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Before There Was the Internet, there was only Ann Landers and Dear Abby

Posted by bell_flower 
Before There Was the Internet, there was only Ann Landers and Dear Abby
November 08, 2020
In 1975 Dear Abby asked her readers if they would have children again if they knew what it entailed, and approximately 70% of the letters she got in response were an emphatic NO. (Of course, we all know this was not a truly random sample, but it was still very telling because really, how many parunts would be willing to admit they fucked up in a real survey?)

I was an early articulator and declared at age 9 that I would never have children. I will be 60 in a couple of years, and I thank the appropriate deity every day that I had the strength of my convictions to remain childFREE. I would have LOATHED my life if I had sprogged.

I have reached the finish line--I am retired, financially secure and married to a good man who didn't want children either. While my life currently has a bit of aging parent drama, it will not be that way forever. Children, on the other hand, are forever. I have all the validation I need for my decision---I'm reaping the fruits of that decision every day. Watching my childed friends and their drama are the icing on the cake.

Anyway, I was recently going through some papers and I found some columns I clipped from a newspaper. Each one of them had examples of the life I did. not. want. to live and they were a talisman of sorts. I carried them for years. I held on to them because I had close to ZERO role models.

I thought you may find them interesting. I only cut the column, no dates, but I estimate they are at least 35 years old. Very yellow. There are three and I will type them up as I have time.

She Regrets Having a Child

Dear Ann:
If I remember right, about 10 years ago, you took a poll of your readers, asking "If you had to do it over again, would you have children?" I seem to recall that a shockingly high percentage responded with a resounding "NO." I think it's time to re-run the results of that poll.

Having babies is back in style, especially among affluent couples in their 30's. Many of these women who enjoyed lucrative, exciting careers have decided they want it ALL! They have no idea of the responsibilities and restrictions small children will impose on their lives. At best, motherhood is an invisible, low-status occupation with no pay and no time off. Worse yet, a lot of hard work and good intentions can result in failure.

How do I know? Ten years ago I was pregnant when I learned of your study in a magazine article. To be fair, I was already experiencing doubts about my aptitude for motherhood.

Ten years later, I'm certain that i never should have had a child. I really tried---and I am still trying--but the boy is hyperactive all his life and it's more than I can handle.

This type of child, estimated to compromise 10 percent of male children, sleeps very little, talks constantly and requires around the clock supervision. After 10 years of hard work there are still many places I cannot take him because he won't behave properly and ends up embarrassing me. I see signs of improvement and people have congratulated me on the "wonderful" job I am doing, but it does not feel wonderful. When I think of what it's going to take to get this child through high school--well, I don't want to think of it or I couldn't face the next day.

Television, magazines and movies portray the raising of children as a rewarding, joyous and effortless process. Never do people see that is something goes wrong, it can also be the most painful, lingering and public of failures.

Ann, please print this letter. I can't bear to think of the young women out there who are ready to throw away hard-won opportunities on a whimsical impulse to have a baby. If my letter saves even one person from paying the price I paid, it will be well worth the effort it took to write it.

I cannot use my name for obvious reasons. Please sign me:

Bummed Out

Editor's note: I give kudos to Ann Landers for her response.

Dear Bummed Out:

Hyperkinetic children can drive a person crazy, but under competent professional supervision and proper medication they can be calmed down considerably.

Motherhood is not for everyone. Women who don't want children should marry men to whom parenthood is not important. Neither should feel guilty.

For you, I recommend counseling to help you cope and an organization called Parents Anonymous. At the support group meetings you will meet mirror images of yourself and will feel better.
'Maternal Instinct:' Catch phrase for guilt?

Dear Ann Landers: This is for "Southern Dilemma," who described herself as a washout when it came to being a mother.

She is not alone. Many of us feel trapped and resentful because we cannot stand our kids.

"Maternal Instinct" is a lot of bull. It's just another way to make women feel guilty. (You will notice nobody ever talks about "paternal instinct.")

