I picked up the November 2010 issue of Marie Claire to read at work today and instead of perusing the latest styles of swimsuits (which unfortunately with my post-2-children figure consisting of pot belly and saggy boobs won't suit me!) I end up reading all these sad and dreadful stories - not unlike picking up the newspaper.
The first depressing story is about a Brazilian soccer player who had a lover brutally murdered because she refused to abort a pregnancy after a one night stand with him. She was chopped into pieces and fed to some dogs after days of beatings and torture. The poor baby boy, growing up knowing that his biological father did that to his mother.... ugh.
The second depressing story was about life for people after the China earthquake in Sichuan province where whole families were lost. It was the story of 2 survivors, both of which lost their families in the quake. The man lost his wife and 7 year old son, the woman her fiance. There were lots of stories about how the school collapsed and all the children died... in a country where 1 child policy stands and your only child was killed, how can one read that as a parent and shudder to think if that had been yourself and your children? Anyway, the story was that these 2 people deciding to form a family together, and that lots of widows and widowers from the Sichuan earthquake did the same thing.
The third story was about Generation Z. About how children these days have little attention in classrooms, have tantrums and are generally indulgent and very me me me. And this is all the fault of the parents. Because we cocoon our children and shield them from sadness and failure (eg by no longer giving Fs, or ensuring that every child gets a ribbon in a race, not just for the 1st 2nd 3rd) they cannot deal with failure and expect everything. After reading that article I'm trying to think how I can prevent my children from being like that. The last thing I need is 2 indulgent teenagers who want me to subject to their every whim. Hopefully with continued discipline and instilling in the kids the ability to save for things they want and give praise where praise is due then I can hopefully get some well adjusted kids out of the toddlers I have now.