Friday, January 9, 2015

Some Advice I Could Use

There's a lot of parenting advice out there, and I ignore most of it. Not because I think it's bad, necessarily, or that it might be ineffective. It’s just that I don’t really care if my kids get into a great college; or if they're the star of a sports team; of if they get awesome grades; or if they make a lot of money; or if they always eat all the right foods; or if they get the right number of hours of sleep each night; or if they finish every last scrap of homework; or if they can play a cello concerto. 

But when I read between the lines of most parenting advice, that’s what I see. Even when it's pretending to be something else. Really, I could use a different kind of parenting advice. Something that helps my kids hear this, more or less:

Come on now, don't be that fucking person:
  • Who never returns a phone call
  • Who runs away from hard conversations
  • Who drives on the shoulder and cuts into traffic
  • Who’s never on time
  • Who flakes on their friends
  • Who shirks their obligations
  • Who breaks their promises
  • Who’s always looking for a short cut
  • Who forgets people’s birthdays
  • Who acts entitled
  • Who makes snap judgments
  • Who gossips 
  • Who can’t be depended on for anything
  • Who is self-destructive
  • Who treats people badly out of their own insecurity
  • Who lacks empathy
  • Who’s always looking out for number one.
Seriously, please just be someone:
  • Who cleans up after themselves and sometimes others
  • Who stops to push someone’s car out of the snow
  • Who’s there for their friends when it matters
  • Who is responsive
  • Who asks someone "how are you" and waits for the real answer
  • Who respects differing points of view
  • Who treats themselves well
  • Who helps people when they don’t ask for it
  • Who works hard
  • Who strives for self-sufficiency in every sense of the word
  • Who can hold another person’s secrets in confidence
  • Who can offer someone a helpful insight every once in awhile
  • Who can be happy for someone else even when things aren't going well for them
  • Who sticks up for causes and people that need it.
When someone finds this blog, article, or book, would you let me know? 


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