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Jan 22

Back of the hand

Posted on Friday, January 22, 2010 in Family, Philosophy

“Fuck off, you stupid fat bitch!”

I love watching Supernanny.  Okay, so she’s a tad twee and parents cry way too bloody often for their own good, but it’s wonderful to watch other parents fail.  It reminds me that even if I’m failing in some ways too, that nobody’s perfect.  Is there any such thing as a non-dysfunctional family?  Would The Simpsons be such a success if there were?

The above quote comes from a five-year old boy, spoken to his mother.  You can tell he’s potentially a good kid, his diction and pronounciation regarding curse-words are second to none, even with missing teeth interrupting his fricatives.  An intelligent kid, whose problem is that he’s just simply loved too much.  His mother takes it, every soiled little last word of it, and dies a little bit inside.

Isn’t that madness?  The running theme throughout most families of tearaway kids on the show, is that the parents can’t stand to chastise their children because they love them so much, they don’t want to hurt them.  That is a seriously cruel thing about nature, the necessity for tough love.  I don’t know how many times I’ve retreated to the bathroom in distress after I’ve had to dent Puppychild’s wee fairylike spirit with a firmly spoken NO.  Watching her features drop into a look of pure hurt like that – having her tell me that she hates me- she always forgets later about the extremes of her revolt, but I never do.  They should just extract the sympathy nerve from a mother during the birth of her first kid… that would soften the world’s problems entirely.

I don’t know why they don’t send Jo Frost to prisons, it’s never too late for tough love.  Anyone who looks at her sideways would have to sit on the bold-chair for as many minutes as years they’re alive…  listening to Celine Dion, maybe.  That would set anyone on the right path.

Bring on the comments

  1. I can well imagine how hard it is to be tough; I find it hard enough at school sometimes. But I’m always surprised by quite how untough some of the parents on shows like this are… surely part of loving them is wanting them to grow into pleasant adults? I’m surprised it isn’t hard for them to sit back and watch that potential disintegrate.

  2. Baino says:

    It’s one of my great regrets that I didn’t start the supernanny series and I can pronounce ‘acceptable’ properly! Actually I’m compelled to the show as well but the parents she coaches are absolute fuckwits. Proving yet again that common sense is very uncommon.

    As for tough love. It works. I am living testament. I know the feeling of watching that hopeful face disassemble before your eyes though. They won’t understand it until they’re parents themselves.

  3. Celine Dion is too much; it would drive anyone to kill.

    My brother’s eldest Hell Spawn is a good candidate for a right boot in the doot, but of course as he and his wife are massive twats who can’t be arsed properly training their litter, that’s not going to happen. I do take exception at being forced to put up with the wee bitch, though, and if she shows up here again and gets on like a princess, I’m going to have to shiv her in the yard.

    There’s some children you can reason with, and there’s some children that need beat. My grandma said it, and I believe it.

  4. K8 says:

    Jenny- A lot of parents just can’t see the wood for the trees, maybe. I feel for the folks on Supernanny, it must be wicked hard to have somebody speak so blatantly about how useless you are, but it’s an excellent lesson for the rest of us. It must be so hard being a teacher sometimes, I seriously sympathise.

    Baino- They are pretty dumb alright, but how did they wind up with such huge houses? That’s what gets me! It’s just not ‘sseptable.

    Fat Sparrow- Yeah, I know a few kids who seem to be the devil’s spawn alright. When they’re your relatives it’s all good, coz you can raid their bedrooms for the good toys when your bro’s not looking! It’s justified.

  5. Voodoolady says:

    I don’t have any kids but I would like to think I would discipline them well. I was chased around the house by my mam trying to slap me on the back of my legs with a wooden spoon when I was bold and we laugh about it now. I bloody deserved it most of the time as I recall.

    I know one parent who is almost reduced to tears when she sees her husband giving out to one of the kids and then she has a go at him afterwards for being harsh. Tis very amusing to watch, the kid barely notices it and its the mother who gets worked up.

  6. K8 says:

    Ha! The memories… I was no stranger to the wooden spoon either! But, there are better ways to win a kid’s respect. They’re tricky little buggers though, it’s far from easy.

    I’m looking forward to getting my revenge on the aul’ pair when they get old and doddery! ‘Back to bed or I’ll get the spoon!’

  7. unstranger says:

    That ‘fricatives’ is lovely. Who but a writer would have the wherewithal to come up with a way to use it as if it was always supposed to be there; excellent K8.

  8. holemaster says:

    I told my mother to fuck off when I was about nine. She was trying to get me to wear a really naff wooly hat which was a hand-me-down from my sisters. To this day, I’ll never forget the hurt in her face. My heart sank the second I said it.

  9. K8 says:

    Unstranger; Thanks!! I’ve got to admit to stealing the inspiration from Thomas Harris though. :)

    Holemaster; At least you weren’t a girl – I love that boys tend to be door-slammers rather than abuse shouters. I grew up listening to three teenage girls screaming at their parents and each other all the livelong day… they didn’t seem to have half the regret you suffered. How anyone could be a lesbian is beyond me. :-p

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