Why are you always telling me what to do?
The other day one of my children decided that he was tired of his parents telling him what to do.
“Why are you always telling me what to do?” he asked. “You and Dad are always bossing us around.”
“Let me explain this to you as straightforward as I can,” I said. “When I was a kid your Nanny and Papa told me what to do and because they are my parents, I had to do what they asked whether I liked it or not. They were in charge.”
“But if you didn’t like being bossed around, why do you do it to us now?” he questioned, as if I were on trial. “Isn’t it true that you always tell us not to be so bossy with our friends because no one likes a bossy kid?”
It was obvious that he believed he had just helped me to recognized the error of my ways and that I would immediately want to correct it. It was true that I had always told my kids when they were being too bossy that they should stop and think about how they would feel on the receiving end of that kind of treatment?
The case against the bossy parent is dismissed
Unfortunately for my budding attorney, I had no plan of pleading guilty to anything.
“Let me tell you the way I see it,” I explained. “When I was young I had to do what my parents said, just as they had to do what their parents said when they were kids. As children, we had to trust that our parents knew what was best for us, and now you are going to have to trust that we love you and will make decisions based on what we think is best for you.”
The look on his face was one of absolute disappointment. He thought this was going to be an open and shut case.
“Don’t be sad,” I told him. “Enjoy being a kid. You will get your chance. Too soon for me, you will grow up, get married and have your own children to boss around. But until that time comes you will just have to wait your turn, and the line starts behind me.”
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