The experience of approaching my kids bathroom or bedroom door and finding is locked has become a ‘thing’ for me. She’s only 7...which is still 5 years older than it feels like she should be but still, we’re here. She’s beginning to reach an age where there’s an awareness and desire for privacy and alone time and I have not emotionally processed it yet. I’m unpacking, I’m thinking and we’re in discussion. Help me. Is that weird? Is it weird that I need to have a conversation with her and Dad about whether this is ok?
I can’t quite put my finger on what the issue is. For her it seems very straightforward. She wants privacy. I just haven’t caught up yet. Privacy for what? Why now?
For the last 8 years (I’m including the time when perfect strangers began inserting their digits into my vagina to swab for who knows what) privacy was a mythical creature only found in JRR Tolkien novels. Sure, having privacy when using the toilet would be amazing but like any good thing, apparently it’s most enjoyable when it’s hard to come by. No one in our house was lucky enough to get their hands on it and neither of my kids gave a fuck about the concept. Well, now she does.
Is it that I think she’s ‘up to something’? What the hell could she be up to? ...don’t answer that. I don’t think that’s my issue. I think my issue is that I’ve been needed and required to be in both her bedroom and bathroom with her at any given moment that it’s a bit painful to come to terms with the fact that I’m not anymore. She was showering on Sunday night to prepare for school and I popped up to see how she was doing and I turned the handle only to get shot down. I felt annoyed and had to stop myself! I asked through the door if everything was ok and to ask her to shut ‘er down and all was cool. I think we’re at this crossroads because while she may want and deserve her privacy, she still can’t do a lot of the things that having privacy requires you to be adept at doing...ie: making sure not to scald yourself by turning the shower dial in the wrong direction!
I don’t want to hold her back but I just don’t think she’s ready for what she wants to be ready for. You know? Am I a dinosaur on this? ….I suppose this should be the billboard for parenting.