Before diving into the topic of why I think having kids has become a destructive hobby for young couples, I have to make it clear to the readers of this article that I don’t believe all couples do the things I talk about below. There are a lot of young couples with kids that are amazing at parenting and grow their children in an ideal environment. This is just what I see the norm to be these days, which is concerning and frightening at the same time for me.
I checked my Facebook Sunday night. I do that sometimes mostly because I’m always on the look for inspiration for my blog and press articles. This time, a picture of a 4-year-old toddler got to me. The toddler was wearing a small backpack on her back. The caption read something like “this backpack of our daughter was lost in the park in the city the other night. In it, she had her phone, a tablet, a charger and a power brick. Please, if you see it, give us a message and we’ll buy you ice cream” or something like that.
I was awed by the caption. This 4-year-old girl has a backpack full of electronic devices that her parents most likely use in order to keep her occupied. Why would you get so many gadgets to the park? I travel all over the world and don’t own power bricks. To be honest, I don’t even own a tablet! Yet the poor girl has a backpack filled with stuff that’s intended to keep her focused on a small screen, not at playing in the park. Why would you carry a backpack filled with smartphones to the park that are your 4-year-old’s kid?
The parents of this child were younger than 30 years old. This is a very important detail that will make more sense towards the end of this piece. Keep on reading.
A screen solves the problem
There’s a reality TV show in our country called “Schimb de mame”, which translates to “Moms exchange” or something between those lines. Two families exchange moms for a week and live like that in order to experience a new mother into their daily lives. In the end, both families realise just how important their own families are and how lucky they are to have their loved ones around.
In one of the episodes, a couple of young parents were struggling with their 3-year-old who was refusing to have his lunch. As soon as he got his phone, the kid was ready to be fed again. So to summarise, the 3-year-old of this young couple was so addicted to his phone, it was basically the only way to have him do anything. If the phone was not there, he was crying and making a scene about it. Which means the kid has spent tons of time with a screen in front of him since… his conception?!
Use a condom until you’re 200% ready
I want kids, I really do. I want to have at least one kid actually. Preferably two. If I get into trouble, at least I go all the way, right? The problem is, I strongly believe having kids and parenting should never be the hobby it has become these days. No, you should not have kids just because you found your soulmate and that’s what you’re supposed to be doing after the initial love boom has dissipated between you two. You should not have kids just because your friends have had some. You should not have kids if you’re not 200% sure you can give them your full attention and support.
Kids are a huge, probably the biggest responsibility any human being can have. We are human beings, hopefully, matured and healthy, and we only got into this state because we’ve had good, nurturing parents who’ve taken care of us for a long time. Buying your kids a phone and a tablet and leaving them staring at it for hours on end is not parenting. Is the most destructive thing you can do for your child. It will mess with their mind from a very early age and will make him or she grow up with a very destructive set of behaviours and thinking processes that will soon prove to be very hard to correct.
Parenting is not a hobby
Being a father or a mother before 30 is hard. I see couples like the two that I’ve written about above all of the time. Their kids are slowly going into madness, staring at a screen literally from sun up until sunset. In the meantime, the parents are simply happy with the fact that they’re done with their part. They are rather incompetently fine with it or simply overwhelmed by the situation.
I said I want kids in this life, but I will never have kids until I’m ready for them. This is not a job you can quit at any time. Also, this is not a relationship you can end and then forget about it after some rough weeks. Being a parent means you are bringing a new life on this planet. Having a kid is a responsibility much greater than anything else you’ve done in your life before.
Forget about what you think, or your parents or friends or society thinks and says. Please, do not have kids just because it’s a hobby way too many people have decided to partake, just because. Only have kids when you are absolutely ready to raise them. Not with a tablet in front of them for every second of their life. But with love, compassion, care and gracefulness.
Use a condom until you’ve matured enough to bring and raise another human being into this world.