On Mothering Daughters

May 07, 2019

Or, listen on Spotify

In this special Mother's Day episode, guest host and "Commune muse" Schuyler Grant interviews her three daughters (ages 9, 11, and 14) on motherhood. Consider this your extra sassy insight into the Commune family.

Schuyler: Welcome to Commune, where each week we explore the ideas and practices which bring us together and help us live healthy and purpose filled lives. You've probably figured out that I'm not your host, Jeff Krasno. No, this is Schuyler Grant, and I'm Mr. Krasno's better half, and I've deposed Jeff this week in honor of Mother's Day.

Now, my own mother, Ann, bequeathed many things to me, a whole slew of questionable personality traits which seem to be manifesting with increasing frequency the older I get, and one of the things I definitely inherited from my mom is a distaste for holidays like Mother's Day, which appear to have been concocted by the chocolate and greeting card industries. In fact, I don't think I've ever called my mom on Mother's Day and I don't think she's ever missed it. I mean, now  to be clear, I love being a mom. I love moms.

So I dug a little deeper into the origins of Mother's Day to see if I was perhaps wrong about my aversion, and I discovered that. Celebrations of mothers and motherhood can be traced back to the ancient Greeks and Romans.

They held festivals in honor of the mother-goddesses Rhea and Cybele, but the modern incarnation for Mother's Day is the early Christian festival known as Mothering Sunday.

The origins of Mother's Day in the U.S. date back to the 19th century. Before the Civil War, mothers' work day clubs were organized to teach local women how to properly care for their children. Question mark. And these clubs later became a way that people could come together in parts of the country especially that were divided after the Civil War. Apparently Union and Confederate soldiers couldn't say no to their moms when they insisted they all get together on what was called Mother's Friendship Day.

The feminist precursor to Mother's Day came from the abolitionist and suffragette, Julia Ward Howe. In 1970, she issued the Mother's Day Proclamation, which was a call to action that rallied mothers to unite in promoting world peace. Awesome.

Anyway, the official Mother's Day holiday was conceived by a woman named Anna Jarvis, who after her mother died rallied for 10 years to create a national holiday that honored the sacrifices mothers made for their children. Jarvis argued that American holidays were biased towards male achievements, and she spearheaded a massive letter writing campaign to newspapers and prominent politicians. After almost a decade of tireless crusading, President Woodrow Wilson officially established the second Sunday in May as Mother's Day.

Jarvis envisioned Mother's Day as this personal affair between mothers and their families, maybe going to church. You could symbolize this by wearing a white carnation as a badge and visiting your mom. But it wasn't long before capitalism had its way with things, and it took only five years for Jarvis to become disillusioned. She started publicly denouncing the commercialization of the holiday, urging people to stop buying Mother's Day flowers and cards and candles, but the cat was out of the bag. Even though she ended up spending most of her personal wealth in lawsuits against the for-profit Mother's Day industry and actively lobbied to have the holiday removed from the American calendar, Jarvis failed. She remained unmarried and childless her whole life, which may or may not be a reflection of her attitude about the salubrious nature of motherhood itself.

So there you have it. Definitely a mixed history, auspicious beginning with a capitalist takeover.

Anyway, I thought I would commemorate this Mother's Day by dragging my three daughters into the podcast studio with me to see if I can learn a thing or two from them about mothering, because I've kind of really just been bumbling along here for over a decade. So first I'm going to rustle up my number one baby girl. She's 14. Her name is Phoebe, In classic first-born style, she's raised in the world of adults and she's super precocious. She's taller than me by a few inches, which is a totally bitter pill for any mother to swallow and I still freak out when I look at her, and of course, this makes her think she's even more mature than she is. You'll see for yourself. Come on in, Phebes.

So, Phoebe, thanks for coming by. I'm really grateful. I know it's a lot to take time.

Phoebe: It was a lot to ask.

No, she is in Mean Girls, but obviously I know her from other places, Mom.

