Thursday, October 22, 2009

Ms. Merrill Loses it.

There was a story on parental discipline in the New York Times yesterday. I can't quite decide whether to weep or roll on the floor laughing. The subject is yelling at your kids and how guilty it makes parents feel. So I've got this picture in my mind of Yuppie parents who do everything according to liberal conventional "wisdom".
Still, there are those moments.

“I’d like to think that most of the time we have a good interaction based on reason,” Lena Merrill said of her 4-year-old daughter, whom she has never spanked. But then there are the times when “she’s done something like poured milk on the floor or ripped a page out of a book,” Ms. Merrill said. “I just lose it.”

Usually, she says, she shouts something like, “Why did you do that? Why would you do that?”
Can't you just hear the impotence? The rage? Of course these parents feel guilty! Their own children don't even respect them. Their own children see what losers they are. And these children hold up a mirror so that the parents can see themselves. And so they rage at their own children. They hate their own children, if only briefly, for exposing their incompetence.

Actually, that seems more sad than funny. On the other hand, it's pretty funny that these people hold all the levers of power in our government. Wait a second... ah crap. Now I'm really going to cry.


  1. Check back with us after you've had your 10 kids (per the Facebook quiz you took) and let us know how well you're doing with being a parent.

    Man, if I knew then what I know now, I might just as soon be a personal valet to Rosie O'Donnell on an around the world cruise then choose to be a parent again. Lots of joy, but it's also the hardest thing I've ever done.

  2. Oh I don't doubt that it's hard KD. I've heard that it's the hardest job that you'll ever have and I don't doubt it. All the more reason, I think, not to hamstring yourself with the sissiphied parenting techniques that get mentioned in the article.

  3. Well, I know this much. You can't reason with a 4 year old.

  4. fatherhood was the most dedicated thing i've ever done, and basically, a piece of cake. my kids will say i invested heavily, but in truth, 95% of fathering is just showing up. And if you are committed to 'showing up', the other 5% comes naturally.

    I was born to Father, and would eagerly do it again, right now, at 45.

    my advice: forget the cockamanie bullshit. DO NOT read parenting books. DO NOT follow the advice of anybody who grew up in the 60's. DO NOT follow a sliding scale of grey standards.

    DO remember the mistakes your own parents made.
    DO remember the good your parents achieved, and how.
    DO attend every single little league game, or any other sporting activity.

    anything else: just follow your instincts of how a child should behave, and deal with issues accordingly.

    Raising boys: much like training puppies.
    Raising girls: just like wooing a woman.

  5. Gino's and also that Paul Shanklin bit that Limbaugh plays every once in a while "I'm here with a message from the Oklahome State Legislature, telling you that it's OK to spank."

  6. Gino should repost that comment as an actual post.

  7. The youngest turns 18 tomorrow.

    A month ago or so I said, in a loud voice, to the 19 year old, "You can move the hell out any time you like!!!"

    She responded, "Well, Dad, I might just do that."

    And I said, "Whooo Hooooo"

    The oldest turns 21 on Saturday. I haven't raised my voice to him in years. He is finally seeing the G.O.M. wisdom.