Smug Parenting

So much of parenting style is dependent on a child’s personality.  My oldest is a nonstop ball of energy, emotional, headstrong, and full of curiosity.  The middle son sees the elder boy’s stubborn nature and raises the stakes with a streak of defiance.  The baby?  Well, she’s so young that it is hard to tell, but I believe I see a patient nature with a desire to please.  With her, it would be so easy to believe I knew it all, that all babies should listen to a firm, “No. Don’t touch,” and that they quickly learn to self-entertain.

It may sound as though I am critical of the boys.  While they can drive me to distraction I have a gut feeling I am in my rough years with them and these personality traits may set their paths straight once the foundation is laid.  The stubborn nature I find frustrating now may serve them well when others want them to stray.  Their curiosity and boundless energy are easy to view as assets once they have a respect for property and a handle on containing it at appropriate times.  I won’t lie, it is exhausting.


#1 Margo on 06.10.08 at 8:48 pm

boys smell, and if I had a girl I would spoil her rotten. I think Ellie is super sweet – Aidan and Marky too, of course. I have a soft spot for your crew.

#2 Paul Schaubhut on 06.10.08 at 10:47 pm

Don’t read to much into what you see right now. They are testing their boundries with you as their warden. The next few years, one or both of the boys may become the angel, and sweet Ellie may begin to show her emotional and resounding lung strengths at one or two years old. Week to week, month to month and year to year, they will try to be the best (and worst) they can for you. But in the end, you will love them like they have been angels all of their lives. (Just remember, when Ellie, Mark and Aidan become teenagers, you’ll ask yourself “where did my sweet little children go”). But just know that you did the best you could and wish and hope for the best, from them, and for them.

#3 TulipGirl on 06.23.08 at 8:58 pm

Oh, yes. . . so much of parenting requires us to be in-tune with our children–not just in-tune with what we think we want from our children.

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