How a commercial about family meals helped him reevaluate his relationship with dinner and how it affects his life today.
This commercial hits an emotional chord as it reminds parents such as myself how important we are in the eyes of our children. Now I’m still a little skeptical about all the children mentioning their parents without coaxing from the interviewer, however, that could be the parent in me. If I was one of the those parents I would have probably said the same thing. I wouldn’t have mentioned my kids at all and instead I would have named a famous movie star or athlete.
Does this make me a bad parent?
No, but it sure gives me a reason to pause for a moment and ask myself if dinner together matters to my children and to me. In my case, I grew up eating in isolation. I would be given my food and allowed to eat where ever I wanted, which usually meant in front of the tv. Did I feel deprived? Did I feel neglected?
Looking back, I don’t think I did. I really enjoyed my alone time because honestly I didn’t want to hang out with my parents or grandparents while I ate. Now some of that is due to the tension I felt whenever I was around my father or grandfather. I just didn’t have a warm relationship with them so eating alone was bliss. Now does this mean dinner as a family doesn’t matter? It just means dinner is more enjoyable when there isn’t constant bickering amongst the family. So if your children want to have dinner with you that is a good sign you’re doing something right as a parent.
Fast forward to today and I’m open to eating with my children but it also depends if they want to eat with me. It’s hard to keep my two year old strapped down to her seat for the entire meal without her running around while she eats. These meals turn into a scolding session that gets me frustrated and worked up. Not really the enjoyable meal I would like to have but I know as my children get older they’ll come to appreciate a meal with the family and I’ll learn how fulfilling it can be as well.
So the next time you have the time to sit and talk with you children ask them if dinner as a family matters to them? You might be surprised by their response.
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