Thinking Back on Being A Parent

When I started writing this blog I was dealing with Middle School and summer camp. Now I’m helping my kids navigate lease agreements and finding the best coffee grinders.

Over the years I’ve talked about navigating school and social situations. We’ve gone to concerts. I’ve seen first love come and go, but I’ve also best friends, and bonds that will last the ages.

In the great big world my children and I have discussed school shootings, the environment, and politics. We’ve been to political events so the kids and their friends could have that experience and see what it was all about. We’ve known what it is like to be different. We’ve known what it is like to be part of a group.

Every family is different, but I feel, I know there are some things that all parents must do.

So many people think schools should raise their children and teach them everything. Or many think going to church (God forbid) will teach their kids all they need to know about being a decent person. But they miss the point.

As a parent it is YOUR responsibility to raise your child. Not just feed them or clothes them but to share your world with them.

The number one most important thing I can say to parents is to TALK WITH YOUR KIDS. I don’t mean lecture them or talk at them. I mean talk with them and LISTEN to them. Discuss things with them.

Encourage your children to be “big picture” people and go beyond their family, friends, and school. One day they’ll go out into the big wide world. You don’t want our little birds to take wings and get eaten by the first raptor who comes along. Teach them to see, to watch, to question, to be aware.

Teach your children to have their own opinions. Not everyone is a leader, but you don’t want you child to be a follower. They need to know that it is alright it they take their own path. If they choose to be with others that is OK but it must be their choice.

And yes, they should be allowed to make their own choices but you, as a parent, need to guide those choices. If they hang out with a bully then STOP that friendship cold. Let your child know why. If they have a friend you don’t like and the alarms go off then STOP that friendship. You’re the parent. Teach your kids to have real friends, not just kids to hang out with. Teach them NOT to give into negative peer pressure or bullies. Talk to them about it. Always encourage them to take the higher road. Even tiny children understand that to some extent.

Early on explain to your child how important reputation is. It is easy to lose one’s reputation but it is extremely difficult to get it back. Kids lose their reputations by hanging out with kids who offer nothing but trouble. Don’t think you can save someone by being good. They will only drag your kid down with them – and they won’t care. I know this is harsh but I’ve seen it happen too many times.

At the same time teach your children that good friends are a treasure. Teach them that they can have friends that are a different sex, a different color, a different sexual orientation, a different faith, and just different. Diversity is good. I speak from experience. Acceptance is awesome. Love is awesome. Friendship is awesome.

I love my children’s friends. I have grown to love their parents too. As much as I wail on about things I don’t like – I have been honored to have met so many great kids and awesome parents. Woo Hoo.

Laugh with your children every single day.

Encourage your kids to always be curious.

Raise a child who will be a life long learner.

Raise your children to be better than you are.

Raise your children to be better than you are. Even today my daughter showed me that she is a much better person than I am. I won’t go into details, but I can be an asshole. My child gives no second chances (like her dad) but she is smart, kind, and thoughtful. She has tact. Don’t get me wrong, most people think I’m the sweetest thing in the world (even other Vampires) but I can be… well, not always the person I should be. I’ve raised my child not to be like that.

I’m not the perfect parent. I think I’m a better parent for not reading copious amounts of parenting books. Shirley Jackson’s Life Among the Savages is a must read. Real parenting stories are the best – not theory from experts and cold clinical studies. Besides, every child is different. Every parent is different. Every family is different. What works for me might not work for others. But I have to admit I am so proud of the kind of mom I’ve been.

Hey, how many kids can say “my mom blogs about vampires.” Not many.

No matter what you do, make your kid proud of you, and be proud of your kid.

Love them.

Encourage them.

Talk with them.

TALK.

Keep the communications open. Be positive. Be understanding. LISTEN. Let them know that YOU are their safe place.

Parenting doesn’t stop at middle school, or even high school. It is a life long job, even when they move out, gets jobs, and start their own families. Let them live their lives but let them know that you’re always there for them with your love and your understanding.

~Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

 

Parenting Young Adult Vampires – Quick Notes

vampire teens

Even after your kids are grown, or in this case sort-of-grown, you still worry about them.

They graduate from high school, turn eighteen, vote, drive, get jobs, go to college, and they’re adults.

