Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Pick Your Battles.....Sigh.

That has been my mantra in the almost-18 years I have been mothering. Or learning how to mother. Or crossing my fingers and hoping for the best.

To be fair, the Queenager never argued about clothes, and will still wear whatever she puts her hand on first thing in the morning. (Rather funny - placing certain shirts at the very front to see if she'll come downstairs wearing them. She does.) The Man-Child wouldn't argue; he'd just put back whatever I'd put out and come down wearing a completely different outfit. Fortunately, because he didn't like wearing "smart clothes" (that is, spiffy clothes, to any US readers) most of his stuff could stand up to a school day. The Little Guy (a very verbal 7 year old) will argue the pros and cons of whatever I suggest but since it all looks the same anyway, I let him get on with it.

We've been pretty adamant about not allowing the teens to get strange piercings I'll admit. So would you if you could guarantee your kids would be the ones to get horribly infected AND you had to pay the health bills that we face over here. Our mantra for those situations is "When you're off the payroll". It also comes in handy for motor bike arguments, threats to go hang-gliding and other death-defying pursuits.

And up until now, we haven't had too many hair arguments. Not if you discard the faux-hawk that we had going a few years ago. Oh yes. Man-child, in a desperate bid to rebel against something, anything, got himself a faux-hawk. That's the one with the spike but the sides aren't all completely shaved off. It made him look very aggressive in my opinion, and it seemed that one female agreed as it was abruptly removed a few months later.

Two weeks ago he started banging on about wanting either a proper mohawk or blue hair. Blue Hair? Interestingly, I had more of a problem with the mohawk and the Ball & Chain vetoed the blue hair. Man-child dictated that it was one or the other, but I persuaded him to go and see the trendy Eurpean hair stylist round the corner who could give him something really rockin' with perhaps a touch of blue in it. (He eventually conceded that if his entire head was dyed blue he'd look like a Lego character.)

This past weekend he duly took himself off to the trendy hair stylist - who wasn't in. So he then took himself up to the punky barber shop. And got a mohawk.

It's not as bad as I thought it would look as you can see his huge eyes and he still has hair on the sides. A bit. And it'll grow.

What really upsets me however, is that for our 20th wedding anniversary, we decided to get a proper family photo portrait done. And it's booked for next week!

The photographer tells me she's a whizz with Photoshop! Sigh!

Expat Mum


  1. I did want to say I had a mohawk way back when I was 15 in 1981 and I turned out okay. But you read my blog and know how dysfunctional me and mine are.

    I love kids expressing their individuality, especially when they're not mine.

  2. oh no, no photo shop, just wait until the phase passes and he is training for the cloth then have them on display everywhere, revenge takes time but can be very sweet!

  3. Hair...and make-up! The bloomin' bane of my life at the moment. Have confiscated my older girl's make-up bag this week. Such fun and games eh?

  4. AuntieG - ha bloody ha. Actually, I agree with you but I don't really want that look to be the one that goes out on the Xmas Cards and hangs on the wall for the next few decades! Pah!

    Kellog - Training for the cloth??? If he makes it out of reform school...

    SK - thank god I don't have that - yet. If it was still the 80's it would probably have been the Man-Child tho'.

    AMomonS - I know, I know. Sigh...

  5. Ha! I've always said, it's only hair and will eventually grow back. Then I placed said child in a private school with a very strict dress code - so no blue hair or mohawks allowed. I also have used (and plan to continue to use) the "until you are off the payroll" argument on everything. As for the family photo....can the photographer photoshop one picture that you can hang on the mantel and reproduce for Christmas cards - while keeping the rest the way they were taken for torture purposes later?

  6. Hair, clothes, piercings, tattoos I think were invented to cause us parents if teens grief. At least hair isn't permanent. Flatten it down on a nice side parting, he'll love it.

  7. You know it doesn't matter what year or decade it is the arguments are always the same with the kids. My Line when they wanted something stupid was "Get a Job". It's amazing how fast they back off when they know they have to pay and maintain all on their own. My two did manage to grow and now have grown children of their own. They are now saying the same thing to their kids I said to them. Guess I didn't get it too wrong.

  8. I should be grateful my boy is sporting the floppy-fringe-over-the-face look at the moment then! I can handle that.

    The two children of yours that I've met are just lovely - a credit to you and your parenting skills. So keep on doing what you're doing.

  9. It could be worse, want to know how? Blue or mohawed hair grows (or falls out in his case) but a tattoo (which my son now has on his well shaped arm) is forever and since he didn't bother to ask my permission, I had no say. His taunt that he's in his 30's and needs no one's permission fell on deaf ears as I say I brought him into this world inkless and he should honor me by not doing this till I've left the planet. He looked at his 95 year old grandfather and muttered "yeah, right!". Enjoy the hair it'll be back to some semblence of normalcy soon!

  10. At least I can't complain that his floppy hair is hiding his lovely face. Now THAT would drive him up the wall!

  11. If it's any consolation, he'll look back on this in years to come and wonder what he was thinking.

    And you can say "I told you so."

  12. Too bad about the photos.Can't he wear a hat!!!!!!!
    It does seem like a normal phase though. My son stuck a darning needle through his earlobe and as he wore his hair long then, I really didn't know & found out years later. He was lucky he didn't get infected.
    Still hair WILL grow.
    Maggie X

    Nuts in May

  13. You said not to laugh, but I still chuckled! I decided a long time ago that I would like to have my children think that blue hair or a mohawk are the most awful things they could possibly do to rebel - in the hopes that that is the worst they will ever get up to!
    Somewhere I have a photo of my brother in his 30's with a blue mohawk . . . tho admittedly he only had it for one weekend for a fancy dress party and then shaved it off. I don't think his very corporate employer liked the skinhead look any better than they would have the blue mohawk though!

  14. My 19 year old nephew turned up at our place last year to stay, complete with pierced tongue, eyebrow and dreadlocks. When we got married my sister spent ages using photoshop to 'cut' his hair in the family shots. Teens! Who'd have them!

  15. I am sorry but am LOL-so long as it's you and not me.

    Good thing my eldest is in the army-buzz cut is better then mohawk.

  16. Nearly died when I first saw my daughters tattoo. All those years ago. aaahhh.