Thursday, September 15, 2005

My Grade as a Mother

One of the most frustrating things about being a mother who isn't working another job (notice I didn't use the heinous phrase "full-time mother". There is no such thing as a part-time mother) is a lack of annual review. When you're working in your profession, you can count on an annual assessment of how you're doing and in what areas you need to improve.

However, a mother never gets any feedback or guidance from the people she's working for, or, if she does, it's more along the lines of, "You forgot to bring my P.E. kit to school" or "I don't have any clean shirts to wear."

Last week, the Evening Standard columnist Allison Pearson asked her six-year-old son to rate her job as a mother on a scale of one to 10, with 10 the best. He gave her a two. When she asked him "bitterly" (I don't blame her) why she didn't get a one, he told her that once she let him have something she initially told him he couldn't.

I was curious how I would rate, so I asked my own (nearly) six-year-old son how I would rate on a scale of one to 10. After mulling it over, he said, "A nine!" Even though I was thrilled with my score, I asked him why I didn't get a 10. He said, "OK, a 10 then!"

Now, I don't know if it's his American tendencies to grade inflate or think big when he gave me that score, but I'll take it.


Elle said...

Ai, aren't children ruthless. I've learnt (and not just with children) not to ask certain questions if you can't deal with any possible answer.

Having said that, I will try this myself and updated you on the results.

If I dare...

Elle said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Elle said...

Update (well I had to know, hence the hurry)

Asked son, 7, first. Without a blink he said 10.

Daughter, also 7: 'Between 9 and 10. Sometimes a 10.'

'Why not a 10?'

'Isn't between 9 and 10 good enough then?'

'Yes I'm happy with that but why not a 10?'

'Because you ask questions'

You can't win...

Jesslyn Bass said...

I (who am not a mother) found this post (and Laura's responses) very amusing and cute! Thanks for sharing!!