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The Guy's Horizon: The Future of Kids-Part 2

Yes, you've come to the correct BLOG. And yes, we do have a serious side.

This post is dedicated to all the parents and kids of the world. We decided to switch things up a bit and move THE GUY'S HORIZON up a day. Our HOT or NOT? series will be on Thursday

If you'd like to read  Part 1 of: The Future of Kids(The Past)  scroll down to last Thursday's post.

And now Part 2

Part 2: The Present and Future of Kids

Last week we reminisced about our childhoods. Now we examine
the present and look to the future.

Today’s world couldn’t be more different. The days of
unabashed freedom are over. Yes, kids play in neighborhoods across the country,
but only in eye shot of a watchful parent. We are all too aware of the
dangers of the world and we hover over our kids protectively. This is not
necessarily a bad thing. It is what it is. The world is dangerous. But it was
when we were young too. Back then our parents had no clue, but not because they
were clueless. They just didn’t have the access we have today. Now every crime
in every small town is on TV or on the internet within hours of it happening.

So we've fought back and combated the dangers of the
world with what we call, scheduling. We reason that if our kids are busy
doing baseball, gymnastics, karate, art, music, dance, math, reading, Spanish,
etc. they won’t have time to get into trouble… OR run into trouble. Makes sense
to us. But another reason for over scheduling is competition. Trying to
keep up with the Jones’s is a reality that IS all too real.

Here’s a conversation reverberating outside many schools and on
soccer sidelines.

”Hey Parent A, what’s up for the summer?”

“Hey Parent B. Well not much. The kids will be off doing the
usual.  David and Tiffany are doing
soccer and lacrosse camp this summer. And Aaron will be at music camp plus he’s
doing a special math program. And then all of the kids will meet with their tutor to get a jump on next year.”

We won’t bore you with the rest of the gory details. But
parent B leaves feeling like the worst kind of parent imaginable. And sure
enough, a few days later his kids are signed up too. That is if they
can even afford to, which is another big problem in itself that THE GUYS won’t
be addressing today. (Too large a topic for this post) But all of this scheduling starts to feel like a business with our kids being the product. Gain skills. Make contacts. Promote. Advertise. Goal reached.

The problem is that offering so many "opportunities" to our kids, we are actually depriving them of many of the joys of being children.

That brings us to the future. We imagine kids
will soon have skills programmed into them as babies, like in the movie, "The Matrix." They might as well just skip
being a toddler, a kid, a pre-teen and a teen. Forget growing pains. Forget learning
how to tie a shoe, or speaking a first word, or seeing snow for the first time.
Or riding a bike. Or having a first crush. Forget that. Let’s just get them
prepared for the real world. College scholarships. Wallstreet. The faced paced
world of being an adult and parent! Because we are a fast forward nation. We
want things NOW! And that’s what we’re doing to our kids. They will be missing what
essentially makes them interesting: the experiences and growing pains of
childhood.

But also just as important… We, as parents are going to miss it too, if we don’t take a step back soon. We’ll miss the joys of
childhood. The ups and downs of life as a young person. The victories and
defeats that make parenting so difficult, yet so gratifying and precious.

Because one of the greatest things about being a parent, is
getting to be a kid all over again.

So let’s take our hand off fast forward and try to enjoy the
moment.

Oops…..Gotta run….we’re late for soccer.

THE GUYS

4 Comments on The Guy's Horizon: The Future of Kids-Part 2

  1. Very well said. Here! Here!

  2. Truly said….missing joys of childhood.

  3. A friend tells the story of when he was commiserating the end of the school holidays with a pupil, the pupil couldn’t wait for school to start. The parents filled the kids holidays with all sorts of extra mural activities, while at school that was all he did.
    You think it is sad and in Asia the pressure on children to perform is even more pronounced. It is a numbers game – there are SO many people that even being average is not enough (only 10% of school graduates get into local universities in Hong Kong). I lament the loss of childhood, but don’t know the answer.

  4. We don’t have the answers either. It seems we all “need” to make a collective effort to rethink the direction we’re all headed.
    However, the world is becoming more populated and this of course leads to more competition for resources. And it’s only getting worse.
    Wow, too much to ponder sometimes!!
    Thanks for your insightful comments everyone!

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