Am I a Bad Mother?
By LNapolitanoPsyD on March 10, 2014
I Let My Kids Eat FRIED Macaroni and Cheese on Vacation.
I’m not a rookie parent anymore. I’ve reconciled some of my demons at this point. I never made my own baby food in the food processor I registered for at my baby shower. I didn’t sign my kids up for Spanish or Mandarin when they were toddlers. And, in order to get anything done, I’ve been known to put the TV on to keep my kids entertained.
I vacationed this year with my extended family, including my sister and her family. My sister and her husband eat a vegan diet and they are raising their kids with a vegetarian diet. They have their young kids enrolled in Foreign language programs, they limit TV exposure, and they eat organically. While their kids were eating homemade chickpea flat bread and drinking kale smoothies, I was feeding my kids hot dogs and marshmallows.
I thought to myself, my sister is raising her kids the way that I thought that I would. Higher standards, more care put into each meal, longer story-time, fewer electronics. And here I am, the psychologist, feeding my kids deep fried macaroni and cheese bites at a water park. Shouldn’t I be the one with uncompromising parenting standards? Shouldn’t I, at the very least, set a limit when my child orders deep-fried macaroni and cheese?
At the end of the day, I don’t have any interest in pursuing a vegetarian, much less a vegan, diet for myself or my kids. On the other hand, deep-fried macaroni and cheese was a bit of a wake up call for me. Maybe I’m letting the pendulum swing too far in the direction of leniency. Hopefully we will return to a happy medium after we return to the school year routine.
Lauren Napolitano, Psy.D.
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