Here’s a trend that’s a backlash against helicopter parenting, the parenting style where well-meaning moms and dads do for their kids what the kids should be doing themselves. It’s for parents who are tired of being on call and are desparate to establish more boundaries between themselves and their bubble-wrapped progeny.
If this is you, here’s what to do: the next time your kid wants you to pack his school lunch, iron his karate outfit, spellcheck his book report (or, um, read the book in the first place) or drive him to the school that’s three blocks away, just shotgun a beer. This is the best way to show your child he is not in fact the centre of the universe, and to let him know that it’s important to look after your own needs. As child psychiatrist Jasper Lambsharkssen told The New Yorker: “Shotgunning-a-beer parenting is going to explode as parents discover that it’s the simplest way to take care of a complicated problem.” Bring it!
4. Death of the “Playdate”
When I was a kid you walked next door to your friend’s house, rang the doorbell and asked if she could play. It was spontaneous. It was not planned a month ahead of time and pencilled into a child-activity-tracker calendar. I don’t know when everything became so official, but please make it stop. Though I am guilty of scheduling playdates for my daughter, I’m the first to admit that I don’t like it. I wish she, or her friends, would just call or walk over when they wanted company. You know, organic play. I also really hate the name playdate. It’s not a date! So I really do hope the playdate goes the way of the dinosaur, as predicted.
5. Half Birthdays