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Grasshopper Soup: Super Nanny is TV worth watching

Bob Sweigert
Grasshopper Soup
By Bob Sweigert
ALL |

Of all the shows on TV, the one most worth watching is Super Nanny. Super Nanny tells the truth, deals with reality, and proves that tough love, discipline, self sacrifice, commitment and other old school values can guarantee peace and happiness. Finally, a positive, undeniably effective instructional show on human growth and interaction.

For as long as she has been on the air, Super Nanny has been coming to the rescue of one dysfunctional family after another, bringing about miraculous transformations every time.

Each episode of Super Nanny begins with the “Observation” phase. Within minutes Super Nanny watches in total disbelief at how some adults treat their own children. The situation seems impossible. She leaves for the night, frequently mad as hell at dad, mom, or both.

Loaded for bear, she returns in the morning for the parent meeting. Then she lowers the boom, and a major chewing out of the parents occurs. It soon becomes perfectly clear that the reason the kids are so out of control is because the parents have no idea what they are doing.

Parents are more interested in satisfying their own egos by doing things their way instead of meeting the needs of their own children. The children are in control of mom and dad because mom and dad can’t work together. The parenting is obviously a miserable failure because the problems continue and no one in the family is happy.

The chaos Super Nanny observes is partially the result of the decades old, failed philosophy of permissiveness, reasoning with children who are flipping out, and giving children everything they want (which is how greedy corporate executives are raised).

Next comes the “Teaching” phase. The parents are the students. Usually a very egotistical and ignorant husband won’t support his wife, but often the wife is just as bad. The teaching phase can take a long time. It features at least one of the parents showing complete contempt for Super Nanny and her ideas, certain they will never work. That is followed by the same parent admitting Super Nanny is the only one who knows what is really going on, and how to fix it. It is so simple and obvious they can’t believe it. In the end, even the most stubborn parent is begging Super Nanny to stay.

By confronting stubborn parents, Super Nanny frees them from their ignorance and puts them back in touch with their natural love for their children and their genuine desire for personal growth and a happy family. They become good, effective and fulfilled parents with more alone time for each other. Their kids respect them and obey them.

Super Nanny teaches us how to replace confrontation with communication and understanding. She shows us how to properly and effectively punish children without having to spank them, scream at them or threaten them. Super Nanny is not afraid to tell you the truth to your face at the risk of insulting you. She helps clueless parents abandon old, selfish habits. She issues ultimatums to parents, challenging and testing their love for their spouse and children.

She demands deep personal change and gets it. With her confrontational, yet considerate, systematic and creative approach, Super Nanny turns every family she works with into a loving, cohesive, peaceful and happy group of individuals. And, unlike government and social services, Super Nanny never fails.

What works for a family is what works for society at large. Super Nanny shows families how to live together, and that there are no two ways about it. Everybody benefits when quality time with family is more important than work, when children respect rather than fear their parents. Children crave love, order, discipline, morals, individual praise and responsibility. We learn what we live, and, for good or ill, we take it in to the world.

Super Nanny should be required viewing for everyone.

If Super Nanny ruled the world, peace and love would be more possible.

Bob Sweigert is a Sierra Sun columnist, published poet, ski instructor and commercial driver. He’s lived at Lake Tahoe for 25 years.


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