Traditionally, new mothers and fathers have received advice from older family members and other, experienced parents. Parents often ask pediatricians for advice about child development. In addition, informal mother’s groups, playgroups, and online parenting communities provide new parents with opportunities for sharing advice and information.
Parenting books, magazines, and websites offer a wide range of advice and ideas. Parents magazine was started by George J. Hecht in 1926 and is the oldest parenting publication in the United States. Dr. Benjamin Spock’s book The Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care, became a bestseller in 1946, and by 1998 it had sold more than 50 million copies. Hundreds of books have been written on the topic, each with the author’s own philosophy on how best to raise a child. Television documentaries such as The Trouble with Evan and programs such as Bringing Up Baby and Supernanny offer glimpses into the lives of other families and the effects of their parenting methods.
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