Tuesday, April 28, 2009
How to Give The King a Heart Attack
If I ever wanted to do away with The King and live a life of luxury and leisure off his life insurance, all I'd have to do is tell him that his 12 year old daughter is "going out" with a boy.
She's not at this moment, but from his reaction last night when I told him that she was on the phone with the boy she likes I'm convinced that all that stands between myself and all that money is concrete evidence that our daughter is a normal, hormone driven Tween.
Would he rather she not be normal? Does he want her to be the that girl, the one who stands on the sidelines, afraid to talk to anyone and feeling like she's inconspicuous and invisible because no one notices her. The King obviously doesn't get what it feels like to be a girl and hope that someone, anyone finds you attractive. It doesn't mean that you have to like them back, but it's a critical step in the development of a teen's self-esteem.
He still sees her as the 4 year old with bouncy curls, who wore pink sundresses and gave concerts of Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star and Madonna's Beautiful Stranger (weird pick, I know, but she loved it when we watched Austin Powers). It's very heartwarming and endearing that he still thinks of her that way, but also dangerous to their relationship as she wants to be given more responsibilities and freedoms and he wants to keep her in pigtails and bobby socks.
So we come to the internal conflict that I battle over every time I have to play referee between the King and TQ. I really, truly believe that parents have to support and present a unified front when dealing with their children. However, I think the King's overreacting- in his mind talking to a boy= holding hands= kissing= sneaking out at night= pregnant teenager. What he is forgetting is that this is our daughter, the girls who is unfailingly responsible and honest. This is the child who came to me in the middle of the night a few weeks ago, sobbing that she was "the worst person on earth" because she had read Breaking Dawn behind my back when I had expressly forbidden it until she was at least 14. I never would have known had she not confessed, and she took her punishment of being banned from all things Stephenie Meyer/Twilight for the time being without any complaint. What is perhaps more impressive is that she admitted to me that she had bad feelings when she was reading it, and she knew that they came not just from disobedience but from reading material that was not appropriate for her age and maturity. This child is amazing.
I'm inclined to keep sticking up for her on the "talking to boys on the phone" issue. Maybe it's my own insecurities from that age rearing their ugly head, but I want her to know that I trust her to make good decisions. Besides, she's probably a little too much like me and I think it behooves her to learn how to flirt now rather than later when her "rabid feminist" gene kicks in and boys everywhere will run for their life.