Yes, I’m sure there are some exceptions, and sorry if you get lumped in with the rest of them, but yeah, I pretty much agree. The only thing she missed are those annoying little stick figure decals of Mommy, Daddy, Little Boy, Little Girl and a dog that infest the back window of every fricking minivan.
WTF? People have been reproducing for a long time — do you want some kind of an award?
9 thoughts on “Suburban soccer mom values”
I don’t have any decals on my car(not a mini van) but can anyone tell me if I did why the heck would it be wrong? Every once in a while I “get” why people think liberals have a superiority complex. Seriously, psychoanalyzing and armchair quarterbacking a familiy’s dynamic from outside must be super fun but I don’t think it’s overly productive nor is it likely to be accurate. People who are protective of their children may have baggage(considering 61% of rape victims are under 18, 29% under 11, and only 1 in 10 are reported. http://www.usatoday.com/life/2002/2002-03-12-pedophilia.htm). People that enroll their kids in programs may be attempting to give their children a safe environment with adult supervision and an outlet that they can use later on in life and hoping their children benefit from it in much the same way a parent might take on an exchange student so that her child can see Europe or a parent might send a child to camp to have her work on skills.
Frankly, I found the screed full of bias and not particularly well thought out. In my opinion, particpatory parenting is the least of our problems in this country. I’ve also yet to see a parent(Riverdaughter included) that doesn’t tend to take pride in the successes of their progeny. As for awards, we give them to actors, teachers, football players and a whole host of people who have jobs that don’t carry nearly the influence a parent can have on their children)our freakin’ future leaders, thank you very much). I have to wonder if all the people scoffing were hatched from eggs or had nearly perfect childhoods because all it takes is coming from a dysfunctional background to know how important our formative years can be to the person we later become. We should all be so lucky to have parents that vet the backgrounds of people their children come in contact with routinely or are trying to ensure that their children have rounded experiences by signing them up for extracurricular activities.
The post, I thought, was pretty clearly talking about extremes. There are a lot of people who make parenting into an Olympic sport and they’re going for the gold medal. If you’re not one of them, more power to you. Children aren’t science experiments, you can’t control all the variables, and even the most respectful, well-behaved kids want some privacy.
Riverdaughter was also talking about herd behavior among suburban mothers. It’s there. I don’t know how anyone can say it isn’t.
Finally, this surely isn’t liberal vs. conservative, since most of the parents I know who fit this description are liberals. It’s more urban vs. suburban. In the city, kids tend to be a lot more independent. We don’t raise many hothouse flowers here.
You might be right about the urban/suburban split, but likely the answer is smaller families. In bigger families, the kids end up being more independent, because they’re just not going to get all of the parent’s attention. Not so with 1 or 2 kids. I saw this 40 years ago, and it has only gotten worse since, since families are getting smaller and smaller. (Do you know anybody in that demographic with more than 3 kids?)
But I must say, if she hates the suburbs so much why does she live there?
I would think that the more paranoid parent wouldn’t have those stick figures on their vans because it would give kidnappers, perverts and mean people an idea what kinds of potential victims are in the van!
Kids do need a little time that is “free play.” Having nearly every part of the day scheduled with formal activities is, I believe, is unhealthy for kids.
I think we are doing girls a great disservice with all this Pink Princess marketing. I am not saying a girl shouldn’t have a color preference, but, raising girls with the “one day my prince will come” mentality is just wrong.
I think teaching kids to have a little self-direction and taking them off the leash once in a while makes them better people.
Hah. I thought the same thing the other day when I saw one: “Let’s see, they have a dog so I need to bring some poisoned meat for my home invasion…”
I have five kids and ten grand-kids – where’s my reward!?
You must not have any room left on your back window!
You’re missing my larger point. The idea that MOST suburban mothers are behaving the way they are because they view parenting as a competition is simple minded and wrong. Frankly, I see this kind of behavior as just as bad as when the conservative cabal insists they have the right to be judge and jury to people who don’t ascribe to THEIR particular belief set and treat issues such as foreign policy or personal choice as such simple minded and easy issues. People are complex. Families are complex. Raising families is complex. Issues aren’t always cut and dried. I find it quite disturbing that people who ascribe to the position of “open minded” would find it appropriate to pile on a subset of people because they don’t fit in with them.
Yes, it is complex. But you’re missing my point. It was really, really annoying to raise my kids in the suburbs, where I was told I was a bad mother for letting a 12-year-old take the train downtown by himself. The kid wasn’t a moron.
And how, because I once made a joke about a block party about pot, it became common knowledge that I was “a drug addict whose baby was born addicted to heroin.” (You’d have to know my drug-free lifestyle to know how funny that is. I was a childbirth educator at the time.)
Or when I was told I “didn’t love” my children because I asked at a meeting of Cub Scout why the working fathers were never asked to bring snacks.
Suburban mothers can be quite vicious in the way they judge anyone who doesn’t conform, I suppose in an attempt to validate their own choices. It was much like high school. If you deviated in any way, you paid for it.
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