Sort of.

They’re also maybe drinking, having sex, forming strong opinions, dabbling in drugs, staying out late, and exploring the dark side of culture.

They’re exploring all sides of culture. That could be a good thing. A mighty good thing.

And if they’re Vampire kids you have a whole other thing to deal with.

It is one thing if your younger child starts to hunt a little on their own, but it is a whole new game when a young Vampire turns into an adult.

This isn’t something you can push off on the old traditions. Our old timers didn’t make the rules in the 1950’s. They made the rules in the 1750’s, and those rules don’t work anymore. Just like with any other parent you need to keep up with your kids, be open and honest, and teach them the rules of the 21st Century Vampire.

Your young adult children are going to start collecting their own sets of donors. Make sure they choose wisely. Guide them. By guiding I don’t mean vague references like “don’t  pick criminals,” or “watch for people with Hep C.” They need to pick safe donors. Safe means people with calm personalities. That means people who live private lives. It means people who can mentally and physically withstand being a donor.

You also need to continue to talk with your kids and be open with them. Donors are not friends. They are not serious lovers. They are not someone you will fall in love with. Sure you can care. Of course you SHOULD care, but not in a romantic way. Never get involved romantically with a donor. Also do not turn your donors into Vampires. Do not EVER let your donor know you’re a Vampire. These are tough conversations you need to have with your young adult children.

Encourage them to attend seminars about avoiding, and dealing with Vampire Hunters. They have enough going on with trying to find jobs, go to school, and juggle their activities, and start to live on their own, without having to deal with someone trying to put a stake through their heart, or worse. Make sure their only heartbreak is the kind they sing about in pop songs, not literally having their heart ripped from their body.

Vampire Teens Rock

This is just a quick thought for today. Just a reminder. I’ll go into more depth on the subject later.

In the meantime, no matter how old or young they are, talk to your kids. Talk with them, not at them. Listen to them. Engage them. Laugh with them. Share with them. Learn from them. Yes, learn from them – you’d be surprised what they can teach you.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

Vampire mom

 

Throwing It ALL Away – Teens and Consequences

Parenting 101

I consider myself a serious parenting blogger, because I believe parenting is the most important job you can ever do.

So please let me rant a bit…

Parents PLEASE take the time and talk to your children, the younger the better, about consequences of their actions. Tell them: Something stupid you do NOW can have consequences that will last your entire life. It can RUIN your life.

As soon as we started the whole elementary school adventure we realized that it is never too early to screw up the next 5, 10, 20 years – or even screw up an entire life based on bad and impulsive choices.

I often wonder why parents don’t talk to their kids about life, consequences, and taking personal responsibility for their actions. And it is like training a dog. You have to start early. Seriously.

You might be asking, What brings this on Juliette? 

Yesterday I was told about a seriously icky event at the High School. One of the boys in my daughters AP English class (these kids are all seniors) was talking about how he had to get a new car because someone had crapped in his car.

The boy accidentally left a couple of the windows in his car cracked. He parked it in the school lot. While he was at sports practice that afternoon someone (it was assumed two individuals) broke into his car and pooped on the seats. Then the poppers spread the shit ALL OVER ALL of the seats. The poor kids could smell it as he approached the car. He said if it had just been a bag of poop it wouldn’t have been that bad but it was spread all over the car. A tow truck had to be called to haul the car away because there was no way he was going to drive the car home. His parents said they were going to have to get a new car because the cloth seats couldn’t be cleaned. It was an old car, used by every kid in the family already. But still, this should not have happened. The poor kid wonders who could have hated him so much to do such an awful thing. What kind of sick mind would do this? It could have been someone he knew. It could have been someone from another school. It could have been some sick fucks walking by and seeing the open windows.

Here is where my advice to parents comes in:

If the persons who pooped in the car are caught there will be consequences. They will be caught because every kid in the school now knows about the shit-and-run event. Security cameras recorded it. They can see who it was, their car if it was involved, or what building they came out of.

