I know people say it is hard to be a parent today and that children are exposed to so much more now then when we were young. That is true and yet as a father of four I wonder how much of the stuff children deal with is due to our impatience and investment (for lack of a better word) in ensuring their acceptance into a quality school and bright future. If we allow ourselves as parents to slip into a frenzy of fear and control about what our kids should watch, read, consume we can and we do. I am not talking about being over protective nor am I hating on parents who have the guts to say “no” to their kids.
It would probably help if I give an example: The other day I was at the store getting school lunch supplies and I stood there staring at the fruit snacks having a battle with myself on whether I was being an enabler to poor eating habits by purchasing affordable, high fructose corn syrup fruit snacks or just buying the darn things based on the fact that I ate similar stuff as a kid and I turned out just fine (that of course is up for debate as well).
I have two options. I can either not buy the stuff that all news reports scream at us not to purchase because we will doom our children to a lifetime of nutritional hell or I can take a deep breath, live within my budget and say this week I buy this stuff and next week I will buy something different. Besides they really like them.
In the end I bought the super bad for you fruit snacks, because my inner child screamed “Let them be kids just like you once were a kid!”
Parents hope you can take a deep breath today and know on your best and your worst days your kid loves you because you are their parent. Know that you are not alone.