Parenting: Bravo-style

Thursday, 07 August 2014 01:19 PM Written by 


As with many of the programs on Bravo, "Extreme Guide to Parenting" (9:30 tonight) seems designed for the express purpose of making viewers feel better about themselves. In this case, "Wow, at least I'm a better parent than these bozos on Bravo!"

Read more after the jump. ...

An episode sent for review, titled "The Indigo Child and the Coddled Toddler," follows two families. Shira Adler of Katonah, N.Y., claims her parenting style is "eco-kosher, shamanistic, aromatherapy," and she does tend to spritz her kids with stuff, as pictured above, at every opportunity. But I'm not sure it's working.

Daughter Emma is jealous of 10-year-old brother Yonah, who's a mess. Shira claims he's "an Indigo," and Indigos don't do well sitting still. But I'm pretty sure with more limits -- and especially more consequences for his misbehavior -- Yonah would settle down. Shira is averse to medicating Yonah but no one ever mentions the benefits of behavior modification, which is often a prescribed first step before medication.

The second family, a gay couple in Woodland Hills, Calif., dote on their 3-year-old daughter to an obsessive degree. They call their parenting style "all baby, all the time," and it turns out they mean it. They are fussbudgets of a high order, ordering around Scout's mother like a soldier and showing no trust in her own skills at all. The guys even consider firing her as their nanny when she makes an ultimatum that she'd like her granddaughter to have a sleepover or she's done with them.

"Extreme Guide" ping-pongs back and forth between these two families for an hour, which is way too much time to spend on them. Honestly, after about 20 minutes, I was ready for the show to be done. But it just kept going until a contrived happy ending where Yonah was in a new alternative school and the gays had made piece with their Nana nanny. Once again, a reality show that could have been an entertaining diversion is ruined by an over-long running time.

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