Okay, we watch way to much PBS kids shows. I admit that sometimes I do use it as an additional “playmate.” However, it pays off! My son who is constantly in need of learning (gets that from me), just absorbs the information and uses it all the time!
Sometimes, my husband and I get to watch a few things ourselves, mostly at the corners of our life and usually not complete shows (it takes me at least 3 tries to see an entire episode of the Newsroom).
So, I admit, I have only watch parts of perhaps two or three episodes of High School Moms on TLC. I know very little about the show, even less about the lives portrayed on it, and even less about what it is to be a high school mom. Having my first at 30, with both of us parents having master’s degrees and being more than able to financially take care of children – I just don’t know how they get through even one day!
As for reality TV, I love it and hate it. The adults sign-up to be exploited, even if they are trying to educate. As adults, they should know that there is no way to predict what is going to happen once they expose themselves to the entire world through someone else’s editing. When it comes to kids, teens and young adults whose brains are still forming, I believe they really have no clue what to even expect. Yet, I still watch it! I love seeing into other people’s lives in order to, hopefully, gain a better understanding of how others relate to the world and understand themselves. (I do avoid the shows that seem to be all fighting and self-absorbed.)
Yet, there was something that really, REALLY, got to me on one of the High School Moms episodes. One particular mom was being followed for this particular episode, and the directors/editors were showing various sides of this young woman. A teacher (or at least one of the adults working there), said (paraphrasing), that the mom was trying to be nice, but her default was to be mean.
I take great and huge offence at this – and really hurt for this young mother.
I believe that God made us good (Gen 1:27-28, 31) and that our default is just that: good! God smiled on us, giving us his blessing and saying it was “supremely good!” (CEB)
This young woman, this mother, this child of God, is good. Her default is to be good, to be kind, to be wonderful, to be amazing! It is only when life gets crazy that she retreats into “acting out.” When she, like the rest of us, just doesn’t know what to do, she, like the rest of us, regress from our default and reach for something, anything that will help us cope.
When a person is really stressed, they may be regressed more of the time then they are in a healthy place. For children and youth (and even many adults), they (and we) still need to learn how to cope in a healthy way rather than regressing to the edges of chaos.
The teacher on High School Moms, well, I don’t know her. I don’t know what else she said or whatever else she did, but I do think that his quote came not from her default, her place of being in tune with Creation, but rather from her place of regression.
May God help her, the staff at that high school, the moms, kids, partners, fathers, spouses, and all their family and friends. I can’t imagine the journey, and I just pray that the moms and all involved are open to God’s stirrings.