Posts Tagged ‘Parenting’
Preemptively: No, I am not pregnant.
Saw this on Babble. Please don’t ask why I was on Babble. But I thought it was a great list. I liked how it moved between the seemingly banal and serious life lessons. Some examples.
2. In Monopoly, buy the orange properties.
11. Spend time with your mother. She’s cooler than you think. [So true!]
29. Never post a picture online you wouldn’t feel comfortable showing your mother, your boss, and the dean of admissions. [Many people on Facebook really need to learn this rule!]
40. If you make a mistake, forgive yourself and move on. [Hard to do, even for adults.]
50. Don’t litter. Ever. [Why don't more people teach their children this?]
Ford—the guys who make cars, not the guys who travel into space with towels—are introducing a brilliant new technology that makes me feel a lot better about handing the keys to the car over to a teenage driver. The technology, called MyKey, will debut in 2009 in new coupe models, enables the non-teenage owners of the car to program settings into the key that encourages safe driving and limits potentially harmful teen-driving behavior.
According to the article:
“Ford not only offers industry-leading crash protection and crash
avoidance systems, we also are committed to developing new technologies
such as MyKey that encourage safer driving behavior,” said Susan
Cischke, Ford group vice president of Sustainability, Environment and
Safety Engineering. “MyKey can help promote safer driving, particularly
among teens, by encouraging seat belt use, limiting speed and reducing
So how does the MyKey do all this? The new technology will enforce limitations such as: a seat belt reminder with audio muting on the radio until the belt is buckled, earlier low fuel warnings, driving and parking assistance, a top speed limitation of around 120kph (80mph), traction limiting to reduce tyre spin, and a limit of the audio volume to 44% of full volume.
Brilliant! I’m changing car brands as soon as my kid is old enough to drive!
Parenting magazine has a mindboggling story of woman who goes to the hospital with terrible backache and stomach cramps, the nurse examines her and says “You’re eight centimeters dilated.” She went to full term and didn’t know she was pregnant! I mean, most parents are surprised when they find out mum is pregnant. Imagine suddenly finding out you’re having a baby – now!
In a country such as South Africa, where the child murder statistics are horrifying, and where we read about the murder, mutilation, and rape of children as young as 9 months old, letting a child out alone is terrifying. You read many stories in the newspaper about children who go out, even if on a simple errand, and never return alive. It’s scary. It scares me to the deepest core to think that if I let my own son out on his own that he might not return alive.
However, in other countries where the statistic isn’t as bad as it is here, how do you feel about letting your children out alone? Over at Boing Boing is a discussion about a woman who let her 9-year old son take the subway alone, in a society that seems to be mollycoddling children. I do applaud her–she’s probably far braver than I am, but then my son is 2 and a half…and still has no sense of self preservation.
No, I did not give him a cell phone. Didn’t want to lose it. And no, I didn’t trail him, like a mommy private eye. I trusted him to figure out that he should take the Lexington Avenue subway down, and the 34th Street crosstown bus home. If he couldn’t do that, I trusted him to ask a stranger.
Apparently, half the people that she’s told the story to want to turn her in for child abuse–mollycoddlers the lot of them, I imagine!
Has the level of trust in our children decreased from previous generations? Are we coddling them too much? Should we learn to just let go and let them find their own feet? I agree that we should…in principle. In practicality, it’s far, far more difficult. But then, how do you expect the kids to get a sense of street-smarts if you don’t? I was brought up in a sheltered environment, and I’ve no sense of street-smarts whatsoever. How best do you think should be accomplished without smothering the child, no matter how good-intentioned?
Acclaimed horror author Stephen King talks about violence in video games, and specifically about a Massachusetts bill that the lawmakers want to put into effect regarding the sale of violent video games to minors. Says King:
According to the proposed bill, violent videogames are pornographic and have no redeeming social merit. The vid-critics claim they exist for one reason and one reason only, so kids can experience the vicarious thrill of killing. Now, what does and doesn’t have social merit is always an interesting question, one I can discuss for hours.
He also goes on to state that the lawmakers don’t seem to see that violent video games, which is 18 certified, is under stronger criticism than even more violent movies such as, for example, Hostel or Saw. He then discusses what the root of the problem is:
What really makes me insane is how eager politicians are to use the pop culture — not just videogames but TV, movies, even Harry Potter — as a whipping boy. It’s easy for them, even sort of fun, because the pop-cult always hollers nice and loud. Also, it allows legislators to ignore the elephants in the living room.
Personally, I’m inclined to agree with him. I have a deep interest in video games, video game legislation, and societal violence (and if I were still studying psychology like I was way back at the beginning of the millenium, I’d be writing a paper about it). From everything I’ve seen, a large portion of the root problem of violence in society isn’t and cannot be attributed to video games, no matter how violent, but that seems to be beside the point. I know that the issue isn’t all black and white; no issue is. However, by and large, the problem appears to lie within the home: children whose parents don’t know what their children are doing, don’t know what culture their children are growing up in, and don’t know who their children are hanging out with. And are too unwilling to lay down the law when their children have crossed the line.
What are your thoughts on the matter?
This is from the Parenthood blog, which also has a bunch more
Makes me think of weird parenting techniques. I always remember my cousin picking up her youngest kid like a sack of potatoes, just hooking him under her arm and walking off. As she retreated all you’d see was her back and peeking out from under her arm, this big toothless grin.
When I had a pregnancy scare the first year I was married, I got home from the doctor following blood tests (the results would only be back the next day) and went to my room and thought “But where would I put it?”
Thankfully the tests ended up coming back negative but I shudder to think of what kind of flying-by-the-seat-of-your-pants parent I would have been. I think I would have been okay but probably very clueless and very unconventional.
Have you ever seen a parent do something completely atypical and thought “Huh. Who’da thought?” or had any particular parenting fears yourself?