Thursday, August 21, 2014

A Mom's Mission Statement

I've written over 1000 blog posts. Most of them have been read maybe 100 times. I'm not a prolific blogger, I've just been doing this for over ten years. I'm not a really popular blogger either, you know without the giveaways, lists of how you too can have a perfect family (just like mine!), or the fancy graphics that would make a reader think I've got it all together. It's mostly a tune-in and see how Anne's day went crazy kind of blog.

But I have one post that has been read thousands of times. I wrote it over four years ago, and it was still the most read post on this blog this past week. So, what on earth could I possibly write about that would draw over 17,000 people to come and read it?

Micheal Pearl, No Greater Joy Ministries, and that monstrosity of a parenting book To Train Up A Child

The petition to request Amazon to remove this book from it's shelves, is still available here, by the way.

The Pearls clearly have major issues. Their advice has been shown to be dangerous and wrong. And don't even get me started on what they tell women who are being abused by their husbands. I find it disgusting that Micheal Pearl has made money hand over fist by teaching people how they too can be raging assholes to their kids, ya know, for Jesus.

Oh yeah. Did I mention (to those unfamiliar with the Pearls), that they teach their methods as "Godly" parenting?  Sure. I'm sure that's how the Good Lord works. He sets you up to fail, and then beats you when you do. I must have just been absent the day they taught that in Sunday School.

But it got me thinking, if we clearly don't think we need to smack our kids around in order to teach them, what is our approach? What's our goal?

Here's what I came up with for myself. It's practically professional, seriously!: *cough* Ahem:
I am your mother. Your mom. Your mommy. That nasty lady who makes you brush your teeth and clean up at the end of the day. You are my children, whom I made with...a little help. It took many months and a lot of discomfort to get you here, and your success in this whole life thing is pretty important to me. 
I want you kids to be good people. Not perfect. Not rich. Not powerful. I don't care what jobs you have when you grow up, or how much money you make. (Though, please, do get a job and don't live in my basement forever.)
I want you to be kind. I want you to be good. I want you to look at the world around you and see ways that you can make it better. I want you to know that nothing will prevent bad times from coming, but that if you're good people, when the bad times come, you won't be alone.  
To that end, I will keep talking to you about your relationships, kids at school, and how to improve how you communicate with others so that you can truly connect with them. I will encourage you to do the right thing when it's hard. And I will stand by you when you do. I will believe in you and be here every day, no matter what. I will talk about what's going on in the world, and I will encourage you to get involved, even if we disagree politically. I want you to think for yourself. (Although if you think a little like me, I probably won't tell you to stop.) 
I will teach you that everything you do comes with a certain level of responsibility. I mean it. Even sex. Sex, by the way, I will talk about openly and without shame. I want you to know what everything is, what everything does, and how to be responsible with it. It may embarrass you sometimes, but it doesn't embarrass me. Becoming a grandmother before I'm 40, that might embarrass me.  Let's not do that, m'kay? 
I want you to respect me, so I will teach you how, by modeling it for you. I believe that each of you is your own unique person, and not a part of me, though I will always feel like you are. I cannot live your life for you, and I can not live my life through you. My idea of success will be in the character you cultivate and in how you treat others. Your kind heart, is how I will measure how well I've done. Well, that and how much of Star Wars you have memorized. A mom's gotta have her standards. 
I love you, I love you, I love you. I will never stop. You are my mission. I promise to parent you with kindness, respect, and a little bit of humor, acknowledging that you carry within you, threads of the divine. You deserve to be safe and loved every day, you deserve to laugh and have joy in your life, and I will always try to give that to you. 
So, that's my mission statement. I may need to put that up somewhere so that I can read it when they're all yelling at each other and driving me crazy. Or when I'm driving them crazy. Not that that happens, mind you, because I'm such an amazing mom they really just spend all day bringing me bon bons and asking to rub my feet.

At the end of the day I can at least rest easy in the knowledge that I'm a hell of a lot better a parent than Micheal Pearl. Of course, that's setting the bar really low.


You read all the way through that? Thanks! If you liked it, click the link below which registers a vote for me, would you? Thanks. You're the best!
If you like what you just read please click to send a quick vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs- The best mommy blog directory featuring top mom bloggers


  1. LOVE THIS! I hope I raise decent, kind human beings. Anything else is just icing on the cake for me as a parent.

    1. Right? Although having kids who love Harry Potter and Doctor Who is pretty good icing. ;)

  2. I'd never heard about the Pearls and am aghast. I can't imagine teaching my children to fear me and to obey me because of that fear. That's not Christianity, far from it. It's something much more frightening by virtue of hiding behind that mask.

    I love your mission statement.

    1. Yeah, he's awful. Any criticism is taken as an attack against Christianity (since he truly believe he's teaching what God wants), and he completely fails to see how his theology fails.

      It seems to me that if your basic understanding of God is as a Deity who loves His creation so much, that he would sacrifice Himself for it, so that it would escape a punishment that it deserves, then it doesn't follow that to parent God's way is to create scenarios in which kids will fail, in order to punish them.

      But what do I know? I think there are better ways than fear and intimidation.


I love comments!