I am a sort of a “free mom.” I believe in my girls making their own choices to learn from (for the most part). They pick out their own clothes. At mealtime, they get 2 options to choose from and can select from those. I ask their opinion on activities, they watch TV and sometimes eat cereal for dinner….gasp!
I know these things don’t really make me a bad mom, but I know some parents and non-parents think how I raise my children is odd. More often than not, my girls choose grilled cheese or PB & J sandwiches, hot dogs, and cereal. They love tiger cereal and chocolate “fruit loops.”
And honestly? I don’t care, as long as they eat and I don’t have to wage a battle royale.
Everything is a battle when you have toddler/preschoolers! I do cook, they just don’t like “mommy foods.” So they stick to their standard menu, and sometimes even venture out into spaghetti, lasagna, tacos, pizza and sloppy joe sandwiches. According to my grandma, “It seems like you’re cooking spaghetti every time we talk!” We talk once a week. Come on grandma, cut me some slack. It’s definitely every other time we talk. The ladies love pasta, what can I say.
I tried so hard to push what it seemed like they should have been eating and no one was happy. I’d cook what I wanted them to eat, thinking “they’ll eat it or be hungry,” except they would choose hunger and then drive me nuts and wake me up later for a snack!! They sure showed me! They always eat the fruit and other sides offered, but the rest is a struggle.
And then there’s TV time.
I let my kids watch TV. I’m not ashamed and please don’t feel bad about it at all and if you do the same. I had so many parents in my 12 yrs of doing childcare tell me they allowed TV for their kids, and they’d be so embarrassed about it. I’m not sure when using some TV time to get mommy time became such a serious offense. If I need a little assistance from Daniel Tiger to get that toddler to “just chill” and stop whining, I turn it on. I mean, I’m not letting the kid watch soap operas, Lifetime movies or HBO (except Sesame Street…can we please talk about how it’s weird that it’s on HBO?). That small moment of sanity that is crammed into those 26 minutes is much deserved and needed.
Regardless of this, my girls are still well adjusted and bright and I bet yours are too, whether or not they’re picky-eating TV-watchers like mine or completely opposite! If you are one of the lucky ones who can do it with no tv or devices and all kale and lean proteins, kudos to you and please spill your secret! I’ll end with one of my favorite things to tell people when they have an issue with my parenting, “I’ll do what works for me, ya’ll do what works for you.”