Parenting Fails Happen


I enjoyed the Grade 5 Recognition Ceremony at the boys’ school last night.  Watching Bob celebrate the transition from the Lower School to Middle School filled me with joy and just a little bit of sorrow.  I am not a fan of 6th graders going into middle school, but that is where we find ourselves now, so I have no choice but to roll with it.  Bob is ok with it, now that the school has thoroughly prepared the class for the move, and the administration goes a long way to keep the 6th graders mostly isolated from the bigger kids, thankfully.

Meanwhile, back at home, Dwight was in charge of helping Harold take a bath and get ready for bed.  I rotate between which older boy I leave in charge of Harold when I’m out, and while they might not be thrilled about it, it usually goes pretty well.  Last night, not so much, and Harold was up way past his bedtime, leading to a more challenging than usual wake-up this morning.

Harold proclaimed that he could not go to school because he had a sore throat and also felt very tired.  He insisted that he didn’t feel well and could not possibly go to school, despite the fact that he would miss swimming.  He felt a little warm, so, I relented.  I said he could stay home, with certain parameters: No internet, no video games, etc.


Two hours later, Harold seemed better, so I asked him how he was feeling.  He said, “My throat is ok, but it might get bad again and besides, there’s a big test today, so I’ll still stay home.”

Wait.. What?  Hand hits forehead.


First of all… a big test… in first grade?

“Harold, what kind of test?”


“You know, you’ll have to take the test on Monday.”

“Maybe.  But maybe not.”

Hmmm.  I’m pretty sure this was a parenting fail.  I probably should have made him get dressed and driven him to school, but I didn’t.

There. I said it.

Sure, it wasn’t my finest parenting moment, but I’m ok with him staying home.  He’s seven years old.  He has LOTS of big tests ahead of him; especially at the international schools he’s on track to attend.  Missing one is not going to make or break him.  Sometimes a kid needs a day off when he’s tired.

Nautical Alphabet

Sometimes adults do too.


About Commander in Chief At home

Erin is a military spouse and, sometimes temporarily single mom to 4 boys. She's a writer, editor, teacher, and (Autism) mom.
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2 Responses to Parenting Fails Happen

  1. Oh, a classic! Clever kid. I agree that facing up to these kinds of challenges early is important, but still got a kick out of his ingenuity.


  2. I love both his logic and his honesty!


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