Wretchard comments, as eloquently as always, about the increasing prevalence of 'evil' in our lives which reminded me of my apoplectic fit yesterday.
My wife TiVos up "Dr.Phil" every day. Yesterday she was watching some of the backlog while I was at home. The guests were a 13 year old girl and her mother; the reason they were there was the girl claims she's more than ready to be sexually active up to and including having a child. Yes, I boggled at that as well.
What really got me going, though, was the mother's observation that when she talked to her OWN FREAKING DAUGHTER that it didn't seem to do any good, so she just gave up because she was tired and worked hard at her job and boo hoo hoo. From her daughter's reaction (eyerolling and all that), it was clear that the mother gave up on raising her own child several years back. The father was, of course, nowhere to be found.
If that's you, what the f&@#^%k is wrong with you? You had an opportunity to be a slacker before giving birth. Once you have a child, you have a responsibility to that child that far supercedes any desires you might have along the lines of "I just wanna sit down" or "I just want some peace and quiet" or "I just wanna watch teevee." You know what? you're the parent ... STFU and be the parent. You can sit down and watch teevee once your children have grown up and moved out, or at least have gone to bed.
I don't want to sound like I don't understand how hard it is to be a single parent. I get it. Hell, it's hard to be half of the parent team. Your responsibility to your child, though, carries a huge amount of weight. You shouldn't stay in a relationship where your spouse beats you. You probably should give some serious thought, though, to staying in a relationship when your only real complaint is your spouse just won't pick up the wet towel off the bathroom floor. If you decide to go it alone anyway, you really ought to line up some assistance because children shouldn't be at home by themselves. Period. Your children need parenting (and their need is rather more absolute than your "need" for overtime to pay for that big-screen television), which means they need your time and attention and you have to provide it. There is absolutely no substitute for being there, talking to them, setting boundaries, and enforcing the rules. You don't get to not be the parent. You don't get to hand your responsibility off to other people.
Damn, but this just validates my hatred of huge swathsof the population. It's just as well I wasn't on the stage because I'd have throttled the woman while foaming at the mouth, and then my wife and children would have to find some way to fend without me and they don't need the hardship. See? That's what I'm talking about; forgoing the momentary pleasure, strangling a deserving oxygen thief in this case, in order to avoid the larger harm to many people of much more importance.