Away from the riots for today – I’ve got another niggle on my mind. This niggle is overpraise, and how it hurts my head even more than underpraise.
See, my child is getting into that age range where we need to start thinking about toilet training. It won’t be today, or next week, or even next month, but it’ll be soon enough that thinking about it is warranted. My mother-in-law loves to be well prepared in advance, so she’s already bought potties, the seats you strap onto the toilets, steps… and books. Terrible, awful books that tell me that I am not going to make it through this phase of parenthood, and should off myself now.
Why, you might ask? I’ll tell you why. Saccharine cuteness and overpraise. One of the books she picked up (at the suggestion of *shudders* Chris Evans) plays noises. There is a freaking cheer button that you are supposed to let the kid press every.single.page, and the whole concept sends me into a foaming rage. The batteries have already been removed, and the book has been placed into another room so I don’t throw it out the door and stomp on it. The other, while slightly less annoying, features a child bear learning how to use the toilet and excitedly showing his stuffed rabbit how to do it after he pisses on the floor.
I guess this is the thing – I do not understand the need to celebrate every tiny thing in life and make huge dancing deals out of it. Much like pre-k/kindergarten graduation ceremonies, it just seems a rip of money and an overinflation of the relative importance of the event. Most of us learn to poop in a toilet, most of us make it through kindergarten – whup dee doo. I admit – I’m not a terribly sentimental person, and I am terrible at making meaningful connections with people. I also tend to not be much of a consumer – I buy stuff, obviously, but I don’t see the need to stack my house full of posted pictures and meaningless awards (the closest I have in the wall are Certificate of Participations from Kingdom of Loathing meets, ’cause funny). So the juxtaposition of the two… just doesn’t appeal to me.
Perhaps it’s a guilt thing. A lot more people are working more and seeing their children less, so perhaps it’s a way to exploit guilt at not being a Supermom? It would make sense to me – we tend to overcompensate when we think we’ve messed up. We can’t be everything to everyone even if society insists, insists that we should be… and me, I won’t be. *grins*
Anyways, just some musing. And y’know… hoping I find a route through toilet training when we get to it that isn’t quite so puke-inducingly cutesy.
Have a great weekend!