Tuesday, June 26, 2007

What Are People Thinking?

Yesterday, I can't remember where (probably online), I read an article about new parents paying consultants to help name their children! And we wonder why the government isn't working? Have we collectively lost our minds?!!

First off, what idiotic parents that they can't trust their own instincts or heritage and choose a name that fits their kid! The article cited instances of books on naming children, "Nameologists", and the like because parents don't (1) want their child with the same name as someone else; (2) want their child with a too-trendy name; (3) want their child with a name that seems too weak. So don't name them "Buffy" or "Chip"! One woman paid a consultant to help her name her daughter, and then is paying for a legal name change because she didn't like the name after it was done. If parents can't trust their instincts when naming the kid, how are they going to handle the difficult parts, like discipline? Chances are, they won't. They will bully teachers, control lives, and not allow their offspring to fail, guaranteeing a life filled with disappointment and grief.

The deeper part of this is that, in my opinion, parents see their children as accessories to themselves, mini-me people, only without the mistakes that their parents made. Listen, my kids, for all that I love them, and they are great kids--my kids make bad mistakes. I teach them right from wrong, and how not to hurt people, but really, they are not a mini-me. I am not self-centered enough, nor is my husband, that we cannot recognize that our children are parts of us, but mainly, they are themselves! If they were recreations of my husband and me, we would not have kids making bad grades (and yes, our KIDS make the grades). I don't understand parents who don't allow their kids to fail at things. How is the kid going to learn that it isn't the end of the world if he/she fails? Life will go on, and they might even learn something about next time. I don't know if parents cannot abide to see their kids fail because they see it as poor parenting, or because they don't want to help clean up the mess, or because they don't want to see their kids uncomfortable.

I know I am cut of a different cloth when it comes to parenting. If my home is too comfortable for my kids, they will not want to leave. It is my job, as a parent, to push them from the nest. But pushing a baby out of the nest is a bad thing. They have to be able to fend, fight, and make do. The need to know how to fail, and how to start again. They need to know that they are not going to like everybody, nor is everybody going to like them. They may still have to work with these people, and they might as well learn to do that now as later. They need to know that love hurts, friends stand by you, and Mom and Dad are a phone call away, but only to tell them how we survived these trials. The trials will happen. I pray that I have prepared my children to be adults when they do.