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LZ Granderson hates your kids. So does everyone else. He said so.
LZ Granderson is an asshat of a CNN contributor, who has won some awards and has now decided that he's the most fucking awesome parent of anyone. Ever.
You know, because he has a kid. And "the look."
What is "the look"? I don't really know, but LZ discusses it several times in his judgmental article entitled, "Permissive parents: Curb your brats."
LZ assures us that "the look" will make any child immediately take heed of his/her parents warnings, sit down, be quiet and allow all adult conversation to pass without interruption. For hours, even.
How do you know if you possess "the look"? LZ wasn't very specific on this point, but he did say if you have "the look," you won't need to tell your child to "sit down" a bunch of times.
If you have "the look," you won't need to say much of anything at all, says LZ. You pretty much won't have to talk or interact with your child at all. They will just sit there, quietly noshing on their plate of steak and leafy greens, while you and your agent discuss your contract for the next year.
"But this nonverbal cue needs to be introduced early and reinforced diligently with consequences for transgressions, just like potty training." So if your child poops his pants, make sure to give him a diligent consequence.
LZ doesn't suggest what qualifies as "a diligent consequence," but it sounds like it might leave a mark.
"And whenever a kid throws a temper tantrum in the middle of the shopping mall it's just as bad as his soiling his pants to spite his parents, and it stinks just as much," says LZ. I don't know about you guys, but I'm definitely seeing a pattern here. A poop-centric pattern. Anal-retentive much, LZ?
Except there's this. If you are honest with yourself, you will recall times that your own child(ren) had a tantrum in a restaurant, started screaming in the grocery store or impulsively ran towards a shiny display at the Mall. And studies show that due to age-determined developmental constraints, children lack the ability to control their emotions, behaviors and responses approximately most of the time.
That's just the way kids roll. Sorry to inconvenience you LZ, but I'm willing to bet you were a brat when you were little, too. But if my kid has a tantrum, I'll tell you what. I will address it. I will give him an appropriate consequence, after I find out what his damage is. Not because you told me I should, or tried to shame me into giving him some dumbass "look," but because I am a good parent. As are most of the people you decided to take to task in your hastily-written and obnoxiously judgemental article. So fuck you for assuming otherwise.
There's another group of kiddos I want to talk about. The one's that LZ neglected to mention, probably because he didn't think of them. Because LZ sounds like he's all about himself.
The kids with disabilities.
Here are some common childhood disorders, which can affect a child's everyday functioning:
Sensory Integration Disorder
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Language Processing Disorder
That's right. I'm going there. Because my awesome, wonderful, loving and sensitive 8-year-old son also carries a diagnosis of severe ADHD, along with OCD, sensory integration issues and anxiety. Add that to the fact that his dad and I divorced at the beginning of this year. Oh, let's not forget the fact that his dad just died. Totally not ok with any child, especially one who obsesses. So yeah, my kid is going to act out sometimes and OMG it might happen in public. Don't worry LZ, I'll handle it.
So here's the deal, you judgmental sack of shit.
YOU DON'T GET TO TELL ME HOW TO RAISE MY CHILD.
YOU HAVE NEVER HAD TO HOLD HIM IN A RESTRAINT, BECAUSE HE'S FREAKED OUT THAT DADDY DIED.
YOU HAVEN'T CHASED HIM DOWN A BUSY STREET, BECAUSE HE'S TOO OVERWHELMED AND ANGRY AND SCARED AND OBSESSED ABOUT THE NEXT PERSON IN HIS LIFE WHO MIGHT SUDDENLY LEAVE HIM.
YOU HAVEN'T CRIED YOURSELF TO SLEEP AT NIGHT, WORRYING THAT HIS MENTAL ILLNESS IS ONLY GOING TO WORSEN WITH AGE AND TIME.
YOU DON'T HAVE TO HEAR HIM REPEATING THE SAME PHRASE OVER AND OVER AND OVER, ALL BECAUSE A NEURON IN HIS BRAIN TELLS HIM IT NEEDS TO BE SAID.
YOU HAVE NEVER FELT YOUR BREATH CATCH IN YOUR THROAT, AS, AT THE AGE OF 6, HE PIPES UP FROM THE BACKSEAT OF THE CAR, ASKING, "MAMA? DO YOU EVER HAVE VOICES IN YOUR HEAD, TELLING YOU TO DO BAD THINGS?"
YOU DON'T SNEAK INTO HIS ROOM AT NIGHT, JUST TO BE ABLE TO SEE HIS SWEET FACE, FINALLY AT PEACE AFTER A TWO HOUR CRYING JAG.
AND YOU DON'T HAVE TO LISTEN TO HIM APOLOGIZE OVER AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN, BECAUSE HE KNOWS HE'S DONE BAD THINGS. YOU DON'T HAVE TO HEAR HIM TELL YOU HOW MUCH HE HATES HIMSELF, AND THAT HE WISHES HE WAS DEAD SO HE COULD BE WITH DADDY.
And the list goes on.
LZ, you are an utter asshole for assuming that you can lump all children under the umbrella of "poor parenting." And you are an even bigger asshole for assuming that the overworked, overstressed and emotionally burdened parents of these children even give a fuck about your opinion.
Except, deep down, your hurtful words resonate within them, amplifying the negative self-talk they've hammered themselves with.
I'm a bad parent.
Maybe he would be better off with someone else.
I never thought it would be like this.
My heart hurts so much for her, there are no words.
He is his own worst enemy.
I just wish she had ONE best friend.
Who will even WANT to take care of him if something happens to me?
I just want him to belong.
My family thinks she is a brat, I'm tired of feeling so judged.
And the hardest one for us to admit, even to ourselves?
I don't want to do this anymore.
So, yeah. I'm extremely offended by your holier-than-thou, judgmental attitude.
The world, and its children, would be much better off if you just shut your ignorant mouth and listened.
You will be amazed at what you learn.