Schuyler: So, I'm going to read you this little, the first bit of this poem by Tina Fey. It's called, A Mother's Prayer for It's Child.

First, Lord, no tattoos. May neither Chinese symbol for truth nor Winnie the Pooh holding the FSU logo stain her tender haunches. May she be beautiful but not damaged, for it's the damage that draws the creepy soccer coach's eye, not the beauty. When the crystal meth is offered, may she remember the parent's who cut her grapes in half and stick with beer.

So, remember that baby doll. Stick with beer.

And I cut your grapes in half. So, I need to ask you a little bit about, you know, parenting 'cause actually you're kind of the expert 'cause you're the one who's being parented and I'm just the parent. So, do you want to give me a little wisdom about, you know, what moms really should be worrying about their teenage daughters?

Phoebe: I would say, give them enough space, like a lot of space. A lot more space than you would think. But, when they do make mistakes with that space, don't always be there to be like, holding their hand afterwards.

Schuyler: Well, that's a really hard ask. That's so mean. Because all moms want to do is.

Phoebe: You're joking?

Schuyler: No, it's true though. Okay. Then, let me--okay, I'm going to give you a follow up question. If you're asking moms to give you more space, and then if you screw up, to continue to give you space, where is the mother supposed to put her worry? Like, what the hell do you do with your every night that you're up, not speaking personally or anything, with 3:00 AM insomnia worrying about your daughter, you know, in an Uber, left on the side of the road?

Phoebe: I think you just got to suck it up and have faith that, I mean, from the 12 years, until they get an Uber account, you've taught them well enough. And I mean, I definitely think boundaries are in order, like, you know? A curfew, maybe, possibly until a certain age, and then extended over time. I mean, I don't know. I think it's different for each parent, and it depends a lot on how they were parented. So, for an example, if you didn't have any rules and you were just allowed to do whatever you want, and then as the child, you saw how scary that could get. The way you parent is probably going to be more hands on.

But then understand the fact that like, the way you thrive is with that space. But if you're someone who had such helicopter parents that were always on you constantly, they're not going to understand that that's just not best for a kid and treat their kids with more space and like room to mess up.

Schuyler: Yeah, I can see that. So, okay, so let me ask you, if what your big kernel of advice is space, like give space. And then when your kid screws up, give more space, then what's the best way for a mom, like once your daughter or son is a teenager. What's the best way that you can impact them, besides giving space? Like, what are the tangible ways you can really have an impact on your kid?

Phoebe: I think being there to encourage and like, help support their ideas. I think that's really important, because all teenagers kind of have like a loss of identity, and know that they don't have to be worrying about who they're going to become or what they want to do. So, when they come to you with an idea for a project or something they want to launch or go more into, it's really important to be there. And even if they don't want your help, offer it and keep on offering it because they probably do want your help 'cause all teenagers are lazy.

Schuyler: You guys are acting like they want you to go away.

Phoebe: Yeah.

Schuyler: It's like, you want me, don't want me. Yeah, that's just like a woman. So, what would you say then are the biggest, the classic mistakes that moms usually make?

Phoebe: I think trying to relate to their kids.

Schuyler: That's so mean, again.

Phoebe: No, no, I mean, not like, actually, no, I fully mean that. It's so repulsive when adults try to pretend that they know what's happening or they know anything about like, our current world. Our current world, meaning like the world of teenagers. It makes you just absolutely repulsed.

Schuyler: Right, okay. I get that.

Phoebe: I think that's one of the worst things a mom could do.

Schuyler: I understand. I'm not trying to like get with the lingo of Snapchat.

Phoebe: No, no, no. That's not what I mean. No, that's not what I mean. Yes, it's a hard combination of like, you don't want to be fake and try to relate. But then also, saying that like, "Oh, yeah, I understand. I understand." Because you actually have no idea.

