Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Not babysitter material

So, the weekend visit with the brother went okay. It felt like we really didn't get much of a chance to talk, but I guess neither of us are very big talkers anyhow. Or we just don't know how to instigate a conversation sometimes. Also, there was a bit of awkwardness with his girlfriend and her 8 year old daughter being there. The good thing was that the girl really liked us, the bad (well I don't know if I can even say bad, just kind of again, awkward) thing was that she was getting really clingy with me. And they didn't seem to care or you know, get her off of me, but whatever. Oh now, I know what you're thinking - "aww, she liked you, don't be mean about it". It's true that as much as I don't feel like a "kid person" they do have a way of melting my childless, cold-ass heart. Damn kids. Making me like them and stuff.

For some reason, it seems as if I'm always the one that both dogs and children run to. They will single me out of a crowd even when I try to blend in. Don't get me wrong - I like kids. I like dogs. But sometimes I have similar problems with both.

Like, you know when people have a particularly jumpy dog they'll usually try to hold them back and keep them off of their guests? I appreciate that. Honestly, I was for the most part terrified of dogs as a kid and while I was never bitten - being growled at and jumped on or knocked over pretty much scared the shit out of me on several occasions. I suppose it didn't help that I'd shriek and pull my hands up, but hey - we never had a dog before - I didn't know what to do. Anyways, point being - not everyone is a "dog person" or will know how to keep your dog under control if it freaks out and I really don't think they should have to. I think most owners are considerate of that fact.

Same goes for children. It's kinda nice when parents restrain them from jumping on you and stuff. Most parents are considerate when visiting other people's homes that do not have kids, and note that perhaps this isn't a place to let them run around willy-nilly and out of control, even if that's what they do at home. I'm not saying the kids should have to be bored out of their minds and sit there being seen and not heard. I'm saying that when you visit someone with your kid - who these people have never met - you might want to maybe give them something to occupy themselves with and like, maybe pay attention to what they're doing so your hosts don't have to become the mean old babysitter. You know? I don't mean to sound like some old bitch. I just mean like, do you let your kids just wander into other people's bedrooms or mess with their things or with their pets? And we've had friends before who have come over with their child (and I understand that they need a break and want to visit with the adults and everything, but...) then sort of ignore them while they try to pull expensive electronics off of shelves, or beat on things, or just shrug when their kid knocks shit over that he shouldn't have been messing with, and look at you like it's your fault that your house wasn't childproof. It just seems to put us in an uncomfortable situation. But you know...

Anyways, point - if there is one - is that both my brother and his girlfriend have quite complacent or maybe just apathetic personalities. While this sometimes may seem like a good coping mechanism among chaos, it can lead to bad things, too. I'm just a bit worried about the fact that they are due to have a baby in another few months and they're kinda like "eh, whatever." They are both in their 30s and I don't feel that I'm one to give them advice. I don't expect them to change their lifestyle and I certainly can't talk as I don't have kids of my own and I haven't always made the wisest choices in my own life. I do hope for the best for them, and it was nice to have them visit - but also nice to have them go.

1 comment:

The Reverend Dan said...

Coincidentally, I've always been the one that ex-girlfriends' dogs run to. Perhaps that's just because I take estrogen pills and am usually wearing their owner's underthings.