I've been staying home with our two year old son because of pressure from my family, but I'm counting the minutes until I can go back to work. meanwhile, my most comforting thought: Eventually, they do grow up.

Signed, IDAHO.

Dear Idaho, you have plenty of company. I could not believe the volume of mail on this subject. Want to read over my shoulder? Take a look:

From Van Nuys, CA: "Southern Dilemma" is a soul sister for sure. At age 36, I finally became joyously pregnant.

Everything was great until the baby came. I had planned to stay home for three months, but after eight weeks I could not stand it. I went back to work, where I was a respected executive. (At home, the kid was in charge.) My husband was disgusted with me.

Eighteen months later, I was treated for postpartum depression. It helped to know there was a medical reason for my negative feelings about motherhood. Now the guilt is gone and I truly love my child.

From Los Angeles: When our son was born I went back to work as soon as possible and took on a second job so I could be away day and night. After a while I knew I needed therapy and I got it. End result: My son is now grown and we have a great relationship.

From Greensboro, NC (because infertile whiners have been injecting themselves into these types of conversations since time began)
When I read letters from women who cannot stand their children, I could just bawl. I've been trying to get pregnant for six years. This morning I read a story about a perfectly healthy baby found in a trash can. It seems to me that God could do a better job of sending children to people who would love and cherish them. Editor's note: Could it be that perhaps some people who profess to believe in God are having a hard time when God's answer is NO, or hey Bitch, if you want a baby, why don't you adopt the thousands I've already sent into shitty families?

Jacksonville, FL: Every mother has felt like "Southern Dilemma" for at least a day in her life. She needs a good doctor, a good friend, a good laugh and a good night's sleep.

Atlanta Georgia: Motherhood is not for everyone. Neither is fatherhood. My husband and I married when I was 28 and he was 30. He had a vasectomy and I had my tubes tied. We may be missing out on some of the pleasures of life, but we are also being spared a lot of grief.
Re: Before There Was the Internet, there was only Ann Landers and Dear Abby
November 08, 2020
I'm glad to see a distaste for parenthood seeping into slightly more mainstream media like Ann Landers rather than being exclusive to message boards, Reddit, etc.

The absolute bottom line is simple: Everything is not for everyone. Just because one person loves something does not mean the next person will. I have never seen people make worse decisions in life than when they reproduce. So many people think that having kids is "just what you do" when you get married or reach a certain age. So many people assume that their children will come out perfectly healthy and will turn into flawless little angels with no effort at all. So many people think having a child is a matter of going about life as normal but with a stroller thrown in.

It's terrifying how many people enter into parenthood having no idea what to expect or having disturbingly inaccurate expectations, and no parenting book will prepare you for the shitshow that awaits because while children are universally horrible, each child also comes with their own special brand of horrible that you have to try to navigate. It also doesn't help that most people think harder about what they want for dinner than they do about becoming parents, especially given that at least half of all pregnancies are unplanned.

r/BreakingMom should be required reading starting in high school. Have obstetricians visit health classes to describe alllllll the things that go wrong during pregnancy and childbirth, both in regard to typical things like tearing and 24/7 vomiting and more serious complications like pre-ecclampsia and gestational diabetes. Bonus points for photos or videos of traumatic births.

But it will never happen because humans think that the godawful bullshit we call parenthood is our best kept secret and it people found out the truth, they might not have kids. If the birth rate goes down, then we'll have a shortage of taxpayers, voters, soldiers, and patients. Can't have any rich fuckers becoming marginally less rich, now can we? The truth is certainly out there, you just have to know where to find it.

It's very telling when so many people would opt out of parenthood in hindsight. I legitimately don't understand the appeal of reproducing. I've tried to understand it - not out of an interest in doing it, but just trying to find the alleged magic in an otherwise horrible experience so I can go, "Oh okay, I see why someone might do that." But I do this real dumb thing called thinking and I just can't find anything worthwhile about the whole thing.

