To be Generation X is to know a coming-of-age that encompassed more commonalities with television characters than blood relatives. The latchkeys, so its constituents were dubbed, were the least parented generation since, well, ever. With soaring divorce rates, “have it all” parental ambition, and minimal options for structured childcare to blame, Gen-X largely raised itself. These “day orphans” managed both schoolwork and housework. They raised their siblings and still found the time to record their favorite MTV jams on VHS. It’s not to say this generation wasn’t loved, it simply wasn’t in an Xer’s nature to be nurtured.
Xers, without a doubt, ran the show — but the kids were mostly alright, right?
Then, something extraordinary occured circa JonBenét Ramsey (see also: speculation that her parents covered up an unintended misdeed by brother, Burke) and the cheerleader murder plot (no speculation here, this happened) — parents at large flipped a gasket and became overtly parental. As such, various parenting strategies emerged, some revolutionary, some unconventional, and some entirely unbelievable.
Today, it’s out with McNuggets, in with organic, farm-to-table luncheons. Out with making damn sure homework is done before Pa gets home, in with criminal college admissions plots. Some parents helicopter, others free-range. There are authoritarian tiger parents and others that lead with respect. Some parents are single, some are same-sex, and some parents have entirely reversed societal “gender roles”. Some parents track their kids’ every move via GPS, apps, and Nest Cams, others have no idea what their kids are Snapchatting to one another. And then there are pageant parents…
There are, however, a few universal truths that unite parents young and old — Baby Shark is a psychological terrorist, Frozen is the Gen-Alpha equivalent of cocaine (2 is better), and no matter what tactics we employ, our kids will still loathe us at some point. Good news: they eventually come around, right?
The Great Grandparent Issue / When Parents and Their Parents Collide
Chasing Childhood / An Argument to Let Kids be Kids
coParent with Confidence / App Coordinates Custody Schedules & More
Tame the Terrible Twos / Influencer Moms Unpack Those Big Little Feelings
Parenting Around the World / Series Explores Raising Kids in Different Cultures
I Will Be Your Father Figure / A Gorgeous Portrait of Gay Parenthood
Sleep When the Baby Sleeps / Hahahahahahahaha
Stranger Care / A Foster Mother’s Heartbreaking Memoir
Satanic Panic / Stranger Danger Perseveres
Surrogacy Difficulty / Film Follows an Impossible Pregnancy Journey
Parental Wisdom / moviewise Selects 14 Films to Make Stronger Families
Read some Mercer Mayer, sing Twinkle Twinkle, and put the kids to bed — we’ve got the mother of all watchlists to keep you up all night.
Pro Tip: Peruse this fine Twitter thread for some stellar film descriptions that’ll bring these babies to life.
Curated by: The Fast Times Staff
“Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy)” by John Lennon
From mega-Beatles star to stay-at-home-dad, John Lennon’s transformation is evident in his 1980 tribute to son Sean, “Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy)”. Part lullaby, part parental guidance, the tune is rumored to be Paul McCartney’s favorite Lennon song.
“Honestly, it was my least favorite experience. It’s just kind of awkward. That song makes me feel like I'm infantilized or something. People always play that song and look at me with a smile like, "Isn't that sweet?" I'm like, "Oh God, I'm an old man. I'm not some smiling baby in a baby food commercial." To be honest, that song is touching to me, but as a musician and a songwriter and a producer, it's sort of my least favorite song musically, because it's so saccharine. It's great. I love it. Maybe it's impossible for me to be objective about it. - Sean Ono Lennon
Isn’t that sweet…