Ok, so on a scale of one to ten, how frightening is the prospect of actually breeding mini humans that bear some resemblance to you?
Fucking petrifying is where I’d go.
But hey, it’s exciting, and it’s beautiful and it’s a blessing and all of them things blah blah blah.
And as more of us our age (yep, we are of child bearing age now & that wins the award for worst sentence to come out of my mouth thus far in 2017) are planning to introduce the mini-mes to the fold, it’s time for some harsh realities.
It’s a massive responsibility.
And, if we carry on like we are, we are going to well fuck them up.
And not because we are degenerate smack heads or are out on parole for committing a heinous crime.
But because we are just being us.
BEAR WITH ME.
We are on the brink of introducing babies into a world of people that don’t speak anymore.
A world of people that confess their undying love to one another on apps. A world of people that speak to people on a screen and ignore them in real life (hey, we’ve all done the Facebook like of the person from school, seen them in Saisnburys and avoided the aisle they are in thing)
They will learn to use screens before they learn to read books.
They will learn to like statuses before they learn to make friends.
They will learn to play games on apps before they learn to play pretend.
Just because we’re being us.
I shit you not, I saw a two-year last week unlock a smart phone.
He wasn’t playing make believe mud kitchen. He was unlocking a iPhone and looking for videos on YouTube.
Videos that one day could turn into videos that we don’t want to be seeing let alone our precious babies.
When his Mum got her other phone out to reply to a text, said child looked up and smiled because he presumed she was probably taking yet another photo of him to upload to yet another social feed. I know this because she said ‘oh no, no photo.’
That instant reaction to pose scared me shitless.
He couldn’t open a bag of crisps.
His motor skills hadn’t quite reached that level yet.
But he was probably tweeting the whole tube journey.
It was a joke. But it made me realise.
We’ve got an opportunity to not fuck up a whole generation of people.
We, as a whole, are pretty fucked.
We were born into an age that didn’t have internet for a while. But now we can’t live without it.
We don’t sit and try to remember useful facts, or how to do a simple percentage at work.
We Google it.
We don’t interact with people that sit in our office. We email each other and ignore one another at the coffee machine.
We spend our entire commutes with our necks bent down staring at yet another bullshit article that’s been shared on Facebook that literally has zero journalistic value or truth it in it’s words.
We’re a generation of people that have more mental health problems than we can shake a stick and who actually consider Instagram followers as a barometer of popularity.
And our kids are going to see this.
And adopt our behaviours.
And before we know it, we’ll be 80 and our grandkids will have mutant little fingers that are bent out just to hold smart devices, they’ll have an IQ of 4 because they’ll just need enough brain capacity to punch things into Google and they’ll have no mates.
They’ll have virtual friends. But nothing real.
So we’ve got to stop.
We need to not make Google our default for knowledge, so our kids learn that sitting down & actually trying to remember what their teacher told them that day is WAY BETTER THAN GIVING UP AND ASKING SIRI.
We need to make sure that our phones leave our hands for a few hours everyday, so that when we have babies they see us making eye contact, watch us making conversation and watch us being aware of our surroundings.
We need to stop sharing every last thing we are doing for the world to see. So our babies don’t look up and smile when they see a phone. So they don’t have an online life before they get to nursery and so they don’t think that ‘getting likes’ is a means of validation.
If we change our ways, our generation can be the blip.
The internet age and a bit of an anomaly.
Our brains will be mush, but hey we’ve already fucked that. But at least we can help them.
Our kids can play in the mud. Make mates just at school and wait until Monday to tell them all about their weekends rather than Snapchatting a bouncy castle party.
They can read real life books.
And make real life dens with real life sheets in real life sitting rooms.
So let’s put down our phones.
And not massively balls this one up.