Before I dive into today’s topic, I wanna throw something out there. Today’s blog title doesn’t mention “contest” … so I’m going to see how much you guys are actually paying attention. 😉 I’ve got some giveaways for you: I’ve got my hands on the brand new special edition of the classic Academy Award winning The Ten Commandments, the one with Charlton Heston as Moses and Yul Brynner as Pharaoh. It’s just been rereleased on Blu Ray and DVD. I’ve got a copy of each (1 Blu Ray and 1 DVD) that I’m giving away. I’ll also give away 5 copies of my new parenting book, Candid Confessions of an Imperfect Parent.
Winning will be simple. Use the comments feature on this blog to post a comment about the subject at hand today– MTV’s take on the modern family (see below). Do you agree with their conclusions or not. At the end of your comment, you must mention the city and state you live in, and whether you would prefer the Blu Ray, the DVD, or my book. I’ll draw 7 winners 24 hours from now. (WINNER NOW POSTED AT BOTTOM)
Onto the subject at hand:
My dad just finished reading my parenting book, and today he forwarded me a relevant article from Fast Company Magazine, titled, Are You M-Ready (about the generation of older teenagers and young 20-somethings known as Millennials). The article interviewed an MTV VP whose job is to research the drives, desires, passions, fears, etc. in the lives of teens today (so they can market to them).
The entire article was intriguing, but the part I found the most interesting was what he described as “tectonic forces” that move beneath much of what defines the uniqueness of this generation.” The first “force” he described was the recalibration of the nuclear family and, as consequence, the way this generation was parented. Where the old family was parent-driven, the new family is more a democracy, if not even kid-driven. Personally, I totally agree with this observation, as probably evidenced by my youth culture window article this week, Raising the Bar, where I lash parents with questions, asking them, “Have you completely given up?!!!”
Here’s MTV VP Nick Shore’s description of this family recalibration. He says it well:
A century of “parent-centered” nuclear family has steadily been under-going a paradigm shift, and may have just passed the tipping point. The nucleus of the family has been moving towards the child, and Millennials look like the first generation raised in that new nuclear family structure. No longer the hierarchical structure with authoritarian parent “leadership,” the new family is flattened to a democracy, with collective (if not kid-driven) decision-making process. Parents are more like best friends, life coaches, or as we at MTV call them “peer-ents.”
75% of Millennials in an MTV study agreed that “Parents of people my age would rather support their children than punish them,” 58% agreed, “My parents are like a best friend to me.”
No longer is it necessary to “rebel against” authoritarian parents to individuate, engage in acts of self-expression, or push at the boundaries. As one youth psychologist we work with pointed out, “Parents don’t say you can’t go to the party, they create safe spaces to consume alcohol, they say Can I pick you up afterwards?, Here’s money for a taxi.”
I’m glad to hear Nick provide some of the reasoning why parenting are lowering the bar. It’s simply because… they aren’t in charge anymore. Little Brianna is in charge, and by the way, she wants the new iPhone… today!
Thoughts? Do you observe this? Are MTV’s descriptions of parents (in this article linked above) and my description of parents (in this week’s Youth Culture Window article) fair?
Sherri in– DVD winner
Danielle in Tyngsboro, MA- Blu-Ray winner
Patrick in Marion, Indiana- Book winner
Nick in Orlando, FL- Book winner
Jake in Butte, MT- Book winner
Pete in Glenwood Springs, CO- Book winner
Micah in Salina, KS- Book winner