Top 10 Parenting Stories of 2011

Every year, there are so many things that happen in the world of parenting, it can make your head spin. One of the best (and worst) parts of being a parent is having these controversies that sometimes fill us with guilt, sometimes make us feel prideful and other times make us tremendously sad. Being a parent means being part of a huge community of other parents whose actions and thoughts affect us in so many ways, both big and small.

This year we saw some tragic stories (young suicides and Casey Anthony's acquittal) as well as some weird ones (parents who keep their kid's gender a secret) and finally some really annoying ones (Tiger Mom and parents who want to ban circumcision).

With no further ado, I give you the top 10 parenting stories of 2011:


Parents who kept kid's gender a secret: The first question we get asked when our children are born is whether we had a boy or a girl. Tell people ahead of time and you get a nursery full of pink or blue, depending. Well, one family in Canada hated all that so they made their baby's gender a secret. Like the idea or not, it is a different way to raise a kid and may help him/her reach his full potential without worrying over whether he can wear eye shadow or she can play with trucks. Then again, what would you do if you were their friend?

Jcrew nail polish: Speaking of gender and controversies surrounding it, when JCrew Creative Director Jenna Lyons painted her son's nails in the JCrew catalog, it ignited a firestorm of controversy between people who realized it did not matter and those who felt otherwise.

Tyler Clementi suicide: One of the most tragic parenting stories of 2011 was the story of young Tyler Clementi, a college student whose roommate filmed him in bed with another man. He committed suicide and with his suicide, lit the way for people to finally see what happens when people are bullied for their sexuality. Some changes have actually started to be made because of it. But the tragedy is Clementi will never see them.

Tiger Mother: Writer Amy Chua's book about the way her mother raised her and the way she raised her children -- the so-called "Tiger Mother" method -- ignited a firestorm of controversy. Some felt she was too harsh with her kids, some felt envious (her kids are amazing successes!) and some felt angry. Either way, she sold many, many books and that was really the whole goal in the first place, no?

Casey Anthony: This is both a news story and a parenting story in so many ways. There was Cindy Anthony's grief for her daughter, Casey's seeming ability to get away with the murder of her own daughter (according to many) and the sordid details of the father-daughter relationship of George and Casey Anthony. It was tragic and riveting for most of us.

Duggar's 20th Baby: The Duggars tragically lost their 20th baby to miscarriage late in 2011, but the country had watched as they prepared to have what seems like an insane amount of children. 

Arsenic in Apple Juice: It turns out every kid's favorite drink after milk actually contains arsenic. Awesome.

Babies Should Remain Rear-Facing: This year the AAP finally changed their recommendations for babies who are rear-facing in the car. Though they had unofficially said for years that babies should remain until age 2, now it is official.

Teen whipped by dad with belt: Corporal punishment got a serious spanking when the video of a judge beating his teenage daughter with a belt surfaced. Many were outraged by his "discipline" technique. 

Anti-circumcision legislation gets on the ballot: The anti-circumcision people got a big win when they started getting their measures on the ballot in California. This was a huge controversy on both sides.

More 2011 Lists:

The 'Year-End' List Every Parent Should Read  

Top Baby Names of 2011   

10 Most Hilarious & Heartwarming Kid Videos of 2011

20 Biggest News Stories of 2011


What do you remember in parenting from 2011?


Image via Amazon


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