Many parents lament about their children taking a long time and giving them a hard time when it came to choosing clothes.
This statement sounded like a #firstworldproblem.
The problem of making such #firstworldproblem implied a few things.
1. My child was so brilliant & special because he/she had his/her own taste.
2. My child knew what he/she wanted in life, even at such a young age.
I was guilty of that too, till I surveyed more people and realized that children today would choose their own clothes because we allowed them to. They also had the luxury of an array of clothes to choose. Marketing research had always shown that the internet savvy generation was a narcissistic lot. The narcissists in us would naturally lend to becoming narcissistic parents.
Well, nothing wrong being narcissistic parents because we were all narcissists to begin with; just look at the number of selfies and how selfies could even become a noun! The only problem was how narcissistic parents would tend to worship the ground their children walk on and make lives difficult for themselves.
When Z started choosing his clothes, I was delighted (cheap thrill) because I was pretty sure I did not do that in the past. Having friends aplenty meant I cross checked and realized it was not a very interesting feat. However, I was still amused when he told me that he wanted to wear this certain red shirt with that certain blue shorts.
Until he began making our lives miserable.
He would not leave the house without a dozen outfit changes. We were delayed in going out, had a zillion clothes to keep in the wardrobe and had to deal with a then (less than 2yo) toddler screaming his lungs out. He expected us to know which precise t-shirt he wanted when he could not even talk. He only knew how to grunt, said ‘no’, threw tantrums and cried.
I never thought I would have a prodigy on my hand so I wised up and put him back in his place. I was the parent and he had to listen. My favourite liner was, “Who should listen to who? Do I listen to you or do you listen to me? Who is the parent here? Who pays for the bills? Who decides where to go, how to go and what to do?”
Well, thanks to my firm stand, Z grew out of ‘choosing clothes’ tantrum phase. Today, we practised some form of democracy. He could tell me what he wanted to wear but I reserved the final say on what he was to wear. He could also wear anything he liked but bore the final responsibility should the outfit be too warm or too thin. He had learnt that his parents knew best and till he was smarter or more analytical than the two of us put together, it would be to his benefit to listen to us.