Judge My Parenting

My husband and I had lots of experience with teens before we actually had kids. I know. And we had them anyway. We are insane saints. And we swore that we will not sweat the small stuff as our kids began to assert their individuality. We were determined not to get caught up in power struggles over clothing (as long as it’s appropriate) and hairstyles.

We’ve done pretty well, I think. For an entire year, we endured being in public with a child who insisted on wearing all clothing backwards. We figured if the kid was willing to put the clothing on without assistance, it didn’t matter what direction they faced. And it made things interesting. People were never sure if he was coming or going. We went through a ruby-slipper phase that lasted through three sizes, but who doesn’t like sparklies, right? Even if they clash with her Easter dress. We braved the purple-jean-red-shirt-green-shoes phase.  And aslong as rips in jeans don’t offer a lesson in human anatomy,  it’s all good. Our kids just don’t realize how lucky they are.

We’ve hit a couple of snags along the way because we’re not perfect. We vetoed a “padawan braid.” (Sorry, son. That’s a rat-tail, and it was never cool. Ask your uncle).

Thanks for the photo, Wiki! Hmm. Maybe I should reconsider. That rat-tail is really something.

And we nixed (not nits, NIX!) the professional color-job (you come up with the $120 to have it done, and we’ll talk). But we’ve done pretty well.

And now we’re at the next round, and I am not sure how this one will end. It’s killing me. I know that when we go out in public, we’re going to get some strange looks, and probably draw critical comments from people we don’t even know.  When you see my kid, you may judge me.

GAH! Socks and sandals! IN THE SUMMER! People will think he’s not brought up right!


And now you have seen. Do you still love me?


70 thoughts on “Judge My Parenting

  1. Ha ha ha, he’s doing some pretty serious jailing for one so young too. The bunches add to the ensemble quite wonderfully. The child of a friend wore bunches and his sister’s clothes from three until he went to school – would have carried on then if he’d had any say 😉

  2. Gasp !!!! You must do something to save him – next he’ll be asking for plaid golf pants or white leather shoes! Maybe theres a support group ?

    (With girls its a bit easier, all I have to say is “Fine, it you WANT to look like a dork….” and they panic and change)

  3. Don’t ask me why, because I have no idea…………..I put little ponies up on my daughter’s head and we called it a pine tree. Totally agree about the fashion choices. I learned quickly in the teen years that I was going to have to choose my battles. Clothing was VERY low on the list battle ground wise.

  4. I love this post. I think on behalf of many moms out there, I will not judge. I might smile and have a good laugh over it at home later, but I will not judge. Been there, done that. STILL doing that.

  5. My 8 year old wears barn boots everywhere – mostly because I forget to look her over before we leave. I wrinkly my nose and ask her if she wouldnt rather wear something that smells better, she answers that she likes the smell of horses on her boots. Fair enough.

  6. Major body parts covered (no illegal activity going on here) and a modest display of self-expression (no small animals harmed in the process) – all’s right with his world. His mom is CHILL!

  7. I only wish my fashion sense was half as stylin’ as your son’s. So far, we limited our son’s mohawks to non-picture season (aka Christmas) with little whining. As long as they look good in their mug shots, I’m sure everything will be fine.

  8. So here’s the thing…I don’t know how to tell you without telling you straight although I assume every comment above is similar. I haven’t read them. He’s a boy. With pony tails. Three of them. And you’re worried about the socks and sandals. Ok.

  9. That screams cuteness! When I read about the sparkly red shoes, I was already laughing KNOWING that it was Squish who was the wearer (and then you ruined it for me ’cause I forgot for a minute you had a daughter too). I quite prefer kids who aren’t dressed by their moms. And you can always point out which ones those are.

  10. “People will think he’s not brought up right!”

    One look at his hair, and you know there is a problem. Don’t worry about the pants. In few years they will be optional, anyway.

  11. A. I had a rattail in junior high. On a mullet. I KNOW. It was AWESOME. If by “awesome” you mean “the worst thing in the planet.”

    B. I could just about die from the accumulated cute here, by the way. Two little ponytails! I want to squish him!

  12. Ahh, the padawan braid. It’s as if Lucas, or someone on his team, was thinking, We need an excuse to give one of the characters a rat-tail. Rat-tails are cool, right? We’ll just say it’s a traditional phase in Jedi training…

    No, George. I’m sorry, but not even in the Star Wars universe do they look cool.

  13. You are both still liked wholeheartedly. But I did want to reach through the computer screen and pull up his shorts. Of course that’s what I want to do whenever I see my nearly 21 year old cutie…

  14. All I can say, as milk spews out of my nose, is…”We figured if the kid was willing to put the clothing on without assistance, it didn’t matter what direction they faced.” is…spheeew…

  15. I just can’t approve of this. Three pony tails with three same-colored rubber bands would have been fine. Three pony tails with three different-colored rubber bands would have been awesome. But two pony tails with same-colored rubber bands and one with a different-colored rubber band is just madness. 🙂

  16. Haha. When sis and I were around 10 and 12 it was normal for us to wear knee high socks with our platform sandals. Yes platform sandals. Why didn’t someone stop us? 🙂

  17. Did you stage this? No! I don’t believe any kid at this age has taste quite this good! You really had me going for a moment there.

    Really though, he is so cute he could pull off the two rabid pony tails.

  18. Who even noticed the socks & sandals when the crotch of his pants is down around his knees & you can see his underwear? Please, please, please tell me you are nipping this horrid style in the bud!

  19. My son does that too. The sandals and socks I mean. And the pig tail on top of his head. Oh yes, I am judging you. To be an exceptionally tolerant and strong-nerved parent. I tip my hat.

  20. I hear you! My son’s growing an afro and my daughter (who, in her defence is only three and a half but so determined to choose her own outfits!) must wear leggings and socks with EVERYTHING. And stripes, florals and colours of all sorts all go together. At every opportunity. Loved your post.

  21. When I was that age I insisted on wearing jeans that were assorted bright colors. One friend asked me “Do you own any jeans that are actually BLUE?!” ha thankfully I grew out of that. If socks and sandals are your worst parenting worry, I’d say you’re doing very well 🙂

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