Creation of kids to blame for parental angst

by Viv Sade

Child rearing has remained basically the same since the beginning of time. The only thing that has changed with the times are the parental phrases, threats and idioms and the number of prescriptions for anxiety medications.

It’s a generational thing that started with Adam and Eve. The following parental wisdoms from 50 years ago are some of the warning remarks my parents used on my siblings and me which we, in turn, threw out at our kids, and now our kids have modified those threats for their kids.

Admittedly, things have changed since the ‘60s. What used to be threats have now turned into negotiations. That’s good because I’m an old hippie who is all about peace, love and harmony. That’s bad because when I was young, all kids knew from birth who had the upper hand. Today, treading the waters of parental hierarchy sometimes gets a bit murky.


50 years ago: If you don’t eat all your dinner, you cannot have dessert.

Today: Here’s $25 — order a couple of pizzas and there’s Ben and Jerry’s Chunky Monkey in the freezer.

Adam and Eve: Here’s some grapes, and be very careful not to eat that apple in the garden.


50 years ago: Go to your room!

Today: Get out of your room!

Adam and Eve: Get out of the rain and into your cave!


50 years ago: Quit fighting with your brother!

Today: Quit fighting with your brother!0bb2602354118a7168cb968b23d3f56d

Adam and Eve: Quit fighting with your brother!


50 years ago: Want me to pull this car over and cut a switch?

Today: Put a movie in your DVD players and watch them until we get there.

Adam and Eve: Carry your own rocks and watch your step.


50 years ago: Here’s your quarter allowance.

Today: Here’s your $10 allowance.

Adam and Eve: Here’s a pretty gold-flecked rock for your cave.


50 years ago: “Don’t go putting on airs; you’re no better than anyone else.”

Today: “Contrary to what you may believe, the Earth does not revolve around you.”

Adam and Eve: “Quit acting like you are the only two kids on Earth!”


50 years ago: Pour yourself some homemade lemonade from the thermos bottle.

Today: Make that two caramel macchiatos and two vanilla bean frappuccinos — to go.

Adam and Eve: How many times have I told you not to drink from the ocean?! It’s too salty and will raise your blood pressure.


50 years ago: As punishment, you cannot talk to your friends on the telephone for two weeks.

Today: No texting for an entire hour while we have Thanksgiving dinner.

Adam and Eve: If you holler into the valley, it sounds like other kids are hollering back. Try it.


50 years ago: If your friend jumped off a cliff, would you?

Today: If a friend offers you pills, don’t take them.

Adam and Eve: Careful on that cliff!


50 years ago: “Grow up. There is no scary clown man under your bed.”

Today: “That’s wonderful! You’re only 2 years old and know how to call 911 on your cell phone if daddy falls off the ladder.”

Eve: “Eek! Boys! Come here and kill this snake!”


50 years ago: Eat! There are kids starving in China.

Today: Eat like the Asians. They are not obese and have a very low rate of colon cancer.

Adam and Eve: Quit hitting your brother! There are four buffalo legs — two for each of you.


50 years ago: Because I said so, that’s why!

Today: Because it’s mandated by the state and it’s the law.

Adam and Eve: Because your Grandfather said, so it’s gospel.


50 years ago: Your face will freeze like that!

Today: OMG! Is that a tattoo?!

Adam and Eve: Those bear scratch scars healed nicely and look exactly like a starfish.


50 years ago: Want your mouth washed out with soap?

Today: Now, listen up. There’s going to be a lot of bad language in this movie. Don’t repeat it.

Adam and Eve: &*#$! What do you mean fire has not yet been invented?!


50 years ago: We can’t afford to buy enough school pictures for you to hand out to your friends.

Today: Look — I just got a notification that this is the 800th photo we’ve posted on Facebook this year.

Adam and Eve: Everyone look into the water at the same time and smile.

50 years ago:
Wait until your father gets home!

Today: You’re both at your dad’s next weekend.

Adam and Eve: Follow dad’s lead and club the critter between the eyes real quick-like.


50 years ago: It’s not nice to say you want to kill your brother.

Today: Believe it or not, someday you two will be best friends.

Adam and Eve: What do you mean you killed your brother?!


50 years ago: Don’t get smart!

Today: You’re smarter than that.

Adam and Eve: Do you think we should we take the fur off before we eat it?

Mrs. Gump: Life is like a box of chocolates.

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