Having kids is a bit of a crap-shoot. Some people are born parents, others struggle significantly -- and a few (let's face it) can barely look after themselves, let alone another human being. What I think is one of the biggest gambles of becoming a new father, however, is not knowing how becoming a mother is going to affect your partner. It's funny because, the lyrics of Kenny Rogers' famous song, The Gambler, really apply here.
There we sat, changing their outfits, brushing their "hair," with me doing my best falsetto voice, as we all got ready for the prom. My daughter, Kirsten, was giggling at me not so much for the voices, but for the fact she had put a lovely purple bow in my hair that matched Malibu Barbie's hair ribbon. We were having a blast!
If you're a parent, you know that your little darlings may not always be telling you the absolute truth. Yes, it's hard to believe, but kids lie. A lot. Just because you've been lied to by your child doesn't mean that it has to continue. It's you against them when it comes to the truth. You're their parent, so you should win.
Why is it always women who have to explain their choice not to have children? Are men prodded with the same line of questioning and expected to explain this choice like women are, or is it perfectly natural for men to feel unsure about fatherhood? As a newlywed (like, really newly wed) I find it odd that most people direct that question at me. As if to say it's solely up to me or my husband has no say in the matter? Going forward, I'm going to suggest that all inquiries involving the utility of my uterus go directly to my husband. I'm tired of crafting clever responses.
We've all heard them. Those annoying phrases that our parents said to us growing up and now that we're parents ourselves, we've decided to inflict them our own kids. The reality is that the true meanings behind these messages that parents tell their kids are often not as straightforward as they appear to be. Following are the top 10 phrases that parents use on their kids, and what they really mean.
Buy your kids only the toys that you were deprived of as a child. For me, that was Star Wars. My childhood lightsaber was a cardboard wrapping paper tube. Two whacks and it went flaccid. My kids on the other hand have every lightsaber imaginable, from the telescopic cheapies, to official lightsaber replicas with authentic LucasFilm® sound effects. Sure they cry when I wallop them too hard, but painful is the path of the Jedi.
My wife Sarah's ovaries joined our Saturday morning lattés when she hit 30. Lacking in vocabulary, but clear in message, they cried one word, "BABY!" I took notice and wondered if women were naturally more ready to be parents than their male partners, or did they just feel more pressure because of the incessant tick-tock of their biological clock?