NEW YORK — Parents always want their kids to have it better than they did growing up. Anyone with a family can relate; we all work hard so that our families and children enjoy a good life. Apparently, for many modern moms & dads, that sentiment also includes avoiding the mistakes that their own parents made while raising them. A recent survey of 2,000 U.S. parents of school-aged children noted that 76% believe themselves to be much better parents than their own moms & dads.
Of course, the world is a much different place than it was just a few decades ago, and the majority of respondents believe it has become that much harder to raise children in 2020. A full 75% said that it is harder to be a parent today than it was when they were growing up.
The research, commissioned by Osmo, identified a common theme among respondents. The vast majority (78%) are determined not to recreate the negative aspects of their childhood for their own kids.
Here are a few additional, interesting statistics regarding modern parenting: 41% don’t believe in strict bedtimes, and 39% don’t make their kids stay at the dinner table until their plate is clean. Also, more than a third claim to never tell their children to “go to your room!”
Corporal punishment was another staple of past parenting methods, but 46% of respondents refuse to spank their children or use any physical force to enforce rules these days.
Regardless of how one may feel about these parenting shifts over the years, there is certainly no denying that modern parents have some new problems to contend with, and the most obvious is the internet. A full 25% said that making sure their children use technology safely is among their top concerns.
Meanwhile, 69% have set stringent screen time rules for their kids and 71% admitted they need to be even stricter when it comes to their kids using tech gadgets. At the same time, a decent number of parents seem to take a more relaxed approach to their kids and technology. A surprising 20% allow their kids unmonitored access to a smartphone, and 30% let their kids use a tablet however they like.
Another 34% of modern parents let their kids play mobile gaming devices unsupervised, and 32% have the same approach with home consoles.
Still, four in five constantly worry about all the time their kids spend in front of screens, mostly because it’s impossible to keep track of every single piece of content their child consumes. In fact, 82% said they would let their kids spend even more time on such devices if the content being shown was only educational.
On average, respondents would be willing to spend an extra $34.55 per month on educational content and materials for their children.
All of the survey’s participants were also asked about the most challenging aspects of modern parenting. The top response was discipline (49%), followed by setting boundaries (43%), education (39%), scheduling (36%), and the daily grind (32%). The top 12 answers were rounded out with work-life balance (30%), nutrition (29%), noise levels (27%), safe use of technology (27%), good health and hygiene (27%), entertainment (25%), and filling the day (25%).
The survey was conducted by OnePoll.