Most of the time, having kids is like drunkenly giving yourself a homemade tattoo. Seemed like a good idea at the time when you ordered all the equipment and you think it's gonna be just fine and you think you know what you're doing. Hell yeah, dis gon be fun! Then you sober up and look at the mess you made and rather than love it, it's just a glaring reminder of how stupid you are that you have to look at the rest of your life. The only thing is you can actually get a tattoo removed. Makes me wonder, if there was a way to sort of "unbirth" a child and go through all the pain of childbirth again just to remove your child from existence, how many parents would be lined up around the block at the hospital and fighting with one another over places in line just to do it?

I knew I didn't want kids starting when I was a kid myself, and my feelings on the matter have only gotten stronger since then. I question almost every other decision and aspect of my life on a regular basis, but the choice to not make another person has been one decision I have never faltered on.
To me, it was pretty sensible and sane for Abby to say motherhood is not for everyone.

I do not see many advice columnists or professionals giving that advice today. They are either Breeders themselves or they feel the need to kiss up to their Breeder audience, because Breeders are SO FUCKING THIRSTY for reassurance that their self inflicted misery was The Right DecisionTM.

Exhibit 1: this asshole, whose column I found when I was trying to find the original Dear Abby column about having kids. The woman is being patronized by one of her friends and this old male person piles on with more patronization. And is he delusional?

Quote

Despite the occasional fights and frustrations, it appears a vast majority of children are both wanted and cherished.

Obviously this dude isn't familiar with a governmental entity called "social services," and as for parental life satisfaction, he hasn't been over to Reddit. And I have special scorn for 70+ dudes who tell young women having children is so rewarding, when they likely did ZERO hands-on parenting themselves.

Cambion, I am crushing on you again because what you wrote is 100x better than what that dude wrote. This dude could have got to the real issues, such as: 1. the woman has a friend problem if she's happy and she gets "pity" from some of her friends, 2. parenthood is a huge decision that should require a lot of soul-searching, and choosing not to have them is a legitimate choice.
Re: Before There Was the Internet, there was only Ann Landers and Dear Abby
November 08, 2020
trouble is, many of these doe eyed baby rabids delude themselves, like the toadler brained asshats they are, that they'll be different, they'll do a better job; fantasize about themselves as the star of the 'noble mommy warrier'. they actually see the hell and misery breeding causes, but they salve their minds with this vomit.

two cents ΒΆΒΆ

CERTIFIED HOSEHEAD!!!

people (especially women) do not give ONE DAMN about what they inflict on children
and I defy anyone to prove me wrong:

The selfish wants of adults outweigh the needs of the child.

If I want to hear the pitter-patter of little feet I'll put shoes on my pets.

Some mistakes cannot be fixed, but some mistakes can be 'fixed'.

People who say they sleep like a baby usually don't have one. Leo J. Burke

Entitlement, thy name is mooooooooooooooo

Adoption agencies have strict criteria (usually). Breeders, whose combined IQ's would barely hit triple digits, have none.
Re: Before There Was the Internet, there was only Ann Landers and Dear Abby
November 09, 2020
The whole idea of the biological clock got invented when birth rates were going down, so I see these articles are truth from another era - one where motherhood wasn't being pushed so hard because most women ended up doing it anyway. Once enough women actually started using their choices, the narrative had to change, and honesty like this went out of fashion in favor of glorifying maternity.
Re: Before There Was the Internet, there was only Ann Landers and Dear Abby
November 10, 2020
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bell_flower
Cambion, I am crushing on you again because what you wrote is 100x better than what that dude wrote. This dude could have got to the real issues, such as: 1. the woman has a friend problem if she's happy and she gets "pity" from some of her friends, 2. parenthood is a huge decision that should require a lot of soul-searching, and choosing not to have them is a legitimate choice.

Aw shucks. blushing smile rolling left right I'm glad I language better in writing than I do verbally.



Something else I considered is when it comes to stuff you regret: a vast majority of mistakes can be undone, managed or fixed. Said something mean to someone? You can apologize, talk it out and ask for forgiveness. Bought a house or a car you can't afford? You can probably resell it and either get back what you paid or take a bearable loss. Blow $30,000 you don't have in Vegas? File for bankruptcy and all you get is bad credit for a few years. Buy a shirt or some other thing you didn't like when you got it home? Send it back, throw it out, donate it or jam it in a closet and forget about it. Even tattoos in all their permanence can be removed. Move into a horrible apartment? There is always the option of paying a few hundred bucks to break the lease.

