Yesterday on Single Dad Laughing, I posted a video of a child having an extremely dramatic and humorous tantrum. It had me laughing harder than any video I’ve seen in a very long time. If you missed it, you can go watch it here.
What I honestly couldn’t believe was how many people in the comments had something negative to say about it. The dad should have been parenting differently, some said. That child needs a spanking or stern discipline, others declared. All he’s doing is teaching the child this and such, others chimed in. How cruel to sit there with a camera pointed at a kid in such distress, others claimed.
Dude, are you serious?
Thank God the majority of people saw it for what it was. Which was funny as hell.
If there’s one thing I know from writing my blog, it’s that everybody has an opinion when it comes to parenting. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been chewed out by complete strangers for the way I’ve done things with Noah. Inevitably, and for the exact same things, I am always praised by others.
I remember once I wrote a post about Noah writing on the couch with a marker. I called him over and asked him if he knew who did it. The blog post was about how it humorously sucks to be an only child sometimes because there’s nobody to blame things on. Should have been funny. End of story. But, in classic parent fashion, a few people jumped down my throat to tell me how I was turning Noah into a liar, how I shouldn’t ask him questions I already know the answer to, etc. etc.
I remember back then I was like, Dude… are you serious?
Maybe it’s not to some people, but to me a lot of things kids do are funny. Some tantrums are funny. Some stunts kids try to pull are funny. Some mistakes they make are fuuuuuunnny.
And sometimes, instead of worrying about it at the moment, as a dad I think to myself… what do I want to remember 5, 10, 20 years from now? Do I want to remember feeling confident that I laid down the law? Or do I want to remember how funny this is? Do I want my kid to remember Dad the tyrant? Or do I want my kid to be able to look back at this and laugh at the silliness of it all?
I’m guessing that’s what the dad of this little girl was thinking, too. He wanted the video for posterity. He wanted the video for himself. And he wanted the video because his little girl’s tantrum was just… plain… funny.
And I know, because a few years ago I had my phone out, and I captured what is probably my favorite home video of all time of two-year old Noah and his step-sister. Sorry for the verticalness of it.
[youtube width="580" height="423"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=US-u9kiKiFg&feature=youtu.be[/youtube]
Oh my gosh. I love that video. Love, love, love it.
But, as I watch that again (for, quite honestly, the hundredth time), I decided to try and look at it through the eyes of all parents instead of the eyes of Dad.
And I can tell you right now. There will be those who laugh about it (the majority). And there will be those who will undoubtedly criticize my parenting. There will be those who point out the funnier parts of the video, the greater lessons being learned, and what this video says about me being a good dad. And there will be those who point out the places I missed opportunities for good parenting, the bad lessons I’m teaching, and what the video says about me being a bad dad.
To those who can just enjoy a great video. Kudos.
To those who feel a need to rip apart a dad capturing a funny moment that he wants to remember…
Well, that’s just sad to me.
Would love your comments today.
Dan Pearce, Single Dad Laughing
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