Once upon a time, not really all that long ago, our son thought we were pretty cool parents. He sought out our advice and he listened to us. He was polite and enunciated clearly when he spoke to us.
The boy is fully in the throes of teenager-dom now. Hormones rule him. He slouches, and he mumbles when he speaks. He is an eating and sleeping machine. It feels as though my beautiful, sweet, funny son has been taken over by an alien.
Mr. Wonderful and I are now known as the meanest parents in the world. He thinks we don't love him. No one else's parents are as strict or as mean as we are.
Because we are trying to teach him to be responsible. We are trying to teach him that, hypothetically, if one were to blow off several homework assignments (which show up on the grade check online) and if, again hypothetically, one's grades were to slide into the dreaded "C" category as a result, there would be repercussions.
Such as not being allowed to go to your Homecoming Game.
Because we are the meanest, strictest parents in the world, no amount of pleading or promising of future good behavior would sway us.
Hypothetically, of course.
Today I woke up early to take the boy up to the school to take the PSAT test. I had to wake him up this morning because he forgot to set his alarm. I calmly sipped my coffee while he ran around the house like a chicken with his head cut off because he couldn't find his wallet. His wallet had the receipt (admittance) for the test. He took my keys to check both cars to see if he left the wallet there. He finally found the wallet in his messy room. Then he couldn't remember where he put the car keys.
It's not easy being the meanest parents in the world. It's much harder to say no and be firm than it is to just give in and let him do what he wants.
When you are a meanest parent in the world you are the recipient of DRAMA...the long, drawn out sighs, the exaggerated, incredulous facial expressions, the pouting, the raised eyebrows, the mumbling under the breath...and then five minutes later he will ask, "Hey Mom - what's for dinner?"
Being the meanest mom in the world is hard. It's one of, if not THE, hardest jobs I have ever had. But it's incredibly rewarding as well - because I can see the man we are creating. This moody, pouting teenager will someday be a man who understands that there are consequences to his actions. A man with a strong work ethic who understands that nothing in life is free and that no one owes him anything. He, and he alone, is responsible for his success or failure.
At least, that's what we hope.
And by the way, apparently I am not the meanest mom in the world. I came across this...
which proves it!