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It’s My Turn to Mess This Up

Growing up in a small town (250 people—no, you haven’t heard of it) was easy. You know what to expect when everyone knows you. And, your parents. And, your grandparents. And, well, your whole family. In my tiny town, we all grew up similarly. Baseball at the park in the summer, trips to the drive in movie theater, lots of family dinners—we had a shared value system.

My parents provided me with every possible opportunity. I had a very Ward and June Cleaver kind of upbringing. Until I left for college. This is when parenting in my family changed. My parents both took jobs that required them to be away from home base. My brother, a freshman in high school at the time, was left to live with my grandmother.

This was not entirely strange as she lived in the house our whole lives and we were used to seeing her, but still, a little strange. Over time, my mother came home less and less frequently, leaving LB on his own. I will neither condone or judge her decision—at this point, it is just fact.

However, recently this mother of mine, who has made herself increasingly less present in my life, decided to send me an email to tell me how I am parenting all wrong. I feed the princess wrong. I take care of homework wrong. I keep house all wrong. And, I date all wrong.

I am usually very good about letting her voice her opinion, and then go on about doing things the way I choose to do them. After all, she raised me to make good decisions. But, this time she crossed a line. Now, I have to say to the woman that raised me “It’s none of your business”. I simply need her to understand that she had her chance to raise children, now it is my turn to make mistakes all my own. (See Mom Fail Friday—I never have a shortage of these moments.)

I’m not exactly ready to disown my mother, however, I am angry enough to not answer that email—EVER. I’m not the first to have issues like this, I am sure, but isn’t it usually with the in-laws?

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Article by FairyTaleMom

My name is Mom. I live in Fairy Tale Land with a Pirate, a Fairy and the Princess. My job duties include: head cook, Chief Executive of Laundry Operations, Vacuum Maintenance Engineer, Chief of Picking up Random objects and Primary Sherpa. I spend a great deal of time carrying sparkly, sequined, glitter covered tutus and miscellaneous dance shoes for the Princess. I long for moments of quiet and a mani/pedi. Trying to strike a balance between being a grown up and being a good mom. FairyTaleMom tagged this post with: Read 52 articles by

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2 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Amanda J Tot says:

    So sorry about this! It sucks! There’s just no other way to put it! I love when people who have made plenty of their own mistakes make it their business to tell me what I am doing wrong. I get that she is trying to help (in her own weird way) but what makes her an expert on the subject? Don’t recall her being around all that much even before you left for college…

  2. fairytalemom says:

    Amanda, I have a hard time remembering when, exactly, she stopped coming home regularly. I’m glad you are able to validate that memory for me (and the internets for those non-believers).

    I just keep reminding myself that for all of the wonderful memories she built in my early youth – and it was a really good childhood – she still LEFT at some point. My goal is to make sure that I find a balance that works for me and the princess. My mistakes, and I make plenty, will never be that I evacuate after years of resenting my situation.

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