April 12, 2012 by Heather
Obviously, I cannot tell you how to do that. Give me a few years and then maybe I’ll try to shed some light on the subject.
A couple of weeks ago I said to Andrew, “I just don’t really like kids.” He informed me, in a rather taken aback manner, that what I had just stated wasn’t something a person should say. “You can’t say that!” Um, oh yes I can. Just did. I don’t know why he was so put off by it. He’s known for quite some time now that I’m not exactly kid friendly.
I realize that saying “I don’t like kids” is a very broad generalization of my feelings toward an entire people group. Perhaps I should have instead said, “I don’t like the majority of kids.” Is that better? Because yes, there is a small handful of children who I can tolerate and perhaps even enjoy being around from time to time. Please do not ask me if your child is one of them.
Apparently it is ok to say that you are not a kid person, but to say that you flat out don’t like them is borderline offensive. I get it – they’re cute, they say funny things, they are the future, blah blah. But if your child is the product of a hyper or under-disciplined or weird environment, no thanks. I’ll not be volunteering to babysit.
You know those people (usually girls) who are total kid magnets? I mean kids just adore them and they adore kids and let them play on their cell phones and sit in their lap and eat off their plates and yank their earrings out…? I look at those kinds of people in awe because I just don’t get it. I shake a one-year-old’s hand when I meet it for the first time. Sorry, I mean when I meet him or her for the first time.
I am one of those people who say things like, “I like your outfit” to a two-year-old. Or I’ll offer a bite of my cheeseburger to an infant. Or I’ll tell my sister to tell my perfect niece to shut it so we can have a grown up conversation. I don’t like baby talk, kid music, or kid tv shows. I’ll hold an infant and it will cry. I once sang Baby Got Back to a baby to make it go to sleep. Then I accidentally knocked it’s head on an end table. I’ll say if I think a newborn baby is weird looking, even when everyone else is lying about how cute he/she is. Most new babies are funny looking, let’s just face it. I’ll own up to it if mine is. They usually grow into their looks. Usually. Some kids, unfortunately, are just destined to look weird. We can’t all be beauty queens.
This is sounding rather harsh isn’t it?
People who know my personal stance on children have often told me, “Ooooh, all that will change once you have one of your own!” And I don’t think it will. I mean, yes, I will love the poo out of my little boy and will think he is the greatest human alive (because he will be), but I still probably won’t like your child. And that’s ok.
As Christians, we are called to love everyone. “Love the sinner, hate the sin,” and all that jazz. However, not once have I read in my Bible that I am supposed to like everyone, let alone a little kid who doesn’t have a clue how to behave. I can love it, and I might save it from a runaway train, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it. I mean him or her.
So, my new thing is to say “I LOVE ALL CHILDREN,” while secretly I am thinking that I still don’t like them. It should be better received that way by others. Unless of course they’ve read this, then they will know the awful truth.
I am 100% sure that after this post the babysitting offers will start to roll in.