So I received the same compliment from strangers over the last couple of years which I am extremely proud of as a mother. In case you're wondering, this is the compliment: my children are the most polite and caring children that they have seen in years and in this time, it's rare to find such children.
While I've always lightened up with a sense of pride and love for my two children, today the same compliment received was followed by a brief discussion on parenting as a single mom.
The discussion was between myself and a fellow community member of the library which I often take my children to. The fellow went further to give examples of children at the library who are out of control running around supervised or unsupervised and their parents just don't care. Mine, whether they are sitting with me or in a different area, not only do they know how to behave in public but seem to be highly responsible as well; reminding each other to finish their homework or do their daily 30 minute reading because "remember what mom said." He ended the compliment stating that especially as a single mother, he's totally impressed with my children and my parenting ability because it must be hard. Now there are two types of single parents in this world, those who would feel even better about what he said and elevate themselves to a higher level than the rest of the parents out there and the the second type which I fall under, who don't pull out the single parent card to gain superiority. My response to him was, "thank you so much and I am proud of my kids... they really are great children. Speaking of single parenting though, all single parents can agree that while it is extra work to raise our families, it is not a pass to raise undisciplined and wild children." Whether you are married, single, or whatever, it's your responsibility to teach your children right from wrong, proper etiquette, manners, and instill in them a sense of responsibility for themselves. It is not that hard. It's very simple, children do what children see. Children behave how YOU behave. Your children look up to you and want to be just like you, especially as kids. So your own actions have a huge impact on the results of your upbringing. To all the parents out there, single, double, triple, or whatever else is out there now, please be responsible and act the way you would want your children to act. To all the single parents out there, please don't play victim to your status and use it as an excuse to slack up on your parenting. Lastly, to all the parents who are doing it right regardless of your status, pat yourselves on the back and keep going!