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To wonder why anything that is good for kids is seen as 'middle class'?

(205 Posts)
stuffstuffeverywhere Thu 22-Feb-18 17:02:46

Where did this weird, slightly derisory attitude come from?

Organic food? Middle class,
Fresh air and countryside? Middle class.
Clothing made of natural fibres? Middle class.
Breastfeeding? Middle class.
BLW? Middle class.
Books? Middle class.

Why are all the positive stereotypes seen as middle class?

Think about working class parenting stereotypes and it's all negative: sky tele, Mac Donald's, PlayStation, obesity....

Something very weird going on with our perceptions....

stuffstuffeverywhere Thu 22-Feb-18 17:05:01

Btw, I'm talking about stereotypes here- not for one minute suggesting that all working class kids sit front of a tele eating burgers all day while posher kids are all outside building dens and eating organic hummus. Clearly that's not true but the stereotypes are there.

BackToThe90s Thu 22-Feb-18 17:05:23

I've never heard anyone saying this confused

SundaySalon Thu 22-Feb-18 17:05:27

Are books middle class? confused
Is fresh air and breastfeeding?!?!? Where have I been?

Marcine Thu 22-Feb-18 17:05:54

Lots of those are expensive and unnecessary things eg buying organic food and letting your baby throw it on the floor. Its not particularly 'good for children'.

LoveYouSo Thu 22-Feb-18 17:14:01

Minus the organic food - which I did for a while - my DC must be middle class. But we're WC and viewed as such by all the MC wannabee families around us.

We don't own our home, we run one car and don't go abroad at the rate other families do. These days it seems exclusively to be the material wealth of parents/ facade of wealth, rather than parenting choices, that makes a child MC.

DeathStare Thu 22-Feb-18 17:17:55

Because you have to be on a reasonable income to be able to afford many of those things (not all of them).

AlwaysPondering Thu 22-Feb-18 17:18:20

I know what you mean OP. My sister has said ebf, buying a few bits from boden and using a sling is confused

DeathStare Thu 22-Feb-18 17:18:46

And why is being seen as middle class derisory? Is it any more derisory than the working class stereotype you mention?

sixteenapples Thu 22-Feb-18 17:21:43

I think it is more about self-promotion.

A family brings its kids up on potatoes and cabbages from the garden while another buys organic locally grown heritage January King Cabbage and organic locally sourced new potatoes from Waitrose and the second is middle class.

sirlee66 Thu 22-Feb-18 17:22:50

What makes you Middle class or working class? I've never known! Also is lower class a thing? or am I just thinking about Titanic and is that different to working class?

Does it go:
Lower class
Working class
Middle class
Upper class
Royal?

Also, how do you know what class you are??

Maybe I should start my own thread to ask!

SheSparkles Thu 22-Feb-18 17:23:19

It came from my in laws. HTH

Mymouthgetsmeintrouble Thu 22-Feb-18 17:24:01

Im wondering where you heard this , we do all these and im proud of my working class roots , ive never heard of these assumptions although im definately a lot more eco warrior than other mums in my area , i dont think other people would think im middle class , just a bit of a hippy

Fairylea Thu 22-Feb-18 17:25:43

It’s an income thing. All of those things - apart from breastfeeding- require a reasonable income. Even living in the countryside or visiting it generally requires a level of income that living in the middle of a city doesn’t. (Unless you’ve been born and bred there I guess).

Organic food is expensive. Ethically sourced stuff and organic clothes etc are expensive. If you’re on a very low income those things are very far down the list of concerns (I’ve been on income support before and trust me I couldn’t care less if my carrots were organic at that point!)

merrygoround51 Thu 22-Feb-18 17:25:46

Erm, I think you got it wrong

Organic food? Very expensive and not necessarily of great benefit

Fresh air and countryside? Fresh air is everyone and not only the middle classes live in the countryside
Clothing made of natural fibres? Even Primark babygros are cotton
Breastfeeding? A point here around support, education ...
BLW? No, just mothers aching to find something to make them feel superior
Books? Not seen as middle class but more around education

5foot5 Thu 22-Feb-18 17:26:48

Organic food aside I don't think I have ever encountered these as middle class stereotypes either

PhelanThePain Thu 22-Feb-18 17:27:44

What makes you Middle class or working class

The working classes work, the middle classes.... err.... Mid? confused grin

I honestly have no idea.

I suspect I’m working class as I’m a lone parent, I rent my house, I get some benefits, and I don’t shop in boden.

PhelanThePain Thu 22-Feb-18 17:28:47

I did EBF til 6 months and extended BF until 20 months and used cloth nappies though so...... who knows?

Basecamp21 Thu 22-Feb-18 17:28:53

Because the people making the decisions about what is to be considered good are middle class.

So traditional working class activities which are positive are ignored....playing out, prioritising family over career, standing up for yourself, strong local communities, prioritising having a good time.

It's rather stereotyping and dated but who runs and works in the media and other professions who influence public opinion......it ain't Tracey from the council estate.

Deshasafraisy Thu 22-Feb-18 17:29:00

Maybe if we stop acknowledging “class” it will fade away

PhelanThePain Thu 22-Feb-18 17:29:42

Oh and we’ve a shit tonne of books.

SundaySalon Thu 22-Feb-18 17:30:41

sirlee66 I think in UK the class system has ranks within the class, like technical middle class and new money middle class. I think your earnings, assets and social circle determine what you are. I am sure if you google it there is a calculator out there.
I briefly did the topic in my degree but in my area it’s so mixed and it wouldn’t really occur to me that someone BF would be middle class or seen as?! confused

WhatAmIMissing Thu 22-Feb-18 17:31:28

These are not 'all of the things that are good for kids'.

To be honest, I think the assumption comes from the middle class need (of some, not all) to advertise all of the middle class things they do and all of their middle class credentials, whilst everyone else just gets on with it!

And I'm middle class.

I often see this response given to the share every bit of your parenting with the street type!

Plus, how the hell does anyone else know you buy organic anyway?

BarbaraofSevillle Thu 22-Feb-18 17:31:29

I know what you mean, especially with food and education. People will argue to the death that working class parents aren't interested in education or academic success for their DCs, which is bollocks frankly.

Also any sort of cooking from scratch from pulses, spices, vegetables etc is seen to be a poncy middle class activity, inaccessible to the working classes, despite it being a very cheap and healthy way to eat.

Likewise for blackberry picking, which is also apparently only a naice healthy outdoor activity for the middle classes and all those blackberry bushes on the edges of the fields surrounding the council estate that I live on must be a figment of my imagination - there have been some very argumentative threads where someone has been unwise enough to suggest that blackberry picking is a good way to get some free fruit and a healthy outdoor activity for all.

sirlee66 Thu 22-Feb-18 17:31:33

Phelan!! Hahaa! The middle class mid!

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