Parents Helping Kids Isn’t Always Helpful

OK, so we’re a one car family. This week the plan was for me to have the car on Monday. That means that my daughter, Charlie, (who goes to a charter school where there’s no school provided transportation) would need an alternate ride home.

She’s 8-years-old and very capable.

On Sunday, (the day before all of this would go down) my husband told her, “Hey Charlie. Tomorrow you need to find your own ride home from school. So you probably want to make arrangements for that today.” He left it at that.

I felt this stupid need to “help” even though, as I’m reflecting on this now, I know Charlie could totally handle this. Anyway, I reached out to a neighbor whose kids also go to the same school. I arranged for a ride for Charlie. And then,  I forgot to tell Charlie all of this. Nice so far, right?

I remembered on Monday morning and called Charlie (from work) to tell her. She told me she’d already taken care of things herself. She called a friend and explained the situation and set up a playdate where they will pick her up from school. Nice!

So then I got on the phone with the first parent to undo the “help” I’d put into place. Turns out, all I had done was created work for myself and a little “noise” in the mind space of this other parent who no longer needed to give my daughter a lift home.

Sigh. Lesson learned.


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