Trade my soul for an invisibility ring? Here, take it!

What kind of person lets someone get away with anything?

That’s the first thought that comes to my mind when I am confounded with the idea that X person “can do no wrong”. What that means to me is that someone is too weak to uphold their standards in the case of a given person’s transgression because of an attachment to some aspect of that person that they’re afraid of losing.

And that sounds really technical, so let me break it down: to feel that another cannon “do no wrong” means that person is:

  • weak,
  • afraid, and
  • compromising their morals.

Those three things alone are enough to earn someone a place in my “Hall of Scorn”.

Or are they? This is definitely how I used to think. It’s a judgment thing, I believe; I’m hard on others. I’m hard on myself. I shouldn’t be, but I’m trying to be better about it. After all, I don’t mean to condemn anyone – least of all myself. I was a no-nonsense hardliner on such things: the girl who lets her boyfriend/husband push her around; the parent who lets their kid run rampant all over town; and they make excuses for them, too. Weakness.

Two Children Playing
I know . . . this is a little creepy, right? (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But now my thinking on that score has begun to change, due to the factor that continues to change me for the better: I’m a parent. I have been for a year and a half now, and if anyone even comes close to that “do no wrong” description, it’s my daughter. Mme. Ross says she’s “testing her limits” (so does that mean right now she’s limitless, while someday she’ll become limited? The former sounds nice, but the latter seems undesirable. If only wee children are limitless, then youth truly is wasted on the young.) I keep having to tell myself that someday some of the things she does will be very wrong – the hitting, the mini-tantrums, the need to hit something – but for now, I mostly just laugh. How can I not? I see so much of my own temperament in her; moreover, I get it, and I know it’s my job to help her learn to control her super-passionate, hyper-emotional nature.

I have to be there for her, or hitting her reflection in the mirror will become breaking a mirror with an object thrown in anger – the path to the Dark Side. We don’t want that for our kids, and I think that being too harsh at this point would push her that way, while giving her too much latitude in later stages would do the same. I’ll be dancing this fine line for what may be the rest of my life – and I’m not complaining at all; I crave the challenge.

But now I get why they do that – why people let others get away with doing wrong. It’s part love, part hope, part sacrifice: giving up the right to precise respectful treatment in exchange for the seed of hope that grows in loving earth; the hope that those we love can become better people over time.

Because we all have that potential, no matter how old we are.

What do you think? Are you a hard-liner or a mindful monk? Are you a hollow reed, where trouble blows through you like the wind? Do you know what late-80’s sitcom that’s from? Let us know in the comments!


This post was prompted by today’s Daily Post prompt.

12 thoughts on “Trade my soul for an invisibility ring? Here, take it!”

  1. Perfect. I struggled with this for the reasons you explain here. And then wrote something else instead. Good for you for not shying away.
    I find I’m much more willing to let my son get away with things than I thought I would be. He can still do wrong and I do still call him out but I do think that the biological connection has made me a bit more tolerant with him than I would otherwise be…than I should be?

    1. I say it’s up to individual judgement whether one should be more or less tolerant with their kids, but there’s also a self-conscious element to that, and so depending upon how keen we are on saving face as parents in the public eye, I think that some of us will knuckle down when we need to, rather than having a constant fight with it.

      Or as a friend of mine once told me when she had three kiddos and I had none, “you have to pick your battles.”

      In the end I think that our judgementalism turns inward, so as long as we can be happy with the children we raised (no matter what) these questions of “should I” will have faded long into the past. Personally, I’ll just do what feels right and seems like a good mix of easy and effective!

  2. I’m continue to be amazed with how our brains work differently from each other, how an exact same prompt results in extremely rich interpretations.

    This one’s a thoughtful post. I guess a child will be parents’ weak spot, one way or another, huh? You seem like a patient fellow. Bless you and your family, and kudos to all parents in the world!

    1. Thank you for that, Lisa. I do try to be as patient as possible – it wasn’t always a strong suit, but I’ve been working on it. Bless you and yours too, I hope you have a wonderful holiday. 🙂

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