When Did This Happen?


Last night my husband and I were watching a TV drama which led to some interesting comments, even for us. Scene: mother and 11-year-old daughter having an argument over a vapor electronic cigarette the mother found in her room. I could totally understand this argument as the argument that ensued when I found out my 16-year-old daughter was smoking would not have been for prime time. What caused the conversation last night was when the daughter stormed out telling her mother, “It’s my room, you have no right to go in there!” The mother just sat there! WTH?

I know, it’s fictional drama on television however, sadly many families actually allow this behavior. Cheese and rice, when did this happen?

It’s true, even I gave up the fight over the unkempt room of my daughter, who is now Mrs. Clean/Better Homes and Garden/ the Queen is coming clean. I gave up the nagging but I didn’t stop going into her room. I would just close the door when I walked out. If she had ever told me I had no right to go into her room, it wouldn’t have taken her long to realize just how wrong that statement had been. My house, my rules!

The first thing, I would have tossed her room until it looked like the FBI, DEA, ATFE and the local police had been searching for drugs. Then I would have set back in my recliner, drinking ice tea and watched as she put every single item away, nice and neat.

Since when did parents decide children need privacy? My private time was when I finally became responsible and old enough to bathe myself and actually get all the dirt off. I still got checked behind the ears and between my toes. If I missed a spot I went back for another bath. My bedroom door was never shut, unless one of my parents shut it. Anyone that has ever had a child knows a quiet child behind a closed door is a sign. A sign to pay attention because usually that child is being sneaky about something.

I lived in my parents’ home, and because we had a small family I didn’t have to share a bedroom with a sibling. It was my room until the owners of the house, my parents decided it was no longer my room.  When I became eighteen, I was required to pay rent. It wasn’t much but it was required. And of course as an immature, didn’t know nothing about anything, I thought the $15 a week was asking too much.  After all, I was hardly ever home and I seldom ate there. Still, it was my parents’ home and I knew if I pushed back too much, I would lose my place to live so cheaply. I said I was immature, not totally stupid!

I suppose all this giving children their own space, their privacy, their freedom came with not being able to spank the little shits when they misbehave. I guess it all started when people started trying to be their children’s friends instead of their parents. I had parents. I hated being parented most of the time, so that means my mom and dad were doing a great job. My friends lived in other homes in the neighborhood.

If you happen to have a child that refers to a room in your home as theirs and you have no right to go in there, please refer back to paragraph four. You don’t have to be a friend to have fun parenting.


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