But a child is one choice that you not only cannot get rid of once you have it, but you HAVE TO take care of it just like someone who actually wants to be a parent. I can see why so many people resent their kids. You can't deal with an unwanted child the way you'd deal with any other unwanted object. Feeling forced to deal with shit you don't want to deal with - especially something you not only don't get paid for, but have to pay for yourself - leads to resentment very quickly and sometimes neglect and abuse.

I mean, yes, you can get rid of an unwanted child by way of adoption, but people don't do this if the child is more than five seconds old because they'd get socially crucified by friends and family for it. I know being a kid in the system is no picnic, but then neither is being raised by 1-2 people who make sure you know every single say how much they don't want you.

Unfortunately, there's probably no way to discourage people because many are just determined to be morons. Even if they have first-hand experience with children, they'll use denial as a way to keep their experiences from preventing them from having their own kids. "It's different when it's your own" comes to mind, as does, "My child won't do (thing) because it's MY child." Then they go and act shocked when they find out having your own is actually worse. I guess technically it is different then, right? bemused eye roll God people are dumb. Children have three settings: bad, worse, and fucking awful. Yours won't be a perfect cherub just because you made it. Assume a brat you create will be as bad as the worst child you've ever met and if you think you can deal with that shit on a daily basis for the next 20 years, then have yourself a child.
Cambion, "not everything is for everyone" is such a good way to put it.

I'd also add "almost everything is a trade-off". I own a standard-transmission car. I'm sure there are positives to owning an automatic. But I like the perks of a manual, and plan on buying a manual on my next car. Yeah, kids are not cars but you get the idea. There are things I'm missing because I'm skipping parenthood, and yeah there are likely some fun/good parts but I don't bitch about missing those because I've made the right choice for me. If you're a grown adult you know that every major decision involves trade-offs.

Everyone should be able to make their decisions when it comes to kids...and those who chose to skip parenthood shouldn't get any shit for it. At all.
Yeah, any decision is a tradeoff. I once read that sometimes the best one can expect in life is to trade one set of problems for a better set of problems. I do agree with that. Example, not having enough money causes problems. Having money and stuff causes problems too: insurance, need to invest the money, need to find a trustworthy institution, money requires some maintenance. On balance though, the problems of having money outweigh the problems of not having enough money.

But it seems parunthood is hyped by so many people that it will be so magical and it's always going to be magical and there are no tradeoffs. It's kind of like overpopulation: people can agree that unchecked population increases in cats, dogs, whatever leads to too many of X, but those laws don't seem to apply to people.

There is certainly enough information out there about the tradeoffs or downsides of parenting, but as twocents wrote:

Quote

many of these doe eyed baby rabids delude themselves, like the toadler brained asshats they are, that they'll be different, they'll do a better job; fantasize about themselves as the star of the 'noble mommy warrior'. they actually see the hell and misery breeding causes, but they salve their minds with this vomit.
Re: Before There Was the Internet, there was only Ann Landers and Dear Abby
November 18, 2020
I love these articles bell_flower, thanks for sharing!

Parunthood is almost always romanticized in today's movies, tv and popular culture. This doesn't help the situation.
I would guess this combined with peer pressure is what causes most women to cave. That and a lack of critical thinking. It isn't that different than romantic movies, where all the lines for men are clearly written by women and the movies are mostly watched by women. Women who watch these movies are clearly looking for an escape from reality.
The alpha very good looking high earner childless male is not going to rescue and marry the single mahm with four kids and hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt unless it is in the context of a romantic movie. The romantic movies always offer an escape plan for the single mahms which wouldn't work out in reality!

Even without role models a casual search on the internet (today) is all it takes to see that:
Childrun are expensive!
Daycare is expensive!
Lots of kids never launch, may boomerang back in their twenties or boomerang back if they breed and divorce.