When kids come to you with their feelings and like, finally open up or trying to talk to you about something big, and parents are like, "Yeah, I get that." And blah, blah, blah. Or, "I understand, but," or, "I felt the same way when I was," 'cause you didn't, and you're actually never going to understand. Even though if you have like, some parents have a clearer idea than others. And so, it's the same way with kids. But it's so annoying when people say they understand your problems because they don't.

Schuyler: I'll say this, yes, the context and the style and the exact issues change, and no, I don't know what's really going with you and I don't really actually, I'm never in your head. But, actually, things don't really change that much. But you don't know that much until you grow up.

Phoebe: No, but everything, but, I mean, but yeah, okay. If like, heartbreak, right? Like, you feel bad about yourself. You feel insecure, you wonder why. Then you get jealous. I mean, yeah, that's probably the same for a lot of people, those feelings. But everyone experiences them differently. And that's what I'm saying. So, when someone says they understand, especially a parent, who just seems decades and decades old, and have so many years in between to forget how that feeling was. It's the most annoying. That's one of the worst things a parent can do.

Schuyler: So let's see. Tell me something that would surprise me about what you and your friends want from your moms. Just one little tidbit.

Phoebe: Faith, probably? Or respect. Compliments. Affection, and not just physically, but verbally. I don't know. Praise.

Schuyler: Okay, I got it, I got it. You're so pretty, you're so smart, I trust you so much. Get out of here. Go back to your friends. Alright, you're relinquished.

Phoebe: I'm done?

Schuyler: Yeah.

Phoebe: Mics.

Schuyler: I love you. You're beautiful. You're so smart.

Phoebe: I'm so smart.

Schuyler: You're so talented.

Phoebe: I love you too.

Schuyler: Goodbye.

Schuyler: Now my sweet second girl baby we named Andine, but from day one, her darling older sister dubbed her Lollipop Ice Cream, and you know, those first kids are really good at getting their way, so she will forever be known within the family as Lolli. Oh Lolli, she is crazy smart. She's both blessed and saddled with intense sensitivity. She's a pretty classic middle child with a tendency towards martyrdom. You know, always smushed in the middle, embattled by her meanie pants older sister and her bratty younger one, who you'll meet in a bit, but she's also a beautiful poet and a dancer and a totally serious little heart warmer snuggler.

So, hi Loll. You just came back from dance, thanks for coming.

Lolli: Yeah, I didn't really have a choice.

Schuyler: No, of course you didn't. That's because mothers are tyrants.

Lolli: Yeah.

Schuyler: Okay,How much influence do you think any mother really has once you're 11 and pretty grown up, over your life choices? You daughter's life choices?

Lolli: It depends how you parent I guess, because sometimes if you learn the best lesson when they're not enforcing it as much. It's like you kind of learn best when you are able to learn it on your own, but then your job is mainly to make sure you're on the right path and it doesn't go too far.

Schuyler: Totally, but that easier said than done. So give me some actionable, mothering tips.

Lolli: I don't know, I'm not a mother.

Schuyler: I know, but you're the expert because you're the one being mothered. You really know what works and what doesn't, right?

Lolli: Right.

Schuyler: I mean, you also have these two sisters, so you even see from the outside what works and what doesn't with them, so give me some wisdom.

Lolli: All right, so. All of your daughters, including myself, they don't need a lot of help, we've never really needed help in school, or finding activities that we wanted to do or anything, so just count yourself lucky because you don't have to do that.

Schuyler: Yeah, I don't have to do a lot of wrangling.

Lolli: But because you don't, you should use that saved time and energy.

And use all that time to really focus on what you think is being a good mother and what you thought, what was your struggles. Because with every mother-daughter, mother-son, whatever the dynamic is, there is always going to be some sort of issue, but what you need to do is you need to find where is that issue a problem, verus where it's just like, you're family, so you kind of love, hate each other.

Schuyler: Got it. So like pin point the crux of the issues that you can do something about and focus the energy that you save not having to make your kids do homework and focus your energy on sealing that gap, fixing that little broken bit?

Lolli: Yeah.

