ARTIFICIAL: insincere, false, unnatural, contrived, put-on, exaggerated, forced, hollow
Many things occur in a day that prompts my brain into sharing a thought. Today’s Daily Prompt reminded me of a conversation I had with one of my adult daughters yesterday.
We were having conversation about her new beau. I was asking about his parents, if they lived in town. She explained that yes, his mother and father both lived in the city and his father was, well, “You know, like dad” (referring to her own father). Oh yes, the now that all the hard work is done dad that comes around just in time to enjoy special events like weddings and grandchildren. The artificial parent.
The artificial parent is usually absent through most of the growing season of your child or children, 0-17 1/2 years, unless perhaps you have boys (or sometimes girls), in sports, which was our case. The father was no where to be found if there was an emergency or a financial crisis. Birthdays, and holidays were no exception, but throw in something like a basketball or football game and you’ve got the most supportive parent in the stands. You would have thought he was out everyday after school coaching and practicing right along with your child. Not! He knows some of the other parents at the event, because they lived in his neighborhood or he went to school with them. Time to show off his kids and what a great dad he is for being there to support them. Ya, right!
Okay, moving onto bigger and better. Let’s talk about graduation. It was almost humiliating to have him there acting as if he put so much hard work and undying energy to get that child through school. Oh my gosh, it was such a struggle, but we finally made it.Ya, right! He doesn’t even realize that all that pomp and circumstance cost a weeks worth of groceries and part of the rent, and nights and nights of crying over homework and last minute credits. What an ass. No clue. But he is big daddy on campus, strutting his stuff and hangin’ with all the other artificial parents who get to step in at a moments notice and try and take credit for a job well done, yes, a job well done by someone else.
And please, when the going gets tough, who gets going? The artificial parent who chooses to disappear just as quickly as he/she appeared to shake hands and smile for the camera. I am so familiar with artificial parents that I can almost pick them out at any function for kids. They are bigger than life, boasting and reciting all the special events they have missed as if they were there the whole time bustin’ their butts and sweatin’ to work, manage school, after school activities, homework, dinner, puberty, boyfriend and girlfriend issues, drivers training, proms, swirls, and of course, the big one…. weddings. Don’t get me started on that one. That’s a whole book entitled, The Articial Parent and their role in YOUR daughter’s (or could be son’s) Wedding.
So, my daughter explained to me that her new beau’s father was just “getting back” in his life after many years. Yessiree, another artificial parent making his way back home, well, how nice. Can’t wait to meet him.