FILED IN: Parenting

Another In A Long List Of Things I Do Not Understand…

It’s hard being straight as an arrow sometimes. It lends it self to being judgemental and feeling uncomfortably holier-than-thou. I tend to have a rather firm grasp on human nature and behaviors, but there is a phenomenon that eludes me.

I was one of two single people at a huge Halloween party last night, and probably also one of two or three who wasn’t drunk, or high, or both.

How do parents reconcile being drunk as skunks or high as kites and going home to children, big or small?

Most of these people also had to drive home, although locally. Most of these people also had babysitters who presumably needed rides home as well. And what happened if one of any number of children across manicured lawn lines woke up in the middle of the night?

“Sorry that I woke you with my hysterical giggling little Joey, Momsie will take this lampshade off her head as soon as she’s done with the bag of Cheetohs?”

And what about teens? How do you teach teens to not drink or do drugs when you are? Is this classic do as I say not as I do? Do these parents think the teens have no clue?

Certainly there are things appropriate for adults and not for children or teens, but I’m not sure I’m on board with drugs and excessive alcohol consumption being two of them. Not with the propensity of teens to abusive and addictive dangerous behaviors.

I’m not here to argue whether or not pot is addictive or if it should be a legal substance. That’s not the issue, and fact is, it’s not legal. Nor is drinking under 21. I’ve heard arguments for teaching kids to handle alcohol responsibly before they can legally drink because they’re going to do it anyway — does that also mean helping them roll a joint, handing them condoms and a copy of Kama Sutra?

Ok, I’m officially an old fart.

Fact is that I gave up smoking pot over 20 years ago and have no interest in going back to it. And while I like a glass of Pinot Noir as much as the next gal, one or two is my limit, and if I’m driving – the limit is one. I take no pleasure in getting drunk at this stage of my life, while knocking back a half dozen martini’s seems to fit the bill nicely for many. I don’t get it. To me it seems very immature and irresponsible.

I guess the bottom line is something I’ve been telling my kids since they could ask “Why?”

Grown-ups get to make their own decisions.

And it will serve me well to remember that, because while it’s true, all I could think of last night were two simple words.


We all don’t do the same things for fun or find the same things “acceptable.” And I try to teach my kids and live a life of tolerance and inclusion, but this is something I not only want no part of, I do not want to even pretend to condone it.

I tolerate behavior like this by removing myself from the situation. My kids weren’t at this party, so I was nobody’s mama. Nor was I interested in dispensing my blog-worthy self-righteous wisdom to 40 and 50-somethings with bloodshot eyes and the munchies.

I left at 10:30 with an honest-to-goodness headache that I couldn’t shake. But I wasn’t sorry. It’s no fun talking to people who are drunk or high, so I did my best mingling, during the early hours and then went home.

I’m realistic. I know that my kids will undoubtedly have friends and friends’ parents do things I don’t approve of, and that sometimes they’ll be on board as well.

All I can do is my best. And while sometimes that includes the drive-thru at Baskin & Robbins, it does not include excessive drinking or the use of drugs.

Now one may argue that Pralines and Cream is addictive, and you’d get no argument from me. But thankfully at last check it was still legal.