In her newest blog post The Nollywood actress Dakore Akande discusses the difficulties of raising kids in a world that’s got more advancement in technology compared to one she grew up in.
In the post titled ‘Digital Media, My Babies & I’ she spoke about having to be extra vigilant with the things her children are exposed to.
Read her write-up below:
On today’s post I want to share the challenge I face as a parent on a daily basis as it concerns digital media/new technology/television.
Growing up we didn’t all have access to it or only had ‘restricted’ access. In my case when school started we weren’t allowed to watch TV so we could concentrate. Yeah, my folks were hard-core like that. We didn’t have much choice in terms of what to watch, it was either “Voltron”, “Sesame Street” or “She-Ra” on television or music videos on Betamax or VHS cassette. Wow, my age don dey show o!
Nowadays my daughters are spoilt for choice as to what to watch on TV with so many different cartoon channels and YouTube on my phone or iPad. I have nothing against mankind’s advancement in technology considering it has made life a lot easier in many ways and saved lives especially in medicine, etc., but as a new parent it’s something we all need to be mindful of.
My 1st born is already a whiz on my phone and IPad and I usually let her watch her favourite shows like “Sofia the 1st”, “Frozen”, “Peppa-Pig”, etc and I did not worry about it too much because most times I have to help her type what she wants to watch so that way I can monitor what she’s doing. Right? Well, sort of. It turns out that there are so many suggestions that pop up based on previous history that can lure kids to get into some adult stuff with parodies of these shows such as “Barbie life in the Dream House”- let me just say it was borderline porn! I was shocked but of course I had to play it cool and just changed it to something more wholesome! Phew!
From then on I always ensure to extra double check what she’s up to. It is not as if she’s deliberately searching for naughty stuff because she’s only 3 years old, but if it’s dangled in front of her like a lollipop, then I can’t blame her for her curiosity but it will not be curiosity killing my little kitty if I can help it! That was my first shocker so I brought my husband’s attention together we became more vigilant.
Another issue is with music videos and shows. As we all know, we live in a highly sexualized world where sex sells just about everything and I find myself worrying about the impact that has on the children we are raising today. In my household we are huge lovers of music of all genres, be it our very own Naija pop, hip-hop, or R&B. And one of my favourite things to do is to dance with my daughters. In the past, I would leave the TV on and watch TraceTV or SoundCity and let it keep showing, now I have to be extra vigilant with all the nudity and shaking of bum-bums. This is coupled with the fact that I have two baby girls and I can’t particularly say I’m happy with the way certain women allow themselves to be portrayed. However that is an entirely different topic for another day.
But back to the matter at hand, I find I have to reduce watching those shows or leave it to when they’re asleep or play the audio version only, or just switch to another channel entirely. When the video that comes up is too risqué and that always causes troubles with my feisty 3 year old.
We really have to contend with a lot these days and I want to encourage us as Mums to be more vigilant with our kids so they don’t grow up too fast and start dealing with things they don’t understand.
Till next time.