My Kid Benefits From My Internet Addictionby Leigh Ryan
We all know about videos going viral on the web (like this hot mess of a song)....the internet and its powers are far reaching, for sure. And for good or bad (music).
But, moms who hang out on internet mom boards and blogs can take not just videos, but a toy recall, a new recommendation or a deal on Ergos and spread the word just as quickly as Rebecca Black became a household name. The strength of mom board should not be underestimated, as I have seen boycotts of several products originate from a few scathing threads and re-posts.
Strangely though, I don't see this among my real life mom circle. Occasionally, I'll receive the odd email forward about the drop side crib ban or something similar but not with the vigilance or frequency of some of the recent hot parent topics floating around the web.
Last month, the AAP released a new recommendation on the length of time a child should rear face in his or her carseat.
Extended rear facing (or, ERF) is a standard mom board debate (discussion? argument? DRAMA?) and has been for several years. When this article came out last week, birth boards all over the web were posting the new recommendations.
On Facebook, the link kept being shared, over and over in my news feed....but curiously, the only moms posting it, were other internet mom friends.
None of my non-internet mom friends posted it...zero.
Now, this isn't a statement against my non-internet mom friends, who clearly, have better things to do with their time than waste away on the internet, as I do. But, this is important information about a safety issue that clearly, isn't reaching them. (The other explanation would be that they don't care and I'm certain that's not the case.)
So, without spending time on mom boards, how does this information - ERF and other hot topics - get to non-internet parents? From a ped during a 15 minute well check? I don't think so.
I don't have a grand solution to better disseminating this information to parents who aren't spending their online time on mom blogs and boards. Starting a website for the non-internet parent? The traffic would be close to zero. Magazines are nearly dead (and the free Parenting mag we get after a newborn only comes a few times). And if they aren't looking for the info, these parents may just never hear about these types of recommendations and other relevant kid topics.
At least I can say that all this time online has made me a more informed parent. And hopefully, there are enough internet moms sharing this stuff on Facebook so their non-internet friends can learn too.
See, my kid DOES benefit from my internet addiction! And yours can too.