‘For Mean Moms’

BUSINESS MATTERS (BEYOND THE BOTTOM LINE) - Francis J. Kong - The Philippine Star

Here is an old article I have kept over the years. I got this through a friend, and I know that I will go back to this one day and see how things are in light of this material.

The title of this article that appeared in a website in year 2008 is “For Mean Moms.”1

Someday when my children are old enough to understand the logic that motivates a parent, I will tell them:

I loved you enough... to ask where you were going, with whom, and what time you would be home.

I loved you enough... to insist that you save your money and buy a bike for yourself even though we could afford to buy one for you.

I loved you enough... to be silent and let you discover that your new best friend was a creep.

I loved you enough... to make you go pay for the bubble gum you had taken and tell the clerk, “I stole this yesterday and want to pay for it.”

I loved you enough... to stand over you for two hours while you cleaned your room, a job that should have taken 15 minutes.

I loved you enough... to let you see anger, disappointment, and tears in my eyes. Children must learn that their parents aren’t perfect.

I loved you enough... to let you assume the responsibility for your actions even when the penalties were so harsh, they almost broke my heart.

But most of all, I loved you enough to say NO when I knew you would hate me for it.

Those were the most brutal battles of all. I’m glad I won them because, in the end, you won too.

And someday, when your children are old enough to understand the logic that motivates parents, you will tell them... Was your mom mean? I know mine was. We had the meanest mother in the whole world!

While other kids ate candy for breakfast, we had to have cereal, eggs, and toast. When others had a soda and junk food for lunch, we had to eat sandwiches. And you can guess our mother fixed us a dinner that was different from what other kids had.

Mother insisted on knowing where we were at all times. You’d think we were convicts in prison. She had to know who our friends were and what we were doing with them. She insisted that if we said we would be gone for an hour, we would be gone for an hour or less.

We were ashamed to admit it, but she had the nerve to break the Child Labor Laws by making us work. We had to wash the dishes, make the beds, learn to cook, vacuum the floor, do laundry, empty the trash, and do all sorts of cruel jobs. I think she would lie awake at night thinking of more things for us to do. She always insisted on us telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

By the time we were teenagers, she could read our minds. Then, life was really tough! Mother wouldn’t let our friends honk the horn when they drove up. They had to come up to the door, so she could meet them. While everyone else could date when they were 12 or 13, we had to wait until we were adults.

Because of our mother, we missed out on lots of things other kids experienced. None of us have ever been caught shoplifting, vandalizing other’s property, or ever arrested for any crime. It was all her fault.

Now that we have left home, we are all educated, honest adults. We are doing our best to be mean parents just like Mom was. End of article.

I have kept this article for 13 years. My kids are all grown up now and they are all doing very well, disciplined to the core, love God with all of their heart, and are still with the Ilocana and I, frequently enjoying dinner together and talking about silly and serious things about life and business. My designer daughter Hannah has made me a grandfather. And I now begin to see her developing into a mean mom too. I will encourage her to keep this article for a couple of years and see how it measures up to her situation by then.

Thank God for mothers. Wouldn’t it be a great idea today to just take time out from our hectic schedule, call mom and say thank you? Show, thank and tell them how much we love them no matter how mean they have been?

Happy Mother’s Day!



(Francis Kong runs his highly acclaimed Level Up Leadership 2.0 Master Class Online this May 24-26. For inquiries and reservations, contact April at +63928-559-1798 or and for more information, visit www.levelupleadership.ph)


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