As the mother of an almost-three-year-old, I like to think I’m a pretty informed parent. I have taken my kid to all her regularly-scheduled well-child appointments; I didn’t give her peanut butter until age one; and most importantly, I am on the Internet all day, every day. That alone should tell you how informed I am as a parent; if I’m not reading 100 different ways I should be properly parenting my child, then I am clearly not doing the Internet correctly.
One thing that’s cropped up seemingly out of nowhere recently is this arbitrary rule, “No screens before age two.” I say “arbitrary” because in my nearly 36 months of parenting, I have never once heard my daughter’s pediatrician tell me not to let me daughter look at screens. And yet, within the past month, I have seen this rule referenced in several articles online, as well as seen people online admit to letting their under-two-year-old watch screens. Admit to whom, exactly, I am not quite sure; I assume these people must be Twitter friends with their pediatricians. Seems unethical, but okay.
Now, I’m going to spare you the whole, “I watched TV all the time growing up and I turned out fine!” argument. I know everyone has a story about how they learned the alphabet by age two because of Sesame Street. They played Nintendo until the wee hours of the morning and hey, they’re completely well-adjusted and valuable members of society! They just happen to constantly have a smartphone in front of their face, but that’s neither here nor there.