Messy Rooms and Exasperated Parents
I have two children. Now young adults.
These two children haven’t always had perfect management over their personal environments.
Don’t mistake me: they are otherwise talented, beautiful, competent, affectionate, kind, loyal, care for their planet, nurture nature, love animals….
(A stress bubble to be featured in an upcoming blog: Obnoxious Braggart Parents Who Actually Believe That Their Children Are Perfect.)
Do you live with young people?
Most young people aren’t obsessively, er, clean. A young person who is exceedingly tidy might be in need of a tiny bit of counselling, at the very least receive a gentle lecture about “Perils of the Perfectionistic Personality.’ ‘Excessive cleanliness in a teenager’ could be a red flag, as it is the antithesis of what a moody, brooding, whining, messy, rebellious teenager (or young adult) is supposed to be.
The Decimated Bedroom has been a major stress bubble for me for a long time. I didn’t initially acknowledge it as a stress bubble. After all, with the ‘right’ parenting, I could change behaviours. A bribe here, a bit of motivation there, a lecture over there, yep, I could alter two separate, unique human beings and coerce them into perfecting their personal spaces to suit my standards.
And how I tried.
Some children are tidy. Some are slobs. Some, of a mix of everything. Some change their ways.
I wish I had accepted this reality a long time ago.
My children have now grown into young adults (as children invariably do.) I now realize, after many years of fruitless self-battle that I always had two choices about their messes: to ‘accept’ them with ‘grace’ (ie gritted teeth, eyes huge, face red, mouth pressed into a line the width of dental floss.)
Or, fight reality, spin my perfectionistic and judgmental wheels into the ground, bitch, complain, beg, plead, bargain…go nowhere, real fast.
One route is healthier than the other, but it’s surely not easier. If you’re a parent, which route do you choose?
Onto my last confession, next blog.