Ikea table parenting
My philosophy of parenting includes keeping only moderately decent furnishings, because mistakes will happen. For example, one of the boys got permanent marker on our dining room table. It’s the nicest table I’ve ever owned, but it’s also an Ikea pine wood jobby, easily scratched and marked. It’s not anything we’re likely to turn into an heirloom.
When I was a kid, I always thought getting yelled at for that sort of thing was a huge injustice. Growing up hasn’t really changed my mind. I can tell the boy didn’t do it on purpose*; it’s easy not to think of these things when you’re a kid**. Nothing (that’s not actually yours) has a huge amount of value, because that’s not how your mind works yet. It’s just stuff, that exists in your world. How on earth could you understand the schooling and career building behind the day your mom was able to buy a decent table?
Knowing that, why would I get my dream table – if I had such a thing – and expose it and my kids to each other? It’s better to have the niceish, functional table, tell them to clean up the marks as best they can, and ban permanent markers.
*He did once mark on a chair on purpose, but that time I could tell it wasn’t malicious. He was just “oh hey, a chair and a marker, let’s see.” Yes, sometimes as a kid you brain fart that way. I remember doing it, don’t you?
**And, the daughter pointed out that the permanent marker may have bled through the paper, which is just a problem with experience and/or anticipating consequences.