With so many regulations, requirements and expectations in today’s parenting world, does anyone ever think about how things used to be? It wasn’t until I was expecting that my mother made me realize just how much has changed. She was shocked at today’s practices and procedures. I was born in 1982. Let’s see how much has changed since then, shall we?
Mom: We had car seats but nothing was regulated. I remember putting you in the front seat at the age of three or four.
FACT: The first child passenger safety laws were passed in 1985, making it mandatory for children under a certain age to be in a car seat while in a vehicle.
Mom: Breastfeeding wasn’t as popular back in the 80s as it is today. There are a couple of reasons why but the biggest was that women in the 80s were only given three months maternity leave. It made it so difficult to breastfeed after that point. There were also no products on the market to help with baby teething. We often relied on homemade remedies.
FACT: Less than one in four moms initiated breastfeeding in the early 70s. Over 75% of babies were fed on formulas, almost entirely commercially produced.
Mom: I remember laying you on your side or back and would always put blankets in the crib. We used crib bumpers too and some mothers I knew used pillows
FACT: It wasn’t until 1988 that Medical societies in the Netherlands recommend babies not sleep on their stomachs to help reduce SIDS risk.
Mom: They were never mandatory when you were a kid. I eventually bought you one, but for my own peace of mine.
FACT: Legislation mandating either all-age or under-18 helmet use was put into place in the period from 1995 to 1997
Mom: There was no such thing as cell phones, tablets or streaming online to keep you entertained. You played outside and were told to come in when the street lights came on. We used VCRs when you wanted to watch a movie and had to wait until a certain time to watch your favourite television show. Television watching also became a shared event because we only had one TV. We watched as a family.
FACT: On September 21st, 1983 Motorola made history when the FCC approved the world’s first commercial portable cell phone. In 2002 the first PC tablet was released, and online streaming didn’t become popular until the early 2000s
Mom: We never had home pregnancy tests so if you wanted to find out if you were pregnant you had to book a doctor’s appointment for a blood test. When it comes to finding out baby’s gender, ultrasounds were not reliable enough and neither was amniocentesis.
FACT: Ultrasounds have been around since the 50’s but weren’t favourable for determining gender in pregnancies until the 70’s.
Mom: We weren’t googling back then, that’s for sure. We relied on books and the advice of our parents.
FACT: It was on August 6th, 1991 that the World Wide Web became publicly available.