How did you get such perfect kids? No wonder you are bursting with pride. You raised your children right!
Clearly those of us who are struggling with our children are at a loss for what to do. We didn’t spank them enough, hire enough tutors, take away enough or show them who is boss.
If only we had listened to you, we, too would have straight A students, doctors and soccer champions. Oh wait. No we wouldn’t because your precious children are a direct reflection of you! Great genes and great parenting. You have the recipe for success!
Our only regret? We missed out on the opportunity to admire you more!
Over the years, we have heard every last detail about how special, how smart, how talented, how athletic your kids are. Even though you knew we were suffering, it was an opportunity to showcase and offer your crew up as shining examples of parenting perfection.
You even shared the time you caught yours with a beer and his girlfriend in the basement! Horrors! But you took care of it the right way and there was no more of that. You had all kinds of great advice. Gives me chills just thinking about it.
After a while, we didn’t burden you with all the ugliness of our lives. Thankfully! Who wants to hear all of that “downer Debbie” stuff when there are martinis to swill and parties to throw! No skeletons in your closet. You are a role model!
To exhibit your caring nature, you broadcasted every salacious detail of our family’s agony. How thankful neighbors and friends must have been to have someone as well-informed as you to warn them of us.
What on earth would we do without friends like you?
Your dear friend Anne Moss
P.S. To our supportive friends and family with kids who have done well, this is not for you! You admitted you don’t fully understand but you listened. You know a lot of it is genetics and luck of the draw. You do not need to apologize for having had children that didn’t struggle. We love you!
P.P.S To the parents with kids that have struggled: You have wanted to say this to those “those judgy types” haven’t you? The ones with no idea what it’s like trying to raise a child with mental illness and/or substance abuse disorder.
It’s people like that who perpetuate the stigma. What’s worse, our kids pick up their message and feel worse as a result. That’s what I hate the most because our kids are (or were) such special people– soulful, talented and highly creative.
Next time you get comments that make you feel angry or small from parents like this, think of this letter and laugh. Sometimes we need a little vengeful humor for all we’ve been through. I have to admit, I had a blast writing it! (Oh I am such a devil.)
Having a bit of devilish fun with this post.