On Being a Hypocrite

Being a parent is hard.


Sorry–I just thought that comment needed some space of its own.  It is hard to parent, and harder to parent well.  Kids don’t really understand context, because they have so little experience with the world.  Parents, more often than not, have spent a lifetime learning about the hair-splitting difference between situations that makes actions appropriate…or not.  Sometimes, though, there will be moments where we are nothing but hypocrites, telling children “do as I say, not what I do.”


While I generally try to avoid these moments, but I had one come up yesterday, when picking up my boys from daycare.  That morning–THAT VERY MORNING–I had chastised my four year old for drawing on himself with markers, telling him markers and paints absolutely must be used on paper, not our bodies or other objects around the house.  Great.  Lesson delivered.

As luck would have it, I had a team-building event at work that same afternoon.  We went to an art studio, determined a palette, mixed paints, and made a work of art as a team.  Most of us went home covered in paint.   So naturally I looked like a mixed-up rainbow when I showed up at the babysitter’s door, with splatters, smears, and even handprints all over my arms, face, and clothes.

And so the tables were turned, and my son informed me, quite seriously, that paint was for paper, and maybe I should try to be less messy next time.

I suppose was right…but it sure was fun!


How have you been a hypocrite parent?



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