Coca-Cola, 7 Up… Talking to your kids about the important things

Mommy!  Mommy!  Have you heard the really cool song that we just learned at summer camp?

Coca-Cola came to town
Diet Pepsi shot him down
Doctor Pepper picked him up
Now they all drink Seven-Up

And thus begins the really awesome conversation that I (as the parent of soon to be twin 2nd graders) get to have about the impact of product placement on our everyday lives.  Am I a product of the environment around me?  Yes… I can safely say that product placement impacts me daily on both the conscious and the unconscious level, but it’s hard to listen to my two little girls chanting lyrics to a song that so blatantly normalizes the importance of big industry in my daily life.  We’ve been fortunate to not have to worry as much about too much exposure to media when the girls were little, but now that they are thoroughly entrenched in the elementary school experience, I am afraid I might run into a few boundaries when I question them about how they are making choices and what they are paying attention to.

Aye, there’s the rub.  As our kids grow older and older with each passing day, we are all constantly bombarded with decisions that we have to make, and how to have that difficult conversation with our child about bullying, or drugs, or sex.  Or the Easter Bunny.

So, how do you talk to your kid about the important things?  (never mind the un-important things, like what they want for lunch, or if they have homework).  As a parent who is going through all of this the first time (and it’s twice as intense with twins) I’m trying to keep it real.  And short.  And to the point.  So, if a little girl, looks at me over the breakfast table and asks me, “Mommy, why do grown-ups drink alcohol?  Isn’t it bad for you?” My answer tends to be something along the line of “because grown ups make silly decisions sometimes too, isn’t that silly??”

How are you figuring out how to have those conversations with your kids?  I’d love to hear about how you’re doing it… we’re all in this together, right?  That whole thing about a village raising a child is really true in my book.

Let me know what you think!!

Kim 🙂