If it was students there will be consequences that will screw up their entire future. If it is a senior he will not graduate (or will not be allowed to walk on graduation day), if it was a younger student he will be expelled and made to go to a continuation school. There might be criminal charges. If the perpetrator is 18 he will be charged as an adult. Even a 17-year-old might be charged as an adult. If caught these kids can kiss all of their college applications good-bye. They’ll be kicked out of a good school, and maybe have a criminal record. Not to mention that NO GIRL will ever want to date these guys – and the list goes on. Did I mention lawsuits and damage charges?

One disgusting event, that was no doubt spur of the moment, and done on an impulse will ruin the lives of these kids if they are caught.

Was it worth it? Hell no.

That is just one example. Teens and young adults are impulsive. It is how their brains work. But they can control those impulses. You NEED to talk to them about it.

It all comes down to what parents always tell their kids. If your friend jumps off a bridge that doesn’t mean that YOU have to jump off of the bridge too.

Kids need to know that they don’t have to jump off of that bridge. They can say NO. If the friend gets pissy then it isn’t a friend they want to have.

At our high school parents and students are told over and over and over, that if they pull pranks they will not graduate. This includes the famous senior pranks that usually include creative ways of vandalizing the school (oiled hallways, interesting pain, pictures of body parts burned into the grass on the Quad, etc.)

If you act like an asshole, if you hurt others, if you blindly follow, if you do things out of spite,  if you DON’T THINK before you act – there will be consequences.

Need help? Here is a list of stupid things teens can and will do.

Unprotected sex: A baby will change the life of any teen. So long college. So long friends. So long exploring the world before you choose if and when you’ll have a child. Don’t give me some happy story of a teen who had a baby and the fairy tale that ensued. That is the rare exception, not the rule. Unprotected sex can also welcome HIV and other nasty things to your child’s life.

Making decisions based on friends: How many kids have rejected once in a lifetime college, trade show, job, internship, and other opportunities because a boyfriend or girlfriend begged them not to go. How many have turned down fantastic opportunities because they did not want to leave their friends. You know what? Those friends are going to leave and do what they want and not think twice about it. Or the friends will be losers who don’t care. If they are REAL friends they will encourage your child to fly and be successful. Real friends will keep in touch no matter how far away they live.

Dropping out: Dropping out of school, be it high school, college, a trade school or a great opportunity isn’t anything to be taken lightly. I can’t tell you how many people I know who dropped out of college the second or even third year in – then found out later how hard it is to go back. Usually is isn’t financial reasons – it is because they can’t look into their own futures and see how hard it will be. Just finish. You’re young. Finish now or when you’re thirty-five you’ll be kicking yourself.

Relationships: If it is indeed true love it can wait. If someone loves you they will never ask you to put aside your dreams. Someone who love you will encourage you to follow your dreams. Only selfish, and controlling people will ask you to turn down your school, job, or any endeavor that is your passion.

Cults (religious and political) and other abusive relationships: These are the people who prey on young individuals. They break kids down, then make them feel good and wanted. They look for kids who are lonely. They look for kids who are needy. They want to turn your child against against everything they know. If ANYONE tells your child to turn against their family and friends then it is time to RUN. RUN FAST.

Doing shit out of spite: If you do anything out of spite to get back at parents, teachers, friends, siblings, school – it will only come back and HURT YOU. That is what is usually called coming back and biting you on the ass. I’ve seen people marry someone for spite because they were mad at their parents – believe me THAT never ends well. So impulsive, and the only one hurt is the one who wanted to get revenge.

And most of all CRAPPY FRIENDS: You can help friends but you can never bring someone up who doesn’t want to be brought up. Crap friends will only bring you down. If someone wants to move up they have to want to move up and do it on their own. Some kids are rescuers. Some are followers. I encourage all parents to PLEASE discourage your kids from being rescuers or followers. It will only lead to things like kids shitting in cars. It can also lead to smaller things that can also get them kicked out of school, ostracized by other kids, and even arrested.

Yes, you are the parent – you CAN have control over who your child hangs out with. From an early age you have to teach them about how valuable their reputation is. It takes a second to lose one’s reputation but years to get it back.

One more thing. If your child wants ink as soon as he or she turns eighteen please guide them. Shitty tattoos last forever and remind one of how stupid they were. Good ones, by good artists, with good placement can be a joy. Remember, tattoos, like herpes, are there forever. Be smart (or start saving for a good cover up or laser treatments.)

