Parenting Tips: Pop Culture

Fostering a Healthy Relationship between Pop Culture and Your Child

Culture has always had a significant influence over our behavior and mental health. Today, we are awash in technology which can have everyone on a constant stream of information, social media and marketing.  It can feel like we are being bombarded with pop culture; what to wear, what to say, what to eat, what to think, what’s “in”, what’s “out”. It can have a significant impact on all of us, especially children, as pop culture influences their attitudes, behaviors, and beliefs.

It’s a good time to remember that no one is in a better position to influence your child than you and your family. Children learn by your modeling of how you manage pop culture in your home. Pop culture isn’t all good or all bad, but complex.

Help your child learn to be critical and balanced in their thinking about pop culture. Help them weigh the values of your family in contrast or continuity of pop culture. Here are some ways that pop culture may be impacting your child:


Shaping their ValuesPop culture can shape your child’s values and beliefs, as it often portrays certain lifestyles, behaviors, and attitudes as desirable.
Influencing their Behavior Pop culture can influence your child’s behavior, as it often depicts characters engaging in risky or problematic behavior, such as substance abuse, violence, or sexual activity.
Affecting Self-EsteemPop culture can also affect your child’s self-esteem, as it often portrays unrealistic beauty standards and idealized lifestyles that can make your child feel inadequate or insecure.
Creating Social PressuresSocial media easily creates social pressures for your child to conform to certain norms, such as dressing a certain way or listening to certain music. Comparison is easy even for adults to fall into on social media.
Providing Educational OpportunitiesNot all exposure to pop culture is negative. It can also provide educational opportunities for your child, as it can expose them to different cultures, historical events, and social issues.

As a parent, it’s important to be aware of the impact that pop culture may be having on your child and to monitor their exposure to it. You can help your child navigate pop culture by discussing your values and beliefs with them, helping them to develop critical thinking skills, and guiding them towards positive role models and healthy behaviors. For more tips on supporting your child, check out Decade2Connect.org.

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