This post by I, Asshole (one of my favorite bloggers and an all-around badass) talks about how she got slammed by the mothering community for her decision to let her kid gasp walk home from school.
As another famous parent once said, Good God, y'all.
I have seen and wondered at that utter waste of humanity: the school pick-up line.
The mothers, fathers and guardians waiting and waiting, burning gas and the hours of their lives until their wunderkind emerges from school to be scooped up into the waiting minivan.
And they have to! Why? Because there is so much traffic around the school that it isn't safe. I have done news stories about this. The logic made me want to smack myself with my notepad.
I have tried to figure out what made children become so Important and I think I have an idea.
When most women finally had a choice about working outside the home or stay-at-home momming it, those who made each choice had a strong investment in it.
Work-outsiders had to prove they could Do It All, that their kids weren't suffering because they chose the way they did.
And conversely, when SAHMing became a choice instead of an imperative, SAHMs felt like they had something to prove - look, I'm not dropping out of the workforce I'm raising superior beings!
Thus, the much-vaunted and overblown Mommy Wars. Not a war as much as insecurity on parade.
Thus every childhood moment becomes a proof of super parenting. Every birthday party is a competition, so we go from cake and a few games to Jolly Jumps and entertainment and gift bags and excursions every single year.
Every soccer game must be attended and followed by snack time and god forbid if someone forgets the water bottles, because those little dudes MUST remain hydrated, even if all they are doing is standing around the backfield picking their underwear out of their butt.
What do I know? I'm just saying that, from the outside, this manufactured, organized, supervised childhood looks mighty strange to me.