By Melissa Ford
Parents naturally get braggin’ rights; it comes with the territory. Why? Because there are so many times when parents are forced to deal with unpleasantries such as:
- Receiving a call from your child’s preschool teacher informing you that your son hides during clean-up.
- Your daughter, in the checkout lane at Jewel, throws herself on the floor, arms and legs flailing, because you won’t buy her that chocolate bar.
- Striking out, your 8-year-old son slams his bat on the ground while kicking dirt over home plate (You watch in disbelief from the bleachers, sitting next to parents of the most well-behaved kid on the baseball team)!
If you choose to boast about your kid, remember, you must be judicious in exercising this right. Over the years, I created my own personal Boasting/Bragging Rules in order to ensure that my swelling, gushing pride doesn’t cause others to run in the opposite direction. Here are a few tips:
- Don’t monopolize the conversation: When conversing with friends (or complete strangers), avoid droning on and on about your child’s great accomplishments or experiences (unless they are really good friends, who will only judge you later in private). Say you are proud and move on.
- FaceBook: Photos on FB are like the old slide shows documenting your child’s amazing accomplishments. Keep your uploaded photos under 100 per event (I’m being generous here).
- If you must brag: (and we all have to) find one or two people who are truly interested in your incessant boasting: partner, grandparents, in-laws, favorite aunts or uncles, next-door neighbor with a hearing problem, school counselors (My kids’ high school counselor, Brandi Ambrose, would always listen to me enthuse about my teens. She’s incredibly polite, never rolling her eyes when I’ve yammered on and on).
- Keep a journal: (This supplants the baby book) and fill it up with your offspring’s successes.
- Keeping-It-Real: Every once in awhile spill a truth about your kid: she’s sloppy and lazy, your college-age son got a D in Bowling 101, your daughter broke curfew and was pulled over by the police.
- Cut-Yourself-Slack: You will break these rules often. I broke every one just days before I uploaded this post. . .
Do you have any other great tips or rules to share when it comes to crowing about your kid? Is it acceptable or just plain rude to brag? Please share your thoughts, even if your children aren’t gifted like mine!