In this modern world, and perhaps since the beginning of industrialization, one may see many reasons to be a “bad” parent. When you live in the sprawling suburbs like my family does, however, you see these reasons everywhere.
Don’t get me wrong, I love ol’ Richmond Hill, Ontario. Diversity, generally healthy approaches to live, safety, amenities, access to everything — I can’t complain really.
But the conformity. My goodness, the unspoken, pervasive, unrelenting conformity. Here is my first in a series called Reasons to be a “Bad” Parent.
Reason #1: When the majority of people who attend your local public school live only a maximum of a kilometre away and no one walks to get to and from there.
Again, please don’t misinterpret: I know there are many reasons you may drive your child to or from school. This is a complex, modern web we’ve tangled ourselves up in. No judging here, I have no problem with it.
I do take umbrage, however: when my family makes a concerted effort to teach our 3yo daughter to ride her two wheeler and happily ride it 450 metres to and from school every day; when all her kindergarten classmates drop their jaws, wondering, “How on earth can she do that?”; when we have figured out a way for us to build natural, purposeful, physical movement into our family’s busy schedule; and when…
The number of times we have been asked by our suburban counterparts if we “really think it’s a good idea” in patronizing tones, implying that walking/riding to school WITH our child is some kind of abhorrent act of living on the edge is too many to count.
If being a “bad” parent means that, just call me Michael Jackson himself.
CC licensed photo shared by Flickr user Jason Taellious