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The Wrong Way To Parent: A Poet's Opinion

Updated on June 24, 2016
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An Important Issue With A Simple Explanation

© 2016 Missy Smith

Today, I sat down and wanted to write a poem. I don’t really want to go into a big explanation about what it's about. However, I do want the readers to get a really good understanding as to where I’m coming from on this one, so I will explain a few thoughts I had when I came up with the idea for this poem and how it would flow.

The Loves Of My Life

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My Main Reason For Writing My Opinionated Poem

So, my main job in life is "mother." I actually live and breathe this job; it’s my job; it's my passion, even over writing, it’s the thing I will always take the most pride in. I have sacrificed in ways people don’t know in order to excel and do my job right. I wanted to be the kind of mother whom my kids deserve. Am I perfect at it? No, not at all, but I damn sure try hard.

Now, as you can tell, I really feel parenting is the most important job we have as adults; that is if you have children. If you don’t, you go live your life in whatever way you see fit my good people. But, if you do have children, then you need to get a reality check on how it goes, and that reality check is not learning from "Keeping Up with the Kardashians," or "The Real Housewives of Atlanta," or whatever reality show you watch where values on parenting and life itself are so screwed up that when the show is over, you feel exhausted from all the drama.

This is where I got the idea for this poem. I thought about what way I felt is the correct way to be an adult and parent to my children over the way some others do it. I believe a lot of us do watch these crazy shows and think life is supposed to be like that. No, no, please open your eyes everybody. Life is supposed to be life in your own way, with your values. The thing is, if you are ignoring your responsibilities as a parent, well then, you really have no great values, right?

I see parents these days in this little small town I live in, totally ignoring their duties as parents. A lot of them are leaving their children at home alone not only during daylight hours, but at night on the weekends, so they can go out partying it up. I’m not just talking about single parents here; I’m talking about married couples. Now that is pitiful isn’t it? Some are in bars playing in their bands and such, and don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with playing in a band at almost forty years old, there is, however, something wrong with playing in a band at forty years old, in a bar, at midnight, while your wife is getting drunk watching, and you have left your young teenage daughter home watching the two-year-old. Yes, I know of several here where I live that do these type things.

However, it’s not only that type to contend with. There is also the career driven parents. The ones that work themselves to death to pay a mortgage on a big house, and their car notes on their new Mercedes, more than give much-needed attention to their children. If they have a bit of time left in a day, they are trying to find sleep time. I know these types too.

My Pretty Daughter The Fashionista "KIKI"

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I Never Said I Was A Perfect Parent

Am I to be excluded? No, not really, I mean I don’t do anything that I just described. I am actually with my kids 24/7. That’s no lie. I love them, and I take time to make sure they know it, by telling them. I show them by helping with homework, listening to their day at school, feeding them when they are hungry, making sure they have baths, and are prepared for their next day at school. But,…I have faults too. I think I over compensate when it comes to “things.”

My daughter, for instance, is a straight-A student always has been, and she happens to love clothes, so, guess what? She is the best-dressed girl in school. My son, he is on the AB honor roll every semester, and he likes video games, so, guess what? He has probably every video game a kid could want. Do I do this out of guilt that they have no father figure? Probably. Do I do this to reward them for their efforts at school? Definitely. Do I think I spoil them this way? Of course.


My Cute Son Who Uses That Fact To His Advantage "PARKER"

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However, I give myself a break, because I do not buy things for myself, I do not ever leave my children to fend for themselves. I'm a constant companion for my children. I don’t have much in the way of money, and I don’t own my own home. I drive a 1999 Cadillac, that I will continue to drive until the wheels fall off. I think what I’m saying is, at least I’m here; simple as that. I may have some faults, but I’m here when they need me the most. Your life becomes your children’s life when you make the decision to have them, and I get totally upset when I see how a lot of people parent and live their lives these days.

Without saying anything else, I believe you will understand my thought process now as you read my poem. I would like to know your thoughts on this issue. So, if you would like to vote in the poll, I post, I am always interested in others' views. Please also comment if you would also like to say a few words. Take care, I hope you like this piece.

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What are your thoughts on this hub...

Do you feel it is justified in it's statement, or do you feel it is judgmental?

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Mother to Mother

© 2016 Missy Smith

How do you manage

to stay in the mirror,

your make-up flawless

hair so not frivolous?


I tell you I can only manage

a ponytail most days. My

toes and fingernails remain

half painted.


You have kids, and I do too;

but my question is, do you

notice them as much as you

notice you?


I go without to get what my

kids need, I don’t worry

about shopping for myself

these days.


