Mistakes in Parenting 1: Teenage Fashionista


Teenage Fashionista

She layers on her makeup, gussies up her hair,
then faces indecision over what she is to wear.
It is an epic battle, trying to decide
inside which current fashion her body will reside.

She asks no one’s opinion. She’d rather try and pile
garment after garment, not quite today’s best style,
on bed and chair and carpet, in crumpled little heaps
until she finds the outfit that she will wear for keeps.

There is no dearth of choices of every hue and kind,
which makes it even harder—this making up her mind.
Crop tops, skirts or Levis ripped in the right places
are surveyed in the mirror as she strides off her paces.

Lip poochings and selfies help to make the choice.
When she finally picks her costume, all of us rejoice.
Into the car and speeding to get to school by nine,
both of the  kids delivered, back home I guzzle wine.

Raising a fashionista is something short of fun.
I swear I won’t go shopping with the younger one.
I’ll build her fascination with reptiles or bugs,
go hunting in swamp waters for snakes or frogs or slugs.

I won’t encourage fashion sense or darling little dresses.
I’ve had enough of posturing and daily costume messes.
Making mistakes in parenting is not part of the fun,
and for sure the next time, I’ll make a different one.


Prompt words today are help, dearth, epic and indecision.

25 thoughts on “Mistakes in Parenting 1: Teenage Fashionista

  1. isaiah46ministries

    Raising five children, three of them boys, was exactly as you say. Five different personalities meant five different approaches to discipline and to satisfying them. Mistakes were made, never the same one. I was a fast learner.


  2. koolkosherkitchen

    I think you’ve met my younger daughter-in-law, Judy. Having made this mistake with her older girls, now teenagers, she is trying to change her approach with the little seven-year-old. I am no help there; I specialize in boys, and my oldest granddaughter, the one in Boston, is just as boyish as I had been.


      1. koolkosherkitchen

        My pleasure, dear Judy. Incidentally, I love my gorgeous and very intelligent daughter-in-law, so let nobody see my comment as criticism. I think she was just trying to compensate: give the girls what her parents, working hard in a new country, had not been able to give her.


  3. Ron.

    This old (childless) poet enjoyed reading this very much, although these days — and especially after reading this — I prefer referring to myself as “child-free”.


  4. KLee

    I love this! Did you write it?! My youngest sister has just entered this stage and actually came downstairs today with her eyebrows plucked entirely because she was “growing a unibrow” and took it too far. Great post!!!


    1. lifelessons Post author

      When I was little I saw my sisters plucking theirs and decided it was easier to shave mine off. They never quite completely grew in afterwards. Yes, I write all the poems on my blog. Thanks, Kira.



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