Fairy Tale Mom

Really. It is the saddest day ever. In the history of days, this was the worst.

Today, my mother called me to tell me that a week ago (A WEEK AGO!) my beautiful, amazing, talented princess told her that she is picked on at school, every day. EVERY DAY. She is made fun of because she doesn’t live in a big house. She doesn’t have an iphone. She doesn’t have all of the newest electronics. She only has one Northface jacket and only 2 pairs of Ugg boots.

I get it. They are all first world problems. And, she certainly isn’t lacking in luxuries. She has an ipod touch, her very own cell phone, the previously mentioned Uggs, we have internet and cable. She has been to Disney like 4 times. We go on vacation. She dances, that costs a ton of my income. We aren’t hurting. But, in comparison to her friends, we are the poor kids on the block.

And, because she is different, they found a way to make her feel bad about it. And, they tell her how fat she is. And, how fat her mom is. And, her mom is mean and won’t let her watch certain movies. And, she generally asks permission to do anything she is unsure of. She gets good grades. She is kind and gentle and sweet. It wouldn’t even occur to her to say mean things to people. Why are these little girls saying mean things about things that she can’t control?

I’m so angry at these little girls for breaking her heart. But, I’m really mad at the parents of these little girls for teaching them that its acceptable to be mean. I am really angry that this group of people has taught their children that the value of things, possessions, stuff, is more important than people. They break her heart every day, all over things she can’t control, instead of noticing how funny she is or how kind she is or how much she loves to laugh.

I’m saddened by our society. I’m saddened that she didn’t tell me herself. I’m saddened that she endured this for a nearly the whole year before I found out. I’m just sad.

Recently when my parenting skills were called into question, I took a few minutes to evaluate my parenting style.  I would like to think that I was somewhat objective in my self evaluation, but probably not really..  What I decided is that I am not a helicopter parent.  I do not hover and make decisions for the princess.  I want the princess to grow up to be independent and able to make decisions for herself.  When she goes off to college, I want to know I’ve prepared her to face the world on her own.  I really believe that I’m parenting the best possible way for her and for me. 

There are those out there who believe that I am too hands off, that I am too abrasive and that I should be more involved in all of her projects.  But, that’s not how I do things.  I prefer to help her understand the instructions or guidelines and let her do the work on her own.  We discuss the projects in detail and I make sure that I’m available for questions, but I never do her work.  I also don’t clean her room or do her chores.   She is required to help with the dishes and take care of her dog.  I want her to understand that she is capable of doing all things that she sets her mind to accomplish.  I also want her to understand that she has responsibilities.  She earns an allowance for completing her chores as expected and she does not get paid if the work isn’t finished.

This is not to say that I am not encouraging.  I am her best cheerleader.  I support her in the good decisions and counsel her through the bad.  My expectations are relatively on par for an 8 year old. 

What I determined is that although I choose to be a little more fluid with my parenting than others, my way may not work with all kids.  That being said, it’s the only method that I’ve got.  So, if you are hoping that I will not correct your child for misbehaving when you aren’t watching; do not expect me to be different than I am with my own child.  When you tell me this is harsh and uncaring, I will take offense.   And, that will damage our “relationship”.  I will also, however, take responsibility for my actions.   You do not need to hold my friends accountable.  Nor, do you need to unnecessarily retaliate against a group for my actions.  Although we parent differently, I’m sure we can find a way to co-exist.  What I’m saying is that you don’t need to un-friend me on facebook just because you think I’m a bad mom.

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