Some say to me, “your kids

are spoiled.” Well, of course

they are - with their mothers

LOVE.


I’m not saying you don’t do

this too, but Jimmy Choo

shoes and Chanel perfume,

just to walk your kids

into school?


However, you do seem to

have it all, I give you that;

fancy cars, nice home, you

appear to be a real class act.


Your career keeps you gone

from daylight until dark. You

pay nannies to feed and help

your kids with their homework.


Don’t get me twisted on what

I’m saying, I know some have

no choice, but to go out and

make bacon.


Yet, those types are the ones

that still find a way to hurry

home after, just so they can hear

a moment of their children’s laughter.


Your kids, however, go

unnoticed, and lack a real

life; Oh sure, they have a

Playstation and their own

iPhone plus.


It’s just…do you ever

take time to slow down,

stop thinking of working

a moment to smile?


To Smile at your child over

the dinner table, and marvel

at the way he is constantly

growing…


I guess I merely ask because I

don’t understand your

vain way of thinking, your

lifestyle only seems to matter

if others envy.


I think I am amazed at myself

really. I wouldn’t want for

fancy things that take over

my maternal responsibilities.


That way of life smothers the

concept of human nature, and

the simplicity of joy from true

connections.


One day, I hope people will

wake up, because there is

so much more to life than

high heels and big bucks!!

Help Your Children Dance...

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    • Missy Smith profile image
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      Missy Smith 19 months ago from Florida

      Hi Val,

      That was a very nice compliment you just gave me, and I certainly hope I live up to it. I do try my best. I'm happy you enjoy my poetry, and I love that I fill your heart with daisies; they are my favorite flower after all. :) Thank you, and I hope you've had a lovely weekend - your friend Missy.

    • ValKaras profile image

      Vladimir Karas 19 months ago from Canada

      Hello Missy,

      One more time you sprinkle the meadows of my heart with daisies of your poetry - this time about this precious gift of yours to see your life's call in being the true friend to your kids beyond being their unselfish provider of their every need. If we looked at all the suffering and discord of this world, we might reduce it to one single cause - lack of love from their parents, because we can only give of what we have, and most of the people never got it, so they can't pass it on to others.

      But, what makes you so special in all this is that your heart was capable to generate something that it didn't get, out of its own noble drive. That alone , my dear, makes you a hero among parents. - Your friend Val.

    • Missy Smith profile image
      Author

      Missy Smith 20 months ago from Florida

      Thanks, Deb. I think your mother did the right thing. It would be a bad feeling if a child were to start calling their babysitter mommy. I don't think that would make the real mother too happy at all. That mother also did the right thing by realizing her child's needs. If the money is not an issue, it's for the best.

    • Missy Smith profile image
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      Missy Smith 20 months ago from Florida

      Hi ChitrangadaSharan, and thank you for liking this hub and really getting what I was trying to do here, which is bring attention to a growing issue. Thanks again!

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 20 months ago from Stillwater, OK

      Sounds like you're a great mom. I think spoiling the kids is natural, as you want them to have more than you did, as well as enjoy life and not have to work so hard.

      I remember that my mother once babysat a little boy, the son of a doctor and nurse. When the child began calling her mother, was when she decided that she should not do this kind of work any longer. I believe soon after, the nurse decided to be a stay at home mom. She really didn't need to work, having worked in the same office that her husband did. He did get a partner at some point, so I don't really believe it was a money issue.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 20 months ago from New Delhi, India

      This is an excellent and important hub!

      Parenting is the most responsible job and every child deserves the unconditional love and care of the mother.

      You have drawn attention to an issue that is unfortunately happening in today's society.

      It is so important to care for our children in the formation and foundation years of their childhood.

      I have three children, all grown up and well settled in their jobs and life. It gives me immense satisfaction when they acknowledge my sincere efforts about their good and sound upbringing.

      Your children are so cute and they are so fortunate to have a loving and caring mother.

      Thank you for discussing this important issue through your lovely and expressive poem!

    • Missy Smith profile image
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      Missy Smith 20 months ago from Florida

      That was the nicest comment, Faith. Thank You! I do try hard, and as I wrote this hub and as I am writing comments back to everyone, I have this feeling that I am not as good as I seem. I mean, yes, I do everything I stated, and I believe in every way I mention, but I think I'll never feel like I'm the best at mothering. I don't like to even think that I am so good at it. I actually think I learn something new every year. When you think about it, you have to; the children grow and change constantly, and you have to know how to handle those changes whatever they are; personality, attitudes, focus of the future, whatever it may be; it sometimes gets overwhelming. I commend all the parents who take the time to put all their strength into helping their children progress into the adults they will become.

