Take a deep breath and revert back to your 15-year-old self for just a moment. Are you there? Now, think about your parents when you were 15. Were they cool?
Probably not. And that is a good thing.
I recently went on a Disney Cruise and I did a lot of parent watching. I quickly lost count of the dads letting their sons get away with something and then reminding their sons that they were the cool parent. Or I would overhear moms snicker and gossip with their tween daughters in a catty way. I think we are all guilty of these things from time to time. Why? Because we want to be seen as cool - as one of the popular group - even when research shows it's not good for our children.
Parents are supposed to be grown-ups. Yes, we need to know how to laugh and play and nurture our children, but at the end of the day, we are the ones in charge of setting the right example for our children. We're the ones who have to teach them to think for themselves and not just go along with the group.
Does this mean we have to be super serious all the time? No. Feel free to embrace your inner dork, or Martha Stewart or whatever facet of your personality you want to share with your child. But you have to balance that out with showing your child that it is OK to have their own thoughts and opinions. It's OK to not be cool.
Easier said than done, I know. My son is still young, and I still have to remind him that I am his Mom first and his buddy second. Yes, I want to play with him, but I am still the boss. (We can be friends again when he has moved out of the house.)
Are you the cool parent in your household? Why or why not? Tell me about it in the comments.