I know I have a controlling personality, and I wonder how I will deal with the choices my sons make in regards to sports, music, career, etc. Do all parents live a little vicariously through their children? Probably. Some more than others. Will I as a parent push my kids into activities and careers that they don't want to be a part of? I hope not, but I may have a hard time if they don't want to do the things I want them to.
My parents, regardless of what they actually thought, never once said they didn't support me 100% in the life decisions I made (pat yourselves on the back parents). How could they not have been thinking I was making a mistake here or there? I know I'll have a hard time keeping my own parenting mouth shut.
I remember having a friend in college whose parents wanted her to play the bassoon, and she didn't love it, but they kept pushing her. I can't imagine what it's like to be a child on the receiving end of parents trying to push their own agendas on a child. Why didn't she just tell them her feelings?
Will I be strong enough to let it go and let my children make the right (or wrong) choices in life? What if one of them says to me, "Why didn't you tell me not to do that?" or "Why didn't you tell me to choose a different career path?" What will I say? Is it better to say something than not to say anything? What if my children don't like the sport I choose for them... I've already predetermined that they will both be in a martial art. Will I push them to participate anyway? Will they be too scared to tell me they don't like it? What if they're no good at the musical instruments I want them to play? What then? It's not like I'm one of those crazy Asian mothers who will disown her children if they don't do what they're supposed to... at least I don't think I am...
There are so many difficult decisions to make when you are a parent, and there are so many ways to screw up a child. My fear is that I will do something so wrong that my kids will end up on a tiny couch blaming their issues on something from their childhoods. I mean, don't we all have some sort of issue that stems from our childhoods? I'm sure I do. Some of you may not even realize you have issues from that long ago.
I guess the best thing to do is to let them make their own mistakes so they can learn from them. Sure, I'll "suggest" things they should do or participate in, but ultimately, it's up to them, and it will be up to them to live with the consequences. I just hope that they inherited enough smarts to make the right choices.
Original Image Credit: Halloween and costumes (http://www.halloweenandcostumes.com/p-1908-future-doctor-child-costume.aspx)
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