I see that Netmums website users are complaining that children are under pressure to grow up too fast. They cite the fact that girls are made to worry about their appearance, and that boys are pushed into "macho" behaviour at too young an age.
The website's co-founder Siobhan Freegard is quoted by the BBC:
"The pace of modern life is so fast that it is even snatching away the precious years of childhood.In one respect Netmums have a point, there is undue pressure on kids wrt their appearance (both in terms of what they wear and their physique). However, that applies to society as a whole, not just kids.
Children no longer want to be seen as children, even when as parents we know they still are.
There needs to be a radical rethink in society to revalue childhood and protect it as a precious time - not time to put pressure on children to grow up far too fast."
Thanks to the impact of mass media we, as a society, have become obsessed with our appearance and the antics of vacuous airheaded z list celebrities who have done nothing worthwhile or tangible other than becoming famous for being famous and have thus become role models for adults and kids to naively follow.
However, regarding growing up too fast, loyal readers are only too aware that there are many "adults" who thanks to the cotton wool treatment in Nanny's schools and by over protective parents are still mentally and emotionally stuck in childhood; they are selfish, greedy, lazy and irresponsible.
Pre Nanny state, children were forced to become responsible at a very early age (or starve) by having to go out an work or join the forces (my own grandfather ran away to join the Royal Navy when he was but a child).
Whilst clearly it is not acceptable to return to the days when children were forced to work, in order to avoid starving, it is clearly also unacceptable to trap them forever in a cosseted existence that shields them from the realities of life and that prevents them from growing into mature, level headed and responsible adults.
You do the kids, nor society, any favours by wrapping kids in cotton wool!
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