LifeStyleParenting

Parenting in the 90s

posted by Mommy Tincture September 9, 2017 33 Comments

When I look back at my childhood and of those around me, I see an entire generation of parents who have given up everything for the sake of their kids. Though parenting in every age and time has its challenges accrued to the ecosystem, I feel that the generation of our parents i.e. the 90s, comprised of a large section of middle-class families where fathers were the prime earners and mothers the homemakers. This is the generation of parents who lost themselves to a constant call of responsibility and their aspirations for their kids to be able to fly high with sky as the limit. Below I iterate how the challenges faced by parents were many with little help on how to deal with them –

The Technological Revolution

In addition to being friends, emotional anchors, and vigilant parents the couple had to deal with the rapidly changing times in terms of technology and culture. The 90s saw radical technological changes that impacted our lifestyles forever. Every parent had to constantly up skill themselves so that they could keep pace with their fast growing and fast learning kids. Remember the pocket video games, TV consoles and then the personal computers that our parents learned to enjoy more than us, but were constantly worried about our addiction to them. In the process they themselves got addicted to a lot of vices is a different story altogether (I can still visualize my mom sitting on the computer table and playing PACMAN with my Dad eagerly waiting for her to be eaten up).

Advent of Cable TV

With the introduction of cable TV, there came a flood of entertainment programs available 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Before Cable TV came, it was 9-11 am on Sundays that was considered appropriate for kids to watch (there was Chandrakanta, Jungle Book, Tailspin and one program that had puppets in green and purple). Only summer vacations had an increased TV time with afternoons dedicated to ‘Chutti Chutti’ . Later, with the advent of daily soaps culture, fathers took pleasure in watching television once back home from work, but the mothers had to live up to the challenge of monitoring what the kids watched on television for the most part of the day. I remember the bizarre look when my mom caught me watching TARA and SHANTI. Despite the daily soaps alluring the women with broadcasts all day long, most mothers refrained from watching television themselves even if they had time in hand, only in order to set an appropriate example for their kids.

The Economic Liberation

The 90s was the time when the economy was opening up. There suddenly was this surge of hope and excitement of many and well-paying jobs in the manufacturing and information technology industries. The 90s was the time when every middle-class parent dreamed of their child becoming an engineer, working in the US and fulfill their otherwise impossible dream of having a ‘FOREIGN’ link.  This was also the time for encouraging career prospects in unconventional professions related to the entertainment industry and fields related to art and literature. So many parents spent sleepless nights so that they could wake their child up and she could spend an extra hour studying. When the time came, these parents went out of their way so that their children could garner required guidance and knowledge to pursue their larger than life dreams.

The Financial Stress

As has been the case for eons of years, 90s parents also skewed the home budgets in favor of their kids. They always worried about whether their child could have that latest trending outfit, or that new gadget that the neighbor’s son owns, or that latest reference guide for mathematics to help her better her score in exams. With the commercialization of economy came a flood of options for everything in the market, which had a huge impact on the household budget.

The Cultural Revolution

Though an open culture always existed in pockets in the society, yet the 90s saw a huge shift in how the inter-mingling of girls and boys became much more acceptable and prevalent.  Our parents grew up in times when schools were either Boys’ or Girls’. The advent and rise of co-educational schools gave many parents sleepless nights. Added to that was the telecommunication revolution that our country saw in the mid-nineties. That was the time we were growing up to be teenagers and with telephones at disposal within the homes parents had a tough time monitoring who their kid was interacting with. Though that wasn’t an iota of the tough task we as parents face today with easy access to internet and mobile phones, yet for them, it was a mountain of uncalled for trouble.

Every generation of parents talks about how changing times made parenting difficult. Yet I often feel that the 90s parents had the hardest of time bringing up their kids. What are your memories of how your parents’ life was made difficult due to the prevalent times?

