Where is the Parenting Rule Book?

Where is the rule book for raising kids?As those of you with children already know, kids are always up to something new, growing and maturing every day.

My daughter Kiara, who is now 10 years of age, is becoming a young lady overnight. Along with starting fourth grade, she’s beginning to blossom, boys are starting to become cute and the peer pressure of fitting in has been enough to keep her busy.

A few months ago, Kiara came to me and said she was getting picked on because she had somewhat of a unibrow (at least that’s what the kids called it) and asked if I would cut the hair in between her eyebrows off.

My first thought was “oh no, you are 9 years old!!” I didn’t get my eyebrows shaped until I was almost grown. So after her making her plea bargain, she went back to school with the mindset that it would blow over and the kids would find someone else to tease. But that didn’t happen; she came home again, but this time in tears and begged to have me cut the extra hair.

When I realized that she wasn’t asking for a make-over, but more of a quick fix, I told her to go get the tweezers. She smiled at first, but after I assured her it would hurt, she thought twice and asked for scissors instead. I told her scissors wouldn’t do the trick, so she took the pain like a solider and to this day she hasn’t gotten teased about her eyebrows. The lesson learned for mom was that it will not always work the way it did when I was a child, sometimes we have to adjust the rules.

Things were fine in fourth grade after the unibrow incident until about a month ago when Kiara realized that she also had very hairy legs.

It didn’t bother her during the colder months because she usually wore tights with her skirts or pants. But now that the warmer months are here she asked if we could shave her legs. Once again, my first thought was, ok this is a definite NO. Little girls don’t shave their legs at 10 years old. (But what age do they start??)

So I spoke to a couple of my good friends who reminded me that it’s not about age. Our parents came from a different era with different rules and beliefs. Kiara is simply asking to have the hair removed off her legs because she doesn’t like it and it makes her feel uncomfortable. So once again I said to myself, she is mature, responsible and not a follower so I went ahead and taught her how to shave her legs.

Even though, I can still remember sneaking to do mine on occasion because my mom said no and swore I would bruise myself, I’m learning that we as parents must pick our battles wisely. We can’t always say no if we want them to be open and honest with us, we have to trust that they will be mature but remember that they will make mistakes.

Now the subject on “boys are starting to look cute…” That’s a whole other topic that I will stand my ground for now and continue to say NO to boys.

What about you?

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