As any parent of teens already knows, they have huge respect for their elders and every word of wisdom uttered from a parent's mouth is heard with the respect it deserves. Did I really just say that?! Sorry - I must have been daydreaming!
Obviously what I meant to say was - parents know nothing, so why should a teen listen to anything we have to say on any subject? Add to that their passion for eye-rolling and sighing deeply as they vacate a room with the satisfaction of having had the last word and it all makes for a heady mix of family bliss. At this point, mums and dads up and down the country, age slightly and admit defeat with heavy hearts.
Teens love to have the last word in any heated discussion, they like to think that they have won the battle, whilst we as grown-ups have taken charge and realised that it's not worth fighting over any more. Afterwards we'll reach for a glass of something, usually containing alcohol as a consolation prize. Alcohol numbs the pain and makes us feel human again.
Just occasionally as a parent you have the urge to lash back in a war of words. There may have been a comment that made you see red, or maybe you have PMT (if you're a mum) and your offspring have done something that has detonated each and every one of your buttons.
On Monday I had a mini rant with one of my daughters. She didn't see the point of putting washing into the laundry basket when asked and after carrying the ironing upstairs, I spied a formidable pile of washing on the landing. Expressing my displeasure, she suggested that I 'get a life,' and to be fair she has a point. Maybe when both daughters leave for uni later this year - I'll find the time!
I retorted with, 'seriously, you need to grow up.' The conversation fizzed for a while, (I won't bore you with the details) and afterwards feeling every single one of my forty-something years, I gave up and went to bed. As punishment, I refused car privileges for the rest of the week. Naturally she was not a happy bunny.
Bear with me a moment, this is a bit of a diversion...
We have a large magnetic noticeboard in the kitchen. It contains the minutiae of family life - appointment cards, raffle tickets, invites, reminders and receipts. To be fair, it works quite well as long as I remember to check it each and every day.
Venturing downstairs the following morning at 6 am, I noticed the contents of the noticeboard piled in a heap on the worktop.
And stuck slap bang in the middle of the noticeboard I found this....
Don't you just love her?!
Copyright © 2013 Izzie Anderton