6 Ways Being A Kid In The Past Was A Complete Nightmare

Thanks to hour and progress, we’ve been able to shoot down a lot of the bad science that plagued the past. No more supposing the Ground is flat, believing females “re coming out” ribs, or igniting witches at the stake for figuring out lifehacks against headaches. Yet nowhere has advancement had a greater impact than on how we are confronted with most children. Back in the working day, there used to be plenty of utterly insane parenting styles which would land people in jail now. Here are some of the most ridiculous routes we used to screw up parenthood. You’ll be amazed we were able to keep progressing the species.


Victorians Would Camouflage Themselves As Creepy Furniture On Photo Day

In the days of yore, video period wasn’t only an excuse to skip out on class and stimulate rude gestures at some underpaid photographer. It was serious business. Taking a photograph was so expensive and time-consuming that having some fidgety kid ruining it is unable to intend doubled switchings down in the anti-personnel mines and a single component of gruel for the whole family. In reality, 19 th-century parents would go to insane lengths to make sure “their childrens” sits precisely how they wanted them to.

In the olden days, having one’s image taken was quite a grueling affair. Exposure could take a long time to set in, up to 15 whole minutes. That’s a quarter of an hour of sitting perfectly still so that you don’t look like a blurry ghost haunting a nice fainting chair. This made taking photographs of small children almost impossible, as they tend to have the vigor and firmnes of a hyperactive ferret. So the issues to became how to restrain one’s child with a firm hand without having that firm hand pop up in the picture and ruining it. The answer was this 😛 TAGEND

via The Guardian
Not the babe dress cut for someone six feet tall .

As your keen Holmesian eyes may have met, that chair seems a little … people-shaped, doesn’t it? That’s right, a mother would disguise herself into the background of the photograph like the world’s most overambitious spy, maintaining her toddler in check and probably committing her child some real Freudian hang-ups about upholstery.

This phenomenon, known as the “invisible mothers, ” was de rigeur back in the working day if you wanted a photograph of young children to cherish, albeit one in which it looks like they’re being suffocated by the Grim Reaper’s old-fashioned aunt, Maude Reaper.


19 th-Century Parents Would Mail Their Children Via The Postal Service

We often take for granted how easy it is to get places these days. Do your mothers live across town? Jump in your affordable auto. Grandparents on the other sea-coast? Grab a seat on an affordable plane. Family in Alaska? Hell, they’re all but devoting Husky sleds away these days. But back in the day, people couldn’t get about so easily, which was especially troublesome for young parents and their very immobile babies. But then, an unlikely government organization offered them a great alternative to traveling with children, and all for the cost of a stamp.

One of the greatest inventions of the U.S. Post Office was the addition of parcels in 1913. No longer did people have to stuff volumes into envelopes and feign they’d only written the world’s most convoluted letter. As long as your parcel was under 11 pounds, the Parcel Post would ship it. That was the Post Office’s big mistake. As it happens, a lot of babes weigh under 11 pounds, and there were plenty of tightwad mothers out in the sticks who would abuse the inferno out of that loophole.

That was the histories of James Beagle, an eight-month-old boy who was literally shipped off to his grandmother — who was thankfully only a few miles back. Still, his parents thought that paying 15 pennies was a better bargain than the wasted day and worn shoes they’d get walking him over. They did insure little James for $50, sending a clear message to the postmen of “You violate him, you buy him.”

Perhaps amused by this gross inattention, parents across the country followed suit, and the brief trend was extensively are outlined in the newspapers. That is, until June 1913, when the postmaster general officially proscribed the sending of children through the mail system. It was a ache for mothers, but an absolute godsend for the postmen who were tired of lugging around smelly babes. After all, they weren’t allowed to change their diapers — opening mail is a federal offense.


Medieval Parents Used To Mold Their Babies Using Swaddling

Naturally, parents want their children to turn out the best that they possibly can. Even the most carefree parents would prefer that their offspring be the first in their own families to get a PhD, and not the first to get banned from several popular eatery chains. So how do you tip the odds? By correcting behavior, fostering aspiration, and a whole lot of other pop psychology, for starters. In those and many other ways, parents have been molding their children since the beginning of hour — except that they used to take that molding a bit too literally.

