I have to start off by saying that I feel like parenting in today’s age is extremely difficult. I’m not a seasoned parent like some of you. I’ve only been at this gig for almost 9 years. I know I have a long way to go. The problem I’m having is as my daughter is getting older, she is starting to see and hear more troubling things around us, too close for comfort. So, my question is, is honesty always the best policy?
Just this weekend, my daughter and I were watching one of our favorite shows, House Hunters. It is just about one of the only shows on tv that has no bad language, no sexual content, and no inappropriate adult situations, until today. Today’s episode featured a gay couple looking to buy a house. It happened to be 2 female’s buying a house. I thought it would pass over her until the narrator went on to tell the background on their relationship. I wasn’t ready to have this conversation because my daughter was totally paying attention to every last word. Today, I chose to change the channel and say that I had seen this episode before. Did I do the right thing? I’m not sure, but I wasn’t ready to have a full conversation about this topic.
Over a year ago we were grocery shopping together and in the check out line waiting for our turn. I was scanning the magazine covers and one I had missed caught her little 7 year old eyes. It was a picture of the new Caitlin Jenner full out showing off his/her new look. “Isn’t that a man Mommy? Why is that man dressed as a girl??” In this situation I chose to be honest but not give too much info. I told her that it was a man and he had decided in his heart he needed to be a woman. Was it awkward? Yes. Did she understand? Probably not, but I don’t fully understand myself.
[bctt tweet=”It’s such a scary time to parent young kids these days. How honest are you with your kids? #momlife #parenting” via=”no”]
We live in the Dallas area. With recent tragic events of the horrible hate crime that took place just 25 minutes from our house the news has been plastered with the deaths of the Dallas police officers. What else can you say to your kids except that there are horrible people in this world? How can we teach our kids not to be scared to death of every single person they come across in every single life event? Is honesty the best policy? How much is too much?
I can only offer what I am doing. I am teaching my daughter (and will teach my son as he grows) that there ARE good people in this world, but there are also bad people. I am teaching her to show her kindness and respect to others by setting a good example to her. I am teaching her the importance of manners and kind words. She is watching as I say “thank you” to others and “I’m sorry” to those in need. Sadly, I am also having to teach her some ‘life skills’ that I didn’t learn until I was older. I’m teaching her to watch her back, not to trust strangers, and what to do in certain tricky situations. I am not allowing her to do very many things without us watching. It’s just the world we live in today and I can’t take any chances.
Parenting is challenging! I am not perfect at it. It takes work and patience. I’d like to hear from my fellow Moms out there. What suggestions do you have on these life events that come up? Is honesty the best policy or do you hold out on information until you feel kids are mature and can understand more? I’m so thankful for Moms that offer advice to others! I feel like more than ever we need to stick together and help end the hate and spread more peace among our children.