Tuesday, January 10, 2012


I have an innocent until proven guilty approach to parenting. I let my daughter play with things until she does something wrong and then I get onto her for it, rather than the other way around, getting on to her before.

Often I'll hear people say things to her like, "Okay, you can play with the pen, but don't poke it in your eye," or "Here's some peas, but don't put them in your nose!" And my daughter is looking at them like, "What the hell are you talking about?" Then she'll examine the situation like "Pea in my nose? I never thought of that!" Ah, the power of suggestion.

It's overwhelming. How can I as one person end the cycle of crazy shit our great-grandparents said to kids that continues to get passed down through the generations?

Then I realized that comments like this are bizarre at any age. Can you imagine borrowing a pen from a coworker and him saying, "Don't poke your eye out!" Or eating at a restaurant and the waitress saying, "Here you go, the plate is hot and don't put any food in your ears. Enjoy!" Or checking out in the grocery line and hearing, "Here's your receipt, don't eat it."

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