Nowadays, each generation has something to say about the latest generation, mostly in that kids are not the same as they once were in the past. As a result, parenting has changed a huge amount over the last few years, even more so when compared to the last few decades.
Most parents agree that a parent's job is to raise, support, and guide their children towards life, as well as giving them certain skills and attitudes to take with them. However, the tools provided for such guidance has seemingly changed over the years, with parents doing things now that their own parents and grandparents wouldn't dare dream of doing. Here are 10 things parents did in the past that they would never do now.
10 Parking The Car
Back in the day, it was normal for parents to tell their kids to go and park the car, especially if they were in a rush. In the days of long driveways and numerous cars per household, parents would usually tell their kids to move so and so's car so another person could get in, and so forth. These days, asking children to park the car would be absurd, let alone asking them to move the car to a different place. In most countries, the average driving age is 16 to 17, something that is strictly enforced by the law. Therefore, parents who allow their children to drive unsupervised could risk hefty fines and even jail time.
9 Making Kids Play Outside
In recent years, technology has seemingly taken over the world, not to mention the household, from games consoles and smartphones to ginormous televisions with every channel under the sun. As a result, kids are more inclined to stay indoors playing in their virtual world rather than hanging out in the real world.
Back in the day, especially during summer vacation, kids would play outside from the minute they woke up, all the way through until they had to come in for supper. However, with a lack of technology, parents had no way of contacting their kids when they needed them, something that might freak out 21st-century parents today.
8 Junk Food
In the past, people didn't really understand the dangers of junk food, soda, and bad nutrients. As a result, kids were often left to their own devices when it came to what they were spending their money on, with youngsters opting for fast food, candy, and ice cream. Plus, back then, cheap food was easy to cook and easy to buy, with healthy ingredients often a lot more expensive. Therefore, it was convenient to feed your kids the easiest and cheapest option available. Nowadays, junk food is a big no when it comes to providing your kids with a good meal, and is only offered as a treat.
Beginning in the mid 19th century and ending only recently, doctors often used to advise their patients to rub a little alcohol on their children's teeth while they were teething. Although the practice worked, and the alcohol did help numb the pain, the idea was a little left field, to say the least. In fact, it has recently been revealed, that alcohol, no matter how small, can damage the liver of your baby and should not be used as a pain killer under no circumstance. To make matters worse, some parents would even dose their kids with hard liquor as a means of getting them to sleep, something that doctors openly encouraged.
Back in the day, smoking was extremely cool. Yes, back then, nobody really knew the dangers of smoking, with advertising companies, commercials, and movie stars, all openly promoting the wonderful world of tobacco. As a result, parents would smoke absolutely anywhere, even if their children were close by. For instance, many parents would smoke in the car, as their kids passively inhaled the fumes in the back seat. Furthermore, many parents would even let their kids smoke, not really understanding how harmful it could be. These days, not only do people not smoke anymore but if they did they wouldn't dare dream of smoking around anyone, let alone a young child.
5 No Curfew
These days, curfews are a common thing among family households, with kids usually given a time that they have to return by. In the past, curfews didn't really seem to exist, with kids able to play outside until whenever they wanted. Plus, back then, children didn't have cell phones, so parents couldn't contact them even if they wanted to. Interestingly, although the crime rate was just as bad a few decades ago, it didn't seem to infiltrate the minds of the masses. Yes, with sensationalism and social media, not yet a thing, people were often unaware of the dangers their children could face.
4 Washing Mouth Out With Soap
These days, the term "to wash someone's mouth out with soap" is thought to be something of folklore, something that is seen as a joke or a mild threat. However, the concept did exist and was used as a traditional form of physical punishment towards children in the late 19th century. The punishment was usually dished out if the child was caught cussing, lying or chewing tobacco. In fact, one of the earliest examples of such a punishment was in 1873 when a schoolmistress punished a boy for chewing tobacco in her class. Thankfully, the practice of washing someone's mouth out with soap is long gone, let's hope so anyway.
3 Going To School Alone
Back in the day, children were often allowed to roam free, stay out all hours and go to school on their own. However, nowadays, parents are much more reluctant to let their kids do anything alone, let alone walk to school. Yes, even though crimes against children are said to have decreased over the last few decades, parents are still worried when it comes to their little babies.
And rightly so. The world today can be a scary place, especially when you are bombarded with hourly news updates, social media and criminal activity. Therefore, it is understandable to see why parents tend to accompany their children to school.
2 Disciplining Other Kids
The lines can be very muddled when it comes to disciplining other kids. Back in the day, it was seen as acceptable to shout, punish and even spank children that weren't your own. In fact, some parents openly encouraged it, especially if their kids were acting up at home. However, these days, if another parent so much as looks at another child, there will be a guaranteed all-out war between the parents. Yes, to discipline another person's kid is a severe overstepping of boundaries and something that could even result in a run-in with the law. Yes, it might be difficult, especially if the other kid is bullying your child, but in most cases, it is better to go straight to the parent instead.
In the past, spanking was the complete norm, especially during the late 19th century and early 20th century. In fact, punishing your kids with a hard smack on the rump was the only thing that really worked, and something that children actually feared. However, after a while, people realized that spanking was actually pretty awful and instead did much worse than good. That's right, it was recently revealed that spanking impacted children later on in life, and instead encouraged anxiety, depression, and aggression. Thankfully, the practice has dwindled, although some parents still use it as a form of punishment.