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Kids these days

Kids these days just don’t know how good they have it.
Back in my day, things were different.
Kids today need to learn the value of x, y, and/or z.

We all know the cliche’s, because about 20 to 40 years ago they were directed at us.  It’s the old “I had to walk uphill both ways in the snow to school” thing.  Parents and “grown ups” think that the way it was before was INFINITELY better than the way it is now, and that kids just “don’t get it”.

But this time, we’re right.

Kids today – in general – are a bunch of whiners and crybabies.  Believe me, I’ve tried to convince my kids that they don’t NEED all the stuff their friends stupid parents are giving them (seriously, an Xbox for a 5 year old for his birthday?  A motorcycle for a 7 year old – and then a bunch of other gifts on top of that?  If I ever got anything that was over $500, that would count for all holidays all year)

It’s hard to teach discipline and hard work when they see their friends reaping massive benefits by doing nothing.  My kids are starting to plot their escape.  When the tooth fairy only gives a dollar at their house, but if they went to Johnnys house they’d get 10 – the course is clear.  I’ve seen the rope made of sheets tied together they have hid under their bed, and the 5 days of provisions they have in a backpack ready to go.  The breakout is coming soon, I’m sure of it.

How can we fight that?  I know they’ll thank me one day for not spoiling them, but today they have a little less perspective.

Parents?  If you say “kids these days….” – it’s probably your own fault.  Get your act together “parents these days”!  Give your kids less stuff.  I’ll thank you for it.

Drawings by my 5 year old

It may be entirely possible that a glassy film spreads over my eyes whenever I view something my kids do.  I don’t think I see the world the same way when it’s talking about them.  I guess it’s the same way as when you look at yourself in the mirror.  You don’t really see what the world sees.  You have bias.  And you have a particular criticism toward yourself that the rest of the world doesn’t share as well.  So looking at my kids is like when I’m looking in the mirror and I see more fat than the rest of the world sees.

When they’re doing something great, that glassy film covers my eyes, and to me they are doing something incredible.  The 5-year-old does these drawings, and I just think they are dynamite.  But I’m so biased I can’t be sure – to me they’re like a Picasso, only better.  But when I show other people these things, they give the cursory – “Oh wow.  Cool.  That’s great.”  Why didn’t they fall on their knees and weep?  Why did they not tear at their hair in awe and wonder at this amazing gift?  Perhaps I’m seeing things they aren’t?

And it works the other way as well.  When they are acting up in a restaurant, no one else seems to care.  When I talk to their teachers, they tell me  they are well-behaved and not loud.  WHAT?  Are you kidding me?  I was braced for you to tell my they are throwing chairs and desks around the room.  You’re telling me MY BOYS are behaved?  Either you’re seeing something or I am!

But, I’m not going to change.  I’m not going to force the glassy film from my eyes.  I love it right where it is.

Great job boys!  You’ve jumped from a one foot height!  You’re AMAZING!