3 Great Untruths to Stop Telling Our Kids – and Ourselves

Jonathan Haidt

Social psychologist Jonathan Haidt is convinced that three great untruths have been woven into the fabric of American parenting in the last generation: The Untruth of Fragility: What doesn’t kill you makes you weaker. The Untruth of Emotional Reasoning: Always trust your feelings. The Untruth of Us Versus Them: Life is a battle between good people and evil people.

The result? Kids born in the mid to late 1990s — the generation known as iGen — have been unwittingly infantilized, emotionalized, and tribalized by their parents. Rates of anxiety, depression, and suicide are on the rise. Safe spaces are in high demand on university campuses, which have become hives of continual protest against contrarian ideas and speech perceived as threatening.

Listen to Haidt talk about the three great untruths, their wide ranging effects, and how we might resist them in the following short videos: 3 great untruths to stop telling kids—and ourselves How overparenting backfired on Americans There are two kinds of identity politics. One is good. The other, very bad You can read more in Jonathan Haidt and Greg Lukianoff's new book The Coddling of the American Mind: How Good Intentions and Bad Ideas Are Setting Up a Generation for Failure.

Pouring Coffee