I know I'm not supposed to point out to my daughter when she finally stumbles into the kitchen in the morning that the pair of black leggings she's chosen for school are the ones with the hole in the knee. I know this. How do I know this? Because my mom loved to toss unsolicited advice my way and it always drove me crazy. Still does. And yet now that I'm the one who's a parent, I often find that, hard as I try, I can't quite manage to keep my mouth shut.
Oh, the irony.
Turns out, I'm not alone. Because when the team at Lifetime Daily, a health and wellness site, asked 1,000 people how intrusive they thought their family was on a scale of 1 to 5 (with 5 being extremely intrusive), most ranked them at around a 3—which is probably right around where my daughter would rank me. I could be wrong, though, since while older generations like Baby Boomers were less likely to find their family members intrusive, those born between 1995 and 2009 (aka Generation Z) were more likely to describe their families as "very intrusive." My daughter was born in 2002, so you do the math.
Of course, not all topics or family members are created equal when it comes to tolerance for meddling. While advice from in-laws was less welcome than advice from family in every category (no surprise there!), the respondents were more open to unsolicited advice regarding their jobs, education, and vacation plans than they were about their weight, lifestyle choices, or their kids. In fact, 1 in 3 admitted to basically ignoring their family's advice when it came to how they raise their children.
Makes sense, right? I don't think any of us want to be told apropos of nothing that our kid is too young for a booster seat or too old for a sippy cup. But get this: When the respondents were asked if they would make their family less intrusive if they could, 31 percent of them said no. So what gives? Seems that while we may say we don't want our family to meddle in our lives, on a deeper level we probably understand that it's coming from a place of love. So keep on dishing out that advice, guys. Just don't be offended when no one actually takes it.