Childrun, even if you like them, are 24X7. Is there anyone who wants someone dependent on them 24X7? That would try the patience of a saint. Especially since boundaries rarely are established by crappy parunts.
Gone are the days when you could work, arrive home and your eight year old has been taking care of him/herself alone and already had dinner. Kid is entertaining itself and the parunts arriving home is a non-event, the parunts can relax and enjoy their evenings without a needy kid following them around.

Gone are personal boundaries and the ability to separate kid and adult activities when it comes to crappy parunting.
Bad boundaries also applies to parunts working (who will let their kids bug them if it rains, or whatever) and with cell phones (which crappy parunts always buy their kids) the kids expect their parunts to be "on call" for them.
Grandparunts are now expected to be second parunts to their grandkids, to do any less than every thing is to be judged by all their grandparunt friends and their kids.

Despite the obligatory "it is all worth it" end claim, there are lots of instances of easily found bleating and bitching (BreakingMom, anyone?) that make the claim questionable at best.
Breeders who whine about their kids seem to be highly likely to whine about their spouse.
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freya

Gone are personal boundaries and the ability to separate kid and adult activities when it comes to crappy parunting.
Bad boundaries also applies to parunts working (who will let their kids bug them if it rains, or whatever) and with cell phones (which crappy parunts always buy their kids) the kids expect their parunts to be "on call" for them.
Grandparunts are now expected to be second parunts to their grandkids, to do any less than every thing is to be judged by all their grandparunt friends and their kids.

If you DO something like (God forbid) require your kid to be a latch key kid, you will be arrested for child neglect if you do so before said brat is mid-teens.

+++++++++++++

Passive Aggressive
Master Of Anti-brat
Excuses!
Re: Before There Was the Internet, there was only Ann Landers and Dear Abby
November 19, 2020
What freya said x 1000. Movies offer HORRIBLE and unrealistic visions of parenthood that people are dumb enough to come to expect in reality. Like Three Men and a Baby. Two unchilded bachelors having a horrid time trying to care for a loaf (implying that only women can be good parents and all men are clueless apes), only for them to miss the thing once it's gone because by golly they just can't get enough of that little scamp and they gotta get her back! And then the bio father - also a bachelor - takes to fatherhood like a fish to water and falls in love with the child once he learns its his. Then they all live happily ever after with three dudes helping this woman raise her bastard.

You know how often that happens in real life? NEVER. No man with a decent income who is intentionally unmarried and unchilded will do a 180 when he is forcibly thrust into a more domestic role.



I also think a LOT of modern parents didn't mature mentally before having kids... to a degree. A lot of young parents now seem to still be resentful over their own parents using real parenting, real discipline, and real boundaries in order to try and turn them into functioning human beings.

And this works when the person in question isn't a spoiled brat of legal age, but I think many current first-time parents still feel that their own parents were mean to them as kids and are holding a grudge. Consider how many people think spanking is child abuse, for fuck's sake!

So in a misguided effort to "prove" to their parents/the world/themselves that their parents' way of raising them was all wrong, these people are going to have their own kids and raise them their own way, which involves lavishing the child with unnecessary amounts of affection, ignoring bad behavior or even praising it, using discussions of feelings instead of punishments, being up the kid's ass CONSTANTLY and attempting to be the child's best friend instead of its parent.

Why? So the child won't feel a single ounce of sadness or disappointment or boredom or any negative human feeling. The problem is that kids get upset over completely ridiculous shit and no amount of helicoptering will prevent that. Plus the way these retards raise these kids is going to turn them into complete failures as people. They'll probably need all kinds of medication because having to cope with things like not getting their own way or having to wait to do something will give them all anxiety or depression. They'll be very dependent and will probably struggle to form normal bonds with others. Given the shitbags Moos seem to like shacking up with, the kids will grow up with a warped sense of what constitutes a normal relationship. They'll go fucking nuts when they're told "no" or experience punishment for bad behavior as adults and will likely resort to violence and they'll generally be selfish, intolerable cunts.

