Parenting with moderation

June 1st, 2012 § 0 comments

When it comes to any sort of indulgence I believe that moderation is the best skill we can teach our children. Be it sugar or TV it’s important that they learn to enjoy but not indulge. I have a friend who’s parents never had a TV in the house when she was growing up and now she is the biggest TV junky I know. I realize it’s anecdotal but I think it’s evidence of a great truth; if we try to eliminate something from our kid’s life that the rest of society deems appropriate it will only backfire in the long run. Unless you keep your kid locked up they are going to discover sugary cereal, Saturday morning cartoons and the fact that the crap you call chocolate is in fact carob. Carob is disgusting.

To me the best way to achieve moderation is by setting rules and being consistent about them. As much as we may try to pretend otherwise every household is a benevolent autocracy after all. We haven’t implemented very many rules but when it comes to sugar and TV we have pretty specific.

  • sugar after savory foods
  • TV on Friday Nights & Saturday. Sometimes on Sunday morning but never on Sunday night and rarely on the weekdays. Special exceptions for when we have friends with kids over and nobody (parents or kids) is having fun because the kids are bouncing off the walls.
  • Sugar and TV are not appropriate to cry or throw a fit about. Doing so will ensure you do not get a special exception.

I guess I should mention that one thing I’m adamant about is that my child not be advertised to while he is in my care. I’m really glad I didn’t have kids 10 years ago because I putting up with DVDs sounds like a nightmare. The same (expensive) content, discs getting scratched, toddlerhandling my DVD player. Netflix and the AppleTV are a fantastic way to solve all these problems. Best of all I will teach him to loath the inconsistency of broadband in this country!


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