Thursday, February 7, 2013


For my faithful followers, you know to expect a “rant” every now and then from me.  Today is no exception, here is my spiel:

<insert scrape, drag....and hold on while I bring over my pedestal and climb atop......drag, scrape....>

I had been feeling somewhat insecure about recent comments and allusions from a few folks around me that I may be a hardass.  I doubted myself; I questioned if I were really perhaps inappropriately tough or perhaps a bit more high-strung than I actually perceived myself to be.  I then had a moment this week that allowed me the freedom and insight to realize that I AM indeed a hardass and I am very, very proud of it.

I have already been there and done that with blogging about how I hold myself up to extreme expectations.  If I do not demand more of myself, who will?  How will I reach my greatest capabilities if I do not push myself to reach for the stars? 
However, in moving on, I realize that I do have very high expectations for my children.  I have struggled in the past with balancing my expectations with not driving my children to need weekly therapy.   So far, I have well-balanced children.  In fact, because of my expectations my children know specifically how they are to behave in public and in a  very wide range of social situations.  My children are expected to use their manners:  “Please.”  “Thank you!”  “It’s so nice to meet you.”  “Thank you for having me.” 

Yes, manners!  Is that almost an extinct anomaly in 2013?  Gosh, help us all if it is and basic social courtesies have become less than the norm.
My children are expected to get good grades.  I do not have to bribe them nor do I have to reward them as a mechanism to perform well in school.  Honestly, it is a simple as that.  My children are required to do their homework before any other activity.  Again, it really is that simple.  Of course, some days there is a fair amount of griping and complaining, but it gets done.  If my children fail to perform at school – whether it be not adequately studying for an exam or not getting their homework done; they suffer consequences.  Consequences that hurt them square in the tummy – they will miss their beloved sports, they will lose valuable TV time, or they will lose an electronic device.  HARDASS.  I think not, I think that is just the premise of being a parent and upholding the fundamental parenting rules.  I cannot be entirely sure as I did not get the Parenting 101 Manual at any of my children’s births; but so far, my "HARDASS" method seems to be working.  I am a hardass because I expect my children to eventually function in the real world.  Mmmhhhmm, okay.

My children are not expected, but required to respect adults and authority figures.  There is absolutely NO room for any flexibility in this demand to treat your elders and your superiors with the utmost proper behavior.  I am a hardass because I insist that my children know precisely their role in the hierarchy of the social web of our human race.  Uh-huh, yup.
Furthermore, my children have roles within our family unit; within our household.  They have chores that they are mandated to perform as a basic, fundamental privilege to being a part of our family unit.  We help each other.  Sure, they have additional chores they can do for the purpose of earning an allowance.  However, all three of my kids understand that in order to function as a family, we have to support each other in the day to day operations of this house.  Chores give my children a sense of responsibility and contribution to the overall well-being of our home.  Chorse also give my kiddos the skills needed to eventually function in the real world on their own!  Shhhh, please do not let that word out on the street.  Whispers, "Hardass!"

I had an episode this week where an unknown 19 year old child publicly disrespected me on a social media forum.  I reported some suspicious activity within my neighborhood and simply asked the local police to check it out.  Not only was this child entirely disrespectful and rude, but the string went on and escalated to the point where additional young adults were crying foul play and victim – because several adults called out the inappropriate behavior of the aforementioned punk .  The impulse reaction of a kid, who decided to comment on a string that had nothing to do with him whatsoever, spurred great emotion.  Several of these young adults, including the first commentator had NO problem posting incriminating and inflammatory verbiage ON the local police department page.  NO fear of any repercussions from the police, from their adult relatives on the same social media forum, and further more actually challenging the adults who stood up to their unacceptable behavior on the thread?

I am bothered. 

My tummy hurt all night.  My head spun with disbelief.  Is this truly the future of our country?  Are our children not being taught the simple basics – manners, respect, and courtesy?  Do they not know how to function in the real world? 

Wow.  I am a hardass.  I will remain a hardass.  However, I will reassure you that my children will be one of the few that will persevere and grow into successful adults because of my hardass lessons at home. 
My children will not cry foul when reprimanded by an authority figure.  My children will apologize for any mistakes they will indeed make.  Further, they will say thank you for the opportunity to learn and grow from their shortcomings. 
Welcome to the real world. 

(And if you ever see my children demonstrating this behavior that I abhor, I demand that YOU take them by the ear and lead them to the corner for an age appropriate "time-out").
<Stepping down from my pedestal, small and short curtsy before scurrying off.>

1 comment:

  1. Completely agree with your post! I hear all the time from acquaintances that they struggle to get their children to eat properly or go to bed on time, it's not hard, just do it. Hey, maybe I'm a hardass too, ha-ha! Call it what you want but we're the adults, we're the parents, it's our job to get the kids in line and teach them how to be respectable people! :) Danica