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baby boomer parents


Wrong versus Right for baby boomer parents.

The old days, the ‘good old days’, had a few rules.

One of the first rules baby boomers learned at home was My Way or the Highway.

This rule usually came up when young boomer felt cheated and wanted to straighten a few things out.

And it usually pitted young boomer against dear old dad, who wasn’t a fan of being corrected.

Dear old dad wasn’t so dear when you challenged authority, his or anyone else.

If you didn’t like the haircut he gave you, he might just put the clippers on edge and go down to skin.

You wise up and go to the barber. A professional hair stylist left little to discuss, until you explain it to dear old dad and he drives you back to the barber and tells them to shave your smirky head bald.

Parents took a harder line and we’re all the better?

Then why haven’t baby boomer parents applied the same rules?

Portland boomers ought to be the most liberal parents in America if you believe the national press.

Come to Oregon. Portland is a joy. The confluence of the Columbia and Willamette Rivers is the most magical place on earth.

You believe that?

Baby boomers learned the hard way between what is said and what is expected.

Having a new baby was a magical addition to the family tree. Oh, so special.

Then you learn that your bundle of special is the same as everyone’s bundle of special. That’s how it is, and how it should be.

That’s how it should be until your parents get divorced and suddenly you’ve got baby competition.

Yes, I said divorce. When your parents get divorced, say goodbye to your last normal Christmas, Thanksgiving, and birthday.

Scheduling replaces the holiday joys of bringing the family together a few times a year.

The time crunch kicks in to avoid awkward meetings between people who don’t like each other.

It’s unavoidable.

Who doesn’t like who turns into a game of one up. These people are worse than those people because? Just because.

Imagine hearing about birth control growing up. Your mom and dad said, “Free love is not free. And who’s taking care of hippie kids? That’s not free. If you want some free love and end up with a free love kid you don’t know is yours or not, don’t bring it home.”

That’s love with a big old L.

You’ve seen the picture with the belt, the board, and the spatula? The idea is baby boomer parents used those implements to whip butts when called for.

And we’re all good with it, just not good enough to admit we whip our own kids.

Instead we helicopter them, send them to time out, and listen to our moms and dads laugh.

You heard about the NFL’s Adrian Peterson whipping his kid? Whipped him real good.

How many parents celebrated a four year old getting what he had coming to him? Did he really have it coming to him, or was it part of a whipping habit?

We’ll be judged for the way we raised kids, Portland boomers, Oregon boomers, all American boomers, and like parents before us we’ll be found lacking by older generations.

When you hear others your age complaining about ‘kids these days’ keep this in mind:

They don’t have kids and have never spent one uncomfortable moment being the only person a kid cares about, or one of two people they care about.

They do have kids and have been counting the days down to the time they can legally disown them.

They married into kids and have no idea what to do, so they complain like the bitches they are when self control feels like an all day struggle.

One mom explained why she didn’t beat her kids with, “If I started beating my kids, how would I know when to stop? I don’t know that answer, so I use what I do know.”

So the question is, What do you know? And what will you do with it?

About David Gillaspie
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