I know how to do this because I used to be a total expert at it, so trust me here. It’s a foolproof method. Works every time.
1. Care deeply about what other people think of you. Your mother, the grocery store clerk, the mailman, other parents, the bank teller, your kid’s teacher, and especially random strangers on the internet. Seriously, marinate in that shit.
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2. Feel guilty every day, hopefully more than once. About being a bad person, a bad parent, a bad daughter/son, employee, friend, volunteer, partner, pet owner, dancer ... you name it. Guilt is an essential step here. Do NOT skip it.
3. Only do what you are "supposed" to do. Just the stuff that society/your parents/your boss/your friends/your knitting club say you should. You know, that stuff that makes you look like a good, upstanding citizen on the outside. That’s the real important stuff. Whatever you do, DO NOT do stuff you actually want to do or stuff that makes you feel good on the inside. That will mess this process right the eff up.
4. Never, I repeat, NEVER speak your mind. Just keep all those thoughts, opinions, ideas bottled right up in there. Wouldn’t want to let that cat out of the bag. Imagine what could happen?
5. Always hang out with people who make you feel like crap. And make sure to take their advice too, especially the people who are experts on everything. You know, the perfect people. Yep, them. Definitely take everything they say to heart and spend as much time as you can around them.
6. Live vicariously through, and only for, your kids. I mean it. You always wanted to be an NHL star/champion downhill racer/violin prodigy/pro golfer or you want one in the family? Well, better get on it then. Make sure to enroll them in lessons before they can barely walk. Re-mortgage your house to pay for all the equipment/coaching/trips/camps, etc. And definitely spend every free minute you have, making sure that little Johnny will be the absolute best of the best. Even if it means you do nothing else for the rest of your life. Even if he hates it, dammit. He’ll thank you for it later right?
7. Make sure to criticize yourself repeatedly every day. Nothing like a good round of "I feel fat" or "I’m so stupid" or "Why can’t I ever do anything right?" to set you straight with the world.
8. Worry about everything, like, all the time. Especially stay up late at night and worry about all the stuff you have absolutely no control over. THAT is the best.
9. Always pretend you are "fine." Just go around with a smile plastered on your face and act like every day is the best damn day of your life. When people ask you how you’re doing, make sure to answer with stuff like, "Never been better, thanks" or "Just fine and dandy." Even if you were just hiding out in the bathroom stall silently crying to yourself, DO NOT let anyone know how you are really feeling. So important here, people!
10. Lastly, and this one is my favorite: Make sure you compare yourself to everyone, and I mean everyone! Especially other parents, rich people with personal trainers, and martyrs. Only then, will you have full appreciation for how badly you’re effing up.
And there you have it. Follow these 10 simple steps, and in no time at all you’ll be on a one way trip to crazy town. Just so you know, though, it ain’t that nice. Trust me, I’ve been there. In fact, I had an extended vacation there once. So, if you decide you’d rather not go there after all, then save yourself the trip, and pretty much do the opposite of everything I just said.
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