Parenting and Social Media Thoughts

Been thinking on and off lately about the future of parenting and how I’m going to handle it. I guess that’s natural since “parent” is a title I’m likely to pick up sometime in the next several short years. Still the thoughts have caught me off guard.

It’s a daunting task all around but I guess I already realized that. It seems like it’s becoming increasingly so with each year that passes though.

The internet I think plays a not insignificant role in that. It’s so accessible today – which is fantastic and it should stay that way – but I have some doubts that all that accessibility is doing kids any favors. The idea of kids being anywhere near social media scares me. It makes so much garbage readily accessible, and even if as a parent you do your best to filter that stuff out, it likely won’t be enough. Then there’s still the wider negative psychological effects of social media to contend with.

None of this would be a big deal on its own. Just keep the kids off social media and there’s nothing to worry about. What I am worried about is social media use among kids becoming so normalized that it becomes weird if they’re not on it. That of course won’t change how I plan to enforce technology rules, it’ll just make my responsibility a whole lot harder probably.

Another aspect of social media that worries me is how excellent it is at spreading highly controversial takes. Kids have enough to worry about without being exposed to political division and propaganda. Like I remember seeing a story within the past week or two about how the White House had invited a bunch of TikTokers over so they could presumably be given a list of talking points about recent economic and political issues. That disgusts me knowing how much that platform is dominated by and caters to kids.

I suppose the root of all this is that I’m concerned about not having control over the raising of my future kids. That, instead, social media and other influences will play the bigger role. Is that an irrational concern to have? I’m glad I’ve got plenty of time yet to think about it, though I bet when it comes down to it it’ll be the sort of thing that you just have to dive straight into and take day by day.