Parenting Fail #734
As a parent, it is my duty to teach my offspring about character. In my fantasy-filled world, I ideally pass along my best qualities to them, while my pitfalls are blissfully ignored. In essence, my children will be kind, witty, conscientious, and healthy. I teach them to be open minded people who accept responsibilities for their actions. In reality, I'm raising a couple of adorable smart alecks who think that farts are hilarious and ketchup is the largest category of the food pyramid. My desire for my children to possess a high level of moral and ethical qualities is far overshadowed by the evil solitude of the time-out corner.
My kids are mostly loving brothers... except when they are busy throwing each other under the bus. We apparently live on a busy bus route. So many buses, so few brothers to throw under them.
Sometimes I'm in a different room than my children. In that other room, I do exciting things like laundry. There no toys in the laundry closet, so the children don't follow me there. "Things" happen when I'm not in the room. I'll often walk around the corner to discover an escalated argument over a tractor, tears or a red mark on a cheek. Sometimes I burst into a fog of freshly expelled odoriferous vapors. When I ask, "What happened?" or "Who did this?" both of my boys rat out the other one in a series of finger pointing and "It was him!"
Over and over again I explain the importance of telling the truth, no matter if it makes a person look bad. Over and over again I tell them that they will get into less trouble if they are always honest.
Over and over again my children cast the blame onto the other.
In their book, responsibility is for suckas.
The other night I was multitasking as the bathtub warden and the cleaning lady. While the boys splashed in the tub, I scrubbed every surface of the toilet and the floor around the throne, yet the urine stench stubbornly remained. I scrunched up my face, squinted my eyes and looked harder. That is when I noticed the wall. Just to the right of the toilet toward the corner, I saw bubbled, slightly peeling paint. As if that wasn't enough of a clue, I also detected a faint yellowish tinge in a suspicious drippy pattern. One swipe of my cleaning rag confirmed my fear. Yes. It was pee. On the wall. And there was a lot of it.
I asked my cherubic, flaxen haired angels, "Has someone in this room been peeing on the wall?"
They answered in their typical fashion, by calling out the other's name, "It was CWLIUKLERT!" (that is the sound of their names being yelled simultaneously)
When I patiently asked again, they had gotten their answers together. They both firmly said, "IT WAS DAD!"