Discipline is the worst part of being a parent.
I wonder if kids ever realize that. I’m not sure that I did growing up.
I think that’s where the anger comes from sometimes. When the choices that they make necessitates discipline. And it makes us all feel like crap so we’re angry that we even have to do it.
But we do. We have to do it.
We have to teach our children about consequences. Because plenty of children (and adults) live believing that they don’t have to take responsibility for their own actions. There are news stories today that are a shocking reminder of that. Do they think they are above the law? Do they just not care? Are they just that stupid?
It is my job as a parent to teach my children how to be respectful, law abiding, kind adults. It is my job to make sure that they follow the rules of our family so that they grow up and know that they need to follow the rules of our world.
In the past couple of weeks, both of my children have tested boundaries. Nothing terrible. And nothing that will keep me up at night. (Yet.) But these incidents have reminded me how important those boundaries are. I have been reminded how much kids need those boundaries. Even when they think that they don’t. And I’m so glad we have those boundaries in place – even if they do need to be adjusted every now and then. (Now. They are being adjusted right now.)
I’m so glad that The Dude and I take our job as parents so seriously, even when we have to be “the meanest parents ever” at all times. It completely sucks to enforce all the rules and handle all the discipline, but it is so necessary and so important. Heaven knows we’re not perfect parents, but we have been blessed with two amazing kids. And I pray that the boundaries we set for them help them to be the most amazing adults.
But if you’ll excuse me, I’m gonna need to take a break from imagining them as adults. Because you know I’m not ready for them to be grown up and live far away from me yet. Boundaries and consequences still apply, but let’s take that grown-up children part a little slower.