All the more reason for parenting licenses to exist.
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Cambion
I also think a LOT of modern parents didn't mature mentally before having kids... to a degree. A lot of young parents now seem to still be resentful over their own parents using real parenting, real discipline, and real boundaries in order to try and turn them into functioning human beings.

And this works when the person in question isn't a spoiled brat of legal age, but I think many current first-time parents still feel that their own parents were mean to them as kids and are holding a grudge. Consider how many people think spanking is child abuse, for fuck's sake!

So in a misguided effort to "prove" to their parents/the world/themselves that their parents' way of raising them was all wrong, these people are going to have their own kids and raise them their own way, which involves lavishing the child with unnecessary amounts of affection, ignoring bad behavior or even praising it, using discussions of feelings instead of punishments, being up the kid's ass CONSTANTLY and attempting to be the child's best friend instead of its parent.

Why? So the child won't feel a single ounce of sadness or disappointment or boredom or any negative human feeling. The problem is that kids get upset over completely ridiculous shit and no amount of helicoptering will prevent that. Plus the way these retards raise these kids is going to turn them into complete failures as people. They'll probably need all kinds of medication because having to cope with things like not getting their own way or having to wait to do something will give them all anxiety or depression. They'll be very dependent and will probably struggle to form normal bonds with others. Given the shitbags Moos seem to like shacking up with, the kids will grow up with a warped sense of what constitutes a normal relationship. They'll go fucking nuts when they're told "no" or experience punishment for bad behavior as adults and will likely resort to violence and they'll generally be selfish, intolerable cunts.

This has been my observation as well since I began reading breakingmom. Nearly every single time the subject of the moos' own parents or discipline comes up, they always have some kind of complaint about how they were traumatized by a "narcissistic" parent, when I suspect the only thing they were "traumatized" by was receiving proper discipline, and vow to never subject their own brats to the same cruelty.

What I don't get is why, after countless thousands of generations of humans, this bullshit is only starting now. Perhaps it is because brats are more of a lifestyle choice than mandatory these days, thanks to modern birth control. I also wonder if they stay up the brats' asses all day to feel some kind of self worth after dropping out of the work force, or maybe it's to get back at their own working mothers.

I'm certainly glad *I* wasn't raised this way. And I don't have flawless parents, either. My father is a bully who is subject to tantrums and inanity.
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toraneko
I'm certainly glad *I* wasn't raised this way. And I don't have flawless parents, either. My father is a bully who is subject to tantrums and inanity.

I was a 'dance studio brat' and raised in a dance studio during my elementary years. I was expected to draw quietly while my mother taught dance for hours. There was plenty of Vitamin 'No' during those years, but I had no complaints.

+++++++++++++

Passive Aggressive
Master Of Anti-brat
Excuses!
Re: Before There Was the Internet, there was only Ann Landers and Dear Abby
November 19, 2020
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Cambion
And this works when the person in question isn't a spoiled brat of legal age, but I think many current first-time parents still feel that their own parents were mean to them as kids and are holding a grudge.

I do wonder how the parents of today's parents messed up so badly. Of course, there were always a few who held a grudge over their own childhood, sometimes justifiably and sometimes unfairly, but it didn't seem to be the norm to resent your parents to the degree that you completely disregarded the kind of upbringing you had. Most people, after growing up, seemed to comprehend that some of the things they didn't like were necessary in order help them develop into functional adults. I doubt any kid enjoys chores, but most adults appreciate why their parents required it.

Now, it seems that pretty much everyone is bitter about their childhoods, instead of gaining a sense of perspective with adulthood. I'm not talking about perfectly legitimate grievances such as parents beating or not showing affection, but normal discipline and expectations.
Re: Before There Was the Internet, there was only Ann Landers and Dear Abby
November 20, 2020
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yurble
I do wonder how the parents of today's parents messed up so badly. Of course, there were always a few who held a grudge over their own childhood, sometimes justifiably and sometimes unfairly, but it didn't seem to be the norm to resent your parents to the degree that you completely disregarded the kind of upbringing you had. Most people, after growing up, seemed to comprehend that some of the things they didn't like were necessary in order help them develop into functional adults. I doubt any kid enjoys chores, but most adults appreciate why their parents required it.

