Hi Readers — This note came in response to my ParentDish column, “New Study: Parents Stink.” Sometimes I am just, well, blown away by the logical leaps people take:
“I am a mother of a 26 year old man and a 13 year old boy. I give my 13 year old as much freedom as I think he needs but I always know where he’s at and who he’s with. This may be hovering but it’s better then him showing up at school one day and blowing everyone away and I had no idea he had been planning this.”
I agree: Most things are better than having one’s kid wake up and kill everyone at his school. Especially when it’s a big surprise. (I hate surprises!) And of course, if he does indeed do this, it’s all the parent’s fault.
That belief — that everything my kid does, good and bad, stems directly from MY parenting skills — is the kind of belief that drives us nuts to begin with. I wish she’d read my book, or at least Chapter 11: “Relax! Not Every Little Thing You Do Has THAT Much Impact on Your Child’s Development.”
Meantime, whatever this woman thinks of “Free-Range Kids” (and me), I actually don’t condemn parents who want to know where their 13-year-old is and who he’s with. I just think it’s pretty wacky to believe that if a parent is a little less informed, that kid will wake up, go to school and kill all his classmates. — Lenore