Some things have been bothering me lately. Some of my friends and co-workers have really great, AWESOME kids. Kids getting exceptionally high grades, they talk to their parents and are getting scholarships. One in particular is doing exceptionally well. I know for a fact that it's not parental fakery......it's genuine........but with SOME parents...To hear tell, these kids are nearly perfect. So, what’s wrong with mine? Son #1 says he doesn’t drink or smoke pot. He’s not gotten caught by me or the authorities (that I know of). He says many of his friends do, but he is choosing not to. I worry that he’s telling me this because I’m his mom and it’s what I WANT to hear.
His grades are just so-so. A’s, B’s and C’s. But in order to get into the A+ program, to have Missouri pay for his tuition at a community college for 2 years he needs ALL A’S. With a possible B+ here and there. POSSIBLE. He seems unmotivated to excel, and all he wants to do is hang out with his friends. Listen to abhorrent music, and stay as far from us as humanly possible.
I talk to my kids about drugs/alcohol, and the dangers. I talk to my kids about sex and being respectful and abstinence. I ALSO provide my kids with an out…….with a ride home should a poor decision be made and providing birth control should they need it. I can’t say that by offering a ride if they’ve been drinking or to make a drugstore run for them means that I CONDONE their behavior, but if they make poor choices, they need to be as safe as possible while making those bad choices…you know?
I suspect that maybe there is some alcohol and minor marijuana use. I don’t know for certain, though. I do not feel like it’s over the top….addictive or anything but experimental. But according to Dr. Phil, there IS no such thing as teenage experimentation with drugs and alcohol….that if you kid is using either, to get them into treatment. This confuses me. I TRIED STUFF in high school and am now a reasonable adult…..that is not addicted to any substance (except maybe food).
So….how are other people’s kids perfect and mine not? Is it because we don’t attend a church? Or is the real, UGLY truth that I am honest about my kids and my concerns for them and my ferocious love and protective nature of them, and others aren’t as honest? That ‘putting on airs’ is more important than acknowledging that a kid may not be PERFECT?
I worry, Internet. I worry that maybe I’m a bad mom. That somehow I’ve failed my kids.
Now, back to son #1. What does he do that is successful? Until Scholastic laid part time employees off, he was employed continuously since he was 15. He tells me he loves me every day (multiple times). He tells me where he’s going and who he’s with. He calls me to keep in touch when he’s out (not as often as I’d like, but he does do it). He’s been pretty forthcoming about events and places he goes, and what occurs at them…..all the while claiming he isn’t participating. He’s currently looking for a job. He does do a few chores if berated enough, and he doesn’t skip school.
So, what makes a good mom? Does offering a ‘pass’ to pick up your child if they’ve been drinking make me a bad mom? Or does it make me a realistic mom? Does offering to purchase condoms for them mean I’m promoting sexual activity? Or does it mean I understand the workings of a teenage mind?
They’ve never taken me up on either offer. Although, I do see condoms in my older son’s possession…he’s not afraid to buy them himself…….which bugs me some, but also makes me re-assured that MAYBE some of what I lecture him about gets through to him.
I just don’t know. I don’t have a God-fearing, 4.0 son. I have a handsome, funny, loving (some of the time), socially active boy.
Toodles for now.