Are Modern Parents Too Involved in Their Kids’ Lives?

Written by Leah Campbell on January 11, 2019

When parents are so busy with their children’s lives, they don’t have any time for themselves and may be doing more harm than good.

Melanie Boyle is exhausted. Living in Chattanooga, Tennessee, she’s mom to a 3-year-old whose weekly schedule includes occupational therapy, speech therapy, physical therapy, aquatic therapy, swim classes three days a week, ballet, gymnastics, cooking, and soccer.

“Then there’s the constant mental work,” she told Healthline. “What did she eat today? Has she had enough protein? How many vegetables? Does she have clean clothes and gear for activities? Has she napped? How many books did we read today? Did she have too much screen time?”

With so much going on, it’s no wonder Boyle is feeling overwhelmed by parenthood. And she’s not alone.

According to a recent New York Times article, “Parenthood in the United States has become much more demanding than it used to be.”

The pressure is certainly on, with parents being more involved than ever before. There are more activities to attend, more expensive opportunities to take advantage of, and more outside judgment of parents who don’t seem to be doing it all.

The Times piece cites several reasons for this shift. From the ever-increasing gap between rich and poor (and parents wanting to ensure their children are on the right side of that gap) to the input from experts constantly suggesting parents do more, the article essentially concludes we’re asking too much of modern parents — and they’re suffering as a result.

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