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33 Comments

Bellybytes September 9, 2017 at 6:40 pm

I was brought up in the 60’s and 70’s. My parents had to deal with the hippies that crawled on Colaba Causeway, drug peddlers that often passed something with the channachur sold outside school. Since we didn’t have television while growing up, kids used to bunk school to go for morning shows. People had private parties where girls were mortified that their drinks would be spiked. Since there were no telephones, our parents were worried when we didn’t come home when we said we would…..so parents worry all the time.
My girls grew up in the 80’s and I was worried that they would get onto Orkut. I was scared of what they’d watch on television. I never let them go for sleepovers because some moms were ditzy.

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Rohan Kachalia September 9, 2017 at 8:37 pm

I still remember playing games on the first computer that came home, even video games and then I see my kid glued to mobile, watching Youtube kids and learning from it. Its a different era altogether and your post somewhere rekindled those old memories.

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Varsh September 9, 2017 at 8:40 pm

Parenting is a challenge for all parents. I do agree with some of your points, but I believe we’re having a harder time. We were better kids and accepted ‘less than perfect’ parents happily. Then, they did it for their own success feeling too, but we aren’t given that choice anymore.

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Modern Gypsy September 9, 2017 at 8:51 pm

I was a 90s kid, so I can relate to all of this! But seeing my friends who have children now, it’s no easy task brining kids up in this day and age either. And it seems like 60s parents didn’t have it easy either! I guess each age has its own unique challenges.

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Paresh Godhwani September 9, 2017 at 8:54 pm

Just after finish 90s Kid’s Superstars, I read this. Great post. I agree our parents has learnt a lot to keep pace with with our learning and technology but even without these things they have lived their life well in their age. Being happy in whatever they had.

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Atulmaharaj September 9, 2017 at 9:24 pm

I’m a 90s Kid and have seen the struggle my parents took to get me whatever I wanted. Be it a small toy or a computer. So a hats off to all the parents ! Loved the write up 👌🏼

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Mommy Tincture September 9, 2017 at 9:34 pm

That’s exactly the point. Every age of parents have their own challenges and reasons to loose their sleep over. We all know of the challenges that we are facing as parents in today’s times. This post is a small ode to the parents of my generation.
I am glad that I was able to stir so many heart felt reactions 🙂

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Dr Roshan Radhakrishnan September 9, 2017 at 10:47 pm

I don’t think kids of this generation would even believe it if I talked of our life as a kid. How when we left our house, there was no way to communicate with us until we reached our deatination or called back. because there was no such thing as a phone or email. In every way, the life we led was so different

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Prisha Lalwani September 9, 2017 at 11:28 pm

i love what you wrote. It is indeed true!! Apart from that im also a huge fan of how your site looks and feels. Its so much into symmetry and so net, i totally love that!!

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Aseem Rastogi September 9, 2017 at 11:29 pm

I guess every generation brings a unique set of challenges for parents and parenting in general. One of the things I surely remember while growing up was the fact that there were many parties and events which my parents didn’t go to since we had school or exams coming up. There was also the 2003 Cricket World Cup which they didn’t watch since I had my board exams. So yeah they did give up a lot to bring us up.

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Brinda September 10, 2017 at 12:26 am

Lovely write up Anupriya. Could relate to each aspect. Thanks for a much needed reminder on how we need to be grateful for all that our parents have done for us. Hope we can leave a similar legacy for our kids to be proud of.

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Shamik September 10, 2017 at 1:17 am

I loved this post. I read the post and every single sentence brought smile to my face. Your post took me to the flashback – especially the “Chuti Chuti” part. We were so eagerly waiting for the clock to tick 12 so that we can watch “Chuti Chuti”… Khub valo laglo post the pore 🙂

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Alpana Deo September 10, 2017 at 1:36 am

Parenting has been always challenging. I think for every parent strives for giving good values standards and best of life. I have seen my parents doing that and today I also do that same thing. Just that circumstances have changed. I grew up in a joint family and my kids area growing up in a nuclear family.

