Dear Aunty Pam
Dear Aunty Pam,
I’ve discovered I don’t really like kids very much. The problem is, they’re mine! With the virus going on and schools being closed, my husband and I decided as he makes more money than I do, I would give up my job to stay home and home school. I’ve got to be honest, our 3 kids are driving me crazy. They’re either fighting or ignoring me and to try to get them to sit down and focus is nearly impossible.
My husband is in the medical field and we take Covid-19 very seriously, so we don’t go anywhere that isn’t safe and for the kids, that’s been difficult. For me, torture. I feel like I’m in prison with three obnoxious inmates. My husband often has to work late, so I’m bearing the brunt of most of it.
I don’t even know if you can help, I’m just venting! Do you want three kids?
Kidding, not Kidding
Hell, no, I don’t want your kids. It’s enough that I get up every morning to step barefoot in a puddle of cat puke or dog pee on my trek to the coffee maker.
Look, KK, the only people who are smiling smugly at your letter are teachers who have been complaining for years that they are forced to spend a huge chunk of their day trying to get kids to shut up and sit down in the classroom, because it isn’t be taught at home, so there’s that. It’s good to see their assessments validated. It’s obvious that you are completely overwhelmed by, well, everything, along with countless parents out there that are going through the same domestic nightmare.
First of all, your kids need to learn manners and some sort of structure. That’s obvious. The problem is I’m a childless comedian and am likely to suggest the use of shock collars, so don’t look to me for help on how to teach that. I am far, far more useful being the eccentric aunt who stuffs bills in their hands to bribe them for a bit of peace and quiet. But here is a link from NPR with a few tips and some eye opening considerations:
When I was a child (Oh, boy, here we go), I remember classes sometimes being held outside. I remember homework including picking leaves from trees and pressing them inside a notebook and identifying them for a botany assignment. Catching tadpoles in a creek (or, ‘Crik’ if your car broke down in the middle of ‘Deliverance’ country), and looking at frogs. I don’t know if that’s on the curriculum anymore, but what I do know is it allowed us to run riot, like Jack Russells released from a boarding facility, so that we were suitably tired, sedate and therefore more likely to focus on dreaded fractions when we returned inside.
Here’s hoping you have access to a park or a backyard in which to do the same. The kids deserve recess, as do you, and a few games of Dodge Ball in 93 degree heat and humidity will not only take the edge off their energy, but afterwards, they’ll pretty much have to sit quietly and lean back in their chairs to stop the nosebleeds.