I don’t like being a dick.
Ok, I’m sure there are some people who may read the above statement and say to themselves “then maybe you shouldn’t be one,” but those people suck and probably don’t read my blog anyway.
When you’re a parent there comes a point when, eventually, you have to be a dick. It happens with more and more regularity as the children get older.
You see where I’m going with this, right?
I feel like a dick a lot recently.
The most recent dick thing I’ve had to do is put time restrictions on Alex’s cell phone account. Ironically, in doing so I also set him up with a plan that has unlimited texting. His phone was broken recently at school (he dropped it in the hall and someone stepped on it, breaking the top of the flip completely off) and I had to order a replacement through the insurance company. After I got said replacement and set it up I started going through the account and I noticed a few things. One, he was texting well after his bed time (until almost midnight last night) and two he was texting while he was at school (something strictly forbidden – you aren’t even supposed to use your phones at school and they can get taken away if you’re caught). The first item? Well, it wouldn’t be a problem if Alex was responsible about getting himself out of bed in the morning. I got on him about this a month or so ago and he was good for a while, but recently he’s slipped back into the habit of oversleeping and then spending 30 minutes or more in the shower. If he feels he’s old enough to stay up later he needs to prove that he can get his ass motivated in the morning without anyone putting a foot up his ass. He’s not doing that, so bed times are set. The latter? Maybe I wouldn’t be so upset about if if it weren’t for the fact that it’s been a nightmare staying on top of him to make sure he has all of his work done in school. Band, for example. The term ends on Tuesday and he has to get 10 hours of practice in between now and then to pass the class because he has only practiced for 5 hours so far this six weeks.
So earlier today I put usage restrictions on his phone. No texting after between 10 PM and 7 AM on weeknights and no texting between 8:30 AM and 4:15 PM on weekdays. When I say I put usage restrictions on I mean it’s part of his account. This isn’t me saying don’t do it – it’s me making it impossible for him to do so.
I hate this part about being a parent. It’s frustrating, sometimes to the point of tears. I can handle failure, but what I can’t handle is deliberate and consistent bad behavior. For the most part Alex is fine. Hell, the majority of the time he is. I think that’s what makes these things all the more frustrating. They are simple and stupid and for someone as smart as he is they should be no brainers.
My frustrations do not end with him, either. Not by a long shot. J. is not my son, though, and it isn’t my place to spout his private business all over the intertubes.
As I am currently lecturing my son over text message (oh sweet irony) I am going to go ahead and close this out.