I’m just ranting right now, but whenever I think of anyone doing stupid mindless and impulsive things that ruin their lives and the lives of others I wonder why they do it.

We’ve all heard of teachers who sleep with students then go to jail and never teach again. Was it worth it to be out of a job. Was it worth it to have years of education go down the drain? Was it worth it to be considered a pervert for the rest of your life?

Then there are the Brock Turners of the world. Turner was obviously smart (click here if you don’t know about the case). He had everything. He was good looking. He was attending Stanford University. He was a swimmer who might have been good enough to make it to the Olympics. But rather than being nice, and normal, he decided to be a violent, vile, and horrible the night he brutally sexually assaulted a girl at a party. One has to wonder if it was worth throwing all of that away to be the biggest asshole in the universe and harm another person?

How many kids would have given ANYTHING to go to Stanford, let alone have the other opportunities Turner had. And he threw it all away, and harmed an innocent person along the way.

What makes it worse is that his parents defended him. There is no defense for that kind of behavior. So was it worth it Brock? Why did you do it? Why where you such an asshole?

So talk to your kids. Tell them all of those cautionary tales of others who have fucked up their lives because of stupid impulsive acts.

That is it. And don’t tell me that it is hard. If I could do it then so can you.

I fucked up enough on my own – but, by my choice, I don’t fuck up when it comes to parenting.

It isn’t easy but you can do it. You’re a parent. That is YOUR JOB.

Now go hug your kids and talk to them. Don’t preach. Discuss. Share. Love.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

 

 

 

 

 

What we talked about on the way to school this morning

The ride to school with my teenager always brings up school, current events, and everything else.

“We’re starting existentialism today. I don’t know what we’ll be reading. But the teacher already called out kids before they made complaints that it was against their religion.”

Some devoutly religious kids and their parents have complained in the past about these books and the ideas they write about. That bugs me is that ANY parent would want their child NOT to be exposed to other ideas, including religion, philosophy, and well, anything. Ignorance is not an option folks. It will not help your children. It will not make them better people. On the contrary, ignorance and extreme sheltering will make your child into the WORST kind of person – that is an ignorant closed minded person.

I asked my child what they were reading and she didn’t know. The class just finished 1984 and Brave New World, so now that they’re all throughly disturbed and depressed I imagine story stories or a play might be in order.

Who could it be? Kafka? Camus? Sartre? Beckett?

AP English Literature. No Exit. Bahahahaha. But seriously folks, I’m glad the students are being exposed to so many different ideas.

College applications are due today for University of California. Of course someone (my kid, my kid) waited until the very last day. She’ll be applying for two schools. We’ll see what happens.

We talked about the Supreme Court and what scary things might happen, which seems appropriate considering the discussion on existentialism. And no, Ruth Bader Ginsburg is not 93 years old. She is 83 years old (or something like that.) We also talked about Clarence Thomas who is an odd waste of space. The guy does nothing. Says nothing. Votes on nothing. He is just weird. This isn’t political. Everybody else in those black robes works hard. This guy just takes up space.

Clara asked about Anita Hill. I told her that almost every woman I know has been sexually harassed, or bullied by males. Most of us, like Anita Hill, just go on with their lives, because we can’t do much about it. It isn’t like she just brushed it off, but (I speak from experience) if one makes a big deal about it there are consequences – unfortunately even now. But, that said, we need to keep speaking up and speaking out, and making sure there is equality for ALL – women, men, children, everyone.

Luckily in the Vampire world that isn’t an issue, at least when it comes to other Vampires. Sure some guys are jerks but they know what is right and wrong. Seriously, it would be a better world if we had a voice as who we are, but like other groups of the past we can’t speak up. That is one of the hardest lessons for us to teach our Vampire children.

We talked about the rain. We discussed our schedules. And we just talked, like all parents and their kids should do. Seriously, sometimes the talks serve no purpose, but you have to talk with your kids, not just when they’re young. Share ideas. They might not be your ideas, but that is why you have these discussions, and find out what makes your kids tick, and what is important to them.

It was a quick ride and there wasn’t much traffic today. Tonight I’ll find out what the next book or story is. I’ll find out if anything else interesting is going on at school. I’ll find out if weirdness abounds, or if all is well, at least in our little corner of the world.

