The most challenging thing about raising a kid: teaching them to be “appropriate,” when YOU’VE never mastered that.
I just decided to go ROGUE with the whole thing.
I learned early in my son’s life that all those “instructions” which come with car seats and cribs – are merely SUGGESTIONS. I frequently improvised. He’s alive, isn’t he?
okay? Play it by ear.
1. Steps and Baby Gates.
I have 3 little steps that lead down from my kitchen into the family room. Everyone was panicked when he started walking and insisted I put a baby gate up.
Why? He fell down them a couple of hundred times, and mastered that shit. Practice makes perfect, right?
2. The “Big Boy Bed.”
Supposedly, you purchase one when your kid can climb out of the crib.
Bullshit. And I hate that vernacular.
P.S. We didn’t. I put huge throw pillows around his crib, to break his fall. Dude, he was climbing outta that thing when he was two. He’s lucky I didn’t buy a net to put over the top.
3. Potty training.
He was defiant and resistant (with everything, why should this be different?)
He was 3, and he hadn’t eaten any candy yet. No, I wasn’t trying for stellar parenting. I had no interest in spending thousands of dollars on dental bills for freaking baby teeth.
I covered the bathroom in so much candy it looked like Willy Wonka’a chocolate factory exploded in there. HE NEVER LEFT. He sat on the toilet and ate candy. ALL DAY. Eventually, he pooped. Case closed.
4. The Facts Of Life.
Little Dude thought all babies were taken out of mommy’s belly, like he was. (C-section). He was grossing me out so badly the other day, describing to me his vomit from the night before in Technicolor.
I can barely handle puke. I was getting queasy, but he would shut his cake hole? Nooo. He thought it was hilarious to see me turning green. Finally, I just countered with,
“Well, babies come out of women’s VAGINAS!”
It shut him up AND took care of something he needed to know. Two birds with one stone. I multitask like that.
Honesty is of the utmost importance.
HOWEVER. There are some grey areas.
I got pulled over for speeding with him in the car. Now, I can…finesse my way out of a ticket every time. It’s a SKILL. But not with my KID in the car. So, I had to come up with a new method.
I made him pretend he was sick. I even made him open the car door and simulate vomiting, which tells you how committed I was to our skit.
My driving record is still intact, thank you very much. He also learned that it’s okay to lie to the police, which will be a much-needed skill in his teen years, if they’re anything like mine.
6. Safety First
Look both ways before you cross the street blah blah blah. Of course.
But Little Dude insisted I demonstrate a “Chinese Fire Drill.” Keep in mind – this as not at all like the time I threw him out of the car on I95 because he called Patti Smith a “hobo.” This was for FUN.
A Chinese fire drill, for the uninitiated, is when you get to a red light, and everyone leaps out and runs laps around the car, ending up in a different seat.
Why? Because it’s FUN! At least it was when I was
really high younger. At the next busy intersection, we hit a red light and, GO!
It was AWESOME! We couldn’t really switch seats because he can’t drive, but every car started honking, and people were laughing and giving us thumbs up.
Actively endangering your child’s life really brings out the community feeling in people.
I TRIED not to.
It started in the car. I don’t think I can drive without saying “motherfucker.” At least, not in New Jersey.
And then, it progressed. Because certain phrases just roll off the tongue when you’re dealing with a hyper, super talkative 4th grader.
He pops out of bed like he has a spring-loaded tampon up his ass. Sometimes, nothing captures the moment better than “Calm the Fuck DOWN!”
8. Laughing at his inappropriate behavior.
YES. I do. It’s funny. I’ve TRIED not to.
He walks out of the bathroom wiping his ass- because he thought of something he needed to tell me and he can’t possibly wait until he’s finished. I start telling him it’s inappropriate, but it’s so DISGUSTING I just end up laughing.
He has ADHD, so all these unfiltered and bizarre things stream out of his mouth, particularly if he’s excited. We were in the mall, going to the movies. He’s babbling away.
“Oh, she’d make a good step mom. She fits the criteria.”
Really? What’s the ‘criteria?’
I suppose it’s as good criteria as any, right? I burst out laughing and he just keeps going.
“I have a really long tongue. It’s 7 inches. Dad measured it.”
Why did you father measure your tongue? Wait. Don’t Answer.
“Hey, wanna go get some (he pauses here, and accompanies this last part with a hugely exaggerated fake wink and a clucking sound) chicken wings?”
Where does this come from? I wish he were older, and I could tell him to combine the long tongue and chicken wing remark. It would make the world’s best original pick-up line.
9. Movie and TV viewing.
The movie was PG 13. It’s not MY fault my son was asking me, “Mom, what’s a blow job?” 10 minutes in. That’s when the ever-popular “I don’t know” comes in handy.
Last weekend we watched Menace II Society. Twice in a row, because it’s awesome. I might have just as well handed him a video tutorial on how to cook crack.
And I’ve given up trying to lunge for the remote every time a commercial for a class action suit against Transvaginal Mesh Failure comes on. He doesn’t even ASK what that is. He googled that shit. That’s probably how he ended up seeing the lady with the (spoiler alert) toaster in her ass.
10. Computer supervision.
He’s only allowed to be on his tablet out in the open. There are parental controls on it.
But he SEES stuff. At least he hasn’t discovered YouPorn (yet).
First he “accidentally” saw naked ladies on Google images.
Then, he tells me one of the aforementioned naked ladies had a toaster up her butt.
Is that even physically possible? I’ve tried googling that very thing. I get NOTHING.
And YouTube is a JUNGLE.
Yesterday, I was sitting RIGHT IN THE ROOM WITH him. Writing.
And I hear a droning male voice, “the hydrogen cyanide must be liberated from the sugar it’s chemically attached to. This occurs when-”
THAT upset me. Watching an instructional video on how to make cyanide? I don’t want him poisoning some kid over a fucking Pokemon card.
I also told him that he needs to be careful what he watches, because now, he’s on a list somewhere for viewing that.
*HUGE eyeroll* “Mom. The 60’s are OVER.”
Do me a favor.
If I’m found dead of cyanide poisoning, with a toaster hanging out of my ass, indict the little fucker.
Have you found it impossible to be “appropriate” around your child? What’s the most inappropriate thing you’ve ever said, or done?
Can someone really fit a toaster up their ass?
Talk to me. I’m listening.