The name of this site is Busy Momma so you may have guessed that I’m a mom and I’m busy. I have three kids, two of which are teenagers. Only one of them is a girl, thankfully. That being said, I’m also an aunt and I love my nieces and nephews like my own. This at times can be a huge problem for all involved, particularly me.
I’m getting to a point, honest. My daughter is eighteen, this year was her prom. I can’t begin to explain the process that we went through on every front that had to do with said prom. The costs involved were astronomical – from the dress, to the “must have” matching makeup, jewelry and shoes to the arguments over curfew… the whole shebang. A continuous migraine of sorts was to be had by me. I don’t remember my son’s prom being this difficult, oh wait, it wasn’t!
Fast forward, it’s now the middle of summer, I did in fact survive prom because I’m sitting here writing this article. And my daughter, who is much wiser and worldly than me has moved out to start her life. That though, is another story in itself. But my niece is here for a few weeks visiting, she’s fourteen. She too is wise and worldly, apparently everyone but me is. Who knew? I missed the memo. Surely you can relate if you are a mom or an aunt or know any teenager for that matter. We are now the idiot’s we thought our parents were. Is that the definition of irony?
As I was watching television with said fourteen-year-old niece she casually asks my thoughts on teen pageants; and, if I will look at 2012 pageant dresses with her. Wait for it… Because she wants to be in a pageant, and who better to convince her father and step-mom that this is a good idea? Apparently her thoughts are me. The problem she has though is twofold, I don’t particularly care for her dad and I’m not a huge fan of pageants. Have you seen Dance Moms? I know we aren’t talking dancing but it’s one in the same in terms of the craziness that goes on behind the scenes. I can’t watch that show, it makes me crazy.
Contrary to the opinions of my wise and worldly niece and daughter I have some advice when dealing with proms and pageants and the like.
Wise Advice from a not-so-cool Mom & Aunt of Teens
One decision I made early on with my daughter was to choose my battles. I’ve never worried much about her wearing makeup, yet that was something that was huge on my parents list when I was the teen. Clothing on the other hand has often been an issue for us. When it came to picking a prom dress I had decided I was going to have a lax attitude about the whole thing. Funny enough, I picked the dress and at first she was hesitant until she tried it on. She looked like a goddess and it wasn’t anything I expected her to pick to be honest. The take home message, choose your battles, you won’t win all of them and we all have different parenting styles and expectations.
Curfew was a huge argument in this house. What worked best for us, was to set a regular curfew but in doing so we agreed that should she have something specific she wanted to do on a certain night that would be later than average we would discuss it. I’m all for understanding the teen necessity of being out and about with friends but at the same time, not every night is a party night. This also ties into the fact that as a busy-single-mom I can’t be up until all hours worrying about her.
As per the pageant, my advice to my niece was to do the research and propose the argument to her dad. It’s not my job. With Google and the Internet readily available to these kids, there are actually good and productive things that can be had, such as using it to research a cause. I’m busy, I can’t do everything for everyone, oddly that has been a hard lesson to learn.
Carol Mueller loves anything and everything fashion. When she’s not blogging about the topic on Red Carpet Victim she can be found reading the latest celebrity gossip or dishing on America’s Next Top Model.