will always know that the decisions we make for and about her as her parent will be because we love her and want what's best for her. Even if she doesn't get it at the time, she will know. And hopefully, above all else, she will learn, how to make the right decisions for herself on her own, without me telling her.

Because a parent with convictions like mine? A crazy person. 
But a teenager with convictions like mine? A child of a great parent.

Here's to conscientious parenting,
Kate

1 comment:

  1. I really like this post. If find myself doing the same things, saying the same things. I think the point that is especially important is that we teach our kids to make the right decisions for themselves...so that they can be independent. And we can trust them. Because we know we did such a great job raising them. If it was only that easy ;)

    I just read an interesting book called Free-Range Parenting...whether you agree with the premise or not, it's an interesting read and much of it involves the idea of raising kids who are able to think critically and independently.

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