Growing up, my mom constantly warned me to be careful or I'd crack my head open.
Yes, I learned, that nearly everything could end with me accidentally being maimed or killed. "Don't go too high on the swings, you'll fall and crack your head open." "Be careful playing on that icy sidewalk, you don't wanna slip and break your neck." "Stop leaning back in your chair, you'll..." "Don't run by the pool… Don't hang upside down from the monkey bars…"
Though few, if any, of those things ever happened, I'm pretty sure the fear of these catastrophes scarred me for life. Which is why I swore not to sound so fatalistic with my own kids.
Oh sorry, that was me laughing because, well, the best laid plans ... and all.
Now that my kids have a bit of independence, I've realized I rely on scare tactics and maybe some exaggeration to get many a point across.
So, here's just a few things I've caught myself saying that will most likely send them to therapy later in life.
(Look, they may have to make important decisions without me, like how much popcorn to stuff in their mouths when someone else's parent takes them to a movie... So, no judgments.)
1. Don't eat in bed, the food won't go all the way down and you could choke.
2. Make sure you step on towels when you get out of the tub/shower the bathroom is the most dangerous room in the house.
3. Don't stick body parts out the windows a car could come by and chop them off.
4. If you get tired while taking a bath call for me to come get you, you could fall asleep and drown.
5. Don't go out past your bellybutton, the undertow could pull you out to sea, plus there might be sharks.
6. Don't get near the Bufo toads, I'm pretty sure I read that they can spray from 15 feet and could kill a small adult.
7. You cannot go outside in just a t-shirt, that's how you catch pneumonia.
8. When you're playing outside, stay away from the areas with a lot of foliage, snakes like to hide in there.
9. I don't trust the rides at these carnivals, people die on them, a lot.
10. I'll only send you grapes for lunch if you promise to eat them one at a time, they're a huge choking hazard.
11. Don't wear headphones or a sleep mask to bed, the wires/string could get wrapped around your neck.
12. Never pet a dog without asking permission, they could bite your head off.
13. You can't get a bb gun, you'll shoot your eye out
. (Wait that wasn't me… but I'd say it if they asked.)
Wow, I never expected to be that person
… I'll have to print out this list and save it for my kiddos so they can simply hand it to the therapists they will inevitably need
: "Why do I have irrational fears of swimming in open waters, eating small round foods, the woods, unsterilized manicure tools? Here, read this …"
Do you catch yourself saying things that may or may not scar your little ones, to keep them away from what you consider harmful?