Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Parenting Choices

Especially here in Snooty-U-Land, Dr. S and I have met a remarkable number of people whose parents appear to have been entirely unqualified for the task. (An old Dilbert cartoon about a parenting test, which ends in leaving organs with the receptionist, comes to mind.) Some of these people have overcome their parents' suffocating tendencies and learned to think on their own. Some don't get along with their families, often for quite good reasons. The rest, well, you can imagine.

I was thinking about parenting in general, and how people often want to avoid their parent's mistakes with their own children (an admirable goal). And then I was thinking about my parents, mildly-tumultuously married for 35 years. I'm a lot like my parents; Dr. S is a lot like his.

I don't think there's really very much I'd want to do differently from my parents, and I don't mean they were perfect, but overall they took care of us while giving us room and opportunities to grow. The only big thing I would change, if I got a do-over, would be for Dad to be home more; he was gone for work at least half the time, for years. I talk to him more now than I did in highschool. And the only little thing I would change is less yelling. But you know? It didn't kill us.

Also, they could have skipped singing "You Can't Always Get What You Want" every time I couldn't get what I wanted.

What do or would you want to do/ have you done differently from your parents? Have you ever sung the Rolling Stones at anyone?