Tag Archives: parenting advice

“Jaw With John” – Mom’s Crying Over Free Babysitting, What???

We live down the street from my boyfriend’s mother. Our 3-year-old daughter spends a few hours there while I’m at work and her dad is running errands. My daughter loves her grandparents, so I don’t mind her spending time with them.

The problem I have is, my boyfriend’s mother repeats everything I say to my daughter right after I say it when I ask her to do something! It drives me crazy. My boyfriend tells me to say something to her, but I have no idea what to say. Please help. — ECHOED IN ALASKA

Dear Echoed,

This sounds like crocodile tears.

You’re complaining about your grandmother providing FREE babysitting…c’mon bruh! She is clearly echoing your sentiments (BECAUSE SHE AGREES WITH YOU!) and trying to teach your daughter what is appropriate behavior. She’s also three…so she’s talking to a 3-year-old…keep that in mind too.

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“Jaw With John” – 9-Year-Old Cannot Be Reasoned With When It Comes To Good Habits

My 9-year-old daughter has several friends whom we love and who are good buddies for her. However, the rules in their homes are different from those at ours. One friend in particular, “Sarah,” eats a lot of junk food and watches more TV than we allow. When my daughter asks why she can’t have chips and ice cream after school, or why we watch movies only on weekends, I remind her that good food and exercise make her healthy, and with less TV she does better in school.

I’m not interested in critiquing Sarah or her family, who are lovely people we really like. However, I do want to make the connection between unhealthy lifestyle choices and possible consequences because this is a subject we’ll keep revisiting as my daughter grows up.

I have been trying to say things like, “Everyone makes their own decisions. This is why we do it this way,” but at 9, my daughter sees things as pretty black or white. If our way is right, then their way must be wrong. I’m totally failing at subtlety. Is there a better approach that I could take to talking about this without invoking comparisons? — LIFESTYLE CHOICES IN SOUTH DAKOTA

Dear Lifestyle Choices,

There is no reasoning with a 9-year-old! Doi!

Because some [children] aren’t looking for anything logical, like money. They can’t be bought, bullied, reasoned, or negotiated with. Some [children] just want to watch the world burn.” OK, not really, but I just like that quote from¬†The Dark Knight¬†and felt like playing around with it for this response.

I remember growing up I had to go across the street to my friend Thomas’ house to play PlayStation or Virtual Boy (I’m dating myself here, whatever). I had asked for a gaming system for years and years but was repeatedly denied because my parents wanted me to focus on school and playing with friends and being outside and blah blah blah. (I did have a Game Boy, by the way, so that kept me occupied)

The lesson here is that every parent parents their child’s behavior and actions differently. You need to be firm with your daughter and tell her why you are making the choices you are. Because, let’s face it, you are looking out for her best interests so that, in the long run, she can be healthy and develop good habits. You are her parent, not her friend, tell her what’s what and stick to your guns!

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“Jaw With John” – Teen Is Never Fully Dressed, But Still Has A Smile

I am the father of a 19-year-old daughter. She is a great kid, smart, stays out of trouble and has lots of friends. The problem is that she likes to run around the house in her underwear.

I will come home from work and she will be sitting in front of the TV with just a T-shirt and underwear on or come out of the shower with only a towel on her head. She doesn’t do this when we have houseguests. I have asked her to put more clothes on, but she just tells me not to be so stuffy. My wife thinks this is just a passing phase.

What do you think? — Confused Father

Dear Confused:

This is weird. Considering that you are her father and she’s a legal adult walking around half naked or full on naked that’s very weird and unnerving. You’ve got to fight fire with fire here Dad. I wouldn’t walk around naked because no sane child wants to see their parent naked and no sane parent wants to see their child naked. This isn’t Taboo. Parade around in your boxers and shove it right in her face. If she asks you to put on some clothes you can tell her that’s how you feel when she does it. If she says nothing…welp, you’ve got a bigger problem.

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“Jaw With John” – Sounds Like Middle Child Syndrome To Me

When do parents quit paying for their children? We live frugally and put all three of our children through expensive schools so they could graduate debt-free. My son is 33 and getting married for the first time. His fiancee was married before.

They decided to get married at an expensive all-inclusive resort. Our son thinks we should pay for his rehearsal dinner for all 35 wedding guests. He says if we don’t do this, it won’t be fair to him.

We paid for the rehearsal dinner for my eldest son 10 years ago. We gave my daughter $5,000 for her wedding. We both had well-paying jobs at the time. We also spent $18,000 for attorneys for our eldest son’s divorce (he risked losing custody of his kids).

We are both retired now and living off Social Security and savings. My son has a well-paying job and his fiancee is interviewing for jobs. When will this stop? — Strapped Parents

Dear Strapped:

“When will this stop?” When you’re dead.

As far as the rehearsal dinner goes, I feel that he’s old enough – and you said he has a “well-paying job” – that he can fit the bill for the dinner. He’s already put the event at an expensive resort so why must you now pay. Isn’t the Father of the Bride supposed to pay for these things? Or was Steve Martin leading me on for all these years? I don’t know wedding protocol so this goes beyond my expertise, but I do know when someone is being taken advantage of, and that someone is you and your husband.

He knows you’re retired and on limited funds and yet still asks for moolah. Is he a middle child? This sounds very middle childish to me. He’s the last one married, wants the same that his brother and sister had, wants to make up for it by getting what he wants, blah blah blah.

Tell your son how you feel and maybe you guys can compromise. If not, order pizza or something and see how it goes.

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“Jaw With John” – Daddy Needs To Take A Step Back

My husband and I have been married for six years. We have a 3-year-old daughter. We both work full time.

Lately I have been feeling like we never make time for mommy and daddy time. I would love a date night, but my husband is always making me feel bad when I ask someone to watch our daughter and when we do go out he says how much he misses her. Is it wrong to want a night alone with my hubby?

–Mommy Who Needs Daddy Time

Dear Mommy:

You definitely need some time alone.

You don’t want her to grow up and be a “Daddy’s Girl”. You know, one of those annoying girls who calls her father “Daddy” long after it’s appropriate (basically once she hits double digits). Those girls are undateable and annoying, but I said that already. Or, she’ll resent her father and harbor ill feelings toward him and her treatment of her and then end up using her body as a weapon by joining the world of adult film. Those girls can be successful but it depends on the angle…and their plastic surgeon.

It’s a tricky tightrope to walk but if he doesn’t walk it then one of those two things will happen. I guarantee it…sort of.

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