family issues

Spare The Rod, Spoil The Brat

At some point in time it was decided that children had so many rights that parents were only entitled to one: The right to appease them.  The child had the right to happiness, so spoil them, don’t discipline them, and shift the whole balance of power around to the point where all lines are blurred.  As a result a lot of parents ended up practicing what some refer to as Passive Parenting.  

Despite the fact that my brother and I aren’t what I deem that far apart in age, we’ve been raised completely different.  It’s said that the first child is always the Experiment. Parents try out what they’ve learned over the years on you, sometimes they coddle you other times they neglect you. Sometimes they appease you, other times they shame you for even having any desires. Honestly, the First Child gets it all and if you don’t end up as a basket case, I’m proud of you. 

The Second Child [Which in this case, is my brother, and the last] gets it much easier. See, by this time, Dr Phil and some magazine advice column have told your parents the “right” way to raise children. The right way entails more “communication” than action. More “bonding” than raising and guiding. Frankly, more talk than action. 

As it tends to happen with lines from the Bible, someone decided “Spare the rod, spoil the child” meant just that: Be your child’s bitch, and as it often happens again, everyone followed blindly. 

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All too often I find myself in the middle of arguments between my mother and my brother.  My 11 year old brother yelling at my 50 year old mother to keep quiet and let him speak as I count the number of times I would have slapped him for every single wayward comment he makes. 

I intervene. 

I put him in his place.

I remind him to respect his elders.

I discipline him.

I explain things to him.

And I’m disgusted.

They’re raising a little asshole.

I believe parenting is more raising an adult than raising a child. You don’t coddle an idiot, breed unsavory behaviour then think one day when they get a college degree it will change. 

You don’t raise an entitled, disrespectful control freak then think one day he’ll be a decent human being. 

You cannot raise a tiny douchebag and expect him to be a Prince.

And my mother tells me she doesn’t believe in hitting children so what else is there?

Being quick to raise your hand when your child messes up isn’t always the solution but it’s not the Evil deed it’s been made to seem either.

Hitting your child once in a while will not lead to you paying for counselling sessions in the future and nor will it turn them into a serial killer. We were hit and we turned out just fine. [Kind of, but, you know..Our problems don’t stem from being disciplined “too much”.]

My mother didn’t have to hit me for me to respect her.

She didn’t terrorize me. 

Contrary to popular belief, Black parents aren’t irrational tyrants who keep us all in line with belts and cuss words. 

I respected her as a provider, as a care taker, as my mother, as someone who knew more than I did. It was only when I became a teenager that I started talking back and engaging in dialogue with her and even then, it was to understand things. [Of course teenage angst played a part in me trying to come for my mother’s wig sometimes but..hey..It happens.] 

I didn’t respect my parents out of fear, I respected them because I understood the contribution that they made to my Life. I also respected them because they wouldn’t expect anything less from me.

Now? Not so much.

When did our parents start raising full out unapologetic brats and why?

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Was it when people started using half baked psychological knowledge to explain their wayward behaviour?

Did the stories of serial killers whose mothers physically abused them scare ours into believing every single slap would make your child a psychopath?

Who do you blame when your child knows you’re afraid of them and so takes advantage? Who do you get mad at?

Who’s at fault when you were so busy out buying books from people who don’t know your family, some of which have no kids themselves, that you built no relationship with your child?

Who do you blame when you realize by the time they’re a teen, you can’t really do much?

What are you going to do when you realize you’re not really a parent and are now merely someone to finance their lifestyle and teach them how to be a dick?

On bad parenting. [Excuse my French.]

As a child, you learn, maybe, to accept the fact that your parents are people too, in order to shield yourself from all the disappointment.  By telling yourself “They’re people too, they’ll fuck up” the things they do don’t hurt so bad.  Sometimes however, they just don’t give a fuck.  They take your maturity for granted and use it as an excuse to shrug off parental obligations.

 People tend to think kids are the needy, deceitful, manipulative ones.. You haven’t met some of these parents hey.  Some parents will shamelessly rob their kids of the beauty of youth. Teach them to hate, to belittle..pass their venom onto them.  Use them for their own selfish bullshit.