      You are a great mom and grandmother, Faith. It is an obvious aura you have when you talk about your family and children here. It's a pleasure to know you. :)

    • Missy Smith profile image
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      Missy Smith 20 months ago from Florida

      Thanks John, I know you know exactly where my thoughts are on this hub. I cannot fathom leaving my kids to daycare. I'm not downing some that do; lord knows they have to, but I decided to live a way that would allow me to be with my children. Does my way get me judged by others a lot? Yes, but people can only assume; they do not know my story. It has made a big difference in my children's lives. I believe they will turn out to be more stable and caring adults. However, I'm not saying the kids who have to basically raise themselves won't turn out to be good people. I know those situations could go both ways. They could either be a product of their upbringing or lack of, or learn from it; my thing is, why take that chance? Raise your kids' people! Be an extreme example in your children's lives. That's all! :)

      I can understand that you have been busy lately, I remember the farm life well. It definitely doesn't work itself. It is busy as a single mother, believe me, I will sit down to write these hubs in the same room as my children, in case they need me, and they usually do. LOL. I am up and down a million times before I finally finish one, and pray that it turns out alright because I have distractions. It doesn't matter to me though, I love my distractions more than I love writing here, so it's all good. I will be getting much busier now though. As of yesterday, I am a new student at the online career school Penn Foster. It's about that time to rearrange my plans. My daughter will be graduating in three years and going off to college, and when that happens, I need something more to focus on and to make money at, as I have a feeling, I may be moving with her. lol. I'm taking a course in medical transcription in hopes of working for a medical examiner when I get my diploma. :) It's also a very flexible job to have; you can take it anywhere.

      My son is wanting to homeschool next year. He absolutely loathes school. I mean, I understand; I did too for many reasons. He has been a straight-A student throughout up until this year where he has now fallen to the AB bracket. Which is not bad, of course, only I know the reason is he just does not like his study environment. I'm nervous about it, but I am thinking hard about taking on the homeschool job next year as well with him.

      To give you and others who may read this just an example of what I mean by busy mom; I started this comment to you at around 8am. Since then, I have stopped three times to help my daughter. I have stopped to help her study for a test, do her hair, after that, I left home to take her to school. Before I started this comment, I had earlier done all that for my son as they are in different schools with different time frames, I had already been gone and back home once. So, I started at 8 with this comment, and it is 9 now. But, hey, pretty good only an hour's time to get it done.(laughing)

      I appreciate all the support I get here at hubpages, and hope I can continue to please most with my thoughts, opinions, and ideas, along with my poetry of course. Thanks again, John! You're the best!

    • Missy Smith profile image
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      Missy Smith 20 months ago from Florida

      That's Awesome, Clive! Now just embrace the beauty that stands for. It's a beautiful thing to be blessed with more than one culture in my opinion. I tell my kids that all the time.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 20 months ago from southern USA

      Missy, you and your children are beautiful in every way. They are so blessed to have you as their mother. I can relate to being an over indulgent mother now grandmother. You tune in and know exactly what makes them happy. If I see something I know my grands will just love as I know their little personalities, I can't resist. I'd rather spend on them and me do without. I think that is a mother's heart to place her children before her. You are a wonderful and beautiful mother. Peace and blessings

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 20 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Another wonderful hub and such an important subject, Missy. Like Frank I love the introductions to your hubs whip his makes the poetry that follows all the more poignant and meaningful. You are obviously a wonderful mother and your son and daughter both stunning. I can see a little if you in both of them :) I can't remember my parents ever leaving myself, brother or sister with anyone else, or home alone until we were mid teens. My wife and I have four children and never left them in day care or with anyone else. My wife even homeschooled ours for three years. We always made sure we had jobs that allowed one of us to be home with them. I shudder to think anyone bases their parenting skills on reality TV shows such as the Kardashians. Scary! Keep being the great mother (and poet) you are. I badly need to write another hub..life has been so busy for me lately, I admire you and how it must be so much busier as a single mom. Great poem and it makes your point well.

    • clivewilliams profile image

      Clive Williams 20 months ago from Nibiru

      i can relate to them...as i too am a product of both worlds

    • Missy Smith profile image
      Author

      Missy Smith 20 months ago from Florida

      Well, thank you so much Clive. I do appreciate that. Yes, they are gorgeous, aren't they...go figure they have the best of both worlds with no prejudice visions at all. They are a product of a love of both black and white race. Amazing isn't it? ;) Take care and thank you again!