Schuyler: That's some good advice. I'll take that advice.

Lolli: And think about what your parents ... I know that you grew up, and you tell us stories about your childhood. a lot, and sometimes it's not as relevant when they use stories of when they were little. "My mom never let me eat sugar, so I'm really being very kind when I'm giving you sugar." Which I get but because it was a different day and age, I feel like more of a job as a parent is not disciplining your kids or making them sure they're on the right path, but is teaching them to discipline themselves and teaching them how to set themselves on the right path.

Schuyler: Let me ask you a couple other quick questions. What do you think is like--what's the biggest mistake that moms regularly make? Not necessarily me, but the moms in general?

Lolli: Taking too much unwanted control whereas to a point where they don't feel like anything is their decision anymore and while you should be there to support them, that sometimes they need that chance to be free and learn from their mistakes and also adventure into the world that is ahead of them.

Schuyler: Cool. Agreed. Okay, let me ask you another question. If there were three qualities that you might take with you into mothering, if you someday become a mother, from me, what would those three qualities be?

Lolli: My first sentence is giving them partial control of the reins. So whereas they can kind of control their own future, but temporarily, not long term like kicking us out of the house. Number two is having a connection that goes beyond, "I'm your mom, I love you, I'm going to take care of you, I'm going to tell you what to do."

Where you get to see them as someone you'd maybe even want to hang out with. I fell like with all family that's one of the ultimate goals is to more than like them, love them as a family, but to love them as a human being and as a person. And lastly, is being proud and supportive of everything they do even when you don't accept it, because I know some things we do you probably don't wish us to do, and you think there's better uses of our time, but you're so supportive overall even though we tease you about being the Grinch and stuff.

Schuyler: The truth comes out.

Lolli: You're so invested in making us happy and that is so important.

Schuyler: Thanks Loll, I really appreciate that. Okay, two super quickies. Does it seem fun to you to be a mom?

Lolli: Yeah, well there is definitely the high points like when your child graduates or something, I don't know. But then there's the low points when you're just like, "Why did I even do this?" But I feel like overall, it's like the satisfaction of making another person's life better and really contributing to who they are and what they are.

Schuyler: Totes. Alright, last one. This is a sill one. What's the best way for a mom to act around her kid's friends?

Lolli: Okay. It kind of depends, the age and the kid in general,

For me, my friends, I'm always super open with my friend's parents, because I'm like, "Well, this will make them like me more," and I like when my parent's friends like me. But my friends are kind of just like ... Well I went to a new school, so I have a bunch of new friends, so right now it's not best for you to be your true self, because you still are kind of introducing it and if you go completely weirdo on them they might be like, "Oh, don't go to that family. Their mom is so weird." But it's good when you meet a new friend or person in general, you show them who you are and kind of your parenting styles, but level.

Schuyler: Got you. So I need to give a little bit more structure, and only let my freak flag fly at half mast?

Lolli: Yeah.

Schuyler: Got it. Got it. I got the memo. Thanks man. You're always good for a life lesson. I love you.

Schuyler: Oh, okay. Micah, my baby. What to say about Micah? Okay, she's yes, nine years old, but still my baby. I mean, I did just stop nursing her three years ago. Yeah, you think I'm kidding. Micah is my strange one. She's fantastically odd and absolutely secure in her quirky little grumpy self.

Here's the story about Micah.

Maybe she's five or six, it slipped out that we had no intention at all of having a third child, and that I actually came pretty close to having an abortion. She was completely unfazed, and she just said, "Yeah, but now I'm your favorite," which is true. No, no. Of course, mothers don't have favorites, no. No, we just have a rotating cast of favorites that we play off each other, or maybe that's just me and my stellar parenting. All right, with no further adieu, let's get Micah in here.

Micah: What am I supposed to do?

Schuyler: I'm just going to ask you a couple questions.

Micah: Why?

Schuyler: Why? Because we're doing a little podcast for Mother's Day.

