By Leslie Robinson
In days gone by, there was a very distinct line drawn in the sand that had parent on one side and child on the other. Children knew to speak only when spoken to, and that disrespect of any kind was going to get them an eye, a few choice words, or sometimes more. It seems as though recently someone has not been playing nicely and has kicked up some sand which is blurring the line that once provided a clear delineation between parent and child. The growing trend today seems to support parents being “friends” with their children, also known as a homie mama friend.
I didn’t consider my own mother a friend of mine until I was grown and had some life experiences to share with her. I never remember being able to hang out with my mother and her friends. Today, with loosened dynamics between moms and dads and children, I such behavior to be more detrimental to the child than the parent. We’ve all seen “grown” acting children; not only is it unattractive, it’s dangerous to their long-term well-being.
Where are the boundaries? Children and teenagers need boundaries that are appropriate behaviors for their age group. Limiting their access to adult life issues early on allows them to fully appreciate the privileges that come with age and maturity. I’m just not sure those boundaries are clear when your child is kicking it with you and your home girls at dinner and the nail salon.
The general consensus that I get from parents that find it okay to be in a “friendly” relationship with their children is they want to build a sense of trust that lets their child know it is okay to talk to them about anything. I truly think there are other logical ways to foster this trust in children without gaining a new friend. To be brutally honest, I think no matter how dedicated a parent is to creating a relationship where their child will feel comfortable coming to them, children will always view you as a parent when it comes to certain situations and more than likely will not seek your advice or guidance. This is where teaching the importance of making wise decisions comes into play and making sure your actions as a parent mirror what you are teaching.
Children are always observing us and if you are at dinner with your child talking about your nonexistent dating life and how trifling men are, what are you teaching? Parents are free to live their lives but must take care in separating those things from their children. I’m not a fan of sugar-coating life but I do believe in editing some of what I say and do around my children.
It is obvious that children are facing issues that we didn’t face in our generation; however I am not a fan of building a level of trust between parent and child that involves creating a friendly relationship over a parental one. If I see one more picture on Instagram or other social network with some sort of caption stating a child is the parent’s ace, boo or friend, I might scream!
Are you a homie mama friend with loose parenting boundaries? Do you see anything wrong with being friends with your child?