For many of us boomers and beyond, have seen our kids grow up and happily leave home. When we look back at the time when we were bringing them up we all have totally different memories. It is an amazing thing that we can often put the bad times out of our mind and focus on all the good things that were happening during their youth.
I have many memories from my kid’s childhood. I am convinced that “mother nature” has protected our emotional state by keeping these memories a little vague. Can you remember exactly what your children looked like and the feelings you had at a particular time? Sometimes it may feel like a dream that has passed.
I do remember that my boys slept through the night at a very young age. I hear mothers talking about how their kids get up during the night at ages up to five and more. When we put our kids to bed they stayed there unless they woke up sick. I was lucky that I got through the growing up years with very little trauma. No drugs, drinking, ending up in jail, suspended from school…Thank goodness! We had our share of issues, but honestly nothing really stands out in my mind. Also, my boys never swore or talked back to me. They voiced opinions, I listened and life went on. Maybe I was lucky.
Things are different today. Kids have more toys ( electronically speaking). Spanking is out. Time out in their well stocked room is about as bad as punishment gets for them. Personal responsibility is not a major issue in many homes. They often have undeserved freedom. Many of the most difficult children turn out fine due to the fact they have really good parents who love them. We all made mistakes, and I sometimes cringe at a few of the things I did or said (but not too many). We brought our boys up strict in many ways. They had household responsibilities like keeping their rooms clean, making their beds, and doing dishes after dinner. They were outside a lot playing with their friends. The much feared pedofiles were not in the open. Thought I was a cautious parent I did not have to worry about them like parents do today. My boys had activities they went to, but not the overload that kids today have. Kids need time just to be kids. Also, my kids learned the word”disappointment”. Today that word is often not part of their vocabulary.
Actually in summing up I had it pretty easy. My boys went to school, got decent grades, and if they wanted extra money they got jobs. They finished college plus graduate education, have good jobs, families and are totally responsible adults…I guess I did my job just fine.