Micah: Oh. Why am I here?

Schuyler: Because we're doing a little interview with each of my daughters for Mother's day.

Micah: But you're the mother.

Schuyler: I know.

Micah: Shouldn't it be-

Schuyler: Jake, are we recording? Oh we are.

Alright, so anyway, are you ready for me to ask you a couple of questions? You cool with that?

Micah: I guess.

Schuyler: So thanks for coming by, I know it was a drag.

Micah: It was. Still is.

Schuyler: Well, maybe you could put out a little bit of your amazing acting skills so that you're not a total Debbie Downer on Mother's Day. How about that?

Micah: It's not Mother's Day.

Schuyler: I know but we're acting-

Micah: I already did something for Mother's Day today. We had to make something in art.

Schuyler: Oh yeah?

Micah: Yeah.

Schuyler: Did you spit on it and rub it in the dirt because you hated your mom so much?

Micah: I made it for dad.

Schuyler: That is really a shining example of your great love for me. You're really a turd.

Micah: I know. I know, right. I made three so I might give one to you, one to dad, and one to grandpa.

Schuyler: Oh.

Micah: I might send one to grandpa.

Schuyler: Two men and a lady for Mother's Day. Sweet. That will put some extra boobs on their chest.

Micah: Okay.

Schuyler: Yeah. So there is this really funny lady, and her name is Tina Fey. Do you know who she is?

Micah: No.

Schuyler: She's an actress.

Micah: I've seen her on your contacts.

Schuyler: No, I wish she was in my contacts. No, she's an actress. She's kind of famous. But she has this poem that I really like, so I'm just going to read you a little tiny bit of it. I'm not sure if it will totally make sense to you, but it's a poem about daughters. It's kind of like a poem that she's writing to her daughter.

Micah: Oh.

Schuyler: Okay?

Micah: Okay.

Schuyler: "And should she choose to be a mother one day, be my eyes Lord, that I may see her lying on a blanket on the floor at 4:50 AM all at once exhausted, bored, and in love with a little creature whose poop is leaking up it's back, 'My mother did this for me once' she will realize as she cleans feces off her baby's neck. 'My mother did this for me.' And the delayed gratitude will wash over her as it does each generation and she will made a mental note to call me. And she will forget, but I'll know because I peeped it with your God eyes. Amen."

Micah: Is that it?

Schuyler: That's it.

Micah: Oh.

Schuyler: What do you think of that? Does it make any sense?

Micah: It's weird.

Schuyler: It's weird?

Micah: Yeah.

Schuyler: Good weird?

Micah: It's strange.

Schuyler: Strange. Do you get it at all?

Micah: Kind of. Not really though. Please don't explain it.

Schuyler: I bet if you just closed your eyes right now ... Let's try this. Let's try a little experiment. Close your eyes and take a deep breath.

Micah: I don't like yoga, or meditation, or anything peaceful.

Schuyler: Don't worry, this is not going to be peaceful.

Micah: Okay.

Schuyler: Just take a deep breath, focus your mind, focus your little laser mind and do a spoken word poem about moms.

Micah: Why?

Schuyler: Just for kicks. Just let it rip.

Micah: Why?

Schuyler: Just for fun.

Micah: Oh, okay. Why? Do I have to?

Schuyler: You do.

Micah: Why?

Schuyler: Or I won't get you sushi.

Micah: Okay, don't get me sushi.

Schuyler: My mothering techniques are totally falling apart. Okay, here, I'll start it. Being a mom is so very -

Micah: Hard.

Schuyler: Alright, being a mom is so very hard, you work in the house, you work in the yard.

Micah: That's very weird.

Schuyler: Okay, we can move along from poetry. So let me just ask you a couple questions about momming and we can be done with this.

Micah: Okay.

Schuyler: Does it seem fun to be a mom to you?

Micah: I just want a daughter and I want to pamper her, and I want to spoil her a lot.

Schuyler: Interesting.

