Hey, where is the handbook by the way?

The one that says it’s ok?

Or not ok?

For a boy to text a girl?

At 9 years old?

Like what would they possibly say?

When is it ok?

For a girl to text a boy?

At 11 years old?

At 13?

At 18?

Daddy, will it EVER be ok?

I’m growing up daddy, don’t take my phone away.

Where is the book of order?

To tell us when they are “officially” older?

When is it too much?

To learn they have a crush?

When is it a must?

To keep a secret?

Or when is it a must to breach their trust?

When is it alright?

For a parent to cross the line?

Or even make a mistake?

Because they are having a hard time?

Accepting that you all are growing up and perhaps, doing just fine?

At what age do they not ask questions?

At what age do they force their kids to make a confession?

At what ages do they encourage their kids, to inform their other parent of what just happened?

Hey my sweet child, it’s just a suggestion?

What will it take you, to tell your ex? Even though you are convinced know best?

If you all lived in the same house, would any of this even come up or matter?

Seriously where are all the answers, served up on a platter?!

How do we explain that some extended families, MANY families, have experienced schizophrenia, depression, addiction, suicide or rape?

How can we steal away these children’s innocence?

What would become of their young spirit’s shape?

How do we abide?

By the boundaries that exist?

Or don’t we even? Or do we?

Let’s go down the list.

Wait, what are the rules again on this?

Can any blood relative shake the stigmas?

Or any of us for that matter?

For that precious innocence is not what you want to tatter.

When is young, too young?

When is old, not old enough?

Where is the guide book?

To help you navigate the nuances?

Of your Co-Parent’s conflicted responses?

Hold up. Did you think that both of you were doing so well?

And then you found yourselves kicked back to hell?

Confused once again.

How did we end up where we were back then?

How does one not go broke on their trust?

How does one not give up when sharing information is a must?

Where are the instructions?

On how much to share with your kids about drugs?

How do you get your kids to talk, engaging you with more than a shrug?

How does one prevent the kids to not take off? Or any of us for that matter?

Leaving the rest of the family in the dust?

Because writing poetry on the beach sounds like promised lust?

How will you ever prevent that prey-tell?

Will the answers come while we sit and dwell?

Where is the freaking manual?

On how to act cool?

When your teen says they met a girl at school?

And not try to pry, yet not lose the window of him opening up go by?

How do you promise your girls to keep their secret a secret?

When their dad needs to know, should know, wait does he REALLY need to know?

What happened to the road map?

That draws this all out?

So you know what to do?

When your child stalks off with a pout?

Because you ruined their life?

Causing all this strife?

When I grew up smart phones didn’t exist.

I learned MS DOS.

I didn’t get dick pics.

Who is delivering professional guidance?

To explain how to navigate social media and messages?

And protect anyone from private passages?

Seeing a therapist is perceived as wrong,

Because everyone wants to appear “strong”.

Why has the stigma been so dark for so long?

Because demonstrating vulnerability IS fucking strong.

Where is the reference book?

On setting the stage? On making it all look,

Like everything is in order?

And that we all have it all together?

How are you doing?

Oh great thanks! Never been better!

Who can bring me Co-Parenting Field Guide?

The one with all the answers?

Because all I have is questions.


  • Jen Whitney

    CEO of Being Fierce

    Inspired and Inspire! Truth dweller of raw grit; exposed and naked on the page. Learning. Evolving. Emerging. What a ride! Co-parent to three. Director.  Poet. Writer. Space- Explorer. Transformed my life. Lost the mental weight, lost 60 pounds, created space, filled with self-love, now use the word impossible with caution. —— We are all worthy of self-respect and self-responsibility and we can prove it in our actions. Let's go get it!