“Not my circus…not my monkeys”

This is may not be the best parenting advice I can offer up, however, it is some of the most useful. Now, I am not saying that your precious children are monkeys; no matter what evidence you may have to prove otherwise.

There comes a point in every parent’s life when you just have to throw your hands up in the air, and while spinning in 180 degrees simply say over your shoulder as you walk away, “not my circus…not my monkeys”.

Now, this isn’t as easy to do as you might imagine. There are forces at play that have manipulated your thought processes, and you are really no longer in control of most of your responses. (The fact is, you have probably stopped thoughtfully responding years ago, and have been instinctively reacting to every stimuli ever since you brought your monkey bundle of joy into this world.) So, walking away from the circus isn’t our first instinct, and it will take some practice.

Now, when the little monkeys are sneaking up on the family dog with sharpies in their hands, it probably isn’t the best time to practice this phrase. But, when they have decided that it is a good idea to dump 4 jigsaw puzzles out onto the floor of their bedroom to create their own version of a rock slide for their little pet shop creatures…REPEAT AFTER ME: “Not my circus…not my monkeys”, and walk away.

Not only does this maneuver, save your sanity, it also provides an opportunity for the little chimps to learn a good lesson. “Sometimes the only one that will clean up your mess is going to be you”.

So, you are welcome for today’s free parenting advice.  Now, I am off to vacuum the big top. Pretty sure the next show will be starting soon. :)