December 14, 2011

The Age of Overparenting

via Boston Magazine

Thanks to a friend, I came across an article in Boston Magazine entitled Welcome to the Age of Overparenting. The article is so enlightening in many aspects of modern day parenting, that everyone who is a parent should read this.

When I was growing up in the 80s, the parenting style I was brought up on might now be considered slightly negligent and completely unattached.  We had to go after, instead of being nudged or sometimes pushed by our parents, as is the case today in overparenting households,  the things we wanted in our lives. After all, back in those days, our parents let us watch TV, play with the most original but not so safe toys, and some didn't stop to consider whether our schooldays were productive enough. And we turned out fine, didn't we?  We are those kids, now in our 30s and soon approaching our 40s, running the bus lines of e-commerce, social media technology and grassroots organizations. Somewhere between playing outside and staying up late, we developed a green conscience while acing our business classes in college.

I know tiger moms have always existed in the parenting jungle of our lives, but don't you think they are becoming the norm in some zipcodes around the country?  And this, I confess, scares me.  Not because I  feel intimated by them, or fear my child might become dumb if she doesn't receive a tiger education at home.  It scares me because we are robbing our children's childhoods and compensating this with technology and the false promise of a secure future where there isn't room for mistakes or for idleness.

I'd like to try to be a parent for my Emilu first and foremost.  And then, a friend, a teacher, and of course when needed, an untigerly critic.


  1. You are thinking about what to do when Emilu is growing up, I'm thinking about what I did when my son Axel was a child. He is 15 now, and of course I still influense him, but a big part of it is done. He has a lot of values I'm proud of, but he also has flaws that I so clearly can see came from me...

  2. Yes, I'm talking about when parenting becomes an obsession. Nowadays here in the States in common for parents to be so involved in their kids' lives they don't know any other way. It's inappropriate and it hurts them in a way.

  3. I think it's the same way in Sweden, there has been debates here about "curling parents" and the negatives beeing to protective and pushing and concerned about every detail of the upbringing.