Now, it seems that pretty much everyone is bitter about their childhoods, instead of gaining a sense of perspective with adulthood. I'm not talking about perfectly legitimate grievances such as parents beating or not showing affection, but normal discipline and expectations.

I wonder where the mindset came from because if their parents raised them properly, then they wouldn't grow up holding these grudges, would they? I mean yes, some parents in every generation will be bad - abusive, neglectful, mean, incompetent or just shit at their jobs - but I can't imagine this many people grew up with terrible parents. I wonder where the victim complex comes from. Could also be partly due to the availability of the internet and these people can cry to others who validate their beliefs that their perfectly normal parents were abusive for grounding them or spanking them or vaccinating them.

And yes, usually when people reach adulthood, they understand why their parents did what they did and are often thankful for it because they grown enough as people to get things from an adult perspective and that their parents did all those "mean" things to teach their kids something valuable. These people don't seem to reach that point and are still in a juvenile mindset of "waaaaaah mommy wuz meeeeeean to meeeee for no reason!"

Then these morons raise their kids in a completely opposite way because it's "better" and they wonder why the kids are horrible, uncontrollable screaming brats and when they just can't fix their kids' behavior with gentle discipline and hugging, they get their kids diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders because clearly if the child isn't responding to such perfect parenting, it's because they have a mental illness.

No Becky, your kid's not autistic. He just needs his ass whooped and to hear NO now and then.
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Now, it seems that pretty much everyone is bitter about their childhoods, instead of gaining a sense of perspective with adulthood. I'm not talking about perfectly legitimate grievances such as parents beating or not showing affection, but normal discipline and expectations.

Maybe it's just garden variety entitlement? Raise someone without saying no, and they will just resent you for not giving them more?
Re: Before There Was the Internet, there was only Ann Landers and Dear Abby
November 20, 2020
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bell_flower
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Now, it seems that pretty much everyone is bitter about their childhoods, instead of gaining a sense of perspective with adulthood. I'm not talking about perfectly legitimate grievances such as parents beating or not showing affection, but normal discipline and expectations.

Maybe it's just garden variety entitlement? Raise someone without saying no, and they will just resent you for not giving them more?

Sure, I can understand that from today's kids, but I'm wondering about the people who appear to have been raised normally (e.g., with a focus on turning them into functioning adults), who, instead of developing an adult appreciation for the things that seemed unfair when they were younger, became bitter about it and then raised their own children without ever saying no. In short, the breeders of today's entitled lot.
I realize I forgot to post the third one. Many lessons here: always have a way to take care of yourself financially; don't build your whole life and persona around a man and kids and FFS, have some self-respect.

This woman had to learn the hard way:

Dear Abby: My husband, whom I'm love more than life itself, has asked me for a divorce. We've been married 12 years, have three gorgeous children and have never had a serious argument. I begged him to reconsider. I offered to change in any way he wanted. I cried and cried. Nothing made any difference.

He moved into his own apartment a month ago. Within days, I was hearing about his relationship with another woman. At first, I wouldn't believe it, but then I got to see them for myself. They were coming out of the shopping center holding hands. It explained a lot. I don't know how long this has been going on but I know I love him and I will take him back without a second thought. The questions is how to make him want to come back. Any ideas?

Abby:
Any couple who has lived together 12 years without a serious argument is:

  • not communicating honestly about their feelings ...
  • Not involved on a deep level
  • Living separate emotional lives

You cannot win him back by resorting to tears or pleading. These ploys diminish you in his eyes as well as your own. Time is your best friend. Go to work on yourself. Become self sufficient. Learn more about yourself and your needs. Explore new pursuits. Get a job. In other words, fill your time constructively. Don't be rushed into a divorce you do not want. Preparing yourself to be independent may be the spark that rekindles his interest.
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