Where did we go wrong?

@worldwise1 (14887)
United States
January 8, 2010 3:19pm CST
I can remember a time when families were focused on working to provide for their family, and the average ones didn't feel the need for a lot of useless things that would only cause them to get deeper in debt by trying to keep up with the Joneses. At one time, believe it or not, families actually enjoyed each others company by doing things like gathering around the TV set to watch a couple of shows in the evening; going for long drives on a Sunday afternoon after church; sitting at the kitchen table to enjoy their favorite board games. Neighbors knew one another and stopped to chat as they went about their daily lives. Everyone looked out for one anothers children in the neighborhood as they played outside. Neighbors visited the sick and shut-in.When did society start to lose their focus on the truly good things in life? If you can remember those days do you think it will ever be possible to regain some of those ideals?
8 people like this
24 responses
• United States
8 Jan 10
I personally don't remember those days but they sound great. I've tried more and more lately to get my kids to play board games and eat dinner together at the dinner table instead of on tv trays in the living room. In fact, board games, besides clothes, are mainly what they got for Christmas this year. The things that you mentioned sound wonderful and I would love to live in a time like that.
2 people like this
@GardenGerty (112410)
• United States
8 Jan 10
You are part of the solution to this problem. We all need to get moving back the direction you are going. What we value, our kids will value.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
It sounds as though you are on the right track, tpatton, and I applaud you for it.I personally believe that the children can still be saved, and that by saving them they will make the world a better place in the future. I know how difficult it is to get them away from all the technological distractions these days, but I have discovered that I have a unique opportunity to exert some influence over my fourth generation of children, and I am doing what I can.
@sbeauty (5870)
• United States
9 Jan 10
The changes have been going on for several decades now. I remember the society you were referencing, and it was much better than the way things are now. People have forgotten the things that are really important in life in their quest for "the good life". Young people look at the way things used to be and say "Boring!", but it wasn't. We didn't need to be entertained. We knew how to entertain ourselves, and we had family and friends around us to do things with. Kids today don't know what they're missing.
1 person likes this
• Mexico
9 Jan 10
Hi sbeauty: I agree with you. Maybe we feel more comfortable in some ways but before, people feel safer than how we feel now, they have less problems and they enjoy their simple lives. It's sad but our societies have changed in a bad way, at least in this respect. Thanks for your answer sbeauty. Hope you are having a nice day. Keep mylotting. Take good care of you. -Alvaro.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
While it's true that many of these changes were set in motion a long time ago, sbeauty, I don't agree that people have forgotten how it was. Most people of my generation keep the memories alive and pass it on to other generations. Sometimes I will get on the computer with my great-grandchildren and show them things like the cartoons we used to watch while we compare the differences. I also do other things like watch videos of performers of my generation(60s and 70s), and also watch some of the latest like "Boom Boom Pow" and "Papparazzi."
@celticeagle (122945)
• Boise, Idaho
9 Jan 10
I sure do remember those days. Where i grew up I knew everyone on the street. And my family and I all got together for meals and watched tv together in the evenings. I don't think that will ever be back. I think people are getting too paranoid and we live in cities full of apartment complexes not homes. People are in a hurry and don't stay in places for generations like they used to either.
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
That reminds me of how much I really hate city life, celticeagle!These days everyone has to have their very own Tv, computer, cell phone, etc., etc., etc. It's no wonder there is no longer any togetherness!
1 person likes this
@celticeagle (122945)
• Boise, Idaho
17 Jan 10
I remember when I was young we watched television together in the evenings. Now days we are all in different parts of the house.
@polachicago (19073)
• United States
8 Jan 10
I do remember those days. It was not that long time ago. I think that computerization of the world is not making as closer....lonely people in front of small computer screen...kid don't play sports as often as we did....
1 person likes this
• China
9 Jan 10
I agree you .you are right.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
I agree that the Internet has greatly affected the way people communicate with one another, pola; so has cell phone usage. At one time I thought it was bad that people no longer wrote letters, but now they choose to text each other rather than speak on the phone!
• United States
8 Jan 10
It would be lovely to get back to a simple life. It seems that life gets more complicated the older I get. People get wrapped up in trying to get the latest and best that they forget what is most important. Family.
1 person likes this
@polachicago (19073)
• United States
8 Jan 10
it requires growing up to understand family values....
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
You are absolutely right, Elusive, and that is why I will never keep reminding anyone who will listen that there is a way to a better life.
