But in lieu of Friday’s post, here’s some interesting stuff that’s crossed my screen recently:
Upon the birth of her son:
Give him freedom (Yes, it’s a balancing act, but if anyone can manage it, it’s the Academy Award winning actress who gave a tour de force performance in Black Swan). If he wants to go to Tosche Station to pick up some power converters, let him. Where’s the harm in that? It might even prevent him from keeping out of trouble/meeting a stalkery old hobo who will guide him down a path that will lead to the tragic deaths of his caretakers (i.e. you) by rogue Sand People, and the eventual explosion of some 1.3 million government employees.
Um, this letter is great, but everybody knows it was not rogue Sand People that killed Owen and Beru, but rather Imperial Storm Troopers. You can’t paper over the truth, Death Star PR! WE ALL KNOW WHAT HAPPENED!!!!!
[The young adults coming to me for counseling] truly did seem to have caring and loving parents, parents who gave them the freedom to “find themselves” and the encouragement to do anything they wanted in life. Parents who had driven carpools, and helped with homework each night, and intervened when there was a bully at school or a birthday invitation not received, and had gotten them tutors when they struggled in math, and music lessons when they expressed an interest in guitar (but let them quit when they lost that interest), and talked through their feelings when they broke the rules, instead of punishing them (“logical consequences” always stood in for punishment). In short, these were parents who had always been “attuned,” as we therapists like to say, and had made sure to guide my patients through any and all trials and tribulations of childhood. As an overwhelmed parent myself, I’d sit in session and secretly wonder how these fabulous parents had done it all.
Until, one day, another question occurred to me: Was it possible these parents had done too much?
This is a good, long article. She manages never to mention the phrase “helicopter parent,” which is good, because nobody ever cops to being one of those. But I know lots of folks who parent the way she describes… including, to some extent, me (though she’s going to have to work hard to dissuade me from logical consequences).
Incidentally, having a job outside the home makes it very hard to overparent the way she describes. You’re just not around as much to smooth things over.
One of my favorite public radio shows recently had a live show in which they asked the audience to complete that sentence on notecards. You can see a slideshow at the above link. What’s interesting is how many very young adults have already decided what they’ll be in their next life, i.e., what they’ll not be in this one. I mean… really? Really?
What will you be in your next life? And can you really not do that now? At least a smidge?