It’s remarkable how social supports for the middle class are shrugged off in this new article in the Wall Street Journal about middle class parenting anxiety in America and what dumb Americans can learn from the French. (“Why French Parents Are Superior” by Pamela Druckerman, author of Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting, to be published Tuesday by the Penguin Press.)
Isn’t class anxiety precisely the reason we middle class Americans coddle our kids? My theory: We know how hard it will be to do better for our children than our parents did for us, so we give them whatever they want and let them drive us insane in the process. The author seems to think the cure is to use a firmer tone. I think the cure is a spoonful of socialism. (Though we won’t be reading about that in the Wall Street Journal. Sacre bleu!)
On a related theme, I’m cooking up a new post about four trends in American parenting and the struggles of the shrinking middle class. Subscribe to stay tuned.