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Amrita Basu (Misra) September 10, 2017 at 10:09 am

Thats such sn interesting trip down memory lane Anupriya.Enjoyed reading this very much.How to compare apples and oranges ?Thats my take .

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Avinash September 10, 2017 at 11:03 am

How the time has changed- Not that i was not an annoying kid for my parents, but still I become clueless when I see kids these days with their mobiles and slangs and “whatever”attitude- than you for taking to memory lane- cheers

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Sheethal Susan Jacob September 10, 2017 at 11:40 am

These days kids need an Iphone, nothing less, and that too at the age of 4. I got a common computer when in high school. That too after months of demanding, crying and hunger strike. But I think, we came to know more about the importance of technology and also know how to live without them too.

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Diya September 10, 2017 at 5:19 pm

My father is a huge solitaire fan till date. This post has brought back a lot of happy memories! I’ll discuss this with my family during dinner today.

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Mommy Tincture September 13, 2017 at 8:54 pm

Hope you have a nice time discussing the memories. Tell me what other funny things were remembered.
Thanks for dropping by

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Asmita Pradhan September 10, 2017 at 7:24 pm

I am a 90s kid and my elder brother was born in the 80s and all I can remember is fighting for the brick game or carrom because obviously someone loses and the worst has to be remote control for cartoons LOL

apsster @ Little Heart Speaks

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Mommy Tincture September 13, 2017 at 8:54 pm

Tetris is what the brick game was called. Remember? You fought with your brother. I had to fight turns with both my parents too :O
Thanks for dropping by

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Obsessivemom September 10, 2017 at 9:34 pm

That was nostalgic. This new generation seems so very far away from that time when we would wait for Sunday morning television or watch films at the neighbours when they’d get VCDs. They’re brought up on gadgets, something we just weren’t.

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Mommy Tincture September 13, 2017 at 8:49 pm

I feel our lives were relatively simple with limited number of choices to make. todays kids have it hard with dozens of options available for everything.

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keerthi vydyula September 13, 2017 at 2:17 am

As the generation changes so does the difficulties! But i feel the present generation is much hard to put up with all the technology being over exposed to kids who are not even past 1 yr of age, which is highly alarming!

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Mommy Tincture September 13, 2017 at 8:41 pm

A lot of complications of the current generation are self inflicted. the age of Consumerism that we live in makes things worse. What do you think?

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keerthi vydyula September 15, 2017 at 1:21 am

Yes! And Sadly, consumerism is not coming to an end anytime soon …

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Ashwini Dodani September 13, 2017 at 1:07 pm

I am an 89 born and I can relate to most of the things you have mentioned. There are difficulties in every generation because this world is evolving at its own speed and if you see our parents who didn’t know a lot about technology have become pro at it while we are trying to move back and learn the basics. We are all in this together, learning, evolving, happy. 🙂 Great one.

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Mommy Tincture September 13, 2017 at 8:37 pm

yes there are difficulties in every age, but some gratitude towards our parents would do no harm. 🙂
Thanks for dropping by

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Ruchi Verma September 13, 2017 at 5:11 pm

Proud to be 90’s child… miss those days

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Mommy Tincture September 13, 2017 at 8:34 pm

we all do. Thanks for dropping by.

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Manisha Garg September 15, 2017 at 12:30 am

I think every generation has their own set of parenting styles. Considering I belong to the 90s too I can relate to what you have said

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Seema Wadhwa September 16, 2017 at 12:26 am

Love the subject and your detailed walk through all the stages, issues and most importantly the revolution and evolution. I’m a 90s kid and I have witnessed my parents prioritise being parents over anything. However, things today have taken the shape of boxes, not that this generation of parenting isn’t wrong either!

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Mommy Tincture September 16, 2017 at 9:46 am

Every age has their own issues. Ours is a struggle of maintaining a balance between good parenting and individual fulfillment. Thanks for dropping by.

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Agnivo Niyogi September 21, 2017 at 12:36 pm

This article has made me so nostalgic. Thanks a ton. I am proud to be a 90’s kid 🙂

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