I Know More Than You
Sigh. I tire of "parenting experts," parenting books, manuals, seminars, television segments. I've been told that non-fiction parenting books sell, but I could never muster the strength to advise. I mean I was accidentally knocked up in a snowed-in cabin in Tahoe so I'm hardly the parenting expert, and if I did know everything about raising a respectful, smart and happy child, I probably wouldn’t tell. This morning I was watching the Today Show and saw a segment on the 7 Big Life Changes for kids and the best parenting strategies for protecting and/or mending the child.
A few of the MAJOR MOMENTS were first day of school, first failure, and first move. While I realize transition and set-backs can be difficult do we really need a guide to counter-offensive strategies? Aren't separation anxiety, dejection, homesickness and fear part of life's deal? I guess I'm just put off by micro-managing kids' experience, and while I want to be there for my child I don't want to hover so close that I accidentally hit her with my whirling blade.
I remember a t.v segment where some smug author-dad was warning lesser parents that they're stressing their children out by praising them. I was nursing my then two-week old when I was informed that my supportive gaze was loaded with high expectations, yearning and need. Supposedly our toddlers can sense this and while at first they’re pleased to make us happy, this excitement soon turns into anxiety. I guess his message was, “When your child says, ‘Look what I can do,’ perhaps don’t look." I swear these people just make up problems that freak parents out enough to buy their books.