I became a mama at a young-ish age. I say "ish" because it's only perceived as young to our generation. Women are having babies well into their 40's, and most women are not starting to think about having babes until they are established and in their 30's. However, if you look at only a generation ago, women were starting their families right out of high school. Many women of that previous generation were done having their 2, 3, or 4 kiddos by the age that many women of our current generation are barely getting started. I only point out this very boring fact because I'm upset with people's perception of what a mama of a teenager should look like.
I, myself, have a 14 year old trying-to-be-a-man boy, and occasionally I'm with him in public. I am, after all, his mother! I'm allowed to drive him places and require his presence during outings that I may need his assistance or company. He isn't an early developing dude; doesn't look older than his age. I would say, without question, that he looks like a young teenage boy. As for myself, I would like to think (hope) that I look young for my age....I spend enough money on anti-aging products, after all, and to some affect they better be doing their claimed job. With that said, I still look like a woman of a mothering age...even one that could have a child of 14.
I am making this point because lately it has come to both my son's and my attention that when we are out in public together some people give us really weird...even mean and angry...looks. Weird right? Apparently no. It happens quite frequently, and my oldest and I both have come to the conclusion that some people...ARE PERVERTS! I am NOT a cougar and this BOY is my SON! You freaks!! Anytime I leave with just my oldest or with the oldest and the baby, the looks we get from strangers are ridiculous! I've even received the scoff from women assuming I must be "with" this teenager. Seriously?! PERVERT!!! That's beyond disgusting. I'm 30(ish) and more than old enough to be this young man's mama, and I'm allowed to go out in public with him.
If it were a one time thing, I think I would quietly let it pass as a case of stupidity, but it seems to happen quite frequently. It truly boggles my mind. First of all, I'm not old enough to be a cougar! Secondly, I bear the scars of being his mama so back off! Thirdly, I'm happily married to a man of normal age (ok...you might have me on this one. I did marry a man slightly younger than me. But that just makes me smarter and wiser than him anyway.)! What gets me the most though is that these idiots actually think it's possible. The very thought is gross. Shame on you perverted scoffing stranger!
I normally don't get all feisty and vocal about things, but since this seems to happen anytime I go into a store or restaurant with my oldest son I felt I needed to make it perfectly clear that we've become a society of judgmental people. Your assumptions, sadly, have affected my behaviors. Now I second guess myself and reconsider asking him to accompany me somewhere even though I enjoy that time with him. Getting that one-on-one time with my teenager is precious. I like to take my sons on "dates"...even if they are only to get icees at the nearby gas station. But I am a little worried to go on one of my "dates" with my teenager...even though he asks when it is his turn quite often. Can you imagine the judgements that would be cast our way at the theater (which is, by far, his favorite mom-Ty date night)?!
You see, these are precious times for not only me but for my boys as well. With many kiddos on my heels, the tiny alone moments that I get with each one is priceless and far too few...and I cherish them. And you, you judgemental, know-it-all, assuming stranger that pushes your idiocy onto myself and my son...you deserve a tongue lashing. We leave the establishment feeling as if we did something wrong. My son will say "mom" countless loud times so anyone near can hear. You have left him feeling embarrassed. Instead of applauding the idea of a busy-mom-of-6 and a pulling-away teen spending time together (even if it is just getting groceries), you steal the joy of the moment with your own incorrect (disgusting, I might add) assumptions.
So I return your tsk tsks and exasperated scoffs and leave you with a "shame on you".