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Mirror, Mirror

Vote for me

I need support!

Everyone wants to feel as though they are important, at least to one other person. How one projects the desire could make or break a friendship.

The time has come for many children to visit the other parent. While the domiciliary parent may be kind and use such monikers as father, mother, other parent, many parents use more derogatory words like baby momma, sperm donor, my lazy af ex. No, this is not going to be a post about mordancy.

Left At Home

The parent left at home now has all the free time which was otherwise filled with soccer practice, judo lessons or cheer rehearsal. Errands put off because taking Junior along would be too taxing are now primed for the calendar. Dates! No sitter needed. No curfew. No prohibition to spending the night elsewhere. What about that vacation where someone keeps your piña colada filled even if you never get out of your beach chair?

Perhaps, sleeping in for the first time in a year, which did not require a hospital admission. Maybe, eight uninterrupted hours of bestie time. Sitting down long enough to binge watch six seasons of a favorite show which went off the air before it could be watched in prime time. How about taking on a project which will net some overtime to finance holiday madness? A session with a personal trainer, masseuse or pole-dancing instructor without the cell blowing up for some kidcentric emergency.

There parents dancing in the moonlight with flowers in their hair, right? Are they elbow-deep greasy from tinkering with their favorite project? Could they be covered in sweat from their favorite exercise? Did they buy a ticket to an R-rated movie and refuse to share the mega-vat-o-popcorn knowing they will not have to make a mid-movie trip to the restroom?

NO

Instead, these parents who now have free time for the first time in at least a year are flocking to social media to, wait for it, complain.

(1) What am I going to do with myself? My best friend is gone.

(2) It is going to be an unmitigated disaster! (Other parent moniker) cannot handle it without me!

(3) I can’t function without Kiddo here… (frowny face)

*Takes deep breath and chants, “No expletives.”*

Number 1

If your child is your best friend, use this time to engage psychiatric help. Yes, it is perfectly normal to want an amicable relationship with your child. At no point should said amicable relationship replace adult interaction.

By design, your child is not mature enough to be your primary source of support. You need an adult with whom to discuss all of the thousands of topics which are not the purview of any child, and more specifically, not the purview of your child.

If you do not have an adult for this purpose, hire one who can show you how to find one. Join a support group, Facebook group, general forum for your favorite hobby site, AA or any other 12-step program, group from your house of worship or any other venue where adults congregate.

Number 2

You cannot control everything. Wait, let’s repeat. You cannot control everything. Get over yourself with the following steps.

If you did not click the link above, do it now to find out how to handle the return trip.

Before your child left you made sure your number was programmed into the cell. You packed clean underwear for the off chance your child is involved in an accident. Your child is well-versed in how to dial 911. Grandparents, Godparents, friends and neighbors are all equally available to rescue your child in the event an APB needs to issue. Every one of them has your telephone number.

Subscribe to Amber Alerts in the area where your child will be. Do not wither away, forget to shower or neglect to sleep awaiting an alert.

If you really want a little more peace of mind, call the police in the other parent’s jurisdiction and register your child with 911. Officers of the law are specifically trained to deal with children who call 911. If they know your child in advance, they are better prepared to deal with an special needs which may arise.

Commune with your higher power, and let it go.

Number 3

Who are you?

We are waiting. Who are you?

If the only facet to your identity is parent, you need help. You need professional help. Ask for help in the following areas:

  • Identity, you need to know who you are.
  • Social interaction, you need to interact with adults.
  • Maturity, your child cannot legally be the head of your household.

One Last Bit

Get off social media. Your friends and family are more worried about the fact you think your world is in this large a state of disarray. Talk to your adult, be it bestie, priest, counselor, shrink, doctor, coach, sponsor… anyone you can look in the eyeball and touch. No, Skype does not count.

What other advice can you give the parents who do not see themselves as anything other than caregivers?


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8 Comments

  1. If you would like a list of links to the Identity Series, Visit Enough Frivolity. http://mommasmoneymatters.com/characteristics/
    Red of M3 recently posted..EngagementMy Profile

    Reply
  2. I think the best advice I can give such folks is to buy a dog…. & consider finishing the growing up they would have been better off to do BEFORE they became parents…

    But, then, that’s just the curmudgeon in me, I guess… To my mind, the whole purpose of being a parent is to help a child become a self-sufficient human being, who is capable of being a viable member of a species that does better with community, than it does without… It’s rather hard to accomplish that if one isn’t self-sufficient themselves…

    IJS

    Reply
    • At least the dog would have the wherewithal to run away.

      Today I saw what is always the most frightening of posts: I know God gave me children so I would not be lonely.

      After having counted to ten, I realize it would require another post to list all the things wrong with that one sentence. *le sigh*
      xxx

      Reply
    • See also my conundrum as to the licensing requirement for driving, owning a dog, having a business… and the absolute lack of one for ruining a person’s life through breeding. That already is a post.

      Reply
  3. I had a full identity before I had children, even at the age of 18. I was a poet, an artist, and a naturalist. I worked at the local wildlife museum. I was a bird watcher. None of these things changed when I became a mother. It is only narcissism to believe that your children cannot live without you. It is your job to help them become secure within themselves to not only survive, but to thrive without you. You are a role model for independence and connectivity to the world around you. By example, the richness of your adult relationships will encourage your children to foster theirs. That is what peers are for. Using your children for companionship is deplorable. It warps their self image and makes them enmeshed in your childish needs. If your needs are so great as to make you turn to your children for satisfaction, you need professional help.

    Love you Red,
    Gailxxx

    Reply
    • Correct. This behavior is an aberration of the child’s love map which is not easily recoverable.

      I love you, too xxx

      Reply
  4. Speaking from experience, lots of sex is very helpful. And Vodka Use caution when combining the two and I refer to sex with a partner – which also fufills the other adult and in this case I would not reco,,emd buying one..
    Practice safe sex too. We are trying to get away from the caretaker role.
    <3
    Lizzie
    Lizzie recently posted..Waking UpMy Profile

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