Friday, October 21, 2016

Generation Y Parenting

I was born in 1982. My wife 1983. My brother 1980, sister in law 1981. In looking at our characteristics and those of our friends, relatives, and co-workers with similar birth years to those in Generation X before us or the infamous Millenials after us, we deserve our own generation as we share more with our predecessors than our successors. I don't care what modern anthropologists are saying, Generation Y deserves to stand alone, the 1980 to say 1986 window. Once you get a late eighties birth year then you really weren't old enough to truly value what the 90s had to offer. Saved by the Bell, Fruit Roll Ups, Duck Tales, Nintendo and Super Nintendo, AOL IM, Tupac vs. Biggie, Baseball before steroids, Basketball before defense, Football before concussions. We set the foundation for which the Millenials would explode upon.

My point on the importance of our Generation Y status is that each generation, with their unique and beautiful nuances, will also have their own majestically poetic style of parenting.

G: (extra fidgety while playing in the playroom)
Dad: Do you need to go to the bathroom?
G: No I don't need to go to potty.
Dad: It looks like you need to go potty.
G: Yeah, I need to potty.
Dad: Okay good. Let's go potty.
G: (starts running excitedly to the bathroom) YEAH! LET'S GO POTTY! AND GET TREATS! GREAT IDEA DAD!
Dad: (shaking my head with a giggle)

A Generation X parent will appreciate the positive step in potty training. A Millenial parent will appreciate the transition from calm defiance to the funny enthusiasm in avoiding the mess of a potty accident. But then there's us Generation Y parents. What do we enjoy the most? The brilliant inclusion of getting TREATS. It's Seinfeld meets How I Met Your Mother. Witty and clever and teasing our playful humor as a generation of parents. How dare we discourage the excitement of an action we appreciate while also how are we to promote the self-determination of a reward for that behavior that will become a normal expectation for situations moving forward? Classic Zack vs. Slater dilemma.

The above referenced scenario occurs quite often in many different moments throughout the day with a 2 year old. The only thing I have learned in how to deal with it is: it is always best to just have fun with it and make sure your kid has fun with it also. Don't waste good humor on trying to be a good parent as the most important thing we can teach our kids is how to laugh and make others laugh.

And when we fingerpaint....

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