There are many tools in The Parenting Tool Box like Patience, Love, Compassion, Respect, The United Front and, let us not forget, The Double Standard. Love is the hammer...it will get most jobs done even if it is not the most appropriate tool for the task at hand. The Double Standard can be important too, though. It's like a good wrench. Mostly, you use it to tighten things but, occasionally, you can use it to bang something together when the hammer is in the basement and you are too lazy to go all the way down there to get it. You must use The Double Standard sparingly, however, because it will leave those little wrenchy marks all over everything and those never fade. So, in our household, we reserve the use of this tool for the following situations:
- The Imbibing of the Liquor
- The Drinking of the Pop
- The Eating after Dinner
Luisa and I do drink liquor but we don't allow the kids to drink because they are horrible when they are hung over. Oh now...you know I'm kidding. It's really the cost - they have Bombay Sapphire tastes on a Beefeater budget. Again with the kidding! Luisa and I also drink Diet Coke, though, I have really cut back in the past year because I know it is horrible for me and because I find it very hard to justify The Double Standard with that one. As for eating after dinner, we do have the occasional bowl of popcorn at night but we don't let the kids eat after dinner because it became obvious fairly quickly that they were demanding food at bedtime just as a stalling tactic. How obvious? Well, it would take them about 30 minutes to drink a small glass of milk while they sat there smiling and looking about the room saying pithy things like, "It's fine weather we are having, isn't it mother?"
The topic of double standards came up after a conversation with friends this past weekend about high fructose corn syrup and yogurt with active cultures. Apparently, I can be a little haughty in regards to food, so, a friend called me out for having Jelly Bellies and coffee for breakfast one day last week. I could go into a lengthy explanation as to why I did this but it would bore you. So, let's just say that I blame the Peanut Corporation of America. Would I ever let my children have candy for breakfast? Absolutely not. Will I ever eat candy for breakfast again? Absolutely not. It was gross. I learned my lesson. No double standard there. So, what about you? When do you use The Double Standard? And I do mean when, not if - fess up.