In Medieval England, there existed a medical assumption that newborn newborns had a malleable torso type, like Play-Doh, which tended to curl into a ball-like shape. In ordering to prevent that, moms would swaddle their children in tight linen papooses as a lane of stretching their spines and their extremities out, believing that this would result in a tall , normal-looking child — though we’re sure there used to be plenty of father-gods who wanted to leave their kid unswaddled simply to assure what happened.

But if children are made out of putty, why stop at correcting bad posture? Medieval parents speedily figured that some extra manipulation would ensure long limbs and legs, so they’d pulling and hold their little babies’ limbs like the latter are tiny Stretch Armstrongs. And since being handsome is always a plus in life, they also routinely pinched and pulled and tweaked the nose and cheeks and ears and lips until “their childrens” hardened into a fine adult/ clay ashtray.

Not merely was the practice useless and painful for “their childrens”, but it was also bad for its development. Not changing the bonds daily( which no Medieval parent did) caused all kinds of sores. And in their hurry-up to make sure that their children came out child-shaped, some moms would also swaddle them too tightly and cause them to suffer from circulatory problems, chafing, and a heap of dermatological nightmares. Nothing some extra swaddling couldn’t buff out, though.


“Twilight Sleep” Was Pure Horror

Moms, what is the worst part of being a momma? Is it letting go on the first day of school? Is it the anxiety when they’re not home by curfew? Is it having to boil all your towels the moment those little masturbating ogres hit puberty? Wrong, the worst part of motherhood is the pain of squeezing a hollering melon from between your legs whilst all the members of the maternity room stares at your hooha. However, thanks to the miracle of modern medication, there are many ways of dealing with the ache and inconvenience. But what about your grandmother’s generation? Well, the very best news is that they too had a compound concoction which blocked out the sorenes of childbirth. The bad news? It kind of attained moms go insane.

In 1914, the three hottest trends in Europe were smoking opium, getting machine-gunned in a furrow, and “a new and painless method of childbirth.” This new procedure, known as “twilight sleep, “ was made possible through a mix of morphine and scopolamine — the former for sorenes and the latter for recollection. That’s right, the whole phase was not only to stands the grueling burden of giving birth, but also to forget that the ghastly affair ever happened at all. Women would simply wake up the next day and some nurse would plummet a baby into their arms, assuring them it had plopped out of them mere hours before.

Giving birth while you sleep sounds like a pretty sweet deal — except that it wasn’t, for any of the parties involved( except medical doctors, naturally ). There’s this little thing mothers need to do called bonding, which is tricky when you get introduced to your baby via a nurse like she’s trying to set you two up on a blind date. Twilight sleep mothers offered suffering from dissociation, wherein they couldn’t recognize their children, often leading to postnatal depression, hallucinations, and a whole host of psychological troubles speedily passed on from one generation to the next.

And to induce affairs worse, after twilight sleep wards were put in across the U.S ., it soon became apparent that the practice wasn’t even truly painless, either. As it turned out, all it actually did was mind-wipe new mothers without making their birthing much less horrible. In fact, it did the exact opposite, removing their willpower be addressed with the situation, often causing them to freak out. Every hospital that offered twilight sleep rapidly turned into a haunted house, as its hallways were filled with the voice of soon-to-be-mothers hollering for “peoples lives” . And as the drug cocktail was so shit at numbing them out that these mothers were either strapped to their hospital couches using leather straps or were put into a straitjacket and forced to give birth in padded cells.

Naturally, as this became common knowledge( and some poor lady succumbed ), twilight sleep lost its popularity, vanishing altogether by the middle of the 20 th century. It’s a good thing it didn’t last until the days of daddies videotapeing the birth — otherwise it would have spontaneously fabricated the found footage fright genre.


Old-Timey Parenting Books Were Full Of Dangerous Nonsense

Having kids is hella hard. They’re the most complicated animals in the world to create, but their operating manual is never included. That’s why, over the centuries, an entire industry has been built around informing new mothers how to deal with their stinking, screaming sheaves of joy. Ironically, these guidebooks had some teething problems of their own.

