I am reading a new, fascinating book called Parenting, Inc. It has been very insightful as we begin to embark on this journey of parenthood. From her website, www.pamelapaul.com, she summarizes the book as this:
In Parenting, Inc., Pamela Paul investigates the whirligig of marketing hype, peer pressure, and easy consumerism that spins parents into purchasing overpriced products and raising overprotected, overstimulated, and over-provided-for children. Paul shows how the parenting industry has persuaded parents that they cannot trust their children's health, happiness, and success to themselves. She offers a behind-the-scenes look at the baby business so that any parent can decode the claims-and discover shockingly unuseful products and surprisingly effective services. And she interviews educators, psychologists, and parents to reveal why the best thing for a baby is to break the cycle of self-recrimination and indulgence that feeds into overspending. Paul's book leads the way for every parent who wants to escape the spiral of fear, guilt, competition, and consumption that characterizes modern American parenthood.
For any of you other parents out there that feel inundated with advertisements and marketing ploys to guilt you in to thinking you're doing your children a disservice by not providing them the best of the best - this may be a good read for you. It has really boosted my confidence in my ability or lack thereof to be a good mom without feeling guilty.