Today’s question comes to us via the magic of Google’s Let’s Track Every Move People Make On The Internet program. Earlier this week a thoughtful child found I’ve Become My Parents by typing this question into Google:
What are 4 things parents need from their children?
Well, Google certainly sent you to the right place. But then Google does have a dark sense of humour.
I got a question a few weeks back that I think is relevant here: “Why are my parents suddenly being nice to me?” I know what you’re thinking: it’s because they want something from you, right? Wrong. Think about it: we always want something from you yet we are rarely actually nice to you. If your parents are suddenly being nice to you it’s because they’re afraid of something. That’s totally different and will no doubt be the subject of a future post.
So what do we want?
Ask anybody’s child and you’ll quickly learn that there are many more than four things that parents want from their children. Oddly enough, the list of things parents don’t want is equally long. Someone should ask me that question some time because I think it would lead to a quite satisfying rant, and I could use the release.
To understand what your parents want, you need to understand the concept of unconditional love. We love you unconditionally. And we’ll keep loving you unconditionally as long as you give us what we want. So, in exchange for our unconditional love we expect the following four things:
- Money. Look, we didn’t work our asses off all our lives so we could retire broke. We did it out of unconditional love for our kids. And all we expect in return is that you’ll start sending us cheques on a monthly basis beginning the moment you finish high school (college if we’re feeling particularly patient, but we expect bigger cheques).
- Your unconditional love. Yes, we ask that you love us unconditionally as we do you. We expect that you’ll demonstrate that love by doing what we want, when and how we want it.
- We need you to quit your whining. “But Daddy, I just washed your car yesterday.” “Daddy, none of the other kids have to give their parents nightly foot massages.” Honestly, it gets old real fast.
- We need you to make up for all our shortcomings. This is one of the main reasons we have kids in the first place: we messed up and you’re our second chance. Find out what your parents sucked at and make sure you’re really good at it. My kid needs to kick ass at sports and I’d be totally thrilled if he dates college girls when he’s fifteen. All he really needs to do, though, is date any girl and he’s made up for a lot. If she actually knows she’s on a date and is happy about it, that would be even better.
Your parents love you very, very much, anonymous Google searching person. There is nothing more magical than a parent’s love for their child. Remember that and smile next time your arm’s down the toilet searching for Mom’s ring.
Problem solved. You’re welcome!