During the 19 th century, many guidebooks for new mothers were published containing a lot of, to throw it politely, fucking batshit crazy guesswork. Do you crave a healthy child? Better align their sleeping stance due north so that they’re in sync with “great electrical currents … coursing in one guidance around the globe.” That lane, according to 1878 ‘s The Physical Life Of Woman , those currents can synergize with your baby’s central nervous system and supercharge them to the max.

And you don’t crave your babes to become ugly, right? Searchlights On Health: The Science Of Eugenics had an easy answer: Don’t think about uggos. A pregnant girl should dispel all beliefs of the ugly “or those marked by any deformity or disease.” How do you not think of something just mentioned in what you’re read? Good topic. Also, if you’re a pregnant both women and you’re read this, good luck with your hideous child.

Meanwhile, in the best-selling The Mother And Her Child , two doctors recommend you “handle the babe as little as possible.” If it( and they are definitely an “it” here) weeps, you are able to let it happen. After all, crying is “absolutely essential to the development of good strong lungs.” You want your kids to have good strong lungs, don’t you? Well, let ’em weep … But not so much that they begin to choke and explode the blood vessels in their face, in which suit you are able to spank them for having the dishonor to nearly die in the middle of a life lesson.

And to make sure they don’t go soft after they’ve hollered themselves strong, you should also never, ever hug small children, and simply kiss them once a day( maximum) before bedtime. Remember, mothers, an emotionally dead child is an obedient child, so greet them in the morning with a firm and hearty handshake to let them know you respect and care for them in the same style you would an out-of-town business associate you haven’t seen in four years.


Better Healthcare Through Getting Kids Wasted

So you’ve tried everything. You tried binding their legs, ignoring their weeps, even thumping them senseless, but none of that stellar parenting has done the trick. You’re still coming home to a sickly, unruly child who imagines of you as a malicious stranger out to ruin “peoples lives” — but not in a good way. Well, have you tried pumping them full of opium?

Via Bustle.com
If your kid was carry before World War I, the answer was “Yes, ” whether you knew it or not .

During the 1800 s, drugging your children was the most socially responsible thing a mother could do. According to doctors, it cured every newborn ailment, from fever to night terrors to full-scale tuberculosis. Opium was the most popular medication for the young and age-old alike, because it couldn’t be bad taking something that constructed you feel sooooo good. Medicine such as Stickney and Poor’s Pure Paregoric( a cold syrup) contained 46 percentage booze and “one and three-sixteenth grains of opium to each liquid ounce” — a ratio you wouldn’t think to find outside of an Afghan warlord’s bathroom cabinet. And in case mothers were a little bit worried about, y’know, pumping their little ones with so much slap they’d start overdosing like they were in Trainspotting , the bottles came equipped with a handy-dandy chart listing the “correct” dose for everyone from adults all the way down to five-day-olds.

“If you see yourself crawling over the ceiling toward a Scottish smackhead, reduce your dosage.”

But what if your kids were the fussy forms who didn’t like the bitter savor of uncut opium? Well, you could also buy opium cough drops flavored with the refreshing savor of cherry. Of course, having six-month-olds chase the dragon induced some mild addiction problems, but parents who are cool with pumping their children full of class A narcotics are typically not mothers who bother knowing discrepancies between overly fussy babes and children presenting hardcore signs of withdrawal.

Not that opium was the only style mothers used to let children live it up like they were on tour with Guns N’ Roses. During the gin furor of the mid-1 700 s, English mothers let their offspring get sloshed on up to half a pint of cheap gin every day, we guess because they favor the music of loud ocean shanties over hollering. Of course, these were the days of child labor as well, so maybe it’s more a lawsuit of seven-year-olds, fresh from a switching down in the mines, stopping at their local for a quick pint before they had to get back to the ol’ mama and chain.

Adam Wears is on Twitter and Facebook. He also has a newsletter about depressing history, but that’s merely for the coolest kids .

There are much better volumes about child care these days, but we’re not qualified to suggest any so don’t forget to introduce your kids to all things Dr. Suess. Likewise please don’t ever to continue efforts to mail your baby .

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