Reasons I’m Scared to Raise A Child in Today’s Society

I have been reading through online articles for about the past hour or so without even realizing it. I am absolutely in shock at the insanity going on in this world, specifically with parenting. As a first time mom-to-be: I’m terrified.

People are cruel on the internet, this much is obvious, but people are also stupid and unbelievably harsh. Here are some things I’m scared about…

  • Day care: I just read an article about a mom who had a miscommunication with her husband about who was supposed to be picking up their child (a 10 month old baby) from day care. They realized this about 30 minutes after the day care closing time, so the mother headed over immediately, calling the day care on the way. When she arrived, about 45 minutes late, the entire place was closed and her baby was still inside, crying! They broke in to get their baby out, and thankfully the baby was perfectly fine. The comments were insane!
    • I saw MULTIPLE people saying that this woman was lucky to have her child and that the state should take her child. Um EXCUSE ME?! This was 45 minutes, in a facility that these to employ to take proper care of their child. There was a miscommunication, and they were less than one hour late. It is not as if the parents were falling asleep and realized they were missing baby. Some people were saying “well maybe the daycare worker had her own children to take care of”…that doesn’t exactly mean to leave an innocent child without attempting to reach the parents! It also seems this was just an oversight by the daycare, which is just as bad!
      • The fact that there was no clear sign-out system in place is disturbing. It makes me wonder if people could pick up anyone’s child with this oversight. Thank goodness this baby was fine in the end, but my goodness if I was that poor mommy, I would probably not let my baby out of sight for years!
    • Illness that can spread at daycare
    • The choice of career or daycare: my degree is in engineering, and I am not sure if or when I will use it. I spent an uncountable number of nights slaving away in a computer lab, for what? I am SO excited to get a mother, but if I’d known I wouldn’t use my degree, I’d have not gone to college, or at least taken a much easier major.
    • Abusive care-takers. This shouldn’t happen in a place that does background checks, but it still can. There are many videos around of caretakers being cruel to the children they are watching. Often this is more common with in-home care, but still! The risk is there, and it is real.
  • Outdoor Safety: I want my child to play outdoors, not spend his/her life in front of a screen. I played outside quite a bit as a child. I had ground rules though: do not play in the street. If I did have to enter the street to retrieve a ball or something, look both ways. I was allowed to walk to the elementary school park that was 0.3 miles away, about a 10 minute walk for my 10 year old self. Nowadays that too can get you arrested for child negligence. That scares me. Children should be able to play outside, instead of rotting their brains on iPads in kindergarten! Child obesity is an epidemic, and we make it worse by bullying other parents into fear that they are being bad parents by allowing children responsibility. Again, I had very strict guidelines when I went to the park. If I was late, I would have consequences!
  • Worry About Predators
    • When and where I grew up, predators were animals! Now, even in my hometown, I would be scared to let my child walk the same distance outside that I had growing up. There are so many kidnapping cases and it terrifies me to imagine anything like that happening to my child. Thoughts like those make me want to just sit my kid in front of a screen, at least I know they are safe. except…
    • Online predators are just as dangerous. Anything connected to wifi can be infiltrated by creeps as well. That means even if my little one is playing safely indoors, he/she could be in contact with bad people. There are even those creepy cases of “online kidnapping” on Facebook, where someone steals pictures and info about your child and pretends they are his/her own. Disgusting! It makes me want to never share pictures over the internet! And wasn’t that supposedly a benefit of Facebook?!
  • Society in General
    • Spanking: I was spanked as a child. I think a couple of times my little bottom even got bruised. Now that would be child abuse. I was NEVER abused. My parents would send me to my room, calm down, come in and explain what I had done wrong and why I was getting punished. It was never done rashly or out of anger, and never overly hard. My skin has always bruised easily. Seriously, a bump on the table would look like abuse on me now at the age of 21. Had I been seen by the wrong person at the wrong time today, my parents could have faced consequences they didn’t deserve, and I could’ve been put into foster care.
    • Gender Roles (including, avoiding gender roles): Even at my work, those near my age were starting to tell me to be careful not to raise my kid under gender roles. This included saying that I shouldn’t get too many pink items (I’m having a girl), and that I should raise my baby without a gender. EXCUSE ME?! My female daughter is going to be raised as a girl, because that is what she is. Does that mean I’m going to tell her no if she wants a superhero toy over a Barbie? NO. I loved playing with trains and legos as a little girl, even though those were marketed as “boy” toys. I have no problem with listening to my daughters desires, but I will nurture my daughter in the way I see fit. For me that means raising her as a girl, because she is a girl! If, after puberty, she comes to me saying she believes she was supposed to be a boy, I will then take that step by step with all the love a parent can give. I hope to be an open minded parent, but I will also not be bullied into raising my child to wear yellow and chop her hair off every time she cries about wanting short boy hair. I don’t believe in catering to every single thing a child asks for, that is called spoiling your child.
    • Consumerism: I was one of the first kids in my school to have a smart phone. SENIOR YEAR OF HIGH SCHOOL. My parents generation it would have been considered insane to have a cell phone before adulthood at all. Nowadays? Kids expect to have a tablet as a toddler (Leap Frog Learning Tablets) and a new upgrade constantly, be it ipod, smartphone, tablet, laptop etc. We want more, we want better, and we want more of better things.
    • Narcissism: selfies. OH MY GOSH I hate selfies. My child is going to grow up in a world where half of the photos in the average person’s phone are of their own damn faces. Everything is about ME ME ME, and I don’t want to raise a child like that! Where is compassion for others? Even when taking group photos, people look immediately at themselves to see how they look specifically, without noticing someone else may be gawking or look ridiculous. Photos from vacations are often selfies that may as well have been taken at home. It’s embarrassing how much we love ourselves.

This list really could go on, because there are many other things that scare me. These are the more natural motherly things like how to handle the first time my baby is sick etc. If you are pregnant with your first child and afraid/uneasy, trust me, you are not alone.

-Rachel

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