It's been almost 13 years since Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the last book in J.K. Rowling's series, was released. Upon reading the final line, my wizarding journey came to an official end. But these books have staying power — the stories and characters are so well-drawn and rich that more than a decade later we're still talking about and analyzing them. Everyone has a particular witch or wizard who speaks to their soul, but what does your favorite Harry Potter character say about your parenting?
For a lot of Harry Potter fans, one of the big draws to parenting was waiting for the day when we could introduce our kids to the series. (It wasn't the only reason, I hope, but it's exciting to share something you love with the people you love the most.) I even consider myself one of the most intense Harry Potter nerds, mostly because I will not, under any circumstances, allow my kids watch the movies until they've read the books.
This summer, I'm actually "assigning" my 7-year-old Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, confident that once he gets into that one he'll read the rest of the books on his own. Needless to say, I am pumped. I have a guess as to who will be his favorite — Harry — mainly because he's basically IRL Harry Potter, and the characters we connect to in any work of fiction tell us something about ourselves or the kind of people we wish we could be in some way. So what do our favorite characters tell us about how we approach parenthood? Here's a start:
You've entered parenthood with a kind of wide-eyed wonder, unsure of what's going on, but finding yourself with a natural knack for it. You get frustrated and moody at times, so much so that you may find yourself in conflict with people who only want to help you, but you can usually pull yourself together and be the parent you were always meant to be. You have a strong sense of duty to your family, but also a strong sense of fun.
It's change-ium diaperOSA, not change-ium diaperoSA.
Like the formidable Ms. Granger, you are sharp, brave, and, sometimes, just a little bit of a know-it-all, but, like, maybe the problem isn't you knowing it all but everyone else not knowing anything. This isn't on you! (Can you tell who my favorite character is yet?) You are organized and have a plan, but that doesn't mean you don't have the gumption and flexibility to improvise when you need to. And yet despite your "by the book" general approach, those closest to you know that your greatest parenting quality is your fiercely loving heart.
Think of any dopey but loving dad stereotype out in the ether: that's you (yes, regardless of gender identity). And I don't mean that in a bad way at all! Ron is sweet, sometimes worrisome, but always tries his best and is capable of more than he (or anyone else) realizes. You're quick with a joke and always supportive. You're the family's emotional lifesaver, keeping everyone afloat with good cheer when things look grim.
You are wise but playful, and while it may sometimes look like you're flying by the seat of your pants you always have a plan... even if you haven't really told anyone else about it and it doesn't always make a ton of sense when you really think about it. While you may appear to comply with adult authority figures, low-key, passive-aggressive shade-throwing and undermining is your speciality. (No one is going to tell you what to do, but they don't have to know that right away.) You never underestimate your children, and your belief in them means they won't hesitate to come to you for help or guidance.
Warm and cuddly isn't your style. You're not effusively or evenly especially affectionate, and there are definitely times when you are hard on your kids, but it really is tough love. They won't always get your motivations (it doesn't help that you can be gruff and bitter to be honest, my friend), but what you do you do for love... always.
You're gentle but boisterous, tough but sensitive. You'll instill a love of all living creatures in your kids, because your passion for them is infectious. You can sometimes be a teensy bit of a pushover, mainly because you never quite saw the point of hard and fast "rules" yourself, so you'd feel like a hypocrite insisting your kiddos follow them to the letter. You appreciate a simple life, but do not shirk when things get complicated or hard.
Capable and caring, feisty and fun, harried but organized. You are the ultimate mom (again, regardless of your actual gender identity). You do not suffer fools, but you love the hell out of the ones you raised. You are at ease in domesticity, and have a tendency to nurture anyone who crosses your path. Your home is the warm nucleus around which all your kids friends gather and you wouldn't have it any other way.
Hmmm... OK, how do I put this in not horrifying terms? You are... a "goal oriented" parent. Nothing will get between you and that goal. You're intense and, let's call it, "unorthodox." Your kids friends are terrified of you (and they should be).
You have no time to bother thinking about what a mom "should" be like. You have an unshakeable sense of self and you're going to be over here, doing your own thing, thank you very much. You also have an iron will and can-do attitude, and even when your enthusiasm is greater than your ability you're able to power yourself through any situation. You're strong and tough, but tremendously affable. Your optimism and work ethic is a source of inspiration to others.
You're the "cool parent." Kids connect with you on a very personal level and you revel in that sort of thing because you're still a kid at heart and aren't too keen on completely growing up. You're stubborn and a bit myopic, but your intentions are good and you're unfailingly loyal to your loved ones. There's nothing you wouldn't do for them.
You planned your pregnancy around the Zodiac and at the very least considered a dolphin-assisted birth.
I exaggerate... but, you know, not by a whole lot. You're offbeat and don't care who knows it. (In fact, you sort of like when people do.) You think outside of the box and encourage your child to do the same. What you love most about parenting is that you're always learning new things.