Parenting can be a thankless job. Sure we get Mother’s and Father’s Days, and every once in a while they’ll make us some little craft or art project out of the blue, but for the most part parenting is a one-way street. We raise them, care for them, provide for them, and they go on about their lives never questioning the golden parachute that is provided them during their time with us.
Then they move out and we’re lucky if we get a phone call once a week.
Well, I say enough is enough!! Considering all the time, money, and sleepless nights I’ve put in so far, and the countless examples of such that are still to come, I’ve determined that I have a completely reasonable set of expectations for how they can pay me back for all this selfless love and giving once they come of age:
My Perfectly Reasonable Demands:
- They will embark upon careers that will allow me to realize my life-long dream of an existence of leisure. Whether it be renowned scientist, professional athlete, or lucky s.o.b. with a winning lottery ticket, I don’t care. I’m flexible. I just need them to be rich and supporting me in the manner to which I wish to become accustomed.
- Keeping that in mind, I believe I should also have final say on any significant others with whom they may wish to share our riches. Need to make sure we don’t get any gold-diggers siphoning off Daddy’s portion of the fortune. Applicants for the spousal position will be judged on age, body type, and how adorable they think their bae’s old man is.
- While we’re at it, I want to make sure that I don’t become too intrusive into their lives. Once I’ve arranged their marriages, they will definitely need their own space. Therefore I just require a nice, secluded cabin somewhere with a built in-home theatre and a staff of willing help for the wife and I that will see after our every need. The butler’s name will be Waldo. Doesn’t matter if that’s his actual name or not. He’ll make enough to where he won’t have a problem with me calling him Waldo.
- Checking off the necessities list, I will also require transportation. I expect to wake up to this one fine Christmas morning, birthday, or Father’s Day: (The day doesn’t matter, just make sure it’s fully detailed, in pristine condition, and that the atomic battery is to power and turbines are to speed).
- Finally, in respect of the fact that I have given them some space, they should understand that this is a privilege, not a right. I expect them to be at my beck and call at all times, day or night, 365 days a year until I leave this blessed Earth. The monument celebrating the selfless love and unconditional support I’ve always given them should be grandiose, for lack of a better word.
All perfectly reasonable expectations, yes?
Well, maybe not so much.
It always amazes me when I hear stories about how parents basically expect their children to live their entire lives as if it was some form of do-over for said parents themselves. We all have regrets in life. It’s not on our kids to make up for them, and it’s not on them to make true the dreams that we had every opportunity to fulfill ourselves.
Parenting is indeed a one-way street in the sense that it’s on us to provide them what they need to live their own dreams. Don’t get me wrong – I expect a certain level of respect for what their mother and I have done and will do for them as time goes on. However, it’s not fair to expect them to bend over backwards just to make me happy. That’s my job, not theirs. That said, while I’ll do my best to provide them the opportunities to do so, the reverse holds true as well. Mommy and Daddy can’t make their dreams come true for them. That’s on them.
So with that said, here’s what I really want once they come of age:
More Reasonable Expectations:
- That they show some respect not just for what we do for them, but for what others (family, friends, teachers, coaches, etc.) do for them as well.
- That whatever they decide to do, it’s something that fulfills them. Money is important to a point (they will have to support themselves) but finding something that makes them happy to get out of bed in the morning and gives them a sense of pride is even more important.
- Whoever they bring home, regardless of race, gender, religion, etc., treats them with love and respect and appreciates them for who they are, not what they can do for them. It would also be nice if the significant others liked hanging out with the family as well.
- Maybe a phone call every other week or so just to let us know what’s going on with their lives
- That when they have kids of their own, they’ll feel inclined to pass on the same lessons and values we tried to instill in them, and maybe add some new stuff to the mix that we never thought of.
THOSE seems perfectly reasonable. I don’t think we should have any problem there.
That said, if they DO happen to strike it rich, and they WANT to get me that Batmobile, I won’t say no…….