Then she said, “Uncle Max said all of your boyfriends before dad were douches.” OK, I’ll have to have a talk with my brother, or just let it go. I had to laugh.

 

Hope your day is full of interesting thoughts, discussions, and loads of laughs. Just remember to keep your mind open and your temper in check.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

vampire teens

What we’ve been talking about

What HAVE we been talking about? This used to be a regular feature on this irregular blog. One if the main reasons I blog is so I can tell parents “TALK TO YOUR KIDS. Not AT them. But WITH them. And LISTEN to them without judgment.”

We talk a lot. I’d looked forward to the evening chat when I pick my daughter up but…

Right now I’m waiting. Not for a nice warm neck or a dance partner or a lover or coffee… I’m waiting for AAA to come to my office with a new car battery.

Even if I could turn myself into a bat it wouldn’t help because I’d be too small to carry my purse, computer, purse, coat and two pairs of roller skates. I also have a plant. An aloe. It is in a cute little orange pot.

Yes, I bet you didn’t know that Vampires have to haul things around just like everyone else. And unlike the old days I can’t just commandeer the nearest carriage for my own and haul off as fast as I can get the terrified horses to run.

You know, if we were as nasty and awful as the old stories say we are we wouldn’t be around anymore. Governments would have full armies just to kill Vampires. I mean, honestly, would you rather go around being an uncouth thief and all around shit head or would you rather be civilized? Acting civilized gets you a lot more nice warm necks – I can guarantee you that since I do speak from experience.

I’m at my office, and office I do my business in when I have to deal with people. I have other spaces but today was one of those days when I was… well, whatever. So now I’m stranded in a building at the end of a road too far away from my home to walk.

—————

I’m back. A nice man replaced my battery for me. Woo Hoo.

So what did we talk about today? Warning: I’m kind of tired and rushed so this one is going to miss the mark. Don’t stop following this blog quite yet…

High School Drama and I’m not talking Shakespeare…

Tanner’s mom came to school and grabbed his arm and smacked him in the quad right in front of the entire student body at lunchtime. She did not sign in at the office. She didn’t care if she broke the rules. You see, Tanner had sex with a girl in the bathroom during the Homecoming Game. She wanted to, he’d never done it before (but he talked like he did) so they did it. Her boyfriend found out about it a month later and told the powers that be in the office. Someone from the office called Tanner’s mom. Tanner’s mom was pissed. She wouldn’t even take him home. She made him stay at school. Everyone is talking about it.

Emily was talking too much so the history teacher moved her seat but she refused to sit next to Forest because he was a hippy. Forest asked what made him a hippy (he was pissed she called him that.) She said anyone named Forest had to be a hippy.

There is a very nice by named Sam who is Ukrainian. His parents are still in the Ukraine. He is handsome and nice and tall and doesn’t speak English very well. Some kids invited him to what he thought was a party. They said there would be food and music. The wanted to convert him to their religion. He said they were all crying because Jesus and Moses and angels had visited each and every one of them in their bedrooms. He was sort of freaked out.

He is also upset that all of the Russian kids at the school say rude things to him. That doesn’t make anyone like the Russian kids.

I’m working on composing a letter to the school VP about sexual harassment and every other kind of asshat behavior I hear about. It is constant. These kids have absolutely no manners. Nobody, including teachers, is safe. I keep telling my daughter that this is good for her because one day she’ll grow up and have to deal with idiots – better she learn how to deal with them now. She mainly gets frustrated by boys asking for blow jobs and kids who don’t take school seriously. She isn’t some nerdy book worm but she likes to learn without distraction. What the teachers say is interesting. What a concept.

Don’t Touch Anyone

The one in college told me that he isn’t going to touch anyone until he graduates least he be accused of assault. He also is telling all of his female friends to NEVER go to frat parties or anywhere alone or without a friend. By friend he means REAL friend – someone who will watch your back. Nobody is safe from attacks or accusations.

Mom asks for help

Question: Where are the scissors?

Answer: I don’t know.

Question: Could you go upstairs and get the ribbon for me?

Answer: What ribbon?

Question: Can you help me?

Answer: Why?

