Caveman Psychology – a Real Thing

From MSNBC (my favorite!), “Is it time to return to caveman parenting?“:

While our hunter-gatherer ancestors may not have been big on dental hygiene, they did get it right when it came to raising well-adjusted, empathetic children, says lead researcher Darcia Narvaez, an associate professor of psychology at the University of Notre Dame, whose research focuses on moral development of children.

“They instinctively knew what was right for a child, and children thrived because of that,” claims Narvaez, who discussed her research on hunter-gatherer societies at a meeting exploring the psychological, anthropological and biological conditions related to human development. […]

Many of our modern parenting practices are in direct opposition to our Stone Age brethren. The result: kids with a skewed sense of moral behavior, poor social skills, high rates of anxiety and depression, and a host of other ills, according to Narvaez. As one example, college kids today are about 40 percent less empathetic (a trait measured by standardized tests) compared to college students just 30 years ago, a study from the University of Michigan found. […]

Mom Amy Macauley, who works two part-time jobs and attends college, doesn’t think it makes much sense either.

“It’s not easy, but I can cuddle Nate and do Facebook at the same time,” she laughs. “Parents can find a way to work it out.”

Wow.  What?  First of all – I have a two-year-old and I’d like to go on record as saying that it is practically impossible for me to cuddle my son and do Facebook.  Hell, unless he is basically completely exhausted or finds something fun about cuddling, just plain cuddling is out of the question.

Also, the idea that we can know the psychology or behavior of Stone Age human beings is bullshit (that’s actually my main point).  In the same way that I don’t ever, ever, ever buy that men cheat more than women because we were once Stone Age people OR that dudes like me to wear lipstick because it shows my health because we were once Stone Age people, I totally don’t believe that any scientists using any kind of science can ever scientifically prove how Stone Age people treated their children or how that treatment affected their childrens’ emotional well-being and socialization.

All this article does is serve to make women feel bad about whatever parenting skills they have.  Because 1) this is directed solely at moms.  2) If you aren’t doing what the Stone Age people do, you aren’t somehow parenting in a “natural way.”  3) Mom Amy (seriously – that’s her title) at the end of the article has children, two jobs, goes to school, and still finds time to Facebook while cuddling.  So, her kid will not grow up to be un-empathetic but you – you over there! – there’s a strong chance that your unnatural mommy skills will cause the world to implode and then decay at the hands of your heartless child.

Thanks, MSNBC!

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One thought on “Caveman Psychology – a Real Thing

  1. Pingback: MSNBC and Stupid Questions « Speaker's Corner

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