Tiger mom and her cubs

February 10, 2011

My generation’s raised a bunch of bratty kids who have turned into bratty adults. The kind of grownups who think it’s ok to default on credit card and mortgage debt. Or not pay their taxes.

And the cycle continues with their kids. I’ve seen it in some of the college students I’ve taught and interns I’ve worked with.

Kids who can’t understand why their mediocrity in school or the work place isn’t praised to the high heavens. After all, mom and dad thought everything they did was fabulous.

Arrogance, when they have achieved nothing even remotely worthy of praise, much less arrogance. (Spend a lot of time in any Apple retail store and you’re bound to meet these kids.)

Young adults whose parents want to argue with Human Resources about their kids’ work reviews. That’s right. Or whose parents contact their adult children’s bosses. For any reason at all.

This is not normal behavior. Keeping the umbilical cord attached does not support a whole and healthy grown child.

It’s easy to blame permissive parenting and the entire system that’s set up to support it.

I had a pretty interesting childhood. I was raised by first generation American parents who, like most parents, wanted a better life for their kids. My Sicilian-American father took strict and authoritarian parenting to new levels.

Or so I thought, before I heard about Tiger Mom’s kid-raising theories. Her household sounds like the Gulag.

For example, she ordered her daughters to play violin or piano and they were forced to practice three hours each day. But, they weren’t allowed to be in a school play. I guess drama’s too much fun.

They were required to make straight As in school. (The concept of “requiring” that level of achievement makes me wonder about less capable kids. And how much stress that kind of pressure would put on them.)

The girls weren’t allowed to attend playdates or participate in sports. Again, her theory seems to be why have fun in your childhood when you can suffer, instead? God forbid her daughters actually ENJOY anything.

She required “yes-drill-sergeant” style obedience and wouldn’t brook any questioning of authority.

Her girls were not permitted to choose their own extra-curricular activities. More of the “fun is bad” theory.

You just know those girls are going to grow up to write a Mommy-Dearest book. (I hope it happens in my lifetime.)

So, let me talk about the impact of my upbringing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Follow Carol


Here you’ll find my blog, some of my essays, published writing, and my solo performances. There’s also a link to my Etsy shop for healing and grief tools offered through A Healing Spirit.


I love comments, so if something resonates with you in any way, don’t hesitate to leave a comment on my blog. Thank you for stopping by–oh, and why not subscribe so you don’t miss a single post?


Subscribe to my Blog

Receive notifications of my new blog posts directly to your email.