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Delayed Parenting Skills

gracie and dogs004

I’ve come to a point in parenting where I often question my skills, or if I have any parenting skills at all. The kids are just at the age where I find myself asking the questions, “Where do they get that from?” “Did I forget something?” “Did I miss a step?” “I went wrong somewhere, but where?”

And forget talking to them about anything in length, or, I can talk but they’re not listening.

I get it. I’ve been there. I was their age once but, but, but……….just give me a tiny sign that I haven’t  done this all wrong. That maybe a slither of something is seeping through.

Thankfully I got a tiny sign the other day.

I had just sat down on the couch after working the whole day in the yard. I was tired. My body ached.

In comes Gracie.

“Mom. I need to talk to you about something.” she said.

“I’m all ears.” I told her. (Whenever the kids say they need to talk I get a little excited, I’m not gonna lie)

And she went on to explain about how she had this idea. She wanted to start a campaign. “Like the cigarette campaigns to stop smoking but a campaign to stop bullying”

She went on with her ideas of decorating the school hallways with Stop the Bullying posters and about having an after school program to talk about the issue.

She was very passionate about it and it just made me beam with pride.

She got it. She got. She got it!

A few minutes after Gracie left the room, Bobby came in and sat next to me on the couch.

He wanted to talk politics.

At first I kind of looked around the room. Am I being punked?

But he went on talking about the candidates and who he would vote for and why.  He talked about some of the issues and he asked a lot of questions. So many questions that my brain started to hurt.

My God. He is paying attention in class. He is aware of current affairs.

Then he asked if I thought Hillary’s dad would give her any advice if she won.

Then we argued for 10 minutes about Bill being her HUSBAND and not her DAD.

He was a little mortified and I’m praying that I didn’t set him back years with that revelation.

Next up, we had Leroy who wanted to talk.

He sat right in front of me after Bobby left the room and barked at me for a good 15 minutes.

He wanted to talk about the groundhog that keeps taunting him in the backyard.

He was kind of stubborn about the whole thing but I think I got through to him when I told him that he has a better chance of making friends with him if he chases him to the right side of the yard verses the left side. Fence holes are smaller on the right side and the groundhog is a little on the chubby side. And for the love of dog Leroy, when the groundhog stops and turns around and spits at you, just don’t stand there.

I’m still waiting on a verdict on how this is going to pan out but I think Leroy finally realizes that he is in fact, a dog.

Sherman wasn’t much for talking. He’s a wise dog that has it all figured out. He’s just there in situations like this for moral support. Sherman still thinks he’s a person. I have a little more work to do in this area.

My conclusion is this, perhaps I am on the right track with this parenting thing. I’m getting delayed responses but at least I’m getting a glimmer of hope now.


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Callie, Shadow, and Ducky's Mom

Thursday 12th of May 2016

PS. You're doing a GREAT job, Jen! Bobby and Gracie are growing into well-adjusted, responsible adults and making you proud. I love Gracie's idea, and Bobby's questioning about Bill being Hillary's dad! As Leroy and Sherman? What can I say? Dogs are children who eat on the floor. Some of them stay "kids" forever - like Leroy - and some of them become old and wise, like Sherman and my Callie. :-)

Callie, Shadow, and Ducky's Mom

Thursday 12th of May 2016

Ah, the teen years! Jason lived with his mom but spent weekends with us and drove me up a freakin wall at times. No matter what his dad and I - or his mom and stepfather - told him, he had an answer for it all. But then a miracle happened. He told us one day "you were right about such-n-such, this-n-that, and so much more." Now he's "all grown up" and has three boys of his own (5, 2-1/2, and 2 months) and figuring out this parenting thing as he goes along. Just like we had to do when he was a kid. Grandparenthood is wonderful!


Wednesday 11th of May 2016

Lovely post. It all comes together in the end :) Hey, what do I know...I'm just starting hahaha, but I turned out ok so yeah I think it all comes together in the end ;) They seem to be on the right track!


Wednesday 11th of May 2016

I think those few moments just provide the assurances parents require to keep going.


Tuesday 10th of May 2016

My first two were very difficult when they hit teens my daughter started arguing at 12 about everything. My middle son hit the arguing much later. He did everything I asked until 15 and one night he went to bed good, the next day everything was wrong. I heard I hate you or something similar from both of them all the time. Being a Mom i tried to fix what ever it was but no luck. Finally by the third and last son i had it figured out. First of all he doesn't like to be in trouble which is fantastic and has always been loving. In his teens he would say "I hate you " and I would say Ok. Then he would tell me he was going to jump off the bridge or something similar and I would say OK. Then he would say "no Mom, your suppose to say....." and then he would say he was going to jump off a bridge, and i would say Ok and he would explain again. This always broke up the tension and everything would be fine. Trust me, you are doing a great job;)

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