Dad Cleans Up and Does Stuff Around The House

This involves a lot of slamming things around and showing how hard he is working while mom writes her blog. It also involves the TV loudly blaring some sort of car show. If I go upstairs everyone will yell at me to come downstairs because I have to see something on TV (a giant lizard, baby bear or unusual car) or they’ve lost something. Then the cleaning frenzy starts and there is a lot of swearing. The final swearing is usually out of my mouth.

Science

It is really stupid to base a TV show around a guy being eaten by a giant snake. Don’t even think about it.

This year Clara loves science. The teacher is covering a lot of Microbiology.

One of Clara’s friends said he doesn’t believe in science. He means evolution which already makes him sound stupid. The kids in the group don’t know what to do with they and they discuss science fact and theory the way some other girls discuss fashion. They discuss fashion too but today they discuss science. I’m proud of them. Who says girls aren’t interested in science. Actually it isn’t just science – they’re interested in everything. They talk about the universe and how it was made and it rocks their minds. They talk about animals and the environment and food and germs and EVERYTHING. These teens aren’t lazy – their minds are going 24/7.

They discuss diversity and wonder what the big deal is. In their group there are boys, girls, boys who want to dress like girls, girls who like girls, boys and girls who like each other, white kids, black kids, kids who are not on any check boxes and the list goes on and on. They don’t really care. That is a good thing.

Like I said before, things have been busy and crazy lately. So my posts are a little random and I’m distracted…

But I just want to continue to stress that no matter how stressed out you are or distracted take time to talk to your kids about their lives and concerns. Be open to what they have to say. Be there for them.

So anyway, have a good week everyone. Happy Monday and Happy Birthday if you have one today or any day.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

There has to be an app for that… Teens, Communication and Modern Vampire Parenting

vm_keyboard

It was a dark stormy night and five Vampires were on their way to the Apple Store at the Galleria (a huge mall.) I hope I can say “Apple” here without having to describe our adventure as “Going to the all white computer shoppe.” We went to look at Macs for Matthew.

Matthew said he would just stay at home and go online. I told him he HAD to go out. He HAD to go out with his teenage son and my teenage son and their friend Randy. If Matthew is to live in the modern world and have a well adjusted son he can’t continue to live in the shadows. That is exactly what he is, or was – a Shadow Creeper. He was one of those old-fashioned Vampires who thinks we’re all still living in a Victorian Costume drama (but not fun like the new Penny Dreadful show.)

Let me give you a little background (do a search and you’ll find more.) A few years back Matthew’s wife was killed by Vampire hunters – stay with me on this – so he was left with a son in a very modern world. He needed help. I help new and old Vampires become Modern Vampires. Plus Matthew’s son Josh is friends with my son Garrett. Josh is a completely Modern Vampire teen. Click here for more background. It is a really lovely and bitter sweet story.

After everyone was buckled in my car and the perfect music mix was found, I told Matthew that I have something in the slow cooker at home if he wanted to come over later. He gave me one of those WTF looks. I gave him a “you’re the creeper here not me,” look.

On occasion we (Modern Vampires) do cook. We eat “real” food. I mean, can you live on just one thing? sure you could but variety is the spice of life, and I’m not just talking different blood types or booze.

Matthew never says much. I can’t get my Modern Vampire men to shut up but Matthew is the silent type, all brooding like he is trying to make women call him Heathcliff and be swept away on some dark moor where he can bite their necks and make love to them and … just poke my eyes out with a stick right now. The guy is handsome enough but the attitude is archaic at best. And no, this time old-fashioned is not charming.

Just getting Matthew to go out wearing something that is more current than 1897 is almost impossible. At least he could move up to the 1950’s. And no I’m not talking really wonderful turned hip 1897. I’m taking ancestor clothing – right out of the crypt suits all faded black and gross despite the perfect cut and beautiful fabric. Tonight, thank goodness, he was wearing black pants with a striped button down shirt and a gray sports jacket. No tie tonight.

Earlier I’d asked my husband Teddy if he wanted to come along. Well, first I asked him if he wanted to work with Matthew. Teddy just laughed and said “This one is yours my dear.” Gee thanks honey.

I explained to dear Teddy that Matthew had spent far too many night looking into dead eyes and dead souls. Matthew lived in a world where the damned watched and waited for his every move. Teddy just gave me a sideways look and said, “he’s just socially awkward.”

