Extreme Parenting?

I like to watch a lot of reality TV shows.  Don’t judge me.
I really enjoy seeing how other people live.  It fascinates me.
I also work with the public and read mostly memoirs and true crime.  I’m not into much fiction.  Reality, and real people,  are truly interesting to me.

Lately, I’ve been watching a lot of Wife Swap reruns on Lifetime.  This show has always interested me.  I often identify with some aspects of each family.  (If you’re never watched it, 1. go watch it 2. they take two families and switch the wife/mom for two weeks.  For the first week, they live that family’s normal life; for the second week, they live the ‘new’ mom’s way).

The thing about Wife Swap is, I could never be on the show.  Only because I’m not ‘extreme’ enough in any direction.  They always choose people who are extreme one way or another, and then pair them with the most opposite family they can find.  For example, a uber-competitive, strict family who keeps their home immaculately clean will be paired with a family that is extremely laid-back, lazy, and messy.  And when I say extremely, I’m not kidding.

The New Mom always makes the new family convert to their way of living, and the New Family always protests but in the end, they usually agree that they’ve learned something and while they won’t do an enormous change, they will do things a little differently.  And they’re always delighted when the New Mom comes back and life returns to normal.  (yes, it’s pretty predictable, but not always; sometimes they absolutely loathe the New Mom and sometimes it’s so bad they even leave early.)

I have to admit, I’ve sometimes thought of how interesting it would be to go on that show.  The problem is, I’m not extreme enough.

I’ve been the soccer/baseball/softball/etc. mom but never the type to over-emphasize it and I am NOT competitive.  At all.  I’m all “just have fun!” and I really mean it.
I do tend to follow more ‘traditional’ roles; I cook, I do most of the cleaning, and I even *gasp* sometimes serve the kids and hubby their food.  (this is a huge deal on Wife Swap.)  I nag at the kids to pick up after themselves but they’re not very consistent about it and I usually just do it myself.  But I’m not a stay-at-home mom who does every single house chore and irons socks (yes, that happens) and fixes my kids’ hair every day and flips out if they leave the house with a hair out of place.  And my house is very comfortable and lived-in.  Some days more so than others.

We don’t eat an unusual diet.  Many of the families on the show eat either exclusively junk food, exclusively organic, or exclusively hunted meat.  We eat a little bit of everything.

On Wife Swap, usually, at least one of the Moms is narrow-minded and believes that her family’s way is the one and only RIGHT way, and any other way of life is wrong.  Period.  Which is basically the antithesis of everything I believe.

I generally tend to believe that most normal things are ok in moderation.  I’m also not judgmental and very tolerant of others’ beliefs and lifestyles.  Which is why I’d never make it onto Wife Swap.

But I’m curious about YOU.  Are you extreme in any way in your day-to-day life?  Enough to make it onto Wife Swap?
Seriously, this stuff FASCINATES me, please, fill me in!

P.S. Anyone remember this? 

winkyowl

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5 thoughts on “Extreme Parenting?

  1. I don’t think I’m this way or that way. Am I anal about cleaning? You bet…but I do it. We do have some sort of structure as far as routines go but that’s because I’m full of anxiety and need to be prepared, but it hasn’t hampered the way we live.
    My family was a “whatever” type family and I felt that I needed structure growing up. I want that for mine but with much flexibility.
    So to answer your question?
    Wine

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  2. We like watching that show too for a laugh–it’s always pretty funny but the mothers are very bossy and sometimes expect too much of the other husband. No way would I want to leave my own husband for two weeks so right there I would not qualify for this show.

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  3. My kids would run the new mom out in a week. I’m probably laid back enough to be considered extreme on one side ~ some might say that I’m “too permissive” with the 2 I have left at home. Of course, they’re both 18 so – unless you run your kids lives (which I know you personally don’t) – I wouldn’t make it. I watch the show too. It’s funny. Some of those people are WEIRD.

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  4. Oh, Cyndy, I’m so sorry about your Aunt Pat. I’ve been absent for far too long, and I’m just starting to get caught up all my Bloggy Buddies.

    I’m off to the other place now, because YES, I remember!

    Like

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