So. I always want to be the cool aunt. I want my niece and nephew to love me and respect me and think I’m just the shit. I want them to be able to come to me with things and feel like I’m someone they like.
Part of this is because I was a terrible aunt for so long. I was absent; caught up in my own selfishness and self-centeredness. Doing my own thing, worried about my own life. Drinking and dealing with the effects of that and whatever else went along with it. I didn’t have time for things like family and small children.
But part of it is just the regular old manifestation of the lifelong fear of needing so very badly for people to like me, to love me. To not want to make waves; to not want to cause confrontation. For as ranty and frustrated and angry with the world as I may feel and seem on paper, I don’t want to have those arguments in person, with people I know and love.
Another piece is that I’ve positioned myself at this point to be more of their friend than their aunt. This is much less problematic than if I were their mother, for instance, but still somewhat problematic when I feel I want to be an authority figure on something or when i feel I should have some gravitas.
I say all of that to say this: one of my niece and/or nephew isn’t the best grammarian. It’s “are” when it should be “our” on the old Facebook and in chats with me. And it KILLS me. It kills me just as a wordsmith, but it kills me as their aunt. I can’t let them go around writing and talking like that, can I? Does their mother know? What about the FUCKING TEACHERS? They’re in high school, for God’s sake? What the motherfuck?
I went to the same public school they did and we had great teachers and I got a stellar education. Although, apparently, they can eat in class and bring their phones to school now. Man, I feel old. I feel really fucking old, because that all seems like a REALLY BAD IDEA to me. Especially when I have a teenager who doesn’t know the difference between are and our. Do I say something?