Rarely do I come across a word so fraught with meaning as “asshat“. I heard the word but never really knew its full meaning until I came across this article, “10 Signs You are Dating an Asshat“. So lets review:
What is an asshat?
- He cheats on you and then gaslights you. What is gaslighting? For a full definition you will have to watch the movie Gaslight. Long story short, it is when you are made to feel insane and paranoid over legitimate issues created by the person making you feel paraoid and insane.
- He doesn’t keep his commitments. He says he will be home at a certain time or says he will call but doesn’t. Even though he picked the time or the date, he feels no social or moral obligation to honor his commitments nor does he give a shit about you enough to let you know he will not be honoring the appointments he created.
- Moodiness is the motto. There is no rhyme or reason to his nonsense. Don’t try to find it. For no reason he will be upset, irritated, or grumpy. He will direct it at you. He is close lipped about what is going on. Don’t try to figure it out. There is no figuring it out.
- You try to break up or dream about breaking up, but you can’t. Something, whatever it is…marriage, children, you own insecurity…is keeping you tied to this asshat. He knows this. He loves this.
- You have tried every new age, religious, psychological remedy you can come up with to create happiness in your life. You wear crystals, attend 12 step groups and group therapy, you pray daily to any God that will listen to make him different….to make you different. Nothing works….nothing will. He is an asshat. They are damaged goods.
Now that we have those criteria down, we can move onto our sons. Don’t get sick if this describes your significant other, there is still hope for your boys. Your son doesn’t have to become asshat because he fell off the asshat tree. This is where you shine mothers. You have power over your sons that you cannot imagine. You have the power to make sure they are not asshats. How? How can I do that when their main male role model is the biggest asshat yet? Here are the steps:
- NEVER idealize asshatery. When you see it in the world. When you see it in your house. Make sure that you emphasize things about the asshatery that will elicit your sons empathy. Believe me, if you have an asshat husband, he isn’t just an asshat to you. His asshatery extends to your son. How do you raise your son to not be an asshat? Make sure your boy is REAL clear about the characteristics that bother him in asshats.
- Teach your son honesty. Asshats are liars. They can’t tell the truth to save their lives. That is where all the gaslighting comes in, they will lie until the bitter end….until they are caught red handed. You, mothers, need to emphasize honesty…ABOVE ALL ELSE. You can be an asshat and love God. You cannot be an asshat and love honesty. The only thing my son has ever been spanked for is lying. It is a line in the sand that my children know is sacrosanct. We do not lie. My daughter gets like a crazed animal if anyone says she is a liar. It is that prized of a characteristic in our home.
- Teach your son integrity. Raise your son to know they can depend upon you. Whenever you say something, unless prevented through an act of God, do what you said. If you told him you would take him to get a slurpee, you made a commitment…NO MATTER WHAT, you take that kid to get a slurpee. Otherwise, don’t say it. Likewise, when you give out a punishment, it sticks. If I say the punishment is to wash the car, even if I got in an accident, I would have my totaled automobile towed to my house so that my son would have to wash the car. What you don’t understand moms is that it feels real good to be able to depend upon somebody that totally. Your son will adore it and want to emulate it.
- Set house rules about emotions. You are with your son way, way, way more than your asshat. You can control the tenor of the home in regards to your kids. My children are not allowed to mope about all grumped out. If something is upsetting one of them, they need to spit it out. Maybe it is something I can help with. Maybe they need a hug. Maybe they need some space and a cold glass of water. If we aren’t out with our feelings and what is going on under the surface. We don’t get our needs met. Again, this feels good to your boy. When he is upset or sad or angry after school and you sit him down and say, “son, what happened?” He will naturally start with, “nothing.” However, if you just give a little pressure you will see an opening to love them through. Love them through the anger. Love them through the sadness. Care that they feel that way. Next time you are sad, you will be shocked that your son cares that you are upset. It is called compassion, folks…show it…teach it.
- Foster a fabulous relationship with your son. If your son treats you like a mini asshat, you are doomed. You need to end that quick. My son opens my door. My son looks after me and whether I have a chair. Me and my son are tight. Figure out how to do it and rein in your boy.
Mothers, you have power undreamed of to shape the world through these new creatures we created. Even if you think it is too late, it isn’t. You can turn the Titanic around even if you are going down the road to asshatery. Your sons deserve more than being an asshat has to offer! The world deserves more.