Saturday, January 18, 2014
Seriously, seriously annoyed.
As many of you know one of my new healthy habits I adopted a while back was to read articles and blogs that inspired healthy living. I have some on my tool bar and I check and read them every morning before I even get out of bed. On one of those sites, I read an article....
And for me, it was one of those condescending parenting articles. If you only do this, then your child will do that. Voila! But as a parent, I have quickly learned that despite your best intentions, it just might not play out that way. I cringed at the tone of the article. Not because it was a horrible article. I think it's great that the author and his wife lead a healthy lifestyle and role model that to their children, who now eat salad willingly. Bravo. You hit it out of the ball park. But to state that it is "easy" is just not a universal truth. And it does then imply that you aren't trying hard enough or being a good role model if you happen to have one of those picky eaters, or a kid resistant to change. That's where you step into the parent trap. You do not know better then everyone else. And though food may not be your issue, I assure you that the day will come when you realize that despite your best intentions and efforts, your little cherub is a person and ultimately will do whatever he wants (or doesn't want) to do. You don't really know how that will play out.
But I also think the article is a bit dangerous because many people (myself included) have trouble with negative thinking. I will blame myself before you blame me, trust me on that. I will tell myself a million times it's something I'm not doing right. So the article did trigger me. Absolutely. And I have to check myself on why something triggers me. But the response I got about the article being a bit condescending was, well....condescending. Some people said I was defensive (it's possible) but what annoyed me the most were the comments saying, "Finally someone finally gets it!" Like he was Ghandi for saying if you like veggies your kids will like them to! I was relieved to read other comments from people who also feel like it's not that simple all the time. I was starting to think I was living in the twilight zone where everyone's kids eat all veggies all the time but mine. (See? A touch of defensiveness).
I want to offer an extension to the article and say that if you have made healthy changes in your life and that hasn't trickled down to other members of your family, that's ok. All you can really do is be a good role model and keep trying. Your kids, your spouse, your extended family members are all individual people. They may or may not pick up on your changing habits. Don't feel bad about that or responsible for it. Or if you are responsible for it (I absolutely did not eat healthy while Aid, in particular, was in utero) then all you can do is try to help change any negative habits that you helped instill. Don't beat yourself up for it. Don't feel less then if you have the picky eater. If I am being brutally honest with myself, I go in waves where I try harder at times then at other times. Do I just give in and make them mac and cheese sometimes because I cannot handle one more argument? Absolutely! Because it's not "that" easy. We're all doing the best that we can to not only be healthy, but to raise healthy kids. Keep trying. I'm going to keep trying.
For some of us, none of this is easy. And it's ok to admit that.
Posted by Aiden and Grant's Mommy at 7:32 AM