When kids come along your Life changes for the better, but some habits are hard to let go of. Pop Culture is a part of everyone’s lives and that includes your kids, but what’s relevant to you as a Dad and how often you can enjoy it will vary to that of before parenthood.
I read an article on a site I follow titled “Direct Advice for Dads” which is exactly what it sounds like. Their recent article 6 Ways your kid will ruin pop culture forever by AndrewPStreet was one I was really able to relate to. The article summarises 6 key points around just how Popular Culture streams change now you are a parent. Below ill list the same 6, with some helpful tips on how to reduce the impact.
1. You’ll never sit through a movie uninterrupted again
Blockbuster Movies these days just keep getting longer (2hrs 40mins for the latest Avengers movie), as parent with young kids you will find the chances of you having this amount of time unbroken is rare. This doesn’t mean you have to miss out, instead make sure you see these types of films when they are still at the cinema, a great idea for a monthly Date Night.
The other option as listed in the article is the volume turned down and subtitles on. Something my wife and I have started doing recently, and find it funny some of the lines you pick up on when you can read them rather then listen to them.
2. You have new nightmares now
Those Liam Neeson movies will become a whole lot more realistic when your child has wandered into the next aisle at the grocery shop. The Punisher’s children being murdered feels like justification for his vengeful actions.
These action movies might have seemed a bit far fetched before parenthood, and you may have thought you were over the nightmares you had as a kid, but all of a sudden you will feel an emotional connection to the characters in these movies.
3. Things get horribly visceral
While the Star Wars prequel movies have always been a hot topic of discussion between fans (i’ll save that for another day), The scene in Revenge of the Sith where Anakin slaughters the younglings may have made for a powerful scene in the movie will now have a different effect on you
Its scenes like that which when you first watched them would never have hit so close to home. Now your watching your favorite movies doesn’t seem like such a great idea.
4. Your kids have their own nightmares
If you think back to your childhood, nightmares often came from movies or shows with reoccurring characters, completely harmless and there for entertainment. The same goes for your kids, we are all guilty of watching the same movie over and over as it keeps our child quiet. Any character or scene that gets stuck in their head could easily turn into a nightmare for them.
No real way to avoid this one, sorry Dads. What were the focus of some of your nightmares? Clowns?
5. Styles have changed, Grandpa
Movie styles and camera shots have definitely changed. When I was young, movie scenes lasted a lot longer, individual shots could last over 10 seconds. These days camera shots are much shorter and the average scene would be close to half of what it used to be.
This change in pace makes for a very different experience. Kids don’t have the patience we do and a longer scene without much action is not going to engage them the same way it used to for you.
Every Dad has seen Star Wars, think back to A New Hope. What kid these days is going to watch 40 minutes of a couple of robots wandering the desert?
6. Speaking of evolving tastes
Our kids are always learning, and there is no way to limit that. They pickup things from the way we act and respond, their environment, and what they hear. How many times has your kid repeated something back to you that either you just said or they heard on a song.
Now look at your playlist, unless its already full of kids sons, how many of those songs feature lyrics about topics you probably don’t want your kid repeating. I suggest creating another playlist for when the kids are around, and enjoy your 90’s Hip Hop when they are not around.
Popular Culture covers many topics and comes in a wide range of media. These are all made for our entertainment, however not necessarily for our kids. How and if you choose to alter your habits is entirely up to you, but having a child sleep through the night without waking up to nightmares is lovely. Listening to your child repeat words from your old playlists probably isn’t.