Survey reveals the 2016 parenting trends

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22nd January 2016 15:38 - Education

A recent report by parenting site, Channel Mum – entitled the Channel Mum New Parenting Trends report- has revealed that new technology now enables expectant parents to make a model of their unborn baby, using an ultra-sound scan and a 3D printer.

Survey reveals the 2016 parenting trends

The trend first surfaced in the United States, when expectant parents purchased the models to use at gender reveal parties. The models – made from plastic – cost from £170 for a small head and shoulders model, to around £400 for a full 8 inch baby, with the skin tone matched to the mother and fathers’.

Of the parents surveyed in the United Kingdom, 27 per cent said that they would consider commissioning a model, which makes it one of the fastest growing baby trends in the UK.

Another trend identified in the report is that of ‘granny adoption’. ‘Granny adoption’ refers to families inviting old people to join their family, with 60 per cent of new mums admitting to feeling lonely, and 95 per cent of families claiming to have less support than previous generations did. By adopting a granny, new parents have access to support and advice from old generations and old people feel a sense of unity with their new ‘family’.

The respondents in the Channel Mum survey revealed that 68 per cent of mothers in the United Kingdom would consider ‘adopting a granny’, whereas 1 in 20 have already ‘adopted’ a local pensioner.

As well as 3D baby models and ‘adopting a granny’, Star Wars baby names also featured within the report, with 77 per cent of parents saying that they would consider naming their child after a Star Wars character. Fathers were found to be three times as likely to suggest a Star Wars name, than mothers.

Finn, Ezra, Rey, Roan and Hux (all characters from Star Wars: The Force Awakens) were amongst the most popular Star Wars names of 2016.

Baby heartbeat kits are another trend for 2016, with more than 1 in 3 expecting parents having already bought the £25 device, which lets one record the sound of an unborn baby’s heartbeat. A further 91 per cent said that they would like to try out the gadget.

A perhaps more controversial trend found within the Channel Mum research was that of ‘breast friend nursing’, whereby mums breastfeed other women’s children. Of the mothers in the survey, 60 per cent said that they would consider ‘breast friend nursing’, however, 31 per cent said that they would not feel comfortable with another woman breastfeeding their child.

Another trend being adopted across the country is labour videos, where fathers film the birth of their children. According to the research, 24 per cent of parents make their own videos from the delivery room, 37 per cent of which actually capture the moment the child is born.

Of the respondents, 70 per cent said that they wanted the videos so they can remember the moment, whereas 64 per cent said that TV programmes such as One Born Every Minute have made capturing the birth more normalised. As well as this, 1 in 5 said that the filming was to keep their birthing partner busy during the birth. A further 28 per cent said that as they record and share everything else, they may as well share the birth of their child.

Siobhan Freegard, Channel Mum’s founder, said of the research findings:

“2016 is the year family ties will get tighter once again - albeit in a modern and often unconventional way! What we’re seeing is parents connecting more than ever before with those around them.

“Our new trends show how you parent is no longer private but something to be shared with the whole world… Modern mums and dads want to enjoy every experience, but also have a solid way remember it that others can be part of too.”

Channel Mum’s top six parenting trends:

1 - 3D foetus models

2 - Granny adoption

3 - Star Wars baby names

4 - Heartbeat kit

5 - Breast friend nursing

6 - Dad labour videos

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