• United States
8 Jan 10
Several things happened. the first is that married women Had to go to work. back in the day, a woman could Choose to stay home with her kids and have her hubby to all the working outside the home. With all these moms home , it was a little easier to keep an eye on all the kids in the neighborhood. Now she Has to work outside the home. She isn't home to get to know her neighbors. The second thing was the 80's . Back then Material things ruled. That's why yo work, Not solely to support the family but to Buy Everything.and with both parents working , there was less attention for the kids. Latch key kids Became the norm. The kids come home to an empty house. They are'nt allowed to play outside, too dangerous. So whole families don't connect ,Plus they don't get to know their neighbors.So everyone is so wrapped up in their own schedule no one connects with anyone else.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
Sorry, sarah, but I don't buy the whole "women had to go to work" thing. I've known plenty of women who didn't, but they chose to. As for "material things," people are slowly realizing that they don't amount to a hill of beans. Everything a person owns can be taken away at the drop of a hat. Shame on those selfish parents who "chose" to have a family only to breed a generation of latchkey kids! They should have waited to start their families.
1 person likes this
• United States
17 Jan 10
You mean that a parent Has to put the child's well being first?!This is a new concept to some parents these days.If everyone waited until " the right time " to have kids , there would be half as many kids in the world.
@gabs8513 (48712)
• United Kingdom
11 Jan 10
No I don't think so Reasons..... Computer, xboxes and things like that have taken over the Childrens Life, TV is not in any more These Days you can not trust any one with your Children, Neighbours used to help one another, now they just try to butt into your Life and then talk behind your back Board Games are not in any more as the Games are Computers and Consoles Parents are to busy with working, social Life and things like that so the time for the Children is very limited It is not any more like it used to be and I do not believe it ever will be again
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
The only reason these things have taken over children's lives, gabs is because parents have allowed them to do so. They're called "parents" for a reason, and most have fallen down on their job. I don't fool myself by thinking that people are going to stop racing to acquire more material things, which in turn keeps them away from their children, but I do feel a change coming.
@MsTickle (25051)
• Australia
11 Jan 10
That's describing how I was brought up worldwise. It would also have been the way my kids were raised but for the fact that my daughter's father and I divorced and that broke our family. Broken families mean that the parents have to try and somehow rebuild their lives and the family, obviously is never whole again. For each family member whether they are aware or conscious of it or not, there will be an emptiness, a void. Do what you will to fill that void, it can never be done.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
Thank you for reminding me, Ms Tickle, just how much the issue of broken homes contributes to this whole mess we're in. Of course, people have learned to throw each other away just as easily as they toss out the garbage. In their minds nothing is irreplaceable, not even a family.
• Mexico
9 Jan 10
Hi world wise: I don't remember these days. It's sad but that's true. My mom have talked to me in a similar way and I think there is no way to come back to these ideal days and that's because, new technologies have made us individualists that we don't care for our neighbours, kids prefer to play in their laptops (and in some cases doing wrong things) instead of talking to their parents or doing things with their families. The best think we can do it's to be better family members, to hear the others and to share more time with the ones we love. Thanks for asking us this question world wise. Hope you are having a nice day. Keep mylotting. Take good care of you. -Alvaro.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
It was not my intention at all to idealize those bygone days, starsailover. People back then had their share of problems and hardships, just a bit more in perspective. Everything is proportional. Then if a business failed it was a matter of maybe several thousands of dollars; these days if a business fails it is often a matter of millions, if not billons of dollars lost. The quest for bigger and better things has driven the price of everything to the roof, and what goes up must come down.
@eurekafemme (5881)
• Philippines
9 Jan 10
Hello, Worldwise. :-) The world has indeed change and so are we... We focused much on the material things and comfort of life that has monetary values and we neglected what is most important why we drag our butts working so hard, OUR FAMILY. Family's belief had changed. The elders perceive that if they can't provide comfort in their family, meaning they lack some of the material things and live a truly simple life, they don't fit in the society of contented families. Correct me if I'm wrong but other than aspiring to have a better life, one great factor why we seemed to succumb to this sort of nuisance is envy. Envy that others have the things that we don't have. We tend to compare our lives to the lives of our neighbors and we always want to appear the superior type among our group. Accumulating things, wealth and even power will surely give that status instantly. I am trying so hard to teach my daughter how to appreciate things not for its monetary value but for the purpose it has served her.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
Yes, you are right, eurekafemme. There is plenty of envy(one of the seven deadly sins) to go around. People should stop and ask themselves: When is enough enough?
@nijolechu (1845)
• Canada
9 Jan 10
I don't really remember those kinds of days. I wish my neighborhood was that nice to live in. It would be nice to have neighbors that are friendly and willing to help you without any money required. I tried talking to my neighbors but they just ignore me. =(
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
Aw, nijolechu, it is a sign of the times we are living in. Some people actually have no friends in the real world, only the ones they make online. It is truly sad.
• China
9 Jan 10
I like this sentence "What we value ,our kids will value".
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
That says it very well heping!
