Posts Tagged "behavior"

How to Understand Unexpected Behavior

Dear Kid,

Have you ever noticed that we (and by “we” I mean people) tend toward different behavior in different situations?

I don’t mean that you behave differently at a Katy Perry concert than you do at a symphony orchestra concert, or that you behave differently on a job interview than you do at a frat party. I mean that depending on the stresses and stressors in your immediate life, we (again, people) react and behave differently.

For example, when I take the Puppy for his regular vet visit, I’m relaxed and at ease. If I take him to the vet because something is wrong, the stress leads me down Cheeky Lane, suggests a left at Sarcasm Alley, and comes to a screeching halt Smart Ass Road. DearKidLoveMom.comFor example, when I take the Puppy for his regular vet visit, I’m relaxed and at ease. If I take him to the vet because something is wrong, the stress leads me down Cheeky Lane, suggests a left at Sarcasm Alley, and comes to a screeching halt Smart Ass Road. This trip to Bordering on Rude is not my intent at all and as I hear myself I start apologizing to the medical professionals who I know are just trying to help. They (inevitably) tell me not to worry about it (translation: we’ve seen worse but it would be best if you’d stop talking and let us finish the instructions we’re trying to give you).

Their kindness, my stress, and the fact that 11 seconds have gone by generally leads to another “joke” on my part (and by “joke” I mean an attempt to be funny that falls completely flat) and around we go on the carousel again.

The veterinary professionals have – in point of fact – seen this behavior before (and probably without all the apologies). They see it several many times a day and completely understand the source of the worry that causes it. They understand, they forgive, and they patch up the puppies that don’t bother with commenting on the situation.

We tend to carry our stresses with us, like a bad taco (For example, when I take the Puppy for his regular vet visit, I’m relaxed and at ease. If I take him to the vet because something is wrong, the stress leads me down Cheeky Lane, suggests a left at Sarcasm Alley, and comes to a screeching halt Smart Ass Road. DearKidLoveMom.comHappy Cinco de Mayo) into situations where they don’t belong.

When we’re stressed about something at home, we generally can’t leave it there (where it belongs) when we head out to work, or class, or a date. It tags along like an unwanted alien, disrupting our focus and causing us to behave in ways that seem incongruent with the time and place.

Scenario 1

Boss: How is your project going?
Employee (under normal circumstances): Fine thanks.
Boss: Great, let me know if you need anything.


Scenario 2

Boss: How is your project going?
Employee (under serious stress at home): Why are you hounding me!? I said I’d get it done and I’ll get it done! Stop treating me this way.
Boss: Huh?
Other employees: Oooh, we get to see an exorcism!


The next time you see someone behaving in a way that seems out of character, give them a break. See if they are ok, really ok. Listen for things that aren’t said.

And when they get around to apologizing for their behavior, accept the apology and move on.

Love, Mom

More Happy Cinco de Mayo here, here, and here

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College Students and The Mom Look

Dear Kid,

One of the most important things about being a mom is being able to master The Mom Look.

The Mom Look is potent. Behave yourself. DearKidLoveMom.comThe Look can convey a wide variety of instructions, emotions, judgments, and answers—and kids always know what The Look means. At least they do if they know what’s good for them.

The great thing about The Mom Look is that it goes right to the heart of the matter. There’s no ignoring a Mom Look. You can try, but The Mom Look will penetrate your defenses. The Mom Look can bore through the back of your head. Through walls.

The Mom Look can also cover distance. Not just distance to the next room, but vast distances. Specifically, from wherever Mom is to wherever you are.

So if you think someone is looking in your general direction, you might be right.

Love, Mom

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How to Solve the NFL Behavior Issue (Best Idea Ever)

Dear Kid,

I’m so proud to be from Cincinnati. And a Cincinnati Bengals fan.


I’m still a fan of the Bengals. But the whole professional behavior thing has to be addressed.

Clearly, the Bengals aren’t the only team demonstrating unacceptable behavior recently. I understand when celebrities and pro athletes say they should be left alone. They just want to do their jobs (act, sing, score touchdowns) without being judged on their off-field/off-screen behavior. Except, um, no. You’re in a profession which puts you in the spotlight, you are a role model whether you originally intended to be or not, and ergo paparazzi. Behave yourself, be boringly normal, and people will leave you alone.

As I said, I understand (even if I don’t agree with) the desire to be left alone outside the work environment.

Recent, er, displays, however, have been on-field. During important games.

Something must be done.

I have put a great deal of thought into the whole professional athlete debacle and I am delighted to announce that I have figured out how to solve the problem.

Pro sports teams need moms.

I am not joking.

When your mom is watching you, you behave better. Assuming you have a good mom who is involved in your life, anyway. And if the team doesn’t have the right mom, I’ve decided the league should provide them.

Consider the Campbell’s Soup commercials with that the football player (I’m sure you know who I’m talking about) and his mom. He loves Mom, he respects Mom, and he has never been involved with the kind of nonsense we’re seeing both on and off the field from other players.

Point proven.

Love, Mom

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Getting Through One of THOSE Days

Dear Kid,

Have you ever had one of those days when you get to the end(ish) of the day and you say to yourself, “Well, I didn’t do that very well.”

For disappearing acts, it's hard to beat what happens to the eight hours supposedly left after eight of sleep and eight of work. ~Doug Larson DearKidLoveMom.comFor example (completely hypothetically), if on a Sunday you slept late (which you needed very badly), then you dawdled over coffee and the Sunday paper (which you enjoyed very much), then you got a teeny bit done on the family taxes but decided a much better use of your time would be to catch up on the last three episodes of the first season of The Blacklist, after which you spent some time with the GirlChild until it was time to leave for the 7:30pm soccer game which ended up starting late, and you realized that not only have you not written Monday’s blog, you have Work that has be done before the end of day.

Hypothetically, of course.

It might occur to you that you really should have done things differently.

And, still hypothetically, you hear—in the wee recesses of your brain—the echoes of your mother saying “I mentioned you might want to get your work done before you watched Netflix.”

It’s one of those things where if it were your mother actually talking to you, you’d have been obligated to roll your eyes and get into a huff.

But since it’s the echo of mom-ness and you did the conjuring of the echo, all you can do is agree. And sigh.

Hypothetically speaking of course.

Not that either you or I would ever do that.

Love, Mom

P.S. I have to go finish my Work now.


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It’s About How You React in Life and Airline Travel

Dear Kid,

It’s all in how you react. Some people scream and yell and carry on and others take life in stride. All you have to do is look at a kids’ soccer game to see examples of both. Which are you most impressed by?

I recently had the great pleasure of being stuck in the Las Vegas airport. (For what happened after the airport, click here.) Here was my view when I was standing up in the line.

Standing in line at the Las Vegas Airport. DearKidLoveMom.comThis was my view most of the time. The line was moving at a mere 3 feet per year and there was no real seating, so my coffee and I sat on the floor. Lovely carpet, no?

Sitting in line at the Las Vegas Airport. DearKidLoveMom.comOf course we went through the 7 Stages of Travel Changes:

  1. Dismay. WTF! How could they do this to me??
  2. Electronic. Let’s see if we can get rebooked online.
  3. Telephonic. Let’s try to reach a live person.
  4. Line waiting. And more line waiting.
  5. Utter defeat.
  6. Gratitude. Sincere gratitude that we were dressed for travel and not wearing crazy heels.
  7. Indignance. I can’t get out of here until WHEN???

Rinse and repeat.

For the most part, our fellow travelers were reasonably calm as we were herded through the non-moving line. Which was good, because there really weren’t any alternatives.

Love, Mom

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