The Trials and Tribulations of the 21st Century Parent
They say one of the benefits of pet ownership is that it gives you a sneak preview of the responsibilities, trials and tribulations that the raising of human children will bring.
This is certainly true of me and my pet cat, ‘Daisy’. I've put up with the demands, the mood swings, the rows and the turds, but now developments have brought the challenges of fatherhood into sharp focus…
When I first suspected she was taking an interest in religion, I was pleased, I thought it would give her the direction and moral fibre she needed to leave her slothful, workshy ways behind.
But it soon became clear this wasn’t happening. She continued to sleep most of the day and stay out late, she never read any kind of religious texts (or any books at all for that matter) and I don’t think she even knows the direction of
Daisy has become a religious extremist.
It’s hardly surprising. Daisy is one year old now; that’s 16 in cat years and its disenfranchised teenagers like Daisy that are targeted for indoctrination by these extremist groups. They must’ve gotten to her when she was on one of her after-breakfast walks.
I’ve tried talking to her about it but it’s no use, she won’t open up about it, she just sits there gazing up at me with this blank stare, before licking her arsehole and storming off outside. I might as well be speaking in a language she doesn’t understand for all the good it does.
The tension in the household is palpable, she comes in, eats, sleeps and storms off out again without a word about where she’s been or where she’s going. Where is the helpless kitten I once knew? I don’t know her anymore. But worse than that, I’m actually afraid of what she might be capable of if things carry on like this.
Unfortunately it seems that parents in my position have very little support to turn to, until they have actually done something there’s very little help. Sure, right now it’s just small, seemingly innocuous acts of rebellion: staring at you on the toilet, clawing the sofa, - but who knows where it will end? I don’t want to wake up one morning to find her on the front page of the paper - a small tabby would attract a lot of attention boarding the tube in a hoodie and a rucksack.