Tales From A Twin Mom:
How Not To Raise An A**hole
You’ve seen them and you know exactly what I’m talking about. That kid. The one in your child’s classroom or soccer league who reminds you of the a**hole at work. This kid is insensitive, ruthless, oblivious and cold. This is the kid you don’t want your child to become; the one who will point out everyone’s flaws and insecurities just to make themselves feel good.
You know who I’m talking about, right?
Yeah, let’s not raise any more of those. Let’s make an effort to rid the word of future a**holes. They say it takes a village – but in a society already full of a**holes we must take matters into our own hands and work together to right this wrong!
So how do we do that? Here are four ways not to raise an a**hole.
1. TEACH KIDS TO BE KIND
I remember being at the supermarket one day with my girls, in a bit of a hurry because I knew one of my toddlers was on the verge of a meltdown. As I rushed through one of the aisles I came across an elderly lady struggling to get a box of cookies off the top shelf. You could tell she did her very best to take care of herself and that going to the store by herself was probably an errand she dreaded. Her hands shook and she could hardly walk but she kept trying. Much to my surprise, no fewer than three people walked right by her as if she didn’t exist. I immediately helped her grab what she needed and continued to shop with her for a few minutes, helped her check out and put the groceries in her car. It didn’t take much to be kind. I noticed my oldest daughter, Arianna was watching while I helped. When we finally got in our car and headed home she asked me why I had stopped to help when I was running late myself.
“One day you will find yourself in a situation where you will need help. Maybe you will not have the courage to ask for it but I hope that if anyone sees you needing it, they give it just because. It didn’t cost us a thing to help that lady, put a smile on her face, and make her day just a little bit better.” Yes, teach them to be kind.
2. TEACH THEM IT’S OKAY TO FAIL
I’ll admit it- I can be an a**hole sometimes when I am going through a hard time or have failed at something; I’m sure you can relate. It’s how you treat others during those times that proves what kind of human you are. Teach your child early age that it’s not okay to take your frustrations out on others. Show your child other ways to work out their frustration without hurting others. Let them know that it’s okay to fail but that the trick is to never give up. Teach them that the way they treat others is a reflection of who they really are.
3. BE THE PARENT!
((Gulp)) I know some of you have a hard time hearing this. Being a friend to your child is good, but don’t forget to be a parent. It might be funny when you hear your kids say things about others but keep in mind children don’t have a filter. When you catch your child being mean to others STOP THEM (Reality check: you have that right as a parent). It is up to you to teach your child right from wrong. Children must be taught that words hurt… better yet, children must learn to keep their mouths shut when they have nothing nice to say. I’m all for empowering children and teaching them to say what’s on their minds but when they cross the line and hurt others, it is up to us as parents to correct them. Be a parent not a pal. Oh yeah, it might be a good idea, while we’re at it, to let teachers teach without taking their critiques personally! Guess what? Nobody’s kids are perfect. The universe will thank you in the future.
4. DON’T BE AN A**HOLE
It is a fact that children learn to do what they see. If they see you being an a**hole they will think it’s okay to behave the same way. Try to control yourself (at least when you’re around them). I know it’s hard sometimes to not say that Susie looks like a %*&^$% wearing age-inappropriate daisy dukes that could pass for underwear, but it’s important to keep your mouth shut as well. Making cracks about Susie’s pants doesn’t help either. You don’t want to teach your child that it’s okay to hurt others as long as it’s in a humorous way because that is still wrong. I won’t stand on my soap box and tell you I’m perfect because I’m far from it – but I try to be less of an a**hole when I’m around my children. You should too.
Raising empowered children does not mean a thing if you’re teaching them to step on others in order to succeed. They will meet a good amount of a**holes during their lifetime but they should know better than to be one. We live in a society that is under the impression that being strong means being cold and uncaring and that’s just simply incorrect. Let’s show our children that they can be strong individuals without being a**holes. Yes, I said it.
So your turn.. do you agree with these? What are you doing to make sure you don’t raise an a**hole?