23 January 2007

Parenting

I heard a sports announcer from ESPN radio say that one shouldn’t want to be a good parent so they can be better than their parent, but should be or wish to be a good parent because they want to. As he said it over and over again, I couldn’t help but agree with him.

Parenting is not a competition or a status to be maintained, but a dedication to raising a child to the best of our abilities; even when we fall short as we sometimes do.

It’s a known fact that many of us didn’t like the way we were raised and swore that if we became parents, we’d be nothing like our own, but that being said, should it be the motivating mindset to being a good parent? I don’t think so. When most of us became parents, it was because we wanted a child in our lives. Nowhere in our course of thinking did we say, “hey, I wanna become a parent so I can show mine how much they sucked at it by being so much better than they are.” If anyone did actually think that, then I digress; however, I’m sure that wasn’t a popular thought by any stretch of the imagination. At some point, we may have said, “I don’t want to do certain things like my parents because it hindered more than in helped me”.

Seeing as there isn’t a handy-dandy instructional guide that we’re presented with upon choosing to be a parent, so our parents and maybe a relative here or there might have been the closest thing to instructional guides we could get. Yeah, there are manuals and how to book filling shelves in libraries and bookstores, but many are too generic to say if they’d really work on our own children. Hell, who the heck has time to read when you’ve got a kid in need of regular time and attention. Free time becomes a luxury and it’s rarely spent on handy-dandy books. For many, we’ll reach for the phone and consult another parent; our own included. Bottom line is that we’ll still do what the hell we want to do anyway, but just making that call doesn’t make you feel like such a loser.

I’ve said all of this to say, that making a decision to be a parent something to take seriously as it’s a job we can’t just quit from. We should chose the role with great consideration and disengage from the thought that we’re doing it because we want to be better than someone else. We should do it for the love of the child and for unwavering, unconditional, and unrelenting love period.

10 comments:

T.C. said...

I really love this post, I don't think that we honestly think about the task of parenting as seriously as we should...its a life, another human beings life and its totally in YOUR hands...that's serious...another thing is that there aren't a lot of genuine GOOD people having kids anymore, everyone is so wrapped in the grind of school and working and a career path that building a family is not a priority anymore...
I don't know Blu, I think you definitely said something that young adults, including myself, need to read and be extremely conscious of when making the decision to be a mother or a father...

Darius T. Williams said...

You're right...this was on point!

Terry said...

One of the issues I have is not only does a parent not know how to be a parent anymore; the government is slowly starting to legislate parenting.

Here in California a State Lawmaker is trying to make it illegal for someone to "spank" their child. You may have heard about it.

Now I'm not sure what constitutes "spanking". I'm not even sure I know the definition of corporal punishment anymore, but I do know that had someone told my Southern born parents they could not have tanned my ass, they would have had a serious fight on their hands. My Mother believed in two things religiously, the Bible and the power of the switch. Both of which served her well.

More to one of Blu's points, I agree, it is true that many become parents because they have some sort of romantic idea, that they have a need to show they are better, or they simple don't have a clue what they are getting in to. Regardless, once you're in it, as Blu said, there are no time outs, do over's, or changing teams. You're in it for the very long haul. My bitch is, often the wrong people weigh in. You know, the "expert" who has no kids, the government, and the Lady who's raising crack babies. What’s a new parent to do with such bad information?

Don't get me wrong, help is good; after all, it may very well take a village to raise a child. I just think you should be careful which village you choose.

Susan Abraham said...

It all just is, isn't it.
Thanks for coming by yesterday, Blu.
Much appreciated.

Honey-Libra said...

Wonderful post. I find it sad when folks just have children and don't think about what is going to happen in the future..molding their children and making them do what they never got to do is not a way to raise a child. It's a lifetime commitment and should be taken seriously..sad that those who most want children and would probably make wonderful parents can't and those who are out in the streets and doing God knows what have more of them...then again everything happens for a reason...

BZ said...

Props for this one, lady. Well said!

Blu Jewel said...

t.c - parenting is associated with so many emotions and if you're in it for all the wrong reasons, you're gonna yield really ugly results. i try so hard to just get by with what i know/feel to add competition into the damn equation.

darius - thanks for stopping by new reader and i appreciate your feedback/input

terry - i've seen a case where a woman publicy asssaulted her child and that was grounds for police intervention. however, to pass laws to prevent me from disciplining my child is fucking crazy. if we take away discipline, then we're left with anarchy in the home and society. i'm sick and tired of people wanting to be friends with their kids instead of parents/role models.

su - it's hard being a parent and i knew what i was capable of, so having only one was me knowing my limits

honey - so true; so true. i know a few people who went through hell to have a child and to see others squander their roles as parents makes me sick. parenting is not an easy endeavor; especially now, so folk need to act right and raise these kids with some damn sense.

bz - thanks for the props. i could have went on for days on the subject...lol!

Rosemarie said...

For some having children was never a conscious decision, but perhaps an unconscious one (in the heat of the moment). Anyway, for me it was certainly a yearning and a conscious effort to have a baby. And, it was good!

I think having children should be explained more thoroughly. However, I've heard if we got the low down, we'd never have them.

Children are work don't kid yourself, but oh so worth it. Being a mother has only benefited me as an individual. I'm growing with Julia!

My parenting style is my own, and I certainly don't let others schedules or timetables conflict with mine. I'll know when it's best for the next milestone.

Thanks for sharing a sensitive subject.

I use my mom's parenting as a benchmark and adjust where I feel necessary. She did a great job with the resources she had.

blaqrayne said...

Can't argue with you on this one. Good post.

beautyinbaltimore said...

I agree and I think people should think long and hard brfore they decide to have children.