From the Kids POV

Avatar for Cmmelissa
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Registered: 11-13-2008
From the Kids POV
Thu, 04-26-2012 - 1:37pm

I just came across this interesting article from Huffington Post from the child's point of view on making sure he's spending enough time with each parent:

It's the bottom of the ninth. Full count, two outs and the bases are loaded. I could win the game with one accurate swing. The weight of the world is on my 10-year-old shoulders.

But standing there, staring into the pitcher's eyes, I'm not thinking about the fact that I could win or lose a big game for my team. I'm too worried about after the game -- and mom and dad sitting on opposite sides of the bleachers, their gaze cast down on me like white-hot spotlights.

When the game ends, win or lose, which parent will I go to first?

It might seem like a small-potatoes dilemma for a white suburban child of divorce. But awkward baseball games -- and all the divorce politics that come with them -- are some of my most vivid memories, mostly because they were the most stressful events of my young life. I mean, I could win a baseball game any time, but I had the emotional scarring and heart-breaking of two sets of parents to worry about.

Indeed, baseball games had so little to do with baseball, and so much to do with the divorce. It was as if two warring factions were meeting on the battlefield, and their tactics involved one-upping each other with better juice boxes at post-game snack time. My affection was the spoil of war.

They had their tactics, and I had mine. I took mental note of how many breaks I took with each parent, how many high fives I doled out and at what volume I called step-mom, "Mom." If I was on the mound, I made grinning glances at each of up to four parents between pitches. Seventh-inning stretch involved sitting and talking with each group for such precisely equal amounts of time, it made our supposedly "equal" visitation schedule look like it was organized by, well, children.

Should a child even be worried about who he's spending time with?