Parenting, fame and privacy: Meghan Markle's approach
In an earlier article for Yahoo News, I commented on the impact of the public gaze on the development of young children. This was brought to life this week when I was asked to comment on Meghan Markle's parenting style for the Express newspaper. Click here to view the original article.
I was asked to think about Meghan's take on parenting. She keeps her children strictly private, is this the best way to parent her children in the public eye? During our formative years, we develop a sense of our identity, our self-worth and our self-esteem. By allowing her children to grow up in private, Meghan is giving them an invaluable opportunity to figure out who they are. They will have the chance to build friendships, to take risks, to try new things, to make mistakes, without the weight of the world’s gaze on them.
As well as allowing her children to develop their own personalities, Meghan will be shielding them from a public ‘narrative’ about who they are. Maybe one of them is the cheeky one, the clever one, the silly one. We all know what it’s like for us to grow up with these labels in our own families. But imagine growing up with the knowledge that total strangers already have a sense of who you are. Check out my previous article about this here. Meghan is also protecting her children from the stress and hypervigilance that might accompany a public engagement. As children, if we have negative experiences, we often believe that we are to blame (even if we are reassured otherwise). Imagine a scenario where a child does the wrong thing, or says the wrong thing, in front of a public audience. Embarrassment and shame are sure to follow. Her approach protects her children from experiencing this.
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Click here to view the original article in the Express.