We’ve spent the last week in Florida. We had a lot of fun in our last hurrah before the start of school – and now I’m scrambling to do all the school prep I haven’t done over the past week – and I am going to do a few write ups of our experiences at some of the new parks we hadn’t been to previously, with a slant towards the perspective of taking someone with special needs to the park.
Overall, we had a blast. Most of us anyway. I noticed that whenever the wee ones were on a ride at Legoland (many are truly designed for little kids and parents can’t join them), my husband was constantly on his phone. Apparently my reluctance for him to join the smart phone age was well justified…
Rather than watching the wee ones cavorting – in this instance, driving in the Ford Motor School Driving Test, heading the wrong way down streets and blowing past stop signs they swear they didn’t see – my husband was checking the weather. Or maybe Facebook. Or maybe reading news. Or who knows, maybe it was online poker.
For him, watching the wee ones have fun and sharing in their enjoyment is something he wasn’t raised with. His parents didn’t interact with him in the same way that my parents did – nor do they interact with the wee ones when we visit. It’s a completely different style of parenting, and from my perspective, it’s not a fun or filled with joy. It isn’t that it’s wrong, but it’s not how I am.
I’ve given up trying to change him, for the most part. The second he’s finished eating, he’s up clearing dishes and moving on to the next thing, regardless of how many of the rest of us are still eating and trying to enjoy a family meal. When he plays a board game with the wee ones, it’s about getting to the end of the game instead of having fun along the way – you don’t want to be the one having a conversation when it’s your turn! And that’s all he ever knew.
How about you? How were you raised? Do you follow the same tenets of child rearing that your parents used? And what’s your take on hanging out on smart phones around your children?