American culture does not support the notion of parenting being a full-time job. In fact, many in our society look down upon those individuals, most often women, who devote the largest share of their “business hours” energy to being stay-at-home parents. Such commitment is generally thought of as a luxury reserved for the affluent. The rest of the nation has to fit its parenting duties around the more pressing matters of earning a living (and maintaining a desirable lifestyle).
The dominant parenting philosophy of America is clear and widely accepted: Parents must do the best they can raising their kids on the fly and providing them with “quality time” and costly goodies meant to convey parental affection. At the same time, they must invest themselves wholeheartedly in “providing for the family” through career ascension, thus gaining the approval of fellow citizens who understand the challenge of the daily juggling act.
In this context, American society enables and encourages parents to make child rearing a communal affair, relying upon institutions such as schools, community organizations, churches, the mass media, and government agencies to pick up the slack and cover for parents while they are trying to change the world in their nine-to-five roles. Is this having a negative or positive affect on our children?
Barna, George (2010-09-01). Revolutionary Parenting (Kindle Locations 528-537). Tyndale House Publishers. Kindle Edition.
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