Last week on WGN news there was this parenting "expert" on shaming me into becoming a better parent. Apprently, I am a big time rule breaker. Shock. AAAAND Awe.
He claimed that it's in poor taste to ask your children (when they do something they shouldn't) what's wrong with them. In my house, this phrase, "Oh my Gawd, what is wrong with you two" frequently is shouted loud enough for the neighbors to hear when the boys are doing their bone headed boy things. At this point it's a rhetorical question, and they look at me all puzzled and actually have answered, "What? We didn't do anything wrong. Barbie's all tied up because the army guys wanted to shoot at her."
To be fair, I'm not asking the question in regards to their lack of educational excellence, such as "Dude. You got a B. What is wrong with you?". I don't think that's cool.
But seriously, when your kid is outside in the middle of July in his snowboots carrying a foam dart loaded weapon pretending he is shooting nazi's and zombies, I feel that as a parent it's pretty much my civic duty to find out what, exactly is wrong with these kids.
Or, when we're sitting at the dinner table and it gets mentioned that the beets in their salads will make them have red poop, and you start hearing, "Well, I've had green poop, and black poop and brown poop" (sounding for all the world like Bubba talking about the damn shrimps) "and now I get to have red poop" you have to really consider that your children have an odd little social depravity component stuck up their sleeves-saving crap stories (literally and figuratively) for when the Parent gets to come in clean up whatever mess has been made and wonder out loud, "What the hell's the matter with that kid?"
My sister often calls me and hears the kids yelling like Wild Animals in the background, and even SHE has asked, "Dude. What the hell's the matter with your kids" and my response is always, "How much time have ya got?"
I don't think its a good idea to berate kids for trying their best and getting subpar results, like I just mentioned with the school reference. Or even in sports. "Hey, you missed a basket. Whats the matter with you?". That shit hurts their self esteem and makes them resentful towards their parents.
But, when Hello Kitty is being run over repeatedly by a tank carrying those weird looking Ben 10 dolls, and you decide to ask, "What's WRONG with you? You don't leave tread marks on your sister's toys!" and mutter under your breath 'dammit, these kids are going to be in juvy some day, I swear',
Well, when you ask, you may get a whole laundry list of answers, giving insight into a psyche you'd never had access to had you decided to be a "good" and "caring" parent and not ask.
So, What is WRONG with you?