Monday, March 26, 2012

"Stop Wearing My Underwear!"

(NOT my boys) Aquaman and Captain America, 'Strike a Pose'
Micheal's immortal words.
With three adolescent and teenage boys in the house––you're sure to hear a number of 'things that make you go hmmm.'

I live in a home, dominated by pre-teen and teenage life forms. As of the writing of this post, I have a feisty 15-year-old daughter, an almost 14-year-old son an twins boys nearly 12. My home is rampant with heightened levels of food intake, testosterone (the boys), hormones (all four) and rolling eyes (mostly my daughter). The level of sarcasm and contempt in our home is at near toxic levels.

What's more, I grew up an only child so I have very little frame-of-reference for the multi-child mayhem that ensues on a daily basis. 

"Animal Print Pants Out of control!"
Sure, I've had my share of wrestling matches ("peacocking"), sports competitions (Hoops and Volleyball were my biggies, though I was no stranger to the bench press, either). So, though I was raised by a struggling, single Mom, I feel I had a well-rounded upbringing. At least, that is, until I had my three sons.

Yet, no matter what your childhood was like, there is little in life that can prepare you for the onslaught of ear smoldering comments that effortlessly spew from the lips of your precious prodigy. I'm not talking about the occasional "Leave me alone!" cried out when one child annoys another past the point of tolerance. Oh no, dear reader, this post is about the raging insanity my three boys blurt out to one another over the course of any given day.

Over the last few months alone, my children have uttered the following statements to one another:

    "Quit showing me your wiener!"
    "Stop eating my food!"
    "Don't kick me in the nuts!"
    "Stop doing the LMFAO "Wiggle-wiggle-wiggle-wiggle" dance!"
    "Will you please stop following me!"
    "Idiot!"
    "Stop sitting on m y head!"
    "Don't get out of the car at my school–it's weird!"
    "Dad, he's flicking boogers at me again!"

and of course,

    "Stop wearing my underwear!"

Boys will be boys, sure. They have been caught wrestling naked after showers or changing from time spent at the pool. This is stuff I kind of expect. But, erotic break dancing? Really?

"Damn he fly!"
My real concern is that they find this behavior acceptable as adolescents. I always need to be mindful of odd or even deviant behavior developing in them. What they do as adults will be conscious decisions for them later in life. I can't have three boys parading around in their birthday suits while blasting LMFAO–neither their sister nor I will survive.

I've got to say, the "I'm sexy and I know it" culture is a runaway train of hormones and attitude out of control. Of course this conversation isn't old; Elvis was banned from many TV shows and music venues because of his gyrating pelvis, and everyone from Mick Jagger to Steven Tyler to Prince to Madonna have had all kinds of backlash due to their sexually charged entertainment.

It doesn't mean Dad has to like it.

Now I used to get really upset at how my children talk to one another. Less so now. These days, I am convinced this is how they maintain the hierarchy of their pack. Like a wolf pack, they have pecking order and Alpha(s) must subdue the others in order to establish dominance.

Understood.

However, none of this helps me to understand why any of this encourages a young man to wear his sibling's unmentionables. Your brother's T-Shirt or socks? Sure. Hey, as a self-styled kid at heart, I can totally relate to the "wild & crazy guy" schtick. But when it comes to wrapping your package in someone else's loincloth, well, as Hall & Oats once said; "I can't go for that".

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