I was watching one of those culturally profound reality shows the other day. You know, the ones that enrich our understanding of today’s culture, and give us a more relevant perspective of the socioeconomic implications in today’s modern lifestyle. Yeah. That’s the only reason I watch those shows. It’s more like research. Because, I’m more like a scientist. And, more like a liar.
Anyway, there was one man on this show who was some kind of surgeon. His wife was throwing a giant birthday bash for their little daughter. I would guess the daughter was 7 or 8 years old. All the little girls were dressed up as princesses. So were their moms. It’s true. That happened.
If I had a nickel for every time my friends and I dressed up as princesses – just an excellent way to spend an evening. One of the moms on the reality show even came to the party in a horse and carriage. Definitely doing that at the next girls’ night out. Too bad the moms were all screaming at each other by the end of the night. I never saw that coming.
The Surgeon/Dad asked for the girls’ attention. He wanted to make an important speech. He said something to his young female audience about how his family wanted these girls to dress up like princesses on this special day so that the girls could remember that they deserved to be treated like princesses. He told them they should ALWAYS remember that they DESERVED to be treated like princesses. He said no matter how old they got, they should expect to be treated Like. A. Princess.
Do you like that message? I can see where a person might. I didn’t. I thought this Dad/Surgeon, and all the adults in that show could use some parenting help. This Dad’s message made me think that adults like him are doing young girls wrong.
Have you hung out lately with any kids who feel entitled? Yeah. They’re not very fun. Well, I guess they can be fun, as long as they’re getting what they want, and everything is going their way.
Parenting 101: How to make a bad person: Tell them they deserve to be treated like royalty.
I was talking to my sons about this show on our long drive to Colorado. I could tell they didn’t totally understand why it bugged me so much. So, I switched it up. I said, “What if I told you boys that no matter what, you should be treated like a King. You deserved to be treated like a King. You should find a spouse who will TREAT you like a King.”
Then they understood. They laughed pretty hard. The thought of what I had just described made them uncomfortable. I hope that if my boys marry some day, that they would expect their spouse to treat them a little less like a King; a little more like a friend. I was relieved my sons could see the absurdity.
Why would I tell my children that they are superior to others? Why would I tell them to dwell on their superiority? Why would I tell them to find someone who will recognize their superiority, and treat them accordingly? Why would I set them up for failure like that?
My advice to my kids is to stop thinking about how people treat you. Don’t focus on that. Focus more on how you’re treating other people. Treat others kindly, and with respect. You’ll see that people will usually return the favor.
Don’t even get me started on this word “deserve”. I really hope my kids would say that the word “deserve” is rarely spoken in our home. I feel like they would say that. I don’t like that word. I can’t picture that word coming out of Scott’s mouth either, unless it was part of a joke. Not even Royalty deserves to be treated like Royalty.
People who walk around thinking about what they “deserve” are people who spend less time being happy. What do we really deserve anyway? Do babies “deserve” to be born into poverty, and countries that are ravaged by war? They don’t, but there they are. We didn’t do anything to deserve our place and time in history either. But, here we are. Let’s always be grateful. A grateful kid is a happy kid.
Did you hear that the famous singer Sting announced he won’t be passing his fortune on to his six kids? You know why? Because he loves his kids. Sting wants his kids to find their own passion. He wants them to have to work hard to achieve their goals. He wants all that, because he wants his children to have good and meaningful lives. I bet he never once told his children that they are like royalty, and they deserved to be treated as such. He’s too smart to say that.
So that’s my rant on that subject. Sorry if I got a little carried away. I’ll stop now.
Do you like Public Radio? I do. I was an intern for a Public Radio station in Iowa when I was in college. I’ve been a fan ever since. I have always had this inner nerd thing happening in my life. I like my inner nerd. She makes me think. It’s my inner nerd that truly loves Public Radio. But, sometimes those Public Radio announcers are too nerdy even for me.
This morning the announcer was covering a book list. I like their book lists. I try to write down as many of the titles as I can. This morning’s discussion was between the announcer and the person who conducted the book review.
The announcer was asking the reviewer about the book. The reviewer said, “This book is so good. It is based on realism (big pause. Wait for the punch line. Wait for it. Wait… for…it). Elastic realism.”
Then the announcer laughs so hard, he can hardly get control of himself. The reviewer giggles too. You get it, right? Elastic realism? That’s so flippin’ hilarious, my stomach still hurts from laughing.
No. That is not funny. That’s so unfunny. I think those people should be punished for laughing so hard at something so unfunny. And that’s why sometimes public radio is too nerdy even for me.