Taylor McCauslin
Nick Lakostik
English 1100
December 10, 2015
Childhood in Modern Society
For as long as I can remember, I\'ve wanted several children. Less than a year and a half ago, I was relatively happy. I\'ve always had some degree of self-image issues. But I was happy. I had friends, school was easy, my job was fun, and my family life was amazing. That\'s when everything started falling apart. My mom started seeing guys in other cities or states, she told me she was moving to another state, work became increasingly stressful, the relationships between each of my friends became strained, and I started pushing aside school to deal with these issues, which only made matters worse. I fell into a severe depression that nobody really knows the extent of. I cried almost every night. And I came very close to committing suicide several times. I developed an eating disorder that I am still battling with and that few people know about. As I continue my education, I am now questioning whether to bring children up in this world. I am not even legally an adult yet and I have gone through more than enough for any teenager. Thus gave rise to a question I am genuinely concerned with the answer to: should I have children?
If I chose not to have children, I could focus on myself and helping the world around me. There are way too many negative influences on children these days. No matter where you turn, there is something telling you how to be, look, or feel. In what world should this be acceptable? Nobody should be made to feel unworthy if they don\'t measure up to what everyone else says they should be. According to Vivek Agarwal and Saranya Dhanasekaran, "A national survey in the US found that children aged 8 to 18 years had an average media usage time of 7 hours and 38
minutes every day (38)." That is outrageous! It wouldn\'t be so bad, however, if I knew that the media being viewed and engaged in was appropriate and didn\'t have much chance of negatively influencing the person on the other end of the medium. However, I think it\'s pretty well known that any and all media in todays\' society is highly influential on all of its participants. Agarwal and Dhanasekaran also note throughout their entry that media is related to a multitude of negative aspects, including violence, obesity, abuse of several substances, issues in regards to behavior, and the early onset of sexual desire/actions. I could not imagine putting any child of mine in a situation where they could be exposed to not only so much outside influence, but so much negative influence. I feel like it would be entirely too cumbersome and stressful to even attempt to protect a child, let alone more than one, from all of this. Not to mention those children may view me more as an enemy than anything in trying to keep them away from so much common in mainstream society.
In Jantine Spilt\'s article entitled, "Children\'s Social Self-Concept And Internalizing Problems: The Influence Of Peers and Teachers," she elaborates on how children are impacted by both their instructors and they people they are around on a day to day basis. Split remarkes, "There is thus evidence that social self-concept may, at least partly, account for the prospective effects of peer rejection in the course of internalizing problems (1249)." This statement is terrifying. I could not imagine handing my child off to someone else for an extended period of time at all, let alone someone I\'m not entirely sure I can trust. Just knowing what I\'ve gone through thus far in my short existence, nothing would hurt me more than allowing my children to be put into any sort of similar situation where they could be hurt, in any sense of the word.
On the other hand, however, I have always wanted the standard 3 to 4 children. I would love to be a mother and have wonderful little versions of me to guide through this crazy world. I want nothing more than to be able to have someone to show love to, and to protect. I\'d love to be able to run around