Back to Reality…TV

Dayton Children’s New Mommy Safety Blogger, Jessica Saunders

Cold weather and a new baby made for some interesting television watching over the last few months. I must admit – I spent a lot of time watching wacky reality TV. And of course, with my little safety hat on, I was watching for child safety violations.

Near the top of the list was an episode on TLC’s Bringing Home Multiples where a father thought a good bonding experience with his 2-year-old would be riding an ATV – without helmets! TLC’s A Baby Story and Bringing Home Baby showed families committing multiple infractions dealing with unsafe sleep practices including overly snuggly beds with bumpers and car seats with way too many aftermarket products.

Another favorite was My Big Fat Redneck Wedding on Spike TV where a toddler was left on the kitchen counter in a Bumbo seat literally an inch from the edge while his mom prepared for the camouflage wedding of her dreams.

TLC’s 19 Kids and Counting surprised me with fewer infractions than expected for 19 kids but the one incident that sticks out was when the family moved to their temporary home in Little Rock to be closer to baby Josie and the kids decided that it would be fun make a game of going down the steps head first. Over and over again.

And of course- MTV’s Teen Mom 2 – Where do I even begin? 

These shows allow us a glimpse into these families’s “supposed” reality. It makes you wonder why more children don’t get hurt. But to me I also wonder, especially in a show like Teen Mom 2 why we can’t be giving education to these new and young parents.

I like to say that a new parent is born every day.  There is so much to learn out there about parenting and at the end of the day we all are doing the best we can. That is the reason why I started writing this blog.  Believe me – I’ve learned so much in the last 8 weeks about the reality of having a baby. But professionally and because I believe so deeply in the mission of Dayton Children’s, I feel that I do have some tidbits of knowledge that might also be helpful to new parents and I’m responsible to share that in hopes that it may keep more children safe and healthy.


  1. Reply
    Tina March 23, 2011

    So very true, more education needs to be available not only to teen parents, but safety reminders for all parents.

  2. Reply
    Kelly March 23, 2011

    My husband and I are somewhat obsessed with the Teen Mom series. And we also sit there and debate the obvious safety mishaps of these young parents. We think they need to do a pop-up-video style recap episode that points out “opportunities” for improvement!

    It’s also I reason why I love being involved in the Junior League of Dayton, specifically the volunteer opportunities with the Infant Toddler, Safety program. If we can help teach young parents the right way to do things, then we are making an important difference in peoples lives. I just wish we could do more, because it’s obviously needed!

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