Out of all of this report, the thing that is just sad enough to make me weep is the blunt fact that we are a (collectively) a nation of people who don’t wish to spend quality time with our children.
What happened? Ways of entertaining kids without parental input? Commercialising babyhood to the point where they an accessory and a cute add-on to buy things for but people don’t think about the child beyond the baby? Kids who can be farmed out to every free daycare going? Perhaps it would be better if daycare went back to being something you had to graft to afford, rather than just being on-tap respite care from ordinary parenthood.
When i think of the kids i know and love, the fields full fo tents with adults who love my children and who know i love theirs, the joy at seeing little girls beginning to morph into young women and the benefit to me of having kids who treat me as a friend and talk to me, talk to my kids, stay with me, hug me and know i will be there for them as i know their parents would be there for mine, i could cry for knowing that we have something uncommon.
It shouldn’t be uncommon for children to be growing up like that, it shouldn’t be uncommon for kids to have supported access to fantastic ways to spend their time, it shouldn’t be that the best way to spend time is hanging out in a bus shelter.
We’ve gone so very badly wrong in this country and yet while we sit here doing what children need and giving it freely, we stand in danger of having that right curtailed. It is a mystifying fact that we live in a country where politicians can read a report like this and try to address it with more control orders and more laws, while equally trying to force more kids into the same narrow tube of destruction.