@allknowing (84210)
• India
9 Jan 10
Thanks to technology people no longer need people for entertainment except when a celebration is organised when suddenly everyone wants everyone else to make a crowd and those attending need an occasion to dress up and have some good food! Lets take those who are here in myLot. None of us need our family members, neighbours or anyone to participate here and this is just one of several activities activity where we prefer to be left alone. With the kind of varying interests one has even watchig tv together is no longer attractive.Even eating dinner is at different times. This explains therefore what we cosidered togetherness is not wanted or appreciated any more.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
I agree, allknowing, because I find that I am sometimes lax in keeping up communication with friends, but never my family. I do spend quite a bit of time on my computer, but I've made a vow to cut back soon. In the long run people will discover that they still need each other just as much as they ever did.
• Philippines
9 Jan 10
Can't help but reminisce after reading your post! I grew up in a closely knit family and neighborhood. My friends call my parents Mommy and Daddy and my older siblings as Ate(big sister) and Kuya(big brother), likewise, I call their parents and siblings the same. We are so used to extended families so to speak. Now, I have my own family. I have three children and I am sharing the values to them. In fact, their godfathers are mostly my childhood friends. For me, the family values that I am sharing to my children is my legacy and very important and more precious than anything in this world.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
You sound like a wonderful parent and a wonderful friend, aucortezano! I am happy that you are teaching your children the right kind of values. We need more parents like you.
@Janey1966 (24126)
• Carlisle, England
8 Jan 10
Here in the UK we have definitely become more insular and cocoon ourselves in our homes by surrounding them with fences (if there are gardens) to shut away the neighbours and be more private. However, since the snow started here recently the British Bulldog Spirit has been apparent in a number of ways...District Nurses visiting their patients on foot as opposed to driving (often walking 4 miles or more to get to them), staff at Health Centres staying there overnight just in case they can't get in the following day, young people doing good deeds for their elderly neighbours, people in 4 x 4 vehicles helping others get to work. Having said that an awful lot of workers have - to put it bluntly - skived off work. Hospitals don't shut down so the staff in those places have had to get there by whatever means, why can't people do so elsewhere?
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
That is much of what life is all about Janey, living in harmony with your neighbors and being of service to your fellowman. It's not about all of the materialistic crap.
@GardenGerty (112410)
• United States
8 Jan 10
Perhaps with the economic slow down we will have to go back that way. That may be the only blessing. I know I am going to cut back a lot, and cut back on being such a wage slave. The things you describe really gave life value.I would love to spend time in my own back yard, or gathered with family to play games. We used to sit on grandma's porch in the middle of the summer and play games. That is one major attraction when I visit my family out of state. We play games and relax, listen to music. Very simple and fun things.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
For me that is the American Dream, GG; making a living; enjoying your family; and the freedom to pursue a happy life without all of today's stress.
• United States
8 Jan 10
I remember the good old days like these. I was a kid then and happy at that. I feel computers and electronics took all that away. My daughter would rather chat online then spend time with her mom. I still watch leave it to beaver and I am 40 years old. She can't find anything good about the show.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
I guess it's a case of some having the desire to look into the past while others don't, giftsandbags. My 6-year-old great-grandson was gifted with a PSP for Christmas with the GTA game! I was so angry because any adult should know that that game is not for children! They also spend a lot of time watching movies that are objectionable, but what can I do - I'm just the ggmother!
@malamar (784)
• Canada
8 Jan 10
worldwise, you just described my childhood perfectly. Will those days ever return? I highly (and sadly) doubt it. Kids have lost the joy in the simple things mainly because they just have so much "stuff". We didn't have computers and video games and all that stuff, so we didn't know we were missing anything! I think the best we can do now is try to make our own family unit closer, by insisting on eating meals together, enjoying a family night without distractions once or twice a week, and so on. You tell some little kids today to go outside and just play, and they will look at you like you are crazy! It is all electronics, lessons, and scheduled activities now. Everybody is so busy, there is no time left to slow down and take it easy. I am in so many ways grateful that my child is already an adult.
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
So true, malamar! I suppose it helps if parents share in some of these activities with the children. I know that when my great-grandchildren come over to visit we spend time on the computer playing games, dancing, listening to music or watching videos. At least we are doing things together.
@Thoroughrob (11750)
• United States
8 Jan 10
I think with the economy more families are playing games and watching tv together. I would much rather play board games, but kids would much rather play video games. I would like it to come back to that, but I am not sure it will.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
16 Jan 10
I'm so afraid you're right, Thoroughrob, and it's very sad indeed. My adult children remember how it was when they were growing up, but they did not "pass the torch" to their children Their children grew up in the age of technology, and, yes, I abetted them in a way when they taught me how to play video games.There just has to be a balance for family life to succeed.
@MJay101 (711)
8 Jan 10
It is a function of globalisation, of the increased drive for profit, of the penetration of any and all markets by organised capital. Everything has become a commodity. Everything is for sale. Family values, religious faith, traditional values - all will be eroded by cheap goods, cheap entertainment, etc. I don't think that globalisation is necessarily a bad thing, but I do think that as a function of the profit motive, it can only be harmful. Ultimately, though, it is up to us - we can choose not to consume. But how many of us do that?
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