 

Oh but let the child attempt to get out of it..To stop being a pawn..To no longer carry them.. The child is “ungrateful”, “doesn’t understand”, is getting involved in things that “aren’t their business”.

 There’re a few things that I hate about this family shit, and I hardly ever use the word “hate”.  

I don’t like that these people feel like you owe them your time, energy..And that they think they can take it and it’s whatever. That you’re somehow indebted to them simply because of a surname/DNA/your gender etc

I don’t like the expectation.

I don’t like the forced bonds.

I don’t like that sometimes, you can’t do anything about anything, for whatever reason.

I don’t want it. I don’t want to have relationships forced on to me.

I don’t like cooking when I’m not hungry. You’re hungry, fix that.

The “has your father eaten?” question like he isn’t able bodied. I don’t know.

The fact that the men will sit, the whole day on a couch, waiting. For food, for attention..anything..Just waiting. And it’s fine.

The “You can’t do that/act that way, you’re a woman” shit.

But most of all..

That everyone, everyone wants to create you for their own personal, selfish reasons.

Man, I hate this shit.

They also don’t know how to leave people alone. They smother you with their mess and call it love.

I hate always having to tell people where I am or where I’m going..It doesn’t matter. I’m gonna lie anyway.

“Where were you?” Does it matter? Am I dead?

These people that you’re born with aren’t always your “family”. Fuck around and end up trying to learn to love toxic people.

They don’t go away, they don’t leave you alone, they don’t let you grow [into what you wanna be].

I am mad as shit at shit I never discuss. Seething.

 

– Courtesy of my Twitter timeline. A bit crude, I know. But I was rather bothered. 

“That Baby Don’t Look Like Me!”

Boy meets Girl. Boy tells his friends she’s a “Bad looking little bitch with a fat ass” and approaches.  Girl plays coy but exchanges numbers with him nonetheless.  Boy wakes up and sees an unknown number, remembers, and the flirting begins.

Two weeks later boy ends up at girl’s house. Boy and girl begin to do what grown folk do, except he doesn’t have a condom. He stops. She says her period ended two days ago so she’s on her “safe period”. Girl straddles him, kisses him softly, grinds on him, well aware of the fact that one often reaches a point of no return when Lust is involved, no matter how rational they may be otherwise. Boy stops her and says they can do this, but if she falls pregnant, he doesn’t care because he didn’t want to do this, she insisted. She says it’s fine.

Four rounds later, boy goes home.

Six months later, girl calls. She’s pregnant.

Boy hangs up.

What happened was, all of this. Except Boy is a Man in his late twenties and Girl her early twenties.

He told me his story proudly as we walked, on our way home.  With a crisp “No, fuck that bitch” at the end of it.

I was speechless.

He’s proudly saying that he wants nothing to do with a child that may be his because he told his mother he wouldn’t look after the child should she fall pregnant.  There’s a little boy out there with his genes, and he won’t acknowledge his existence because he simply doesn’t want to.

On the one hand, fine, let’s be honest, that Lady should have known better.  Whether or not she was on her “safe period”, she had sex with basically, a stranger, who outright told her he would not care about what happened afterward.  Why not get the morning after pill?

She called him hopeful. Thinking that knowing he had created a Life with her, he may care, may bother. He didn’t.

From what I gather, he once gave her a bit of money to take the boy to the clinic, other than that, he’s made no contribution towards the child’s well-being in any way. He proudly says “No, I don’t give a fuck, I told her” and continues to tell me how she recently called him to inform him she’s considering moving on to find a man to cater to her and her child’s needs, to which his response was…wait for it..Can you guess?

“I don’t give a fuck.”

I still don’t know how to feel about it. Two silly people met, had sex, and created a large mess they can’t be mature enough to resolve.

Why would a woman be that irresponsible?

Why would a man be that callous?

How could two parents be so  immature? So selfish? So.. Childish?

So Girl had a boy by the Boy and seems to be trying to be a Woman.

Boy remains a Boy.

A father to a boy who might just grow up to be just like him.

A little man who’ll grow up to relate a little too well to J.Ivy’s “Dear Father.”

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