Someone emailed me about my post yesterday on embarrassing my children. I figure if she needs clarification, there are several other readers in the same situation.
No, I didn't mean I go out of my way to humiliate my children in order to form their character or anything so sinister.
What I simply meant was, older children are naturally embarrassed by their parents and I'm not one to go against nature. Teen children are embarrassed by the mere fact they have parents and I'm not going to go out of my way to disappear.
I remember reading an item some years ago about how Billy Joel's daughter was embarrassed her dad was going to sing at a party they were attending. If Billy Joel's children are embarrassed by their dad singing in public, imagine my children's fate when I start singing along to the radio with all of their friends in the car.
Recently, I asked a dad to cover a Teen Wednesday for me and his son was mortified. How could his father betray him like that? When I asked Teen Daughter 1 about this, she said, "Oh Mom, how embarrassing to have your dad there in front of all your friends." I pointed out I'm there every week leading the group. She responded, rolling her eyes, "Yeah, but we're used to you embarrassing us."
Now, my friends aren't' embarrassed by me. I don't think so at least (Linda?). They find me interesting and even witty sometimes. They love me all the more when I tell a corny joke, share anecdotes about my children, dance to the radio, laugh out loud, or even cry at a sentimental story. Someday, my children will grow into adults and love me for these reasons too. They may even appreciate the fact that I do actually exist.