Saturday, February 13, 2010

Hurry Up, Please! It's Time!

T.S. Eliot said that April is the cruellest month, but I'm certain it's February. The weather, regardless of locale, is craptastic, and as a teacher, I'm living for Spring Break. This year, it doesn't happen to be until the first week of April, which, to me, means that February lasts now until the first week of April. There's just nothing interesting about March. I prefer to skip it altogether.

Lately I've been watching entirely too much T.V. It's embarrassing. I've always been a reader, and although I've never been one to shun T.V. (oh, how I love my pop culture), I don't think I've ever watched as much in my life as I have during the last two months. Much of this has to do with my immobility from my knee injury, but when I find myself singing the "lapband song" in the shower, I know I've got a problem. Big time. "Let your new life begin, call 1-800-GET-SLIM..." or, is it "THIN"?

One T.V. show has me thinking about stepmotherhood recently, though--"The Bachelor." This is the first season I've actually watched it, and I'm so impatient that I read all the spoilers online after I watched the first episode. Of course I told my mother everything that I'd read would happen, and now she marvels at my "insider knowledge" as every detail I reported has come true so far. Want to know who wins?

What bothers me about "The Bachelor" is the way that the show involves the children of the contestants (is that what they're called?!) in this inane process of finding a mate. It's fine if you're a single childless guy or gal, but if you've got kids, why in the world would you want to parade them in front of the cameras for the world to see? And, is it a sound idea to tote your tot along on a date with someone you might never see again? In this season, one of the women had an eight-year-old son who actually sent a toy airplane along with his mother to give to the bachelor (who is a pilot). When the lady gave it to the bachelor, she mentioned that her son couldn't wait to meet him someday and hopes that his mom finds love. Puke. To make things worse, the lady actually brings her kid along on a date to Sea World with the bachelor, who sends her packing after the next episode.

Is it me or it that just wrong? I didn't even meet my stepson until after about six or seven months of dating my now-husband. We waited until we knew that things were stable and serious between us until I began forming a relationship with his son. I can understand if the child was a little older, maybe, but it just seems wrong to get a kid's hope up--let him meet this cool guy that takes him and his mommy to Sea World and then never sees them again. Did I mention that this kid's dad had died in a plane crash?

Then, I found it revolting that another contestant, Rozlyn (kicked off the show for an 'inappropriate relationship' with a staffer), had a kid who she kept secret from the bachelor. According to the spoilers, she was told to keep it quiet, so I don't know if she chose to hide it or not. Regardless, when someone is meeting and dating a potential spouse, that person deserves to know that the other has a child. Any of us stepmoms know what kind of baggage comes along with a stepkid. People need to know up front what they may be getting into, as entering stepmotherhood or stepfatherhood is no joke. It takes patience, understanding, and the ability to keep your mouth shut from time-to-time. From my conversations with dozens of stepmoms, many have said that they don't know if they'd ever even gotten involved with their significant others if they knew what being a stepmom actually entailed. Can you imagine if you didn't even know until after you'd fallen for someone? Some people may say it wouldn't matter--love conquers all...blah...blah...blah...Wrong. It does matter. And you'd better be darn well sure you're the type of person who likes an E-ticket roller coaster ride.

Finally, this brings me to the bachelor last season (Did I say I'd never watched it before this season? Oops!), Jason. How can you forget his proposal to Melissa, which he took back in order to swap her for Molly? Imagine what his kid went through. "Hey, Ty, remember Melissa? The woman I told you and the whole television world that I would marry? Well, Daddy changed his mind. Here's your new stepmommy--Molly!" And, I love how the show just completely skipped over the fact that Jason doesn't just come with the baggage of a kid, but with a bio-mom, too. Where was she? The producers of the show should've hauled her in, the future in-laws, any shared friends he had with his ex, about twenty of the little kid's friends, and a therapist, because all of those people are about to enter her life, too. But, no. This "reality" is all for show. Welcome to "The Wasteland."

Now I'm completely embarrassed that not only do I remember last season's charmer, Jason, but also the name of his son. At least I got in three references to T.S. Eliot, though, for counterbalance. Whew! Brain saved--at least for today.


Churlita said...

How bizarre. Why would anyone hide the fact that they have a kid? I'm super upfront and open about it. If nothing else, to weed people out. I wouldn't want to waste my time on someone who couldn't handle my kids.

Junkgirl said...

I'm glad you're up front about it. I agree with you--why would you want to be with anyone who couldn't handle your kids?! It's insane.