A Visit to Dear Prudence | Giftie Etcetera: A Visit to Dear Prudence

Saturday, September 29, 2007

A Visit to Dear Prudence

I was reading a "Dear Prudence" question from a person "concerned" that a one year old daughter of a friend was watching too much tv. Prudence suggested waiting until the friend brings up tv watching, and then offering that you read that tv watching is bad for one year olds.

Um, no.

I'm sure tv watching is probably bad for one year olds. Breastfeeding is best. You should never raise your voice to your child. And so on. Probably all mostly true.

But the person writing the question and Prudence (though usually right) are both WRONG.

You shouldn't wait to tell your friend.

Oh, if the topic comes up, feel free to share your opinion:

"We bought our 6 month old a tv."

"Really. Wow. I would never do that. I think tv is bad for kids."

Feel free to share your views on your blog.

Feel free to write to Congress and try to pass laws banning tv.

If your friend asks for your opinion, feel free to give it.

Feel free to whatever.

EXCEPT...don't wait for an opportunity to judge and criticize your friend under the guise of friendly conversation. If you wait for the opportunity to say something that's not your business to say, you are just as bad as the person who just says something that's not your business to say.

I'm just saying.

Etcetera.

3 comments:

Mathochist said...

Was this one of my friends???

Mommy to Ander and Wife to Box said...

Doesn't it feel like that sometimes? I must say, my own friends got much better when I started calling them on it. I would calmly point out what they were doing, and they stopped doing it. But not without Alan having to listen to me rant about it. LOL.

Mamaebeth said...

i disagree with you on some points and agree on others. but i am having a hard time pinpointing each side.

i think "Really. Wow. I would never do that. I think tv is bad for kids." is ruder than the comment Prudence suggested. but this is just my personal opinion.

i agree that when you share your thoughts the reaction is probably going to be the same. if you are going to share there isn't really any point in waiting.

but, the judging has already happened. and unless you can let the judgement go, it is better to go ahead and tell the person because otherwise you start telling other people which, IMO, is worse, even if the only person you tell is Prudence.