Thursday, February 24, 2011

My children will be just as dysfunctional

So far, I have never met someone who has made a conscious decision to procreate, and invest twenty years of their life, just for the fun of damaging their children beyond repair. Yet that is usually what happens. Even families that seem to be the cream of the crop, the most normal of all, will still have dysfunctional children. No matter how good we are as parents, there will always be issues, years of counseling, baggage and resentment.

As parents, you can’t win. You work … they hate you because you didn’t spend enough time with them. You don’t work … your kids hate being poor. Not enough of this, too much of that. So you may be asking, are children really worth it? Of course they are, because even dysfunctional children can still be a blessing to their parents, and truthfully, when that strong maternal instinct kicks in, there is usually not much you could say that would convince someone that having a cute, adorable, bundle of joy is not worth it.

So what’s the point in trying? You try because deep down you hope that someday your children will realize that you tried to do what was best for them, and they will look at the big picture, and maybe at their grandparents and even great-grandparents, and notice that each of them tried, with all they knew at the time, given their background, to make the best decisions. Perhaps their perspective was wrong, or their thinking was based on inaccurate information, but they still loved you and exerted a great amount of effort to raise you.

One of my mom’s favorite expressions is, “Being a mom is a thankless job.” She usually tells us this soon after we’ve informed her that she has single handedly ruined us forever. She then follows it by the mother’s curse: “I hope that someday your children are just like you.” So the cycle continues indefinitely. Someday I will realize that, no matter how hard I tried not to, I still managed to raise dysfunctional children.

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