Now as many folks who are likely to stumble across this post know, there is a video recently that went viral. It showcases a father who discovers a less the flattering letter his daughter shared on Facebook and then out of frustration and anger he takes out a gun and shoots the daughter lap top. After negating her claims and talking crap about her. Lots of folks chimed in to crown him as a rock star parent.

 I am so very grateful that I have folks in my tribe who have responded with an alternate way of a parent.

Quite possible my favorite quote,  “Your kids have choices in life, about what they do and how they think and how they feel about you and whether or not they will want you in their lives. Act accordingly. Hug. Laugh. Support. LISTEN. Be humble. Ask questions. Seek first to understand, then to be understood. And never, ever, assume that you are better, smarter, righter, or more entitled just because you are their parent.” ~ Jeff Sabo

A few others I admire also helped me remember the world is full of just as much good as it is misdirected unconnectedness.  Freeplay life wrote this, Friends Don’t Let Friends Parent Batshit Crazy. Jen of the Path Less Taken had THIS to say. Heather really made my eyes leak with this one, How Not To Be a Father and a plea from Serendipitymamma, Do Better Please.

Reading the above blog posts and quotes reminded me that I had done a stellar job of surrounding myself with the sorts of parents who go about being respectfully in the world with the children, just like I strive to. And for a while there I was sure I would avoid writing a blog post on this matter. They had it covered. I couldn’t say it any better. The balance of batshit crazy parenting was being countered nicely with connected, love you like crazy, respect you parenting.

The reality though,  I really can’t be off the hook cause other folks have it covered. Like my last post, More on the Why of the Ass Post, if I want the world to be different I can’t just sit around hoping for it. Or passing the buck to well doing others. I have to get off my ass (pardon the pun) and do something about it. So here I am adding my voice to the chorus of connected parents in saying, it just is not okay to pull power over your kids.

It’s not okay to use force, bullying, anger, threats, violence in the name of raising your kids up right. Enough said.

I adore children. My own, other peoples, strangers kids .. yep adore them. And if the truth were to be known a lot of the time I like them better then the adults who are traveling along side them. There are a large number of exception to this rule cause like I said above I have surrounded myself with tons of super cool people, adult and child alike. But when I am out in the bigger world, the grocery store, the local playground etc. I would much rather engage in a conversation with those free enough to play then those standing around making each other feel better about the disrespect they constantly toss at their children.

Because I can see these kids and all the wonder they are posed to share in the world, I add my voice to this conversation. Because I want every child to have the possibility of being respected without earning it, I add my voice to this conversation. Because I want the internet to be peppered with just as many articles celebrating the brilliance of childhood, I add my voice to this conversation. Because I want articles filled with loving kindness to be available to parents frustrated and looking for another way, I add my voice to this conversation. Because I believe compassion, love and connectedness are the beginnings of a more peaceful world, I add my voice to this conversation. Because I can’t make a different by silently believing children are worth more then shot up lap tops and controlling parents, I add my voice to this conversation.

To close out, here’s a little something a wrote a while back about the Unconditional in parenting.


As we are looking to build our tribe of local friendships and connection we are spending more time around unfamiliar folks and witnessing a wide array of parenting preferences. Lately, the one thing that has really slapped me up side the head, is the true burden some folks feel in taking on this big job of parenting.
This idea got me to wondering, I mean for the vast majority of folks they did choose to invite this human being in to the world. And again, for a large percentage it was cause they were crazy in love with their partner and wanted to make another human being out of that love. And from what I know for certain about babies they arrive in this world as nothing sort of a pure unconditional love. From day one, that is simply what they have to offer up, pure unaltered not tampered with or damaged unconditional love.  A rather powerful drug that makes parents fall head over heels in love.
So if we have these people who are in love and they make this person that is pure love, where is the point that the child becomes this manipulative little being who is out to make their parents life challenging? Where is the turning point that the child stops being unconditional love and becomes devious and in need of disciplining or reshaping?
I imagine it could be at the point when they start to push a parents buttons and in doing so encourage this parent to turn inward and have a look at what is going on for them. Cause really, for a child to be spoiled wouldn’t that mean at some point they were rotten? And if they were rotten wouldn’t that mean at some point the scales began to tip from good to bad? In order for that tipping moment to emerge from a being that was pure unconditional love when it arrived one would have to argue it had something to do with the environment the unconditional love was being nurtured in. And if this is truly the case we present, how in the name of any powerful being can that be the fault or the responsibility of the child. They were the one who was invited in to this world after all and showed up wrapped in unconditional love.
I vividly remember a moment in my life when an subtle internal shift occurred that opened an even deeper well of unconditional love with in me for my children. It was late in the night and my 2 year old had woken me again to nurse (for the first three years of his life this happened nearly every 2 hours) I turned to him with frustration. I heard a stream of stories and advice pouring in to my mind about how he was manipulating me, I should have trained him out of this by now etc. You know what I saw in return, a smile. A smile that radiated that pure untainted love he had for me. I recognized in that moment that that was all he ever had to offer me. It was at the heart of our every interaction. How in the world could I meet that with anything but the same pure and free love.
I try my best to have a huge amount of compassion for the chest puffed father asserting his power over his children in the park, in a manner that belittles, shames and embarrasses them. I suspect he is responding to the world around him that encourages this sort of dominance as evidence that he is doing a “good job” as a parent. And I offer a smile to the frazzled mother in the grocery store who is threatening her children  in a public manner cause I suspect she has bought in to the idea that a good parent keeps their children quiet in order to not disturb those around her, who by the way don’t have an ounce of unconditional love for her.
I still don’t think it’s okay though.
I wonder about a world that accepts and makes it okay, to take unconditional love, manipulate it or train it or discipline it and then turn around and blame the results of that on the person who arrived invited offering nothing but that unconditional love.