09 February, 2011

Raising Children Today

When you grow up, you mature physically and mentally. The thing that makes you "you" to most people, though, is your personality. Most people retain some core aspects of their personality throughout their life, but to varying degrees people's personalities can change noticeably between one's teen years and mid-adulthood.

There are not a lot of photos of my parents when they were in their teens and twenties. There are no videos of them that I'm aware of. So my concept of my parents as people begins with them in mid-adulthood - with a job, a house, children, and a lot of life experiences. I'll never know what they were like when they were 20 year old.

But my children will potentially have access to a great deal of photos and videos of me from my youth. Today, recording a video of you with your friends is as easy of as taking your cell phone out of your pocket. They will see what I was like (in all my silly awkwardness) before I had a job, a house, responsibilities, etc. Their concept of me will span my most of my life, not just from the moment they were born (or more accurately, around 10 or 11 years old).

Is this a good thing? Possibly. It might give me more cred when lecturing them about what things are not good ideas to do when you're 15, simply because they will have a visual picture of me at that age. What we can say is that raising children in the coming decades will be a very different experience than it was 20 years ago simply due to the availability of media-taking devices and the internet.

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