I'm starting a new phase of parenting and I'm positive that I'm not ready. I'm no longer parenting toddlers and preschoolers which I think I'd gotten pretty rock-starish at, I'm now parenting pre-teens and it's a whole new world.
I thought pre-teenness began somewhere around the age of 11 1/2. No, this is not true. Skyler is almost 9 and while she may still act the baby, she's definitely got a bunch of pre-teen going on. Zack is 10 1/2 and we're now well into issues like hair *wink* and deodorant and face cleaning and locking down the internet. I'm learning, slowly.
One issue I'm not a huge fan of is that kids this age are mean. We try to raise nice polite kids but they're constantly exposed to kids who have been parented in a totally different style if you get my drift. Last night when we were getting ready to Trick-or-Treat a child in the neighborhood called Zack fat. Zack can usually fend for himself but he's really really sensitive to being called fat. A third child came and told me and I marched right over to find this kid's mother. I asked the child what he called Zack and he had no problem telling me that he said that he was fat. I asked if it didn't hurt his feelings when someone else called him a name. I found the mother smoking her ciggies and having a beer (klassy), we had words and she ended with yelling at her son "just stay the fuck away from those kids". Lovely. Can you blame the child when he learns from someone like this? She's his primary adult figure. What can you do with that?