One mom asked folks what parenting terms and advice they think will be outdated by the time our children have kids of their own—here’s what people said.
When we look back at how we were raised, we realize our parents had some questionable parenting methods such as spanking, time outs and even drinking and smoking during pregnancy. But have you ever wondered what our own kids will think of the parenting methods and strategies we use that feel so normal today?
Well, one parent on Reddit, who goes by the username piratefinch, started a thread on the subreddit /r/beyondthebump asking exactly that question: What parenting buzzwords and advice do we currently follow with our kids that will eventually date our generation when our kids are parents themselves? Check out their original post:
Obviously, the parents of Reddit had a lot to say, so we’ve rounded up a few of the most talked-about buzzwords that people thought would make us seem old when we eventually (and hopefully!) become grandparents. And while you’re reading, remember that this list doesn’t mean a certain word or piece of parenting advice is good or bad—it’s just people’s opinions!
Developmental leaps & Wonder Weeks
The Wonder Weeks have been around since the ’90s. Husband-and-wife team Frans Plooij and Hetty van de Rijt published their parenting book with that title in 1992, explaining the mental leaps that babies go through as their brains develop. Since then, the term “developmental leaps” has come into the parenting sphere to mean essentially the same thing—it just also applies to the years after the baby stage.
While these concepts have been around for a while, parents on Reddit thought “leaps” would seem dated because essentially your kid is always developing and growing (it’s kind of their job!). So “waiting for things to reach some kind of plateau so you can catch your breath”—as user AbsurdistMama said on the thread—is kind of useless since your kids are constantly changing.
As parents, we often tie sleep regressions to developmental leaps—and while some parents stand by the idea, some think it’s not really a helpful tool. “Knowing that a sleep regression is happening doesn’t help much,” one user, who goes by Jingle_Cat, posted. “And it gives parents something to worry about unnecessarily, as many kids don’t experience any or all of the so-called regression phases.” Their main point is mostly that while kids definitely struggle with sleep sometimes, there’s not really a cut and dry timeline for when these difficulties happen. Essentially, every kid is different and sometimes people just aren’t great sleepers.
The pressure to be a “Mom Boss”
One user, who goes by higginsnburke, nominated the phrases “Mom Boss” and “Domestic engineer” and anything similar that suggests that moms should be expected and are able to work full time while also being moms full time. Not only should moms who are bosses simply be called “boss” (without the “mom” modifier), but it’s also annoying that our generation has been told we can and should “have it all” and that we should feel guilty if we can’t (and in most cases, you really can’t unless you adjust your understanding of what exactly that means).
Another user, who goes by I_Upvote_Goldens, agreed with this sentiment saying “I HATE the glorification of throwing yourself full force into a full-time job while being a mom.” While some people have no choice but to do that to provide for their families and plenty of people succeed at having rewarding careers and raising families, the societal pressure to be a “mommy martyr” or “supermom” and the accompanying “mom guilt” are probably things we’d be better off leaving behind.
Gender reveals & “Boy/Girl moms”
This is one we totally agree with. Not only are gender reveal parties actually just genital reveals (Why do people care so much what kind of genitals the baby has anyways?!), but so many of these parties have ended in disaster and caused actual harm to people. Luckily, users in the thread were also on board with making gender reveals a thing of the past. “Gender reveals are already SO problematic. In 20 years people will be appalled at them,” posted user Eva_Luna.
The terms “Boy mom” and “girl mom” were also mentioned in the thread. While people didn’t have much to say beyond nominating these terms—one user, who goes by jordynelsonjr, simply posted “Boy mom… barf”—it’s easy to see why identifying yourself with the kind of genitals your kid has in their pants is a bit cringe.
Montessori at home
The Montessori daycares have been around forever, but our generation seems to really want to bring Montessori home with wooden toys and simple playrooms (we even have a guide for it!). While the Montessori mindset has its merits for sure, parents said they were fed up with the use of the buzzword as an excuse to make wooden toys more expensive. “I saw a video of someone looking at a website that was selling Montessori toys that were very expensive while saying that the whole Montessori movement was supposed to be a cheaper alternative,” posted one user who goes by middaymovies. “[There’s also] the common complaint that anything basic and made of wood is labeled as Montessori.”
[Insert adjective here] parenting styles
When you think of parenting styles do you automatically think of adjectives like “Helicopter” “Crunchy” “Gentle” “Snowplow” and “Lawnmower”? Parents in the thread mostly just mentioned these by name without explaining further, but it does seem like a lot of these styles are specific to our generation of parents. “I have always found the parenting style terms to be complicated,” posted a user who goes by Jonisca. “Gentle parenting, lawnmower, etc etc, and what, there’s snow plow and crunchy ones?? Oh my goodness—”
Lots of users specifically mentioned gentle parenting, especially for how vague it can be. One user who goes by TinyMe3897 posted this about the term: “I was part of a gentle parenting group on FB and I can say that although members were advocates of being gentle with their children, the same could not be said when they (some of them) were giving advice to others!”
A lot of users mentioned babywearing as a trendy buzzword that’s specific to our generation. However, it has been around since ancient times in many different parts of the world, so we don’t really think carrying your baby using some sort of carrier will seem dated any time soon. One user, who goes by notarussianbotsky, put it perfectly though: “Literally people have been wearing their babies since the beginning of humanity. The term is just trendy.” Who knows what people will call it in the future?