Tuesday, September 18, 2012

When Parents Mess Up


In the last two days, I have seen at least three articles about parents who videotaped or took pictures of some questionable parenting moments. The first was a video of a toddler with a 300 pound gorilla in an enclosure, another was a two year old driving a car on a rainy highway, and the third was a picture Kate Gosselin posted on Twitter of her daughter wearing a pair of her heels.
The first one, I was pretty incredulous. Really… I have read of at least two stories of chimpanzees that attacked and ripped the faces off of people. Yes, they were chimps and not gorillas, but these animals are still wild animals. Parents should not be trying to live out their own Tarzan story. That one seems like a no brainer.
The video of a two year old driving had me wondering what everyone was freaking out about. We have let our boys sit on daddy’s lap and steer the van a time or two, but it was always in a parking lot. After watching the video, why in the world would a parent let a kid do that on a highway, at a high speed, on a very rainy day? The motivation to let the kid drive was okay, but they need to know under what circumstances that would be okay. There are safer ways to do that than on a highway.
And the third… are you kidding me? What little girl hasn’t walked around in her mom’s high heels? The picture was completely harmless and totally cute. Is it just because Kate is the number one hated parent in America? That poor woman cannot get any credit for anything she does. I feel bad for her, because if my parenting was under that much scrutiny, I think I would lose it and end up in the loony bin.
For some reason, people think it is their jobs to be hyper critical of anyone and anything that they deem is not a decision they would make. It is easy to accuse and cut down other people’s parenting choices because we are not the ones that bear the consequences of those accusations. There are times that parents obviously make bad choices, but what parent has not made a mistake or two? Who hasn’t done something they regret while parenting? We are all imperfect people, just trying to do our best. Let’s just stop and show one another some grace when it comes to our parenting, unless children are clearly being abused or repeatedly put in harmful situations. 

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