    • clivewilliams profile image

      Clive Williams 20 months ago from Nibiru

      I think you are a good mother. Love, honor, commitment, spoil them with love. You are the strength of many women who have to be both mom and dad in their children's life. By the way, the kids are beautiful.

    • Missy Smith profile image
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      Missy Smith 20 months ago from Florida

      Wow, Frank!!! I think I'm speechless to that compliment. All I can say is, I thank you so much!! And I really want to relay that compliment back to you too. You are, as you know, one of my favorites here. I love your flash fiction stories. I don't know if I should say this, but I'm gonna. LOL... Anyway, what intrigues me about you and makes me a fan is how you can write such gritty, raw, pieces. They truly get deep in the reader's gut, some of your descriptions of these scenes literally have made me ill, and that is because you are a genius writer. Now, this is the part that is so cool about you and doesn't make sense, which makes it even cooler; you are one of the nicest people here on hubpages. You seem deeply humble and take your credit on your brilliance very nonchalantly. So, writing the type of flash fiction you do is really astounding to me. It's very impressive my friend. You are an amazing hubber as well. :)

    • Missy Smith profile image
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      Missy Smith 20 months ago from Florida

      Hey Venkat, I'm happy you see my purpose for writing this hub. It's kind of a touchy subject, because some will see this as a judgment, which is not what I'm trying to do. I'm only bringing focus to how a parent should feel about their child, and how a parent should take all measures in making their child or children a better life with much need attention from them. I'm glad you see that was my subject matter here, and thank you my friend for chiming in. :)

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 20 months ago from Shelton

      You know Missy, I like your intros... you just say how you feel and that is so cool... and then you educate without touching off a vicious confrontation by those who may part disagree.. then you calm them down with your poetry.. amazing hubber you are.. amazing

    • Missy Smith profile image
      Author

      Missy Smith 20 months ago from Florida

      Amazing Deborah Demander! I give you props for being able to maintain eight kids. You mention how great they are, and that is my point I'm trying to make here. You are an involved parent just to recognize this fact about your kids. However, I do agree with you about others, and I'm not here trying to judge how others parent, but I have witnessed and know personally a few parents whom are so neglectful of their children, that I go to bed every single night praying to God that he will protect them and help them along. People like us on the outside can't do anything but that, our hands are tied to do anything to help if we have no family relation to them.

      Trust me, when I say neglecting parents, I'm not speaking of the ones who have to go out and make a living and come home late. They do the best they can, but some so-called parents are self-centered parents who barely say hey to their children during a day because they are too busy living their own lives of only taking care of their own wants and needs. Some are drug parents, who leave their children to fend for themselves while they are out getting high. I'm just saying I have seen it all in this day and time. These are the parents I am trying to bring focus to here.

      You're right everyone does need a measure of grace though, and this is precisely why I pray for a better outcome. This is exactly why I am trying to bring awareness to a problem that is out there in the world these days. Who knows...perhaps by chance somehow, one of these parents that know they are wrong in how they raise their children will see this, perchance it could wake them up and change their outlook. Well, probably not, but I will continue to try. That's all we can really do.

      I'm going to throw out another opinion, and I hope you don't get angry, but my opinion is; you should be bitter towards your parents if they did not take proper care of you, and as you may not show it, and really don't feel that you are resentful, something in you is, and now I bet you will never raise your children like your parents raised you, right?

      I hope I didn't come off too strong with my comment back, Deborah. I wouldn't want to do this as we have just met and do not know each other well. In saying that, I am happy to meet you, and get your views on this issue I have written about here. I do understand your stance as well. Thank You! I hope you and your family have a blessed coming weekend. :)

    • Deborah Demander profile image

      Deborah Demander 20 months ago from First Wyoming, then THE WORLD

      You seem very invested in your children. I have eight kids of my own, plus two step-children, and two-sons in law. They are all great kids, and I am proud of their accomplishments.

      I don't really cast aspersions at how other people parent. I spent many years resentful of my own parents for the way they raised, or didn't raise, me.

      I realized, somewhere along the way, sometime in my late 30's, that everyone is doing the best they know how, given the tools they have and the experiences they have. I don't necessarily agree with parenting decisions that other people make, but I realize that they are trying with what they know.

      Everyone needs a measure of grace, ourselves included. We do our best.

      Best wishes to your family,

      Namaste

    • Venkatachari M profile image

      Venkatachari M 20 months ago from Hyderabad, India

      A good topic for bringing awareness among people. I am always worried about those children whose parents are too much busy with their own tight lifestyles and enjoyments leaving children under the care of others or sometimes completely neglected. I am very happy to see you are a caring mother. My best wishes to you and your children.