Micah: That's my dream.

Schuyler: Do you think that you've been pampered and spoiled a lot?

Micah: No.

Schuyler: No?

Micah: No.

Schuyler: Really.

Micah: No.

Schuyler: So does that mean you think it's fun to be a mom since you want one?

Micah: No.

Schuyler: No. So not fun to pamper and love up a little girl?

Micah: I don't want a baby. I don't want a young child. I don't like young children. I want a girl that's like 10 or 11.

Schuyler: Cool. That's called adoption.

Micah: Yeah, I know, but I don't want to miss the first

Schuyler: So you don't like young children, but you don't want to miss the first bit.

Micah: Yes.

Schuyler: That's tricky.

Micah: No because I don't want to miss things like when she loses her first tooth, but then she has to lose her first tooth very late.

Schuyler: Got it. So why is not fun to be a mom of a young baby? What's not fun about that?

Micah: Their cry. They cry and it's annoying.

Schuyler: Yeah, but when it's your baby-

Micah: I have sensitive ears.

Schuyler: That's true. I don't really like other people's babies either. When they're your baby you're kind of wired to love them. 

Anyway. So you want to be a mother someday, but only one and you want that kid to arrive fully realized as a ten year old kid.

Micah: Yes.

Schuyler: I got it. I got it. Let me ask you, what are the most inappropriate things you're like, "Mom."? What frustrates you or annoys you that moms do?

Micah: When you tease me about my love life even though I don't have one. It's very annoying. It's not inappropriate, it's just annoying.

Schuyler: Okay, I will not tease you about your non-existent love life anymore. So what do you think are the best parts of being a mom?

Micah: I don't even know if I want to be a parent.

Schuyler: Don't you think I look like I'm having a really good time most of the time?

Micah: No.

Schuyler: No?

Micah: You got an ear infection and sprained your ankle this last week.

Schuyler: I know, but that doesn't have anything to do with being a mom. But you see how much fun I have. I love being with you guys.

Micah: Okay.

Schuyler: I have one last question for you. You know it's Mother's Day coming up, did you even know that?

Micah: Yeah, it's like next week or something.

Schuyler: It's coming up on Sunday.

Micah: This Sunday?

Schuyler: So it's Mother's Day this Sunday, and put your little nine year old mind inside a mother's mind. What's the nicest thing you could do to show your mom that you loved her? Really.

Micah: I don't know. they probably want their kids to make them something, not really buy them something. It really depends on how old the kid is. If it's a kid that's like a teenager, then yeah they can get away with buying them something, but a kid that's my age, they would kind of have to make you something.

Schuyler: Yeah, you could just give me yourself because that's beautiful. Whomp-whomp.

Micah: Whomp-whomp.

Schuyler: I love you Mics, thanks for bringing your grumpy self over here.

Micah: You're welcome.

Schuyler: I think to wrap this up, I think I need to call my own mom to resuscitate my ego because as mean as my own children will be to me, my mom will be unfailingly adoring. I'm afraid that's probably my sad future. Whether she'll answer the phone or not is something else entirely, but I'm going to give it a try.

Ann: What would I say about mothering? I would say mothering is fraught, really ... a childhood's stuff is so ... it's so ... important. It forms you. It forms you in positive ways. It forms you in negative ways. And Jack and I were young, sadly unformed ourselves.

The point that is mothers and mothering, we all need to grow up before we have kids. Grow up. I don't know if it's even--

Schuyler: Wait, you're saying, that you should wait because then, so then when you do have children, however many you might have, you're a more adept parent? You're not just babes raising babes?

Ann: Yeah. You're not going to, yeah. You're not going to affect your children in negative ways. Your amygdala, which is that little almond shaped bit in your brain that is all about ow, something scary, oh, ouch, oh, watch out, or disgust. It does disgust too. And it is like a hub of neural pathways, and it actually keeps track of salient events that happen to you, and generally, when you're a child, remembers those somehow and those events are out of your conscious mind.

