parenting 101...the alternative class

there are so many things that I set out to accomplish when I first became a parent! my child would always behave in child would eat her entire meal, no matter how much she hated it or how much I piled onto her plate, child would be polite and considerate ALWAYS.... from expected behaviours to the ages I would allow them to do certain things like dating, make up, piercings... I had it all figured out in my mind.....

then reality set in :)

what I had planned out and what actually is are not the same thing

I mean with my first I did a really good job of trying really hard to stick to my guns and accomplishing the parenting dos and don't according to my ideology and not practical theory! my poor oldest would fall asleep at the table cuz she hadn't finished her dinner! I actually have pictures of her curled up on the chair sleeping cuz I wouldn't let her down until ALL her dinner was done ! um yah a little anal retentive over a my now opinion.. matter. By my 4th daughter I didn't even care if she ate dinner at the same time as us! now that probably wasn't such a good idea either! talk about total shift between the oldest and youngest! now as far as dinner goes I still don't make my girls separate dinners.. I am not a private chef! what I make, when I actually cook these days!, is what I make if they don't like it they can have cereal or toast and even at that I make it clear dinner is what is for choice there!

Make up was a big set deal as far as I was concerned with my way would she wear it until she was 13 and then I went out and bought her a bunch for her 13th birthday and the girl has hardly ever worn makeup...she does some days but most days she doesn't and she is almost 18! with my 2nd I let her start wearing some make up at the time she was 13 she has been wearing full blown makeup...she LOVES makeup! my 3rd....I have had to fight the no eyeliner rule as she is still only 11 years old!!! the girl will NOT leave the house without it on! I think I can still hold out on the youngest for a while longer  but as the youngest's not going to be easy! monkey see monkey do.

Dating...same thing! I had a courtship plan all set in my mind and how I would not allow my girls to date...I mean they could like boys cuz how can you not allow them to have feelings... I was dumb just not that dumb :) although some would debate that point :) It wasn't until this summer that I allowed my oldest to date...alone dating I am talking about...she was allowed to go out with groups of people even if the boy she liked was there..not a total prude! I figured that she had gained my trust and that is still a big issue for me with making decisions with the girls. I also figured that since I didn't have a really big dating background and was re-entering that world myself and the failure of my marriage that maybe dating wasn't a "bad" idea...I mean how are the girls supposed to know what they want from a guy or what they don't if they don't have any experience in that area? so.... I have changed my ideas of courtship as it pertains to dating. I still don't think I will allow the younger girls to alone date until they have earned my much as I can control that with all of them! I have 1 or 2 that will probably do the out the window trick or I am at my "friends" house with me and I would rather they be honest with me then sneaky! I don't want my girls to lie to me more then is already normal for kids to do with their parents!!

So when my now 13 year old asked for a bar ear piercing for her birthday.....nose at first that was a big NO....I thought about it for only a few minutes....why not allow her to scar her ear? :) what good reason did I have to say no besides an ideal in my head that she had to wait a certain age before I could  allow that kind of a piercing... I couldn't think of any! she is clean..she will take care of it properly! the youngest now that is a different story she wouldn't and it would get infected and nasty... so I guess it comes down to knowing your individual children and trusting that you know them and giving them some trust in return.

I sure fall short in a lot of areas in my life...parenting one of them.... I think the great thing is that I am much as I want to be able to teach my girls and guide them I am still open to learn new things and have new thinking even if they go against all my set rules and agenda's I formed in my head before having experienced them in real life!


Jaimie said…
I so enjoyed this post and hearing about how things change over the years! I can't imagine what I'll do when my boys hit the teenage phase. Is your daughter's ear okay? Is she glad she did it? I heard that is so painful! Visiting today from 5 Minutes for Mom's FB page. I love your profile picture - so cute!!

Anonymous said…
You know that the picture of Emily's piercing has caused a debate around here about what piercings we will allow. I'm fine with some (like the one that Emily has) but not fine with others. So the debate goes on.

I know as a parent your views and beliefs are always evolving and changing. In the end though your kids as well as mine will be okay.

Keep up the challenge.

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