Tuesday, May 4, 2010

celebrating mediocrity

Why do parent celebrate the poor choices they made? Is the goal to survive childhood? If so - isn't that setting the bar pretty low? As parents we all do things we shouldn't have. We all have regrets, things we wish we could take back or undo and have made mistakes. As adults should we not learn from those low points instead of bragging that your child survived it?

When I was a kid we didn't have car seats, my mom drank when she was pregnant and we played with real lawn darts (yes we stood behind the circle while someone on the other side threw it towards us. Many times jumping out of it's path). Did I survive it - yes. Does that make it OK - no!

We are adults and parents. Is it not our jobs to educate ourselves and do the best we can with the resources we have? We know about car seat safety now - so use them and use them correctly. We know about fetal alcohol syndrome now, so just because you drank during your 1st pregnancy and the child turned out OK - doesn't mean the next one will. Is it worth the risk?

I have spanked Alex. I am not proud of it. I am ashamed and embarrassed over it. It was my lowest point to date as a parent. I didn't spank her because I thought it would stop a behaviour. I didn't do it because I thought it was the best thing to do or a last resource. I did it because I was pissed off at her and I wanted an outlet for my anger.

Many parents who spank will say they never do it out of anger or spite. They are lying. Either to you or to themselves. As an adult I learned how Alex can push my buttons and what my limits are. I learned to walk away sooner and take a time out before it gets to that point. I did make a mistake, Alex did survive, but more important I learned from it and it will never happen again! Even though she survived it - that doesn't make it OK.

People feed their babies certain foods that we now know it is better to wait to give them. Ask a parent who has a child with a life threatening allergy how much fun it is. Why would you risk it? Yes your baby survived - but is it worth the risk?

Chances are I could drive around with Alex not in a car seat or buckled in for years and nothing bad would happen - but why risk it?

Why do we put our children at risk unnecessarily and they bragged that it is OK because the survived it? Your child surviving childhood isn't a goal or a badge of honour. Why not aim higher? Shoot for the stars and aim for the moon. Give our children the best chance at life as we can.


  1. Great arguments! Just one thing..

    We start off the just survive game, with the doctors in the hospitals who say that A live baby/live mom is a great birth.

    If only people were a clear thinking as you! the world would be a better place!