Monday, June 25, 2012

Parenting 101: Concerts, Yay or Nay

Would you take your children to a concert?

As you know, I was at one recently. It was at an outdoor venue and started at 7, so on that particular summer weekend evening, it was still light out for the first two bands.  My partner in crime and I sat their watching ALL the people mill around and noticed many of them had children...on their shoulders, stretched out on the blanket eating...

We started chatting about whether or not our own children should come.  It seemed like a good idea. I mean, it was definitely geared toward adults, but it was a country concert, so the songs and lyrics were not questionable.

Then it got dark and the final band went on and all of THIS started happening and we both looked at each other and said, "NO!"

Afterwards, though, I started thinking about my own concert experiences... my parents took me to my first concert, a 60's reunion concert at a very similar outdoor venue, when I was 6.  I had a blast and fell asleep in my chair with my friend by the end of the night.  I wasn't all that conscious of all the shenanigans around me.

I do remember my mother taking me to the bathroom and smelling this AWFUL smell and whining, "Mommy what is that?"

"That's marijuana," was my mother's nonchalant reply. A word I'd never heard.

"It smells like sewage!" 

That was the extent of the conversation. My mother didn't make a big deal out of it and just left me to stew with my thoughts.

I think we all know it's doesn't, smell like sewage that is, but in my 6-year-old head, that's what I equated it too.  It was probably ten years or so before I was around it again and that whole time, I thought it smelled like sewage and why would I ever smoke something that smelled so nasty?

And so I haven't.


To this day.

The best, most inadvertent, anti-drug education on the planet. My parents couldn't have done it better if they'd tried!

Maybe a concert wouldn't be such a bad idea? The venue is literally around the corner. I could get the kids home quickly and easily if I needed to.

Yet, I still don't think it's gonna happen any time soon!

How about you? Have you taken your child to a concert? Would you?


WicketsMom said...

We took my then 3-year old to a Jimmy Buffett concert a couple of summers ago. He did a free concert on the beach in Gulf Shores, AL and we were able to get tickets. Even at that age he was a little Parrothead and knew the words to several of the songs. We didn't get close to the front, and were able to spread out on beach towels. He even napped for part of it and there were enough of us to provide a protective perimeter around him when a few stumbled through after too many margaritas.

Buffett does so few outdoor/beachside concerts any more that I figured it is probably a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for him, and we all had a blast! Probably about the only artist I would consider taking him to though.

Melinda said...

I guess it really depends on the concert. a tween pop star sure but not an LMFAO concert :)

DysFUNctional Mom said...

I've been taking my kids to concerts for years. Our town has Free Friday concerts May - October. They're downtown outdoor concerts. People from all walks of life attend, from homeless to city officials. I love the atmosphere, it's so much fun!
I've also never done marijuana or any drug of any kind! Let's form a nerd club! lol

Ellen Stewart (aka Ellie/El/e/Mrs. Seaman) said...

I'd have to ask him, but I think my son's first concert was in fifth grade. He went with his dad who worked for a company that sponsored lot of alternative rock shows. Big ones. All day festivals. With bad language. Mac was fine with it.

(He cusses too much now as an adult, but that's not the fault of rock and roll! He does not smoke pot, however!)

I remember taking my sister to see Duran Duran, how fun was that, when she was about 11. Closest thing I'll ever get to experiencing a British Invasion.

There's a lot to be said about sharing experiences with your kids and then discussing them.

I took Mac to auto races and baseball games, and if people acted out of line, I'd point out his presence and they'd usually apologize and stop...usually!

Blond Duck said...

I don't have a child to take! :)

Emmy said...

I haven't been to a concert since I have had kids- sad huh- so haven't had this concern yet. But yea, I don't think I would. Teenagers- yes, younger kids probably not

Erin said...

I haven't taken my kids to a concert, but I'm not against taking them. I think the outside venue would be good for kids, now the inside venue would be more difficult to keep their attention.

Pepper said...

Hmmm.. what an interesting way to learn about drugs :)

Personally, I guess I wouldn't take my daughter to a concert. She'd get all fussy.

Charlotte Klein said...

I guess I have mixed feelings about this, too, but I think it depends on the type of concert. In recent years I have noticed that a lot more people seem to bring their kids to phish shows which I wouldn’t ordinarily do... but they now have a mommy and me section stretched out on the lawn which is nice and secluded. Bumping and grinding would disturb me too though!

Charlotte Klein said...

Also your mom sounds awesome.