Monday, December 13, 2010
The Hurried Child
So as I was getting my baby dressed in her baby Adidas outfit today, it made me stop to realize how adult she looks at age 7 months! It reminded me of a great book out there called The Hurried Child by David Elkind. It's basically about how our Western culture is rushing our children to grow up fast.
The main point of the book is that children are being pressured to act and look more adult every year that goes by. Ever walked into a Justice store or even Gap Kids and seen all the adorable clothing that looks like a 'mini' version of us adults?
We all swoon at how cute the clothes are. Little 12 month old Juicy Couture track suits, 18 month old True Religion jeans, and on up to pre-teen clothing that looks like they are about to hit the clubs! Some of the clothes are just adorable and we have all been caught thinking how cute they would look on our kids. But it still begs the question of 'are we asking our kids to grow up too fast?"
We all get caught up in the next stage of developmental milestones as infants like walking, or talking and then as they get older, wondering if they going to be sports stars, or learn algebra and be scientists. I have to keep reminding myself to just live in the moment and not rush to the next stage. Because our children grow up so fast, we need to savor every moment!
I now understand why my parents did not want me to start wearing make-up in junior high as they thought I was too young and I of course got mad and threw a fit, "but all the other girls wear it!". I am stressed with my child learning to walk, but can only imagine the stress that will come when she is at the dating age, wearing make-up and being picked up by a boy for a date and getting into his car and driving off to who knows where, and, okay, I am getting ahead of myself here and breaking out in a sweat thinking about it.
How about you? Do you feel kids are forced to grow up too fast and our society pressures young kids to be mini-adults? Do you think we have more stressful demands on ourselves than 30 years ago (cell phones, cable, internet, dual incomes, etc.)?