Mr. Cloudy's Shelter
A Place to Listen and be Heard

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Parental Pressure

It's amazingly hard to be a parent in so many subtle ways. All of your shit becomes your kid's shit one way or the other, somehow - they either carry it, sit in it or at least have to shovel it up and throw it somewhere else. You shame without realizing it. All of your failings that adults may take in stride, they interpret as meaning something about them instead of something about you.

And when you level with them, sometimes they seem more sad to know of your own demons than to just have you let them out.

Perhaps I make too much of such things because I was so sensitive (was? yeah right, ok, AM, damn it). What's really crazy is that teachers who made me feel special always got a lot more out of me as a student, and yet I'm continually getting into a conflictual, shaming blaming relationship with my son even when I see it hurts him.

Part of the truth of the matter is that I worry he's not tough enough to be a man, because I don't feel tough enough. Catch 22. It's hard to trust your kids to find their own way, especially when tv and video games offer them every incentive to maintain a status quo affirmation that it is either boring to have nothing exciting at hand to do, or it is easy to make progress on significant things in life without painful self-sacrifice.

Somehow, I've got to find a way to sometimes become the positive voice he hears in his head rather than the one who is always correcting, forcing, pushing - even when all of those are geared toward "helping" him attain something he says he wants to attain.

I don't know why but I find it easier to say positive things to people in writing than face-to-face. And perhaps that is my best way to reclaim a positive foothold right now.

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