Free to (not so) Good Home

My twelve year old is being an arse.

My four year old isn’t much better.

They’re both doing my head in.

It’s not just me though. Over on the Club’s Retell Therapy Forums, it seems there is “something in the air” or some other, equally fob-offish shit as there are a number of kids of our members how are being right little shits.

Tired after first term of school, bored from the holidays, et cetera, et cetera and whatever other excuses you can come up with for their range in obnoxious behaviours, it does little to diminish the impact when the behaviour is seemingly relentless.

I know in many cases the “sell them on ebay” ideas has crossed minds (but that is frowned upon, even if it is really old news) and I’ve seen more than the occasional “X aged child free to good home” popping up on Facebook.

(Not, “X aged” obviously, just that I’ve seen the same or similar posts where “X” donates any given age of said child).

It’s crossed my mind to offer mine up free to good home.

Then, when I thought about it, I thought “Fuck it! With that behaviour, they don’t deserve a good home. And I wouldn’t inflict them upon a good home!”

Not that I’d also wish them a horrible, traumatic experience either. I don’t wish that on anyone. Ever.

I also don’t feel that living in a ‘good home’ is doing much more than teaching them to be spoilt little brats, either. I have had my fair share of Kids From Good Homes over for a sleepover, or a play and am appalled by their atrocious manners, their “I’m not eating thats” without even trying it and the “I can do what I like” type behaviours.

Good Homes don’t seem to be doing them much good either.

Thinking about it some more, as I tend to do, it occurred to me just how child-centric this society we live in is. Don’t get me wrong, I am all for the safety, health and well being of children and think some of what has been put into place is brilliant. On the other hand, I feel the extreme safety-consciousness, the over-litigation and subsequent feeling of the need to implement laws and guidelines, the “won’t someone think of the children” culture we have in place is to the detriment of children.

The recent exposure of ANZAC day, news stories and documentaries on this event also reminded me of a few things.

Both sets of my grandparents lived through two wars. My parents were raised by parents who experienced wartime and all that came with it. They lived through the feminist movement, the Vietnam war (although not directly linked to it or experiencing it in any way) and some fairly significant social changes.

Relatively speaking, these experiences were mild compared to the experiences of the parents and grandparents of many of my peers; those who experienced considerable horror and trauma. In fact, some of my peers have experienced some degree of population or social level trauma.

(Not discounting, also, those that have experienced various forms of personal or physical trauma, as do, sadly, too many children in our ‘safe’ and civilised society- I’m not talking about those kids in this post, however. Nor am I discounting them at a deeper level.)

In our white, middle class lives, what is it we have to worry about that takes our minds off the kids? Mummy wars? Really?

Am pretty sure the ANZACS and our defence forces would be highly offended by this. Where our grandparents or great-grandparents hid in attics and scavenged to ensure their children were fed at least once a week, we’re having bitch fights over whether co-sleeping of comfort settling (previously known as ‘controlled crying’)

One Reply to “Free to (not so) Good Home”

  1. I cringe when I hear myself pleading “Have I not done enough for the 2 of you today? can you please stop”, with my 2 girls (10 & 8) to stop arguing, sniping, bitching, moaning and generally being awful to each other and/or me.
    Am I insane to believe that my good behaviour towards them should be paid back by good behaviour from them?
    Am I trying to buy ‘niceness’?
    Shouldn’t they just behave? Does it matter what I have or haven’t done for them?
    I don’t even know where this response is going anymore, too many questions and and guilt for there to be an answer really….

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