One of the bittersweet moments parents experience is their kids growing up. They become trees standing tall, spreading out their branches to explore life outside the tutelage of mom and dad. And while this is expected and even encouraged, it remains scary nonetheless.
Your little man doesn’t want to be called little man anymore. They don’t want you embarrassing them in the presence of their friends. So you can’t scream I love you pumpkin when you drop them off at school, and many other rituals that used to be okay suddenly becomes embarrassing to them.
Breathe! Your kid doesn’t hate you. They are only growing up. And this phase, every parent will have to go through. If it is any consolation, they will also experience the same emotions with their kids when they become parents. And you will become the cool grandparent everyone runs to. *BIG GRIN*
To show that you are not alone, Lisa Rubisch, a New York City-based commercial director has this to say about this phase.
“It never occurred to me that my son would grow up to rebel against me, a la Alex P. Keaton.
When my son was little, I dressed him up in my image. He had Beatles-esque moppy haircuts; he wore tiny converse sneakers, sweatpants with vertical red and cream stripes, shrunken black hoodies, and army pants. He also didn’t mind wearing fluorescent-anything. He looked liked the mod/punk child I had always imagined I would have.
But as he grew, his own style emerged, and nope, it wasn’t what I groomed him to love. He now dresses behind closed doors, in private. His current fashion is to blend with the crowd, and his palette ranges from grey to black. He favors oversized Adidas basketball shorts that make me shudder. No pockets, no graphics – nothing. My heart deflated a bit when he cut his amazing wavy overgrown rock star hair for an almost militaristic buzz.
As hard as it is for me to understand, it’s his style, and he’s proud of the way he looks. Like everyone, I express myself through my clothes. We are what we wear, and my expression is to be different from everyone else as possible. My style was cultivated out of a need to rebel against my hometown’s conservative, preppy sameness.
But when I volunteered to chaperone one of my kid’s field trips, his cheeks turned literal red, and he yelled, “Mom! You just can’t! When I asked him why he mentioned my sweatshirt as an example of an embarrassing piece of me that his friends must never see – my sweatshirt has a cartoon of a guy with a gargantuan beard. So I could see how that might embarrass him.
Is it okay that my ten-year-old son is embarrassed by me? I guess it is the normal state of the universe. Even if I’m an urban mom whose work has me staying relatively current, I think I still am too old school for him.
As his mom, I am proud of him. I’m happy he has charted his course and seems comfortable walking on his fashion path. My consolation is that I still have my younger boy, who still thinks I’m the coolest. He is only seven, and soon, I may have to go through the MOM YOU ARE EMBARRASSING ME phase with him. But until then, I will revel in its comfort, like a sweatshirt with a beard on it.”
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POSTED IN: STYLE. TAGGED: DRESS UP, EMBARRASSING YOUR KIDS, KIDS DRESS, KIDS’ FASHION, KIDS’ STYLE, MOM STYLE