Parents have been parenting since the 1970s, which is why the simple process of raising a child has become so difficult. This podcast begins a series that contrasts the craziness of parenting with the relatively simplicity of merely childrearing. If you recognize yourself, good.
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Hi there John Rosemond here and welcome back to because I said so the only parenting podcast worth listening to. In this exciting episode I'm going to explain the differences. And believe me they are a legion between mere child rearing, which is what I experienced as a child in the 1950s and early 1960s. And this thing called parenting, which is a thoroughly neurotic thing that my wife and I did for 10 years in the early 1970s, before realizing that it drove people crazy, not in the psychiatric sense of the term, but in the sense of causing people to have great difficulty thinking clearly. And when we realize that my wife and I around 1980, we bailed on parenting, and we reverted back to merely child rearing. Around that same time, we bought a new home. And when we moved in to our new digs, a Willie, my wife and I couldn't help but notice that two or three afternoons a week we would hear this awful yelling and screaming and shrieking and squealing, coming from what turned out to be the neighborhood swimming pool, which was some three quarters of a mile away, I would estimate I mean, the yelling and the screaming at border on bizarre. We were subsequently informed that the commotion was being produced by parents cheering at swim meets. And sure enough, a week or so later, several moms showed up at our front door one day all excited that our kids Eric and Amy, were going to be on the community's swim team. And Willie and I said we would ask the kids if they wanted to swim and we'd get back to them. And they looked at us speechless, like we were from another solar system. Finally, they mumbled something and left. The kids didn't want to swim by the way, which was a relief. We subsequently discovered that the yelling and screaming was called supporting one's kids. And apparently, the louder a parent yelled, the more supportive he or she was. Praise the Lord from whom all blessings flow. My parents never supported me by attending my baseball games and not just my sandlot games, mind you, which were held nearly every day in warm weather. But also my little league games no one's parents ever showed up at our little league games. In fact, the only adults present are the two coaches. Most folks of my generation will say the same thing, or parents didn't come to their game. And you just imagine they put on a little league game and no parents show up. No parents screaming yelling and arguing with the coach and punching out the umpire. Just a bunch of kids having fun feeling no pressure. What a concept. Or marble one little league game during which a teammate pointed to a car parked on a street contiguous to the baseball field complex the car was maybe otter 300 yards away. And my teammate asked is is that your parents? Oh yeah, much to my everlasting humiliation. It was my parents. It I had to gesture to them to leave, but they must have thought I was waving to them because they began waving out the car windows. Anyway, when I got home, I politely asked them if they would please never come to another game and they never did. We America, we are now two generations removed from the day when children actually played game. Today's kids in little leagues. They're not playing I've been to these games these kids are performing. They're performing for well intentioned parents who are parenting. Unfortunately, today's kids are so accustomed to being parented. And today's parents are so accustomed to parenting. That no one seems to know that there is an alternative to the madness. It's called repeating myself, mirror child rearing. I'm going to begin explaining the differences between the two. Between mere child rearing and parenting in this episode, because I said so. And then I'm gonna move this discussion to my sub stack where it will continue over several weeks to locate my sub stacks simply go to John Rosemond, no spaces, and there's John rosemond.substack.com. A yearly subscription, which will give you access to weekly essays that you won't find anywhere else. Normally costs $50 a year, but for a limited time. We're discounting that to 25. So the first difference between mere child rearing which was what parents were doing before 1970, there abouts, and parenting, which is what parents have been doing ever since, is the today's parenting parents don't seem to have a proper grasp of their purpose. They don't understand their purpose, because they're not thinking long term, they're stuck in the right now, not understanding that right now is merely a dress rehearsal for something that is probably going to happen in one way, shape, or form and their child's life. 20 years from now, or maybe 30, or maybe 40. The purpose of being a parent, the proper purpose is to cause your child to want to move out of your home not because he doesn't like you or love you, but simply because that's the next stage in his life's journey. Purpose of being a parent is to cause your child to want to move out of your home into living quarters of his own and assume full responsibility for every aspect of his life. That purpose was, in fact set forth in the book of Genesis, the first book of the Bible Psalm 3500 years ago. It reads, Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother and shall cleave unto his wife and they shall be one flesh. That's Genesis, chapter two, verse 24, and I'm using the King James Version. Take note, the word shall is used three times. