Tuesday, June 25, 2019     Volume: 20, Issue: 16

Santa Maria Sun / Humor

The following article was posted on August 2nd, 2017, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 18, Issue 22 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 18, Issue 22

Adult children

Krider's kids made it to adulthood, but he still pays their bills


My youngest offspring—my only daughter, my little girl, the apple of my eye—turned 18 recently. This means I’m old. I can’t run around and act like a kid if my own kid isn’t a kid anymore and is actually an adult. I only have myself to blame for this situation because years ago, when my little Sweetie Pie was crawling around on our floor making dirty diapers, I remember wishing she would hurry up and grow up. I wanted her to at least get beyond the diaper days. Well, eventually she was potty trained, and she did grow up, just as I wished, and now both of my two children are my adult children.

The term “adult children” is exactly as it sounds. It means that my kids are adults in the sense that they are over 18. However, they still hang around the house and eat everything in the refrigerator like children. Adult children want to be adults when it comes to staying out late on Friday night, but they want to be children when it comes time to pay their car insurance. Sure, they are considered adults by law, but because they let me pay their cell phone bill and they still want parties and a cake on their birthday, they are certainly still children.

Yes, my kids, I mean, adult children, are part of the generation commonly referred to now as millennials. The term “millennials’ is the buzz-word going around society today regarding anybody who listens to vinyl records, has a $15-a-day coffee habit, and doesn’t have a job. Personally, I try not to beat up on millennials too badly because the reality is, millennials are my fault. My wife, whom I love, and I are the people that raised two millennials to be exactly who and what they are. We created these adult children who care about the environment, love all Apple products, and document everything they eat on Instagram. What is the punishment for my wife and I committing this heinous crime? Probably having these adult children live with us until they are 30 years old.

I’m guilty. I protected my children from the moment they were conceived. I was a helicopter parent. I strapped my babies in expensive child car seats and let them ride around in huge SUVs that got terrible gas mileage. I didn’t let my kids out of my sight when they were toddlers, literally walking behind them with my arms out to catch them if they fell. I didn’t let them ride their bikes around the block when they were in grade school because I wouldn’t be able to see them for about four minutes. I gave them everything they ever wanted, the newest iPhone (when they were 11), trips to Disneyland (when they were two months old), and cars (when they only had their learning permits). Of course they’re spoiled rotten. How could they be any different? Of course they don’t want to move out of our house, why would they want to? Our house is fantastic. The fridge is full, the cars in the driveway have gas in them, the internet is fast, and there is a hot tub in the backyard. I wouldn’t move out either.

This all sort of hit me on the day of my daughter’s 18th birthday. I woke up and found the following email in my inbox from my lovely daughter. The email read, “I sent itineraries to your phones. We will need to start early to fit it all in. Mom, make sure you call Grandma and Grandpa and make dinner reservations. Dad, I’m doing my best to work around your work schedule, but make sure you get off on time. I’ve also sent pictures of the gifts I want along with links of where to buy them. #mysweeteighteen.” Yes, her birthday had its own hashtag.

My little Sweetie Pie didn’t see anything wrong with sending that email, and why would she? Her mom and I paid for a limousine for her and her friends, not for her senior prom, but for her 12th birthday party! Of course my daughter expects her 18th birthday to be a “very special day” with spa treatments and expensive dinner reservations. That’s what every Disney princess would get.

Luckily for me, I had to work that day. It was my wife, whom I love, who enjoyed the entire birthday extravaganza marathon day, which included a pedicure appointment, a jaunt to the movies to see Girls Trip, an excursion to the mall for shopping, specific restaurant stops, and all-day adoration of our daughter.

I caught up with the girls for dinner at my daughter’s favorite restaurant. Grandma and Grandpa joined us and we celebrated the fact that our little baby girl had successfully survived 18 years on the planet earth, living in California inside a middle class home during the 21st Century—a very difficult feat. While we were eating dessert, after the wait staff and half the restaurant sang happy birthday to my baby girl, we asked her what being 18 meant to her.

“Now that I’m finally 18,” my daughter exclaimed, “I can get my belly button pierced and get three tattoos.”

This was not what Mom and Dad wanted to hear, and it certainly wasn’t what Grandma and Grandpa wanted to hear. My daughter looked at me and asked, “What does me turning 18 mean to you?”

“Well, Sweetie, it means I can legally call the Sheriff’s Department and have you forcefully removed from my house for trespassing.”

“No, you couldn’t!”

My daughter looked a bit hurt. She didn’t understand why I would say such a thing. Her mom and I chose to have a child, didn’t we want to shower that child with love and affection as long as we could? Why would anyone get the Sheriff’s Department involved?

I looked at my daughter’s sad face on her birthday and it broke my heart, “Just kidding, Sweetie. I love you. So, what kind of tattoo are you thinking of getting?”

Like I said, this is all my fault. 

Rob knows that when it comes to millennials, you have to feed them every few days, or they’ll die. You can read more from Rob Krider or contact him at robkrider.com.

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