Everyone rears their children the best they know how. Just as our parents did. However, just because your parents did something, it doesn’t mean that you have to. Furthermore, just because of societal pressure to graze with the sheep, it doesn’t mean that you have to give in as a parent to do as others do.
Ashish and I have always been very conscious of what our children read, see and do. We do our part in making sure companies don’t market directly to them. This comes largely in part by way of TV, movies, dvds and educational (a-hem) programing. We also understand that they are learning so much and their minds are little sponges. What they need to learn are real-life things; touching, seeing, tasting, exploring…Not a mindless gaze at the tube.
I recall way back in school an assignment I had to complete for a child psychology class. I had to watch 20-minutes of a cartoon/”educational programming” for children and count the violent acts viewed. I literally lost count. This is pre-children…I can only imagine how I would view it as a parent.
I admit, last week, Nishad did watch a musical (of course!), “Annie.” One that I second guessed in showing as soon as I saw Miss Hannigan snuggled up with the “Jack Daniels.” Then there was a gun (something that isn’t even in Nishad’s vocabulary) in the hands of rooster as he chased after Annie to “kill” (another word not in Nishad’s vocabulary) Annie. Needless to say, we had several breaks through the movie to take a moment to walk away from less desirable scenes. Auntie Kelly tried to ease my nerves and make me feel better by saying that he “probably just recalls all the singing and dancing.” Let’s hope so!
I feel especially proud though that we didn’t give in or give up by letting Nishad watch TV programs and such before 3 years old. Not many parents can say that- I know my parents couldn’t. However, the joy comes in knowing that we did the right thing for Nishad. Our child isn’t a toy crazed commercial pup that yearns for Spiderman, Batman, Thomas, Wiggles, etc. He knows his Bunder (Curiuos George stuffed animal) as simply that…a bunder (monkey in Hindi). I love that!