Keep the Lesson, Lose the Guilt

Friday, April 27th 2018


Dear Gavin:

Regarding your breaking school policy today by playing a (violent) video game during free time:

Now that we have talked it under and over, here are some observations:

This was a poorly timed, useful mistake.

You were out of integrity (and also got caught).

I know you feel terrible, and are scared (of possible consequences).

Do not despair.

You have an excellent moral compass.

I have every confidence in your inner voice and higher self.

We cannot predict every situation you will encounter throughout your life.

Indeed, no parents in the history of the earth have had to help their children navigate the kind of technological environment that you are growing up in.

And no children have faced these challenges before either.  Ever.

So that is what your Best Judgement is for.

So when we come up with objectives -like you performing your best in class this week- the unspoken expectation is that you also do your best to Use Your (Best) Judgement.

I will do my best to articulate that more often for now, to help you remember.

No one can save you from poor choices in your life, but you.

Only one person in the world can steer you away from poor choices in your life; that’s you.

I truly -truly- believe in you and I do not despair at all.

We -you, your parents and the staff at school- have all come up with consequences that you understand, that are reasonable, that are designed to help keep you accountable, and that provide you the time and space you deserve in order to reflect upon this and get the most out of the lesson.

You have brought up some amazing points and I look forward to exploring this further; not in a punitive way but in a learning way.

I love learning with you.

And I love you.

Forward we go, imperfectly as always.


And we still have cake and pinata and posters to make.

We gotta get to work!




#VideoGames  #ScreenTime  #Self-Regulation

About circuskitchen

performing artist, mom, wife, daughter, sister, aunt, niece... just a regular extraordinary person
This entry was posted in activism, childhood, domestic life, education, faith, family, fight, forgiveness, health, history, learning, love, mental health, Mindfulness, parenthood, patience, school, work, work-life balance and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Keep the Lesson, Lose the Guilt

  1. Bubble Wow says:

    Uh-Oh, BUSTED! Forty lashes with a wet noodle. Nice maternal response.
    We had fun today. Sorry I had to leave G and CJ alone in your apartment for a few minutes without waiting for Paul to get home. Despite cross-town traffic, I got Miles to his dad’s by six, saving Miles his father’s (inappropriate) wrath. Sometimes you get caught between a rock and a hard place.

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