Things Parents Say

Things Parents Say

When you’re a parent, you tend to repeat yourself a lot.

I constantly find myself telling my son the same things over and over again in attempts to get him to listen. It’s partially because he’s only three and therefore very stupid, and it’s partially because he’s diabolical.

I’m pretty sure he pretends to be dumber than he is, feigning ignorance just so he can continue to do whatever idiotic, dangerous and destructive thing he’s currently doing and then act all surprised (read: start crying) when he finally realizes we’re mad. The dude’s favorite word is “no!”, so it’s a tad suspect when he suddenly doesn’t understand our stern reprimands and just keeps swinging his plastic baseball bat perilously close to the TV.

Whether it’s his stupidity or his subterfuge, Mom and Buried and I have to constantly repeat the same collection of phrases, which I’ve compiled below. If there were an english-to-parenting dictionary, there’d be a list of “common phrases” at the front, and it would probably look a little like this one.

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Six Ways Having Kids is Like Not Having Kids

Six Ways Having Kids is Like Not Having Kids

Although I’m a firm believer that having kids doesn’t have to change your life entirely, it definitely does change it. Just not that much, not if you don’t want it to. My blog is proof that you can keep your questionable personality and hateful sense of humor when you become a parent; you just have to try!

I didn’t stop being a sarcastic jerk when my son was born, even though I quite sincerely love him with all my blackened heart. And I didn’t stop drinking, or going out to eat with my wife, or watching the TV shows I like and the sports I love. In many ways, being a dad is a lot like not being one.

I made a list of some of them.

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The Universal Parenting Collective

The Universal Parenting Collective

I wasn’t one of those people who used the phrase “we’re pregnant.” For one thing, that phrase diminishes the role the mother plays in childbirth, and considering that the mother’s role encompasses pretty much the whole enchilada, saying “we’re” seemed disingenuous and potentially insulting.

For another, saying it makes me feel like a douchebag.

Aside from including myself as a member of the Miami Dolphins (the 12th man!) or the Boston Red Sox (but I’ve never liked the “Red Sox Nation” thing), I’m not one to use “we” for much of anything. I’m a loner, Dottie. A rebel. But I do find myself invoking some mysterious, all-encompassing “we” when explaining something to my son.

I don’t know where “we” came from. And we don’t like it.

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Children are Mirrors

Children are Mirrors

Children are mirrors.

When I concentrate really hard, I do this thing with my face where my features get scrunched up all tight. My wife blames this expression for my increasing wrinkles and constantly attempts to stop me from doing it (despite the fact that I can still pass for 18!) I see her point, and I’d love to stop creating crow’s feet. But it’s impossible; it’s genetic.

I’ve seen my father make the same face, for the same reasons, and now I’m waiting to see it on Detective Munch’s chubby little visage. He already looks a lot like me, and it’s so gratifying to see him take on some of my characteristics that I’m okay with adding the wrinkle-maker to that collection.

Unfortunately, it has yet to happen. But I have seen him reflect back aspects of myself that are not quite as amusing.

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I Don’t Use Baby Talk

I Don’t Use Baby Talk

Years ago, before I had kids, I was walking across a park with a friend when a little boy of about 4 or 5 wandered by. I looked at him and said, “Hello, how are you?”

Confused by my formality, the kid scrunched his face and quickly scampered away. I felt like a narc.

My friend laughed at my bizarre attempt to engage the toddler, noting that I clearly had no idea how to talk to children. He was right. Now that I have a child of my own, I know a little better.

But my approach hasn’t necessarily changed. I don’t use baby talk. Read more about I Don’t Use Baby Talk