20 Signs Childhood As We Knew It Is Gone For Good

boy and girlThe older my kid gets, the more I realize her childhood will never be like mine. It doesn't matter that I'm raising her a mere 16 miles from my childhood home. It doesn't matter that I have pretty much the same values as my parents before me. There are some things that are just never coming back

And when it comes to the mullet, that's a good thing (seriously, Mom, that third grade picture ... really?). But it's no wonder parents today are neurotic .. life is so different. Just take a look:


Childhood Then: Mom taught you to avoid that empty house down the street.

Childhood Now: We teach them to avoid high fructose corn syrup.

Then: When you complained about your food, your mom told you about the starving kids in Ethiopia.

Now: If they really think they have it rough, they could try living under Joseph Kony. 

Then: Ernie & Bert were our favorite babysitters.

Now: The only babysitter we trust speaks three languages and has a PhD in child development.

More from The Stir: 8 Childhood Horrors Our Kids Don't Have to Face

Then: Mom worried we'd get in trouble for trading Garbage Pail Kids cards on the playground.

Now: Our kids would get suspended if they brought a peanut butter sandwich into the cafeteria.

Then: You couldn't wait until your pictures came back from the developer and Mom picked them up.

Now: They wish we'd stop sharing every single thing they do on Facebook.

Then: We came back inside from playing when the street lights came on.

Now: What do you mean "go outside?"

Then: The lucky kids got Wonder Bread with Goober.

Now: The lucky kids don't have to eat kale chips.

Then: Casey Kasem provided the soundtrack for the lives of everyone in the family. 

Now: Radio? We only let them listen to Kidz Bop.

Then: Mom magically paid for toys by writing out a check at the department store.

Now: BPA-free, wooden toys magically appear on the front porch after we order them online.

Then: Movies were a Saturday afternoon day out at the theater, paired with popcorn that was absolutely soaking in butter.

Now: Movies are popped in the DVD player, Pirates Booty is poured into a bowl and plopped in front of them, and we vamoose out of the room as fast as we can.

Then: Itchy bug bites were coated in Calamine lotion, and we were sent back out the door.

Now: We take their clothes off and send them straight into an organic oatmeal bath.

More from The Stir: 10 Childhood Joys, Rediscovered

Then: Friday meant family game night with pizza.

Now: Friday means dad's on the Xbox, mom's on Facebook, and the kids are playing Angry Birds on their iPads.

Then: You fought with your brother over who had shotgun.

Now: They won't be riding in the front seat until they're in college!

Then: You had to wait until Mom had time to take you to the library to do research for your school project.

Now: They can look up whatever thy need on their laptops.

Then: Visiting with Grandma and Grandpa meant making cookies and staying up late for snuggles on the couch.

Now: We set them up on Skype so they can talk to our parents.

Then: Three words: raw cookie dough.

Now: You just found a recipe on Pinterest for carob brownies made with free-range eggs and zucchini hidden inside that looks fabulous.

Then: Kool-Aid stained our teeth.

Now: Organic Honest Tea is a rare treat. Otherwise it's a stainless steel bottle full of water.

Then: You brown-bagged your lunch to school. 

Now: They have a monogrammed, insulated bag made from sustainable fabrics.

Then: You had to sell candy door-to-door for the PTA.

Now: You take an order form to work because the school has forbidden the kids from actually selling to a real, live person in case they're pedophiles.

Then: There wasn't enough room in the car for all your friends, but the squished in anyway.

Now: Your only child can move their booster seat to any of a variety of seats in the minivan.

What is the biggest difference between the childhood your kid is having and yours?


Image by Jeanne Sager


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