By DR. JOHN L. COX
Dear Mom and Dad,
Instead of sending you an Instagram or a Selfie or a Facebook posting, I wanted to try to speak to you in your own strange language—Written English.
Hence, I am writing you a letter.
I just need you to know how hard my life is. It is a life of deprivation and woe. Firstly, you make me do horrible things like obey you. Here I am minding my own business, and by that I mean literally my OWN business, (that is all I want to do, you understand—my OWN business) as opposed to YOUR business. And in the midst of my self-centered bliss, along comes this “parent-person,” with all your rules and regulations, telling me ridiculous things like I need to pick up my socks. I feel like I should call the Department of Human Services again and say, “Yeah, this is little Johnny—you know the one who called you last week? They’re doing that thing again, you know that thing with the socks.” And maybe they will rescue me from this life of bondage.
And another thing, I had a baseball game last night (the fourth one this week), and one of you did not attend and video it!!! I believe that I’m going to need to talk to my therapist about this one day. I’ll say, “I remember that traumatic time in April 2013 when one of my parents didn’t come to one of my games. I think it has caused me to have addictive functioning and a diseased process of toxic codependency. I need holistic healing and wellness before I can ever feel good about myself. My family was dysfunctional and my parents never empowered me, and consequently, I’m not self-actualized. Help me please!!” So, there!! LOL. But there is still time for you to make this all better.
Anyway where was I was I before I got distracted by my entitlement, er, woundedness? Oh yeah—I was talking about how hard my life is. Yes, it is very hard.
You make me wake up in the morning and eat a breakfast that you cooked, and you make me go to the school that you pay for, and you have the nerve to make me study for all my classes—and you actually give me consequences if I don’t study!! This is ridiculous. I’ve got really great Xbox games that NEED to be played!!! (I’m stuck on Level 10!!) I should be able to play Xbox and text my friends all I want. And you should go to work and earn money to enable me to do this. And you should require nothing of me for all of this work that you do. Are you getting this yet? Send me a Tweet at #guiltyparents if you are understanding of my pain.
By the way, another thing—if my friends are getting to do something, then you should naturally be required to allow me to do those things as well. Just think of what the other parents will think of you if you say “No” when all of those parents said “Yes!!” You will feel very ashamed. They will think you are the puritanical, rigid parent, and you wouldn’t want that would you!!! Remember, you need to be like all the other parents or else you will feel very bad about yourself.
And another thing—you should not get to make rules for me unless I feel like those rules are “fair.” And what is “fair” is decided by me. You act like You are the authority around here, but even YOU have to bend the knee to the great god, “Fairness.” So if you have not asked something of my brother then you should not ask it of me—do you understand?!? That would be Unfair!!
Lastly, (and I have so enjoyed our little chat) I feel that when you ask me to do something like help you with the dishes or do chores, you are acting like YOU matter or something!!!! OMG, that is just so Redonk!!! In fact, when you do that it really worries me that I might eventually learn that my life is not about holding a board meeting and electing myself chairman!! I worry that I will begin to take responsibility for my choices (shudder). I even had a bad dream last night that I felt this horrible feeling called humility and gratitude for all that you have done for me. I woke up in a cold sweat. Perhaps I should just keep playing Words with Friends until 2 a.m. and avoid sleep all together.
Anyway, my friends keep texting my on my iPhone 4G (I can’t believe you haven’t gotten me a “5” yet!!) so I’ve gotta go. TTYL.
PS – Happy Mother’s Day
Dr. John L. Cox is a clinical psychologist who has been practicing in Jackson for 25 years. He works with adults, marriages and children at Live Oak Psychological Associates. You can contact him at 601-352-7398, or at his website: www.liveoakpsych.com.