It’s Sunday night and the day got away from me. This post is a repeat from 2013, but I added a bit at the bottom seeing how the 12-year-old is now a 15-year-old, 16 in two weeks. Not much has changed except for her sister’s 13th birthday this year, I hosted a hotel party. WHAT IS HAPPENING?
You know what’s fucked up about being twelve? BEING TWELVE.
I imagine this is what my soon to be 13-year-old would say if given the leeway to cuss like she wants to. She would roll her eyes and exclaim how unfair 12 is, how unnecessary 12 is, how in the way of being grown 12 is. Twelve is the barrier to life. Also, 13 through 17. Eighteen is where it’s at. Twenty-one kicks ass. But 12? Twelve is a waste of time. School, homework, ask first, do this, NO, sweep that, put this away, now put it away where it belongs. Twelve is bullshit.
I’m going to tell you a secret about me: I am not very open or trusting when it comes to other parents, especially parents I don’t know who invite my child to a party. If it’s a sleepover, cue the application process. I KNOW! It’s shocking, right? I seem so ordinary, so willing to let my kid come to the crack house you have in the basement. I am the mom who when you ask my child to a sleepover I need the invitation before the day of the party (this happened recently and as much as it hurt my kid, we said no). I need to meet you, see where you live, know who lives with you. I don’t consider any of these things over the top. My child, my rules. I have grown past wanting to see your driver’s license or having a friend in law enforcement run your tags. I am maturing.
There was a sleepover this weekend. It was at a hotel. I am staring blankly. Blink. I felt OK only because I realize this is all the rage with middle schoolers now, kids who no longer want a traditional party but still want to feel like they did “something.” I also fully understand it from a cleaning standpoint: no one wants to clean the house prior to a handful of girls showing up, let alone clean again once they leave. I also felt OK because I trust my kid to make good choices and not be a jerk the minute she’s out of my sight.
The weekend was supposed to consist of dinner, a movie, the hotel pool, and breakfast. I asked what movie they were seeing. When I expressed concern that it’s rated R, the mom immediately acknowledged my reaction and said they’d find something more suitable. Later, I found out that not only was the movie canceled altogether, but, you guessed it! I was the only parent who had a problem with the rated R movie.
Listen, I know these kids see a lot. I know they hear words and we can’t shelter them forever. I get that. At the same time, I don’t see a reason to purposely put certain themes or ideas or situations or words into their receptive little brains. She’s probably seen an R rated movie that we’ve deemed ok once we’ve seen it, once we’ve determined, as her parents, what we think she is ready for, can handle, should see/hear. And truth be told, I probably had issues with her seeing a movie I wanted to see, before I saw it. I checked myself on that, reined in my selfishness and determined that no, I said no to the movie because it’s an adult-themed movie with adult issues and there will be a time when we will sit and watch such movies together. At 12, though, it ain’t hapnin.
So, I’m sorry that she was embarrassed that I was the reason they didn’t see a movie. But you know what? I’m sorrier that the mom felt the need to point out that I was the only parent who took issue with the choice of movie. IT’S YOUR FAULT WE CAN’T SEE A MOVIE, YOUR MOM’S A STICK IN THE MUD. Boo hoo.
I don’t like feeling unpopular. I don’t want her to feel or be unpopular based on a decision I made thinking it was the best decision for her. I want to feel like I’m doing things correctly, that I’m considerate and open and hip.
But evidently I’m just that mom that gets her kid teased for having that mom.
(I’m also the kind of mom who says unpoopular in her head rather than unpopular because I’m awesome. Also, Lucy, duh.)