Gen X parents are devoted to their kids. But their children are growing up rude, complains Susan Gregory Thomas on MSNBC.
(Gen Xers) are champions of “attachment parenting,” the school of child-rearing that calls for a high level of closeness between parents and children, Many Gen-X parents co-sleep with their children, hold them back from entering kindergarten if they feel their children’s emotional maturity is at stake and volunteer at their kids’ schools at record rates. Gen-X moms have been famously criticized by early feminists for dropping out of the workforce to care for their young children.
Yet, their kids are, well, rude. It may be that today’s parents are so fixated on their children’s emotional well-being that they’re teaching them that the well-being of others is comparatively unimportant, says Dr. Philippa Gordon, a long-time pediatrician in Park Slope, Brooklyn, an urban New York neighborhood famous for its dense Gen-X parent population.
Some researchers say Generation X missed out on nurturing as children. Half came from what used to be called “broken homes.”
“They are trying to heal the wounds from their own childhoods through their children,” says Dr. Michael Brody, a child psychiatrist and chair of the Television and Media Committee of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.
Are today’s whippersnappers really worse now than past generations? We baby boomers were awfully full of ourselves. Still are, goldurn it. But our parents couldn’t hover and smother because they had too many kids.
My mother, who raised four children, is celebrating her birthday and Mother’s Day today. (We always thought it was exceptionally nice of her to be born near Mother’s Day and to let us combine the celebrations.) The family ranges from one years old to . . . old enough.