There is no ‘perfect’ way to parent, we are all doing our best and trying to raise children who are kind and open-minded. However, as Julia Fox has incidentally proved recently, that doesn’t stop the internet – and the entire world beyond it – wading into the debate on the best ways to bring up our off-spring, and these discussions can escalate to pretty heightened levels at times (Mumsnet, we’re looking at you).
Julia Fox has found herself in the middle of a parenting debate that seems to be dividing TikTok, after she commented that parents should be buying their children cleaning supplies instead of toys.
In a video posted to her TikTok on Monday, the model, actor, and Ye’s former muse, discussed the “concept of childhood” and claimed that it convinces parents to buy things that their children don’t need.
“I think that the idea of childhood was invented as a way to just get parents to spend a lot of money on s*** that’s…not really teaching your kid anything,” said the mother of one, who shares her 19-month-old son, Valentino, with ex-husband Peter Artemiev. “You just end up kind of raising a kid that’s like helpless and doesn’t know what to do.”
She goes on to acknowledge how her child doesn’t care about his “toys”, before telling parents to buy their children a variety of cleaning supplies, such as “a mini-mop or broom”.
“I found that with my son, he doesn’t care about his toys, and he is actually more interested in like what I’m doing,” Fox continued. “So I suggest that everyone buy their kid a mini-mop and mini-broom and start teaching them those life skills really young, so when they enter the real world they don’t have to outsource for everything.”
“And they know how to do things for themselves,” the Uncut Gems star concluded. “I think that’s really important.”
And given that most things Julia Fox does now go viral, it’s hardly surprising that the video has already received over 2.7 million views, with TikTok users wading into the discussion in the comments section, with many looking to praise Fox and agreeing with her advice.
“We love a capitalist class labour relations conscious queen 👸🏼 Marx and Engels could never,” wrote one, while another added: “I’m a student at Julia Fox university.”
“I bought my son a mop and broom etc and taught him how to cook and clean but only cuz I wanted a live in maid but if it helps him too that’s dope,” a third added.
Others though, seemed to insinuate that they felt the model’s advice was a little too out there. “Cool, at what age do I ask them to file my tax returns then?” one viewer questioned, another writing: “Completely agree my son has been doing electric work in our home since he was 1.5 yrs.”
Others were more direct in their disagreement with the suggestion. “Giving kids toys that don’t necessarily have a purpose (to us) isn’t ‘pointless,’ it aids in their cognitive/physical development! Toys aren’t useless,” one wrote, followed by another TikTok user saying: “I would argue that the concept of childhood is more about protecting people at the most vulnerable stage of their life than selling products?”
We think the crucial thing to remember here, whichever side you are on, that what is right for one child isn’t the best idea for another, and so if your child loves getting involved in housework, amazing, but if you’d prefer them to stick to playing dress-up or playing with building blocks, that’s totally fine too. Let’s just not bash other people’s ways of parenting, hey?