Listening to kids, particularly over the last ten years, I’ve noted that they are growing too quickly for their own good. As parents we all announce our shock about how time has flown and here stands a child we don’t recognise. We don’t recognise them as children, because although in body they are, in mind, they are mature beyond their years.
I don’t mean that they’re mature in wisdom- this comes with experience and time. I mean the things they know. Kids from the age of eight/nine have heard of sexual activities that I, as a kid of the 80s didn’t know about until I was a teenager. We were too busy giggling and having crushes, sending love notes surreptitiously through friends and stealing kisses by the oak tree or around the corner.
Children have access to so much and as a result, don’t need to ask us any questions about intimacy, looking good or how to apply make-up. That awkward privilege has been taken away from us. ‘NOT MY CHILD, I MONITOR EVERYTHING!!!’ I hear you claim in righteous indignation. Well, suck it up buttercup, because these little humans know more than they’re letting on.
Yes, you can restrict screen time and police their search history, but the fact is, they can get that information from a friend who has access to it.
Sadly, they know way too much, too early. It’s a sign of the time. When I, a near fifty year old woman, who’s pretty un-shockable, is shocked by what kids come out with, it’s a day I never thought I’d see. My compromise? To have fun family time together and dinners at the table where I let the kids be who they are, laugh and argue. (It’s par for the course of growing up). In return, they can talk to me about anything and everything and are grateful for my open mindedness and treating them like young humans and not expecting perfect robots for kids.
Take care, Eva x