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother and shall cleave cleave unto his wife, and they shall be one flesh. God isn't tendering a suggestion here he's giving an instruction. The man shall emancipate bully. He shall marry a woman. A biological male and a biological female shall join his one and create something bigger than both of them. And much, much more important than either of them a family, the cornerstone of civilization. Mission. What a concept. I'm a member of the last generation of American children whose parents, almost all of them fulfilled their primary parental obligation they caused me mine caused me to realize I was in my early teen years, I think when I figured this out. That I was going to be able to create a better life for myself than my parents were willing to create for me. Don't get me wrong about that. I grew up in a middle class family in a single family suburban home. I never wanted for decent food, decent clothing, and so on. But my parents did not lavish me with things. They provided what I needed, and the occasional thing that I wanted. But the most valuable thing my parents gave me was freedom. Followed by a sense of personal responsibility. And the two by the way, they go together, and and glow. Have you noticed that today's kids have hardly any freedom? They're micromanaged from the time they wake in the morning until they fall asleep at night. They're known as Generation Z, I think. But I call them to hurry up. We gotta go generation Hurry up. We gotta go. Hurry up. We gotta go. Today's kids don't have many have any responsibilities either. They have after school and weekend activity that are organized and micromanage by well intentioned adults, no freedom and no responsibility. Your parents organize and manage everything about your life, your school life, your recreational life, your social life, everything. Why would this child desire to leave home. By contrast, by the time I was in high school, I wanted to be on my own. Every one I knew male and female wanted adulthood. We talked about it with one another. By the time a person reached high school for him or her to not yearn for full independence, to be out from under his or her parents government was to be well, it was to be weird. This yearning had nothing to do with some set of negative experiences during our childhood. I'm sure there were kids who for whatever reason, had no love or loyalty toward their parents. Those kids could no doubt have been found. But they certainly weren't the norm. My generation wanted to leave home because leaving home was simply what an American young person did as soon as it was realistically possible. Among other things, leaving home was a demonstration of courage. As well as a personal demonstration of one's subscription to the American ideal of liberty and personal responsibility. For one's parents back then, in the old school days, a child's striking out on his or her own was a testament to having done their job well. They understood their job as parents involved not simply the proper discharge of their obligations to the child, but also involve the proper discharge of their obligation to the community, to the culture to America. Indeed, for a child who emancipate as early in his life as he can reasonably do so benefits everyone because in so doing, the child becomes the young person becomes a productive citizen who strengthens the economy and is willing to do what his conscience will allow to stand up and defend our freedom. If the necessity arises. It could be argued, in fact that the average age of emancipation is a fairly reliable indicator of the health of the country in question. I think it's a given that young people who postpone their Amantha patients indefinitely, young people over say age 22, who continue to live with their parents and have no operational plan for emancipating. Within a years so tend to work at wage earning as opposed to salary jobs if they're working at all. In that regard, it is usually the case that when I hear of a 20 Somethings steal living with his parents. The young person is a male who is highly involved with video game. In other words, a young male who is already a compulsive gambler. And under employed that's not good for him. That's not good for any of us. So what are the amounts of patience statistics in America anyway? Okay. So in 1970, when I turned 23, and had been married for three years, with one child aged two American males emancipated on average between their 20th and 21st birthday. That's when I emancipated for example, 20. emancipation was defined as living independently of one's parents and paying all of one's bills. Today, by the same standard, the average age of male emancipation is approaching 28. As an average mind you too many young people, again, disproportionately male, are found still dependent upon their parents in their early 30s. A person of my generation a relatively early Boomer, that's nothing short of strain. These days, young females seem to be having less difficulty with than males with wanting to be authentic adult. In terms of percentages, more females. And just to be clear, I'm defining a female as a human being who possesses 2x chromosomes in every cell of her body. More females graduate from college and go to earn graduate degrees, then do male. The Emancipation statistics most specifically a 78 year rise in the average age of male emancipation or a canary in the coal mine and the bird is chirping frantically, something's wrong. What is it? The simple answer is American parents no longer know what they're doing, or supposed to be doing. For example, when I ask a parent who is seeking my advice, what is your mission statement? He or she will stare at me like I'm speaking Swahili for a few seconds and then say, Oh, what do you mean, John? But what do I mean? What in the Sam Hill kind of question is that? That's my cognitive reaction, by the way, which I cloak instead, I answer. I mean, what are you trying to accomplish with your child? Oh, the parent then responds, smiling Well, I want him to be happy and successful. Like I said, American parents no longer know what they're doing or supposed to be doing. And they're operating almost completely in the here and now they lack a long term long range view of what being a parent is properly all about. I'll use my parents as an example. They didn't feel that they bore any responsibility for my happiness, or my success by whatever means the latter