Has guilt gone out of style?
My mother has a way about her. She can reduce me to a puddle of neurosis with a glance. She doesn't have to say a word and I'm in a fetal position of guilt.
She's a pro.
So, one would think I'd have learned from a master. Not so fast.
My kids are impossible to guilt. No matter how many times I look down my nose in that meaningful way...you know what way. I get nothing.
A well placed heavy sigh, a wavering bottom lip, a shoulder slump - all time honored, well tested tools in the mother's guilt toolbox. Fugget about it.
Even my favorite - silence. Those pregnant and hurtful pauses on the phone gets these responses:
"Is this where I'm supposed to feel guilty?" my son says.
"You're not trying that again, are you?" my daughter says.
The precious darlings.
So, when my husband and I married ten years ago, we blended families. You can imagine my excitement. 2 new kids! Finally. "Give guilt a chance," I thought.
The joke was on me. They both have an inner toughness that I hadn't counted on. In fact, I don't think they've ever even noticed my best attempts.
How we managed to have 4 kids better adjusted than we are...well, it boggles the mind. Who do they think they are, anyway?
Luckily, I'm no respecter of persons when it comes to the laying on of the guilt trip. Isn't that what grandkids are for?
Forget this one. She's too busy planning world domination to bother with guilt.
This one had real possibilities. But then she discovered Calliou. And Dora the Explorer. And Mario Bros. She just asks me to get out from in front of the TV when she's had enough. Or, she pretends she's fallen into a coma.
This one's a slave to fashion. Not guilt.
Where have I gone wrong?
So, that leaves him. Even I wouldn't bet on me.
You couldn't hear me, but I just sighed. Really loud.
I gotta go call my mother. To apologize.