Simmer down, internet, we aren’t all THAT bad at parenting…
Rae and I both stumbled upon this lovely (read sarcastic tone here) little cartoon, thank you pinterest, and were both equally unimpressed. It’s just another one of those ridiculous “articles” put out there in this very condescending tone, telling you that despite your best efforts, you are actually the worst parent in the world.
I have SO many problems with this cartoon (and the video version, with the chippy up beat sound track so you can feel good while feeling terrible at the same time!) that it’s hard to know where to begin… but here we go…
First of all if you follow the Pinterest post it takes you to 9gag. A website that is simply a collection of memes, videos, gifs (etc) from the internet that users can upload. So this is not the origin of this content. In it’s title it states “trust me I’m a psychologist” but with no actual author attached. If you click “source” at the bottom of the cartoon it takes you to curejoy, a site that frankly I haven’t quite figured out yet. According to their website they are “a platform to concise natural health information about holistic therapies, alternate health supplements & whole food nutrition to achieve optimal health naturally, from our experts throughout the world”. BUT no where on their version is there a cited author. If you click where the author should be it just sends you to a paragraph saying articles are compiled from these “experts”. I also note here that there is no mention of this “psychologist” that claims this post on 9gag. Hmmm… Still not convinced this is bologna? Just take a look at the sources cited to actual psychological studies. Oh… thats right… there are none.
Here’s the thing. May SOME of these things be true? Sure, they COULD be, but without actual studies, without data or research or randomized controlled trials these are just badly worded sentences next to cartoons. Some of these aren’t even fully developed ideas. Like I’m not 100% sure what “If your child is secretive the reason is you blow things very big” means. Yeah, weird right?
And lets talk a minute about the absoluteness of these statements. While a handful do say “it may be because”, a lot of them state if your child does this IT IS BECAUSE YOU DO THAT. Yikes! I’m no expert but I am pretty sure parenting doesn’t work like that. Kids are complicated, people are complicated. A child’s reaction, attitude or personality does not develop from one thing alone. Behavior is not influenced as if in a vacuum, free from any other influences. This cartoon does not take into account any other factors in a kid’s life besides things the parent does. According to this cartoon, though, they are the way they are because of mistakes (one single mistake actually) YOU, the parent, have made trying to raise them. Geeze… harsh.
This cartoon has been liked/shared at least 12 THOUSAND times. That is ridiculous, unless it was shared with a comment along the lines of “this is total crap”. Because it’s been shared so many times, you might come across it as you innocently look at baby updates on Facebook or are perusing Pinterest. So just keep in mind, if there is no quality science backing it up, that means don’t take it seriously.