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As parents, our to do lists can feel never-ending most days. There are the basics like feeding the kids, washing their clothes, driving them to school, and taking them to the doctor when they are sick. Then, there are all the other things like driving them to gymnastics, or karate, or soccer, or all of the above. And let’s not forget the mental pressure parents put on ourselves to raise sweet, perfect children.
There are some things we HAVE to do as a parents, but there are a number of things we can just quit doing:
Forcing Cheesy Gorilla Smiles
Stop insisting that your kids make big forced smiles for every picture. Maybe your kids have Bitchy Resting Face. Not everyone needs to show teeth when they smile. Imagine if someone walked around smiling like that all day; they’d be sent to a mental facility. Plus, showing teeth is a sign of aggression in the animal kingdom. You don’t want your little snookums getting the tar knocked out of her by a defensive dog, do you?
Being a Maid
Believe me I GET it. I am a Type-A whirlwind, but I’m not doing my 17-year-old son any favors by doing his laundry and making his lunch every day. Kids need to learn how clean up after themselves. So just shut their bedroom door and ignore the mess, and you’ll be good to go on this one.
Allowing So Much Junk Food
Smack the sugar out of their hands and be a parent instead of Willy Wonka. I see so many overweight kids and teens everywhere today, and it makes me sad because it is unhealthy. Keep your fat-shaming comments to yourselves; this is about health not bikini bodies. Do you want Richard Simmons to sit and cry at your child’s bedside? Then “just say no” to the bucket of soda at the movie theater.
Encouraging Activity Overload
Yes, it is popular in Yuppie Land to have your little snookums do 5,439 things after school. You don’t want them rotting in front of a video game, right? Instead they’re learning Karate, playing soccer, cheerleading, painting, and volunteering at the zoo. And that’s just a typical Thursday. Kids are already in school all day, and most do homework at night. Let them have some down time.
Demanding “Say you’re sorry!”
Forced apologies are not real and they do absolutely nothing. Instead of forcing a child to apologize for breaking a toy, how about having the kid buy a new toy? Most kids can do chores to earn money. Have them do something productive to make up for what they did.
When I was a kid I got a new toy for Christmas, Easter, my birthday, or severe illness that required a trip to the doctor and pharmacy. Now, kids get new toys every 13 seconds. This teaches them not to delay gratification, which leads to credit card debt, which leads to bankruptcy, which leads to bad credit.
Doesn’t that to do list feel a little bit lighter now? Just by cutting out an activity or fifteen, you could earn yourself some time to bathe, eat lunch, or comb your hair. You might even be able to go to the bathroom alone. Nah. I’m just kidding about that last part. A girl can dream.