Archive for May 2006
My dad once told me about a discussion he had with a psychiatrist. He asked the doctor why you always hear these days how kids go to therapy for this and that. Back when he was a child, this was not done. The doctor explained that when my dad was a child, the family was a tight unit of father and mother, a whole family. In this day and age, the unity has been broken. Kids no longer grow up with both parents; they no longer sit around the dinner table together as a family. For some children, this has lead to problems. What are parents doing today to keep their children mentally healthy?
A story in today’s 7 section (“Video Killed the arcade star”) says a lot of about where families are spending time. Think Chuck E. Cheese and other similar places.
What struck me the most in the article was a few paragraphs about how birthday parties for kids are getting bigger and bigger, and that family entertainment centers are starting to hire event planners to learn how to maximize profits at these parties.
This comes on the heels of a press release that crossed my desk recently about “Yes, You Can… Afford to Raise a Family,” by Sam Goller who offers tips in the book for reigning in what parents spend on birthday parties.
As a parent of two kids, I admit I have, on occasion, gone overboard for their birthdays. It’s so easy to fall into the trap of one-upping the next, and not necessarily their peers, but what we’ve done in the past. As parents we want to make these events memorable and special and sometimes we forget that the memories don’t have to come with price.
I’m curious what other parents have done to make birthdays special but keep them from becoming too much.