Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Help! My children aren't delinquents

Anyone who reads the Daily Mail or watches the daily diet of low-rent reality programmes churned out by the less mainstream channels, you know 'Binge Drinkers in Benidorm', 'Legless in Limassol', that sort of stuff, will know that British teenagers are a rum lot - or is that full of a lot of rum?

Ooh look, even Time thinks so
They wear hoodies and hang round on street corners haranguing innocent pensioners, assuming they are not off shooting/stabbing their peers that is, they binge drink on  cheap alcohol and spend their Saturday nights lying in the gutter with their thongs on show - and that's just the men.

A few weeks ago, The Girl had a sleepover with a bunch of her friends. I was invited out to dinner with friends down the road so left them to it.  In my day, parental absence was a excuse for illicit sex, recreational drugs and a fair bit of vodka so I was horrified to come home and find a re-run of the Great British Bake Off taking place in my kitchen.  Instead of the kitchen being strewn with empty cider bottles and cigarette butts, cupcakes were browning in the oven and a rather superb victoria sponge was sitting on the table. They had made a bit of a mess with the icing sugar though.

Oh knickers! Why don't mine do this?
Last weekend The Boy had a party for 30 of his school friends, all 16 year olds. There would be alcohol (I should mention here that I buy The Boy two cans of low alcohol cider if he's going to a party but refuse point blank to provide alcohol for anyone else's child.)  Finally, a chance to prove the Daily Mail right.  Surely among this lot someone was going to get drunk and be sick on the carpet or pass out with their head stuck down the side of the toilet? Maybe run round the graveyard opposite mooning? That's what they did in my day. The Boy went round to the neighbours and put a note through their door to say he was having a party, apologised for any disturbance and assured them that the music would go off at midnight.  They didn't do that in my day.

I went down to the village pub with friends, promising to pop back at 11.30 to bust a few shapes on the dance floor. Well, why miss out on a great chance to embarrass your children?

When I did pop back, I couldn't believe it. I couldn't hear the music from the other end of the village - in fact I couldn't even hear it from 100 metres away. Pathetic! If a bunch of 16 year olds can't upset the neighbours there's no hope. I left in disgust for a post-pub coffee down the road, hoping that by the time I finally came home  they would have at least trashed the lounge.  

By 1am I felt it was time to brazen the Mongol Hordes so I crept back in to...... silence. Everyone had either gone home or bedded down in sleeping bags for the night.  The remaining 4 people who were still up were tidying up then asked if they could possibly watch a video and have a cup of tea. I mean... Rock and Roll!

Where have a I gone wrong? I was a hideous teenager and my mother has lived in hope that my own teen terrorists would be suitably revolting and put me through what she went through. That would be divine retribution for all the sleepless nights I gave her. I feel a total failure. I am not a feckless parent of feckless children. I've tried, really I have, but damn it, they are just so.... bloody well behaved! Should I teach them to sniff glue? Give them binge drinking lessons?  

I always say if you can't be a good example, be a terrible warning. Maybe I've done just that?

But just in case you think that they sound perfect, I'm going to burst your bubble by pointing out that The Boy is an opinionated little shite at times (wonder where he gets that from?) and The Girl is busy recreating the slums of Calcutta in her bedroom. Guess we can't have it all ways!

This is not my son


Steve said...

Plainly you have been and continue to be a fabulous parent. ;-)

Sarah said...

It just goes to show how well children survive their parenting. :D

Monalisa said...

Mine were the same at that age, I expected the worst things to happen, but they were very well behaved. I think they didn't want to turn out like me.

Perpetua said...

Neither were mine,Wylye Girl. We're obviously failures and haven't provided the DM with any new material. Sob....

the fly in the web said...

You must be burning the midnight oil wondering where you went wrong....

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