Professor Mom

Chronicles the life of a mom, teacher, and writer trying to stay sane amid the chaos of daily life.



MommaT's picture MommaT

How incredibly sad. What a horrible father. Granted, I don't know his story but what I do know is that his son wasn't important enough to "entertain" while at dinner. That sickens me to think about the "damage" he is doing to his son by ignoring him. That's a critical age for kids, especially boys--they need all the attention and love they can get. What a loser!!!

gigi9's picture gigi9

Wow, MommaT. I have to say...I was a bit taken aback by how angry and judgmental your comments were. I've been a fan of this site for some time and normally find your comments very pleasant and fun to read. But this one really bothered me. To make such harsh remarks ("What a horrible father" and "What a loser!") about someone you don't even know is fairly outrageous, in my humble opinion. While the situation appears sad and frustrating, we have no idea what was going on for that father and son. Perhaps the son recorded a letter he had written for his father because he had a hard time communicating with him in person so he downloaded it to his iPod to connect in that way. Perhaps the son only agreed to go to dinner with his dad if his dad promised there would be no talking, and the dad was grateful for even that time. And of course...perhaps the dad was completely disconnected, which would be a shame. Still, not knowing what the situation is, all I can do is send a quick thought of compassion and good wishes their way and take care of my own kids the way I know best. One last thing...I'd imagine all of us who read this post immediately thought about how we would never do that to our kids. But my second thought was, "Wow...when was the last time I 'turned off my iPod' and called MY dad to check in?" I certainly don't do that enough as the craziness that comes with being a working parent (I know you know about that!) can make it difficult to keep in touch. But I can tell you...I will be calling him the minute I post this comment.
Keep commenting, MommaT. I do love your take on things. I just needed to voice mine on this one :)

MommaT's picture MommaT

You are very right gigi. My words were harsh and I was quick to judge, but it's VERY frustrating to hear about a child being ignored. You're right, maybe he wasn't being ignored but it certainly seems like it to me. Maybe I've seen too many Moms pushing their kids in a stroller while talking on the phone or listening to their iPods instead of engaging with them. Maybe I've seen too many parents outside smoking, while their children are inside unattended. Maybe I should have just said, "wow, what a missed opportunity to affect your child's life." It breaks my heart seeing missed opportunities by parents. And by all means, I am not a perfect parent and there are times when my son isn't the main focus of my attention but I never deliberately ignore him.

To me, going to dinner with someone is an interactive thing and if they needed a night "to themselves without interacting" they should have gotten take-out or eaten at home. Whatever their story, I hope this night wasn't a normal thing for them. Everyone has an off night, and maybe this was theirs.

Thanks gigi! I hate being judged by people, and I shouldn't be so quick to judge others. :-)

Todd Lieman's picture Todd Lieman

I went through a full range of emotions during this scene. I initially thought - oh, my G-d, what a tool! I, too, thought he was a huge loser.

But, then...I just kept watching and it just became sad. I felt badly for them both - for a son who can't connect to his dad and vice versa. And, I wondered how it all happened - giving some kind of benefit of the doubt.

Father may very well be a loser, but we can't call him out as such. Son may be the most difficult child on earth and we can't call him out for that, either.

All we can do is make sure that we don't ever find ourselves in the same situations...

mommy3's picture mommy3

My Dad was a quiet man. We often sat in silence together but it was never a bad thing. Just being together was awesome. We didn't need words all the time. I simply enjoyed being in his presence and I know he felt the same way. Not everyone has the gift to gab and we all know when we are really comfortable with someone- we can sit in silence with them. It doesn't mean they love any less.

Todd Lieman's picture Todd Lieman

Totally different vibe at this dinner. Not two people peacefully coexisting and enjoying each other's company. This was two strangers thrust together when they didn't want to be.