Schuyler: Right. Let me just say, it's interesting because Phoebe's great pearl of wisdom when I asked her for a bit of advice about mothering was simply, “mothers should give teenagers more space to make mistakes. And then if they make mistakes, they should give them more space after they've made the mistakes." And I was like, "No, that's the last thing you're going to get. You can ask for that all you want, but no freaking way." But-

Ann: Right. Give you more space so you can make more mistakes, or not even pay attention, that it was in fact a mistake?

Schuyler: No, I think she's trying to argue that by the time you're a teenager, you need to work it out on your own. That really, we're superfluous at this point, that mothers are just ... we're just really kind of an accoutrement to life.

Ann: Right, something could-

Schuyler: After 13.

Ann: Something to slough off. It's time to slough off the mother.

Schuyler: Yeah. Uber-

Ann: Yeah.

Schuyler: With a wallet. You know that's all we really are. But-

Ann: Yes, that's right.

Schuyler: So wait-

Ann: We're furniture.

Schuyler: So here's my question for you, because I'm still in the thick of motherhood, of teenagers, and pre-teens, and pre-pre-teens.

Ann: Yeah.

Schuyler: Is she right? I mean, is the formation of the amygdala, and all that really formative stuff, does that all happen pre-14 for the most part? Can i stop worrying every night in the middle of the night

Ann: Yeah.

Schuyler: Or do I still need to freak out all the time? What do you think? Do you think that really, by the time your kid's a teenager, do you think you really have much power left, or effect left, or is it-

Ann: You don't have much ability, or let me see ... you don't have much traction to change her. She is already formed.

Schuyler: Yep.

Ann: She is formed.

Schuyler: Yep.

Ann: You know, I suppose if you said you're grounded for a month and whatever, I guess, in some ways, you can say there's ... i guess, the one fraction you have is you can say there are consequences to your behavior, and I apply those consequences. And it's good for people to learn that there are consequences. So maybe, in fact, that is the role that you have now. But she probably- 

Schuyler: I just get to be a policeman.

Ann: Won't tell you what she's doing, and you won't be able to find out.

Schuyler: Right. Unless she's busted. Well-

Ann: Right. Unless ... certainly won't tell you if you're going to ground her-

Schuyler: Yep.

Ann: If there's things that are, you know-

Schuyler: No, you can never really punish a kid for the things they tell you. That's just, I would say, one of the rules number one of teenage parenting, is you ... if someone tells you the truth, you can't bust them for that, as bad as that truth might be. That's a truth to live by. But, if they lie or sneak-

Ann: If they do tell you the truth, you have to not punish them for it.

Schuyler: Right.

Ann: Yeah. I agree that it is, and they won't tell you the truth.

Schuyler: Correct. And you can offer wisdom that will not be taken, but it'll make you feel-

Ann: Not necessarily.

Schuyler: Better to say it.

Ann: Yeah.

Schuyler: Did you know there's more phone traffic on Mother's Day than any other day of the year?

Ann: Is that so?

Schuyler: That is so.

Ann: So. That's pretty cool.

Schuyler: All right, Mom. I know if I called you for you anytime, you would always be there for me. That I know.

Ann: Yeah. You bet I would be. I would fly as far and as fast as I could.

Schuyler: All right, Mommy. I love you.

Ann: I love-

Schuyler: Girls out to sushi as a thank you for withstanding the pain and agony of being interviewed.

Ann: Okay. It wasn't bad. Hey, I just have to tell you, I listened to Jeff's podcast.

Schuyler: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ann: The one about the addiction.

Schuyler: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ann: Great podcast. Wow. I emailed him, so you don't have to share, but I'm telling you that.

Schuyler: Well, guess what. He'll be back next week after I'm done kicking him off his pedestal, so you'll get some good stuff the week after Mother's Day.

Ann: Okay. All righty. Toodaloo.

Schuyler: Toodaloo. I love you, Mom.

Ann: Love you too.

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