“Matthew is a Vampire of an old order,” said I.

“The guy is weird,” said Teddy.

The boys were laughing nonstop from the time we got in the car until we got to the mall. You gotta love teenagers for breaking up a dark dank mood.

We walked through Pottery Barn on the way to the main mall. Matthew perked up a bit. The female clerks all eyed him – the couldn’t help it. No woman can resist a Vampire, even a quiet type like my friend. He asked if we could come back later for some goblets and a few throw pillows in gray and black that caught his eye. Yes, there was hope!

As usual the Apple store was packed. Nice young helpers were there with smiles and unlimited knowledge. The boys were in teenage heaven. Matthew was well, uncomfortable to say the least. The presence of so many regular hot blooded humans was more than the old Vampire could deal with. I took him by the arm and was ready to take him out of the store when an employee came by and asked us if we needed help.

The kid, a twenty something young man, was all happy to help us. I touched his arm and said, “My friend needs a laptop. Help him out.”

I watched as the young man (named Corey) helped Matthew, weaving a web of magic mixed with technology. It wasn’t a sales pitch, it was just sharing of information. I could sense Matthew’s discomfort but at the same time he was mesmerized by what he was seeing and hearing.

When we were ready to go Matthew told me that he had no idea how useful a computer could be for a Vampire. Then he gave me a rare smile and said, “I wish I could keep track and contact with all of the people who’ve taken interest in me tonight.” That was just about everyone in the store. Like I’ve said before, Vampires, especially Vampire men get a lot of attention when they go out in public. You don’t know why you’re so attracted to that guy but you are.

I mentioned there was an app for that. He didn’t get my joke. I wasn’t going to tell him twice. Not tonight at least.

On the way out he was more comfortable and absolutely charming in Pottery Barn. The Vampire was in his homebody element. He ended up coming home with a new laptop, four beautiful pillows, twelve goblets in two different patterns and I believe five phone numbers from women who couldn’t resist his quiet awkward sexy charm. Excuse me while I laugh after writing that last sentence.

I asked him if he’d talked to his son Josh much about modern life among the non-Vampire population.

Matthew said “He doesn’t say much to me.” I knew they had a close quiet home life with little talking. More than anything Josh had been teaching his father. There still was a lot Matthew could teach Josh. Heck, the guy is almost 300 years old – that is a lot of experience even if it is mostly in the dark. On the other hand, Matthew was in the dark about so many things. He was uncomfortable with so many things.

I keep stressing to Matthew that he has to talk with Josh about any subject that comes up. Since I got a jump start on subjects like sex, drugs, reputation, college, work, hard work, relationships, responsibilities of Modern Vampires, money, communication, courtesy and grace, getting along, friendship and fashion sense, I don’t have a lot of parenting items to discuss. Not today at least. Our little world here at Vampire Maman is quiet. With Mother’s Day coming up and all I can honestly say that I’ve done a good job. We don’t have screaming matches with teens in my house, well except for yelling GET UP NOW in the morning.

So right… if you have younger children get a jump start on those subjects. You should never be uncomfortable talking to your children – especially about sex, drugs, reputation and other social issues. Tell them the truth. Be blunt where you need to. Tell them about consequences – and I mean long term consequences to things they do now. It is ok to scare the shit out of them sometimes – if it is the truth.

They’re your kids and you are in charge. There is no reason to squirm.

If you have teens surprise them with your straight talk. They’ll be shocked but after that more than likely they’ll respect you for it as long as you’re open for discussion.

Even quiet types can find ways to express themselves. I mean it. They really can. There’s an app for that. HA.

As Matthew and Josh left my house later that evening I yelled out to the them, “Hey Matthew, Happy Mother’s Day.”

He turned back and smiled then put his arm around his son and laughed.

 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

 

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More news…

For Mother’s Day I’m taking a car load of teens to see Twenty One Pilots. Fun. I’ll sing along to House of Gold. More on that. Maybe I’ll LIVE post from my magic little white box (aka my kind of smart phone) to the blog here.

 

We all have our teaching moments… everyday should be like that or at least a learning moment: http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_writing_challenge/student-teacher/