is defined. And let me assure you I'm a better person because my parents thought their job was to merely emancipate a reasonably competent and compassionate human being pro social, American citizen. And make no mistake, my parents let it be known. I was probably no older than 13. At the time, that upon my college graduation, I no longer had sleeping quarters in their home. And they sure as shootin weren't going to pay my bill. The parents of everyone I ran with had sent the same message to their kids, by the way. What? What is this? I want my child to be happy and successful stuff. How in three generations did we get to this crazy place? Yeah, it's a crazy place. Why wanting a child to be happy and successful as a post 1960s Parenting goal. And like I said early on pair Parenting drives people crazy. Anyway, how do we ever arrive at the conclusion that being a parent was mostly about raising a child who was happy, and became successful, whatever that means. We listened to psychologists, that's how. And remember. And for those of you who are tuning into this podcast for the first time, I am a psychologist, you could check it out if you want to North Carolina license 037 vibe. When I talk about my profession, I absolutely know what I'm talking about. So beginning in the late 1960s, psychologists and other mental health types, as much as told parents that their job was to instill self esteem, which sounds an awful lot like, make your child happy. By the way, how a generation, I'm talking about mine, our generation whose parents made little to no effort to make us happy, came to believe that it was our purpose to make our kids happy. There's a story I will unravel at some future time. It's fascinating actually. Anyway, parents who think their job is to stuff their children with an abundance of self love. And help them achieve great things almost inevitably end up doing dumb things like giving them whatever they want. Smartphones for their 10th birthday, for example, because after all, most of their 10 year old friends have them. We don't want our child to be different. helping them with their homework every night. I mean, you gotta get that bumper sticker and praising them for everything under the stone. I'm gonna do this, that parents wanting their children to be happy and successful as well, is why at least one reason why childhood rates of anxiety and depression have soared over the last 50 years. Deep down inside said children intuitively grasp that their parents are trying to prepare them for for a world that doesn't and isn't going to exist. Their parents are preparing them for utopia. Never Neverland. And so when said children begin to see that the real world isn't utopia. that frightens them, some get depressed, some get anxious and some get both. Praise God my parents prepared me for anything but utopia. They were preparing me for dis topia even I didn't realize that time. But my parents were preparing me for worst possible scenario, which by the way children don't like and don't like being prepared for the worst possible scenario. But then children don't know what is in their best interests. I'm gonna say that again. Children do not know what is in their best interest. Therefore a child's emotional reaction to any decision that his parents make is largely irrelevant. For example, here's my mother's response to me telling her that Danny was chasing me home from school every day because he wanted to beat me up. I was in the fifth grade or sixth grade at the time, my mom's response, take another way home. Obviously, mom wasn't trying to make me happy. And I don't know how she defined success because she also told me that as long as I made a meaningful contribution to society. She didn't really care if I became a garbage man when I grew up, by the way for you garbage persons in the audience. I have great respect for the hard work you do for the community. But the fact of the matter is that when I was a kid, garbage man was a euphemism for the lowest of jobs. And so because mom didn't seem to care that Danny chased me home from school nearly every day, I took full responsibility for my happiness and success. And I've done reasonably well at both. I was raised Just merely raised today's kids are parented. One is forgiven for thinking that raising a child and parenting a child are synonymous. In fact, their day and night light and darkness. Parents who raised their children are lighting their children's way to adulthood. Parents who parent are forever going around circles in circles in the dark. Their priorities are all out of whack. I was raised, I knew what my parents were doing at the core of everything they did with them was the message. You need to man up and solve your own problems. Okay, so to summarize for this point in the story, one of the most significant differences between mere child rearing and parenting is the parents who parent lack of foresight and a clear vision, they're not preparing their kids for worst possible scenario. Which folks, I mean, if you know anything about history, you know, worst possible scenario is highly possible. Anyway, parents who parent aren't preparing their kids for worst possible scenario. They're constantly creating the best possible scenario in their children's lives. coddle their kids emotionally viewing it as their job to keep their kids from becoming upset about anything. They indulge them materially so that they don't feel different. They organize their children's lives, they solve their problems, they give in to emotional outbursts, and then they say parenting is the hardest thing they've ever done. Never realizing that it's only difficult because of the way they're going about it. So like I said, this podcast starts a series on the differences between mere child rearing and parenting that will now move over to my substack which you can locate at John rosemond.substack.com. Again for the month of June and maybe part of July who knows? Subscriptions are discounted by 50%. I'm